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Closing the Gender Gap

            Imagine a woman going into work every day, punching in at the same time as her male co-workers who complete the same job tasks as she does but when she receives her paycheck she only earns about three-fourths of what her male co-workers earn. In America today, there is a gender income gap where women are earning less than men are even though they are both performing the same job tasks. It has been proven over centuries that women can perform jobs just as well as men. There are many arguments as to why women are paid less than men and there are many ways people rationalize paying men more than women. However, few attempts are being made to challenge and solve the problem of pay inequality. .
             Some people may say that pay differences between men and women are simply a matter of personal choices. Some of the pay gap is explained by differences in the jobs men and women hold, the hours they work, and their education and training. Career choices and training are affected by gender norms. Women are encouraged to pursue certain types of work and are discouraged from pursuing other types of fields. For example, women are more likely to become teachers, a lower-paying job, while men are more likely to enter higher-paying fields such as engineering. Many of the personal choices women make are shaped from a young age. For example, parents usually give their daughters baby dolls instead of test tubes and compound microscopes. From a very young age girls have been taught to be gentle and caring, which leads women into pursuing careers that deal with being a nurturer or caregiver. Women's personal choices are also shaped through the media. The majority of the scientists and engineers that people read about in newspapers and magazines are men. The majority of society claims that the wage gap is caused by women's personal choices. However, these choices are shaped by many different and less noticeable factors.

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