California State University East Bay

The Pioneer

California State University East Bay

The Pioneer

California State University East Bay

The Pioneer

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Why Women Are Pulling Ahead in The Workplace

Remember when the man came to pick up the woman in his car and paid for dinner, all in attempt to sweep her off her feet? It seems that women are doing most of the sweeping nowadays.

“Women have this self motivation and determination to succeed that men lack,” said small business owner Christopher Ruiz, 21. “Multi tasking in a man’s mind is taking a piss and showering at the same time, but when a woman is multi tasking, she is going to school, working two jobs, taking care of her kids, cooking and keeping the house clean.”

Ruiz said that often times men allow their pride and egos to stand in the way of their success, while women can set things like that aside more easily in order to excel in what they’re doing.

The year 2009 marked the first time in U.S. history that more women began working than men.

Women are holding tight to their jobs, while it seems to be more difficult for men. Surveys show that 82 percent of the people laid off during this current recession were men.

“I think there are a number of reasons why more women are working now than men,” said Dr. Terry West, Communication professor at CSU East Bay and avid researcher of gender roles in society. “First, there are more women in the world than there are men. Second, there is now more of a necessity for women to work, especially with the spiraling divorce rate, which often leaves women taking care of their families on their own. Another big reason is that the U.S. economy is no longer manufacturing based, which was male dominated.”

West mentioned that because there aren’t many products that are factory produced anymore, a good amount of men have lost out on jobs.

Although women now make up the majority of the workforce, on average men are still earning more money and holding more positions of power.

“Women are unfortunately still paid about 80 cents on the dollar to men, thus it is more economical to keep women on the payroll than it is for men, said History Major Greg Prentiss, 22. “The stimulus package of 2008 encouraged women to get out of working at home and earn money. It created many educational support systems as well as early child care for women, allowing them to go out the home, while men are pushed out of their jobs by the depression as well as probably quite happy to take a back seat and be ‘stay-at-home’ husbands.”

According to Associated Newspapers Ltd., the number of employed women has been rising, while the numbers for men continue to fall. The trend affects young people even more. Teenage men have been hit hardest by the recession.

“Among 16 and 17-year-olds, women already outnumber men in the workplace with 30 percent holding down a job, compared to 23 percent of men,” said Associated Newspapers Ltd.

It seems that more and more women are working hard to assert and make a name for themselves in this male dominated society.

While women seem to be progressing, men seem to be digressing. There are fewer men working than ever before and sadly, there are many who seem to be ok with that.

Could this be because there are fewer job opportunities for men or could it be because fewer men want to have jobs. Admittedly, there are some communities where there aren’t many jobs available, mostly low income or underrepresented, where there may be 100 applicants show up for 10 available jobs, but people who need to work keep trying.

The aura of complacency that seems to have hit this young generation of 16-25 year old males is different from those who want to work. They are content living at home, going without a car, working part time or not at all, putting off college and not making real plans for the future.

The ones who do work, are working at a job and not working toward a career.

The lifelong goal of this generation is to become the next big rapper, or better yet, a producer. With the birth of You Tube, anyone can rap, sing and produce their own music videos and most of them think they will be the next overnight sensation. Shows like “American Idol,” “The Voice” and “So You Think You Can Dance” just help to feed the hysteria.

Waiting for their “big break” keeps these young men doing just that, waiting. What happened to all the little boys who had ambitions of becoming doctors, lawyers and engineers?

Now, men seem to satisfied with just being “fly.”

The women of the 21st century continue to expand on the rights they were given during the women’s movement of the 1970s. Women are taking on male-dominated roles, while continuing to be the primary caretakers of their children.

“Men now are more open to women taking on their roles,” said ASI member Samantha Calderon. “I could say that since men feel women are taking care of everything they feel they can just sit back and do nothing. Men are now expecting to just be passengers in life while women have to act as the man and the woman, opening our own doors and paying for our own meals has become the norm.”

Calderon said that tradition has been substituted with independence and it is not a fair trade.

Not only are there more women than men in the workforce now, but they are surpassing men in the classroom as well.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, women 25 and older are more likely than men 25 and older to have completed at least high school, at 87.6 percent versus 86.6 percent.

“I think it’s because women have become more empowered and traditional gender roles are not as important,” said graduating senior Sahar Haraz, 25. “I think women have stepped out of their traditional gender roles and are a force to be reckoned with.”

Among people, ages 25 to 29, 36 percent of women have at minimum bachelor’s degree, compared to 28 percent of men, says U.S. Census Bureau.

“It’s just sort of this dramatic revolution that’s taking place but nobody’s really talking about it that much,” says Beth Kobliner, author of Get A Financial Life: Personal Finance In Your 20’s and 30’s. “Also, we’re seeing that more married women have unemployed husbands than ever before…so the question is: are we going to start seeing the real ‘Mister Mom’s’— men doing the laundry and taking care of all those household jobs?”

As women strive to be more successful, men are becoming more content with being mediocre. In many households, women are now becoming the primary breadwinners, where families are now relying on the woman’s income to pay the bills.

In the singles sector, women are going to pick up the man for the date and the man is seemingly satisfied reclining in the passenger seat of the woman’s car. Have the traditional roles been reversed?

“The roles of women have expanded immensely,” said medical student Errisha Richardson, 24. “If we work outside the home, we are still expected to cook, clean and take care of the children. Although I have no problem with those things, I think this work should be a shared effort. There are more men staying at home and less seeking higher education.”

Have men taken a backseat in modern-day relationships? Have they lost sight of how to be “real” men?” Are they taking advantage of and depending on their independent women?

For the most part, women want and need their man to be strong, protective and responsible. This is not at all to say that women cannot be strong and definitely doesn’t say that women cannot be leaders.

To coin a couple of phrases that have been used over and over again, we want you to “be a man” and stop “holding her purse.”

In the end, according to Dr. West, there is still no concrete research that shows men aren’t seeking higher education or trying to find employment.

Keep in mind, this is just a perspective of a collection of frustrated women.

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Why Women Are Pulling Ahead in The Workplace