As women, we are frequently reminded by liberals of the ways that we are supposedly being held back by men. One statistic often cited is the gender pay gap, which states that women earn an average of $0.23 less than men do. Modern feminists interpret this statistic to mean that a woman makes $0.77 for every $1.00 that a man makes. The data that contributed to this calculation compares all wages of men and women across the board, disregarding differences in previous experience, education, and hours worked.
This calculation doesn’t take into account motherhood, a worthy and noble job that doesn’t come with a paycheck. Many women choose to leave the paid workforce to have and care for children during what could have been their most productive working years. This voluntary leave of absence means that women will naturally receive a lower wage overall than men. But it’s a fair reduction because they made a value-based choice to spend time at home rather than the workplace. These women decided that caring for their children was more important than cashing a paycheck. When they do return to the workforce, they often choose lower-paying jobs with flexible or part-time schedules to allow them to continue as their children’s primary caregiver. While that choice most likely was best for their families, it is not good for the salary statistics as presently calculated.
Women are naturally more nurturing than men, and they gravitate toward certain jobs. Women typically self-select professions such as teaching and nursing, while men often choose to become engineers and general contractors. As such, women’s wages are often lower than men’s, but because of their career choice, not their gender. The gender pay gap is true in that lifetime monetary earnings of women are lower than men, but we need to know that is because of chosen time away from the workforce, not sexism.