Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Denigrating "Women's Work" Is a Scourge On Humanity

If you have to ask the question of why traditional women's work, both inside and outside the home, is denigrated, then you have been asleep at the switch for the past sixty or seventy years.

It's because with "pink collar" jobs it is assumed that women don't really need very high income since they are supposedly being supported by men, the "real" wage earners. Traditional "women's jobs" are considered secondary occupations while "men's jobs" are considered primary occupations. That was a result of unions, and I am not knocking them, pushing for the concept of the "family wage" back during the postwar era. Women's financial independence was a casualty of the idea of a "family wage." It didn't help matters that feminists like the late Caroline Bird made a career out of trashing traditional women's occupations--after all, she reasoned, women should go where the men are to make decent money. That was in the days before neoliberalism took hold and all but destroyed the middle class. That mentality of working for "pin money" is why women alone can be so easily destitute--our career choices are denigrated unless women are in traditional "male" careers, many of them truly awful jobs like medicine and law (I am glad somebody does them, but they aren't all that glamorous). If we don't have that buffer of a man to support us, we are screwed, especially in old age. I don't care how how careful you save the money, if you are kicked to the curb because you are over 50 or you suffer from health problems, a lifetime of savings can go down the drain quick.

I am living proof of this mentality. I have found it nearly impossible to get back on track. Not having enough money just terrifies the shit out of me.

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