Dr. Helen

Are Young Men Between the Ages of 25 to 34 the Ones in Trouble?

When it comes to the workplace, the above statement may be accurate, according to this article at Intellectual Takeout:

When it comes to men and women in the working world, it’s often assumed that the latter get the short end of the stick. As such, a great deal of time and attention is devoted to helping women break any and all glass ceilings that stand in their way.

But what if women have already achieved parity with the men and are in fact surpassing them?

Although it seems absurd given the cultural mantras we’ve been fed, research is beginning to show that such is the case. One recent NBER paper finds that college-educated men are struggling to stay in the “cognitive/high wage” workforce much more than women. Another NBER paper produced a similar result, finding that young men between the ages of 25 to 34 are specifically the ones in trouble.

In a paper at the Brookings Institution, it was found:

These are not older men who have been dislocated from traditional manufacturing jobs after years of service. They are younger men who seem to be struggling to connect to the labor market at all. Perhaps these men are poorly educated? We know, after all, that women have overtaken men in educational attainment. While both men and women aged 25-34 in 2016 were more educated than in 1999, the educational improvement has been faster for women:..

“The negative impact of low levels of education on work rates is significant – and essentially the same for men and women. The employment rate among young adult women with just a high school diploma has dropped by 8.9 percentage points. For men of the same age group, the fall is 9.6 percentage points. Since there are more men with less education, this explains some of the gender difference in employment rate changes.

But it is actually among the better educated that the gender gap emerges. Among those aged 25-34 with a college degree, the male employment rate has dropped twice that of women:”

Are younger men not connecting with the labor market or is the labor market not connecting with younger men? Is our culture so female-centric that men have fewer opportunities? Or are the opportunities presented not suitable for most men these days? Or is it at a lack of enthusiasm, as the author of the first article stated: “..what happens when that masculine desire to be protector and provider is shunned – as it often is today – as a remnant of the patriarchy? Is it possible that today’s young men have picked up on this scorn, and as a result, are less enthused about being an active member of the workforce?”

Whatever the reasons, young men’s needs have to be addressed in a real and constructive way. Letting this many young men fall by the wayside in order to promote gender inequality is unacceptable and a travesty.