Gender inequality essay

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Introduction

Gender related issues begin as early as before one is born. Chants like “it is a boy” or “it is a girl” are very common when pregnant women visit the doctors for the sonic imaging technology scan. In the view of Bornstein, K. (2013), it were to be better off if the doctor or the family members would refer to the unborn babies as just “it” and not a she or a he. These genders that are assigned to us at birth tie us down to a course in life that supports that we are either male or female. It is as though there is stigmatization associated with one failing to fit in these so imaginable gender groupings. Failure to make it to the expected gender perceptions of the community can turn to be a laughing stalk of his friends and the entire world as well.

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For instance, it is considered weird that a man will cry in the public or for a woman to fail to give birth to a child even if out of wedlock past certain age of life (Ahn, Roll, Zeng, Frey, Reiman & Ko, 2016). It is like there are attachments to who is a man or a woman. Social experts have noted that these behaviors and reactions towards people are detrimental and have huge impacts on the potential of the society that we live in since people end up being selectively productive in fear of being branded unfit for their gender. This study is of the view that because of the way our boys and girls a raised, this will lead to a system that continues to have inequality between men and women.

Given the above problem, this study engages the subject of gender inequality in the United State in the modern day. Key issues that the study seeks to establish are whether the U.S. still experiences gender inequality issues and if so, of what magnitude. Further, the various traits of gender inequality that are unconsciously exhibited by the society will be looked at. Towards the end of the research work, the personal take on the subject matter is given plus some concluding remarks to sign off the study.

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Evidence of gender inequality in the United States

The general assumption is that women in America are way better off as compared to women in other countries. That is however partially true since a 2015 UN report revealed rampant cases of gender inequality in the country. The report was generated by a UN delegation led by human rights experts from the UK, Costa Rica and Poland. According to (Schneider, 2013) report painted a glaring picture of some of the most affected fields as far as inequality on gender basis is concerned among the Americans.

According to the “Girl” script by Jamaica Kancid (Kincaid & Bonetti, 1992), a visiting lecturer at Harvard University, the problem to do with gender inequality is inherited right from the way the society and our parents brings us up. In her script, she uses a dozen of examples to show how the role of girls seems diminished in the society like taking part to iron her father’s shirts and generally being of service to her brothers and the entire family. That in her view establishes the dominance that the male gender exercises at the workplace and anywhere else. She wonders why the boys and girls cannot take shifts in carrying out the tasks assigned to the girls. Fisher, & Naidoo, (2016) argues that would do a great deal of good to the society since the masculinity and femininity notions will have been dealt with at earlier stages and the population will grow acknowledging each of the two genders as equals in the society.

The Gender Workbook presents another interesting point of view in the efforts to explain issues to do with gender inequality. The argument is from the commonly asked questions in the normal human settings including our homes: “are you a real man?” or, “are you a real woman?” It is the reasons given for one to be “a real man” or “a real woman” that astonishes the author. Things like peeing while standing as compared to peeing while squatting are what the society claims to be pertinent in the definition of the “reality” of a person. The author argues that is quite unfortunate since it instills false fear and analogies in the minds of children right from their childhood age to their adult life. It further goes on to affect their career choice since there are roles for “real men “ and roles for “real women” and that the two should never be compromised (Kivel, 2007). That in the view of the author is the basis of a misinformed society that thrives on false analogies breeding gender inequality in the later stages of life. Thanks to the information power, the 21st century seems to be changing the way people viewed themselves and are beginning to accept more of what seemed opposite gender’s roles.

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The general feeling as one walks in the streets of major cities in the US gives an atmosphere of attitudes, believes and perceptions that are held on the gender basis of the population. For instance, the patriarchy system explains the phenomenon in terms of the common perception that all men are abusive and exploitive in nature (Johnson, 2004). This further breeds the believe that when a man and a woman are in controversy, the public will definitely rally behind the woman since “the man has to be wrong” even if the people do not have the evidence to prove it. As a result, this has seen men get bullied in the open without anyone handing them support while on the other hand, no man can dare “touch” a lady in the public for the obvious consequences of wrath from the public. Bornstein, (2013) notes that the asymmetrical treatment between the genders has its roots in the legal policies of the globe today. There are so many organizations both public and private that defend the rights of women since the inception of the infamous Beijing Conference of 1984, yet there are hardly any organizations that defend the rights of men from similar basic rights violations (Schneider, 2013).

Finally, a salient feature of the propulsion of gender inequality in the US is the use of violence against women. A classic example is the case of Laura (Sex Workers_Amnesty.pdf) who was tortured and her property including a phone and cash taken away from her at knife point. The fact that she is a street sex worker does not warrant any man to violate her basic human right of security as the constitution demands that the government to provide these basic rights to all citizens indiscriminate of occupation, race or even ethnicity. Ferrant, (2014) says someone may be tempted to think that the robbers work alongside the police to perpetrate these violations of women rights since it does not make sense to have people violated in the streets in a country where the ratio of police officers to that of the citizens is so close.

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Conclusion

Form the above analysis, the problem of gender inequality is a grave matter in the United States of America. The country known as the mother of civilization sets an unlikely precedence when it comes to defending the rights of a vulnerable group of the society, the women. Through the various advocacy groups like the UN, America has been in the forefront to fight any sort of inequitable treatment directed towards any one including going into war sometimes like in the case of Afghanistan and Iraq. However, if the country has to win against itself in the field of inequality, there has to be immense changes in the law of the country. The policies and legal procedures need to be amended to cover all the various problems related to the subject matter of inequality on gender basis at least if not in all sectors, then in the health related ones.

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  1. Ahn, H., Roll, S. J., Zeng, W., Frey, J. J., Reiman, S., & Ko, J. (2016). Impact of income inequality on workers’ life satisfaction in the U.S.: A multilevel analysis. Social Indicators Research, 128(3), 1347-1363. doi:http://dx.doi.org.ezp-02.lirn.net/10.1007/s11205-015-1082-7
  2. Bornstein, K. (2013). My gender workbook: How to become a real man, a real woman, the real you, or something else entirely. Routledge Publications, New York.
  3. Ferrant, G. (2014). The multidimensional gender inequalities index (MGII): A descriptive analysis of gender inequalities using MCA. Social Indicators Research, 115(2), 653-690. doi:http://dx.doi.org.ezp-02.lirn.net/10.1007/s11205-012-0233-3
  4. Fisher, B., & Naidoo, R. (2016). The geography of gender inequality. PLoS One, 11(3) doi:http://dx.doi.org.ezp-02.lirn.net/10.1371/journal.pone.0145778
  5. Johnson, A. G. (2004). Patriarchy, the system. Women’s lives: Multicultural perspectives, Routledge publications.
  6. Kincaid, J., & Bonetti, K. (1992). An Interview with Jamaica Kincaid. The Missouri Review, 15(2), 123-142.
  7. Kivel, P. (2007). The act-like-a-man box. Men’s lives: A journal of psychology, Social Indicators Research Bureau, 148-150.
  8. Schneider, M. P., & A. (2013). Illustrating the implications of how inequality is measured: Decomposing earnings inequality by race and gender. Journal of Labor Research, 34(4), 476-514. doi:http://dx.doi.org.ezp-02.lirn.net/10.1007/s12122-013-9168-y
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