Friday, March 9, 2012

Friday Funday: Singing The Praises Of Women

While today may be Friday, we thought it important to focus on yesterday - or more importantly, focus on women.

In case you missed it, yesterday was International Women's Day, a date set aside to specifically point out the disparities between women and men, and to celebrate the successes of women. While the day is less a holiday, and more a day of awareness, we have to admit - we're incredibly proud of the women we work with and those we know in our lives.

Over the last few years - and especially over the past few months - the kinds of political and media attacks being thrown at women in general, and even specific women, have reminded us of how recently the idea of gender equality has come even anywhere close to reality.

Even saying that things are close is still exaggerating quite a bit.

According to the OECD, women perform 66% of the world’s work, produce 50% of the food, earn 10% of the income and own 1% of the property. While we're not sure exactly how the categories break down, we certainly agree with the fact that women get less compensation than men for the same amount of work.

Even though the first bill President Obama signed into law was the Lilly Ledbetter Equal Pay Act, women still only earn 77 cents for every dollar men earn - a pay gap that remains statistically unchanged in the last decade.

There have been a number of successes for women, however - and we're very proud of these numbers.

Eighty-seven percent of women in the U.S. now have at least four years of high school education, and often significantly more education than that. In fact, nearly 60% of all college degrees awarded in 2010 were earned by women, while half of all women in the U.S. are now college educated.

The women in our own lives and on our staff all have their own successful careers, and have at times been more successful than the men on our staff. We're pretty proud of women, in general.

We still think there are some things persons of each sex can generally do better - but we're all in favor of treating everyone with the same level of respect, and giving everyone the same opportunities, regardless of what sex they may be.

That commitment to equality is one of the many reasons it's been so disgusting to hear the loud, pompous, arrogant, misogynist Rush Limbaugh denigrate and trash women day after day. The only consolation we have for the disgusting display by Mr. Limbaugh is the number of his advertisers who have abandoned him.

Still - as fellow media member Keith Olbermann noted on his Countdown show earlier this week, if any good can be salvaged from Limbaugh's actions, it may be that Rush pointed out a low bar many of our media colleagues have ignored for too long.

We made a commitment at the beginning of 2012 to be better, and hold ourselves to higher standards, for you, our readers. Olbermann himself took a similar oath, and expanded on it this week, saying, "...from now on, we all need to be extra vigilant and dial the filter up [on being civil] a few more notches."

We firmly agree, and proudly join him in that effort. The women - and men - who enjoy our work deserve that kind of respect.

You can't expect to help everyone to soar if your're bogged down by throwing mud.

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