Dr. Helen

"How about a nice career in accounting?"

Ashe Schow at the Washington Examiner has a modest proposal for closing the gender wage gap (via Instapundit):

And so I humbly present my own proposal for closing the gender wage gap, which I hope will not only solve the problem but also satisfy voices on all sides of the argument. As a society, we must begin telling women what subjects they can major in, what colleges they can attend, and what jobs they can take.

For example, if men want to go into gender studies, let them — that way, they’ll make less money and it will help close the gender gap. But women need to be kept away from such majors. Colleges and universities should in fact create separate lists of majors to give to men and women. If possible, women should not be told about any course of study that will yield lower-paying career choices in the future…

Among others, social science majors feed the gender gap. When women ask about those subjects or departments, colleges should tell them they don’t exist, or that all classes are full, except maybe the ones in economics. Even better, colleges should tell women that engineering, mathematics and finance are actually social sciences. Class rosters must then be watched carefully. If a woman somehow manages to sign up for a sociology class, she should instead be given the classroom number for a course in mechanical engineering.

When women express a desire to pursue teaching or social work jobs, they should be discouraged. In fact, college counselors should be instructed to tell them there are no such jobs available, along with some sort of plausible explanation, like: “There are no teaching jobs available anymore, because Republicans cut the budget and the government is closing all of the schools. How about a nice career in accounting?”

While Ms. Schow is being tongue in cheek here, she raises some good points. Many women want to pursue careers to feel good about themselves, not necessarily for pay. I witnessed this first hand in grad school when other female PhD students were willing to do their clinical internships for free. “No way,” I said, as I actually had to support myself. I was surprised at what women (and some men) were willing to do for little or no money. Their willingness to do so however, was often being subsidized by parents, spouses or the school itself. Now women want society (the taxpayers etc.) to pay for their choices. “No way,” I say. If women want to make the choice to take a low paying job, that is their choice. But I don’t see why we all have to pay for it. Do you?