Last night as I was driving back to Ohio from Pennsylvania, my Twitter feed started blowing up about this Audi commercial.
As soon as I finished watching it, I understood why. Audi used the Super Bowl and it’s millions of viewers as a platform to spread an inaccurate liberal idea, that women are paid less than men.
“What do I tell my daughter,” the father deliberates in the commercial, “Do I tell her that her grandpa is worth more than her grandma, that her dad is worth more than her mom….that she will automatically be valued less than every men she ever meets?”
Let’s take a second to think about how many of those million viewers were little girls. Little girls who just heard they are worth less than their brother, who never even knew that was a concept? Why are we instilling this idea? Why are we perpetuating this myth? Stop teaching little girls to be a victim of society.
Let’s review a few things:
President John F. Kennedy on June 10th, 1963 signed into law the Equal Pay Act. This abolishes wage discrepancies between men and women FOR THE SAME JOB. It is illegal for companies to pay men and women different pay for the same work in the United States. So, I’m sorry protester with the “Equal Pay for Equal Work” sign, this already exists.
Audi tweeted that women make 21% less than men. This is just inaccurate. Women do not make 21% less than a man at the same job. Women, as a whole, probably make 21% less than men when you do not factor ANYTHING into the equation. According to this Fortune article, “Factoring differences in education, experience, age, location, job title, industry and even company, our latest research reveals that the “adjusted” gender pay gap in the U.S. amounts to women earning about 94.6 cents per dollar compared to men.” 95 cents to every dollar. Yes, it’s not 100 percent and I get that, but it’s also not 80 cents to the dollar as so many left wing groups propose. Perhaps one of the more entertaining moments of the night was when Audi debunked their own message:
What causes this “gap?” Simply stated, women are less likely to choose career paths that make the big bucks. Let’s take education. This is a women dominated career and pretty much everyone knows they make far less than what our teachers deserve (an issue for another time!). If you add up the money women make in their fields compared to the money men make in their fields, of course men will make more. How many women do you see jumping to be a truck driver or a sanitation worker or a construction worker? These types of jobs actually make GREAT money, but women are rarely considering them as a career path.
So what is the real issue here if it isn’t equal pay? In my opinion, it’s the socialization tactics of our society. The commercial could have taken a completely different and successful route. Audi could have made this commercial all about the promotion of little girls in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) and telling his daughter that no one told her grandma or mom they could be an automotive engineer, but that she could. Audi could have blown the roof off of conventional societal norms, but instead, they took the inaccurate road about an issue that is already illegal in our country.
Women are also less likely to negotiate their pay. In corporate situations, the male in the cubicle next to you might make more than you, not because your CEO’s are sexist, but because he demanded more money. Women, stop taking the very first offer (because they’re probably low balling you) and fight for what you believe you deserve! After you do this, tell your daughters, your sisters, and your friends about it. Teach them to stand up for themselves. Make women negotiating a societal norm.
Perhaps women genuinely do not like fields typically dominated by men. Perhaps we can push these careers all we want, but maybe women like being teachers and nurses and librarians. We honestly don’t know. If so, they’ll be paid exactly the same as their male counterparts in their roles, because that is the law. And unfortunately, those jobs pay less than an insurance broker or financial adviser or engineer. That’s life, people.
So, instead of teaching our little girls to be victims, to continuously tell them their self-worth is less than the other boys on the playground, let’s teach them to be strong and confident and curious and push them towards whatever career they want.