mage67 (mage67) wrote,

Gender inequality (and what happened to Martha Stewart)

This post was inspired by spacefem from this post

She claimed that Martha Stewart was treated unfairly and that women are discriminated against too much in general. I think Martha Stewart was treated inequitably compared to many CEOs who have done far far worse than her and got away with it for the most part. Of course women are discriminated against. However this misses the subtle points.

Most of the harm caused to Martha Stewart was caused by her fame. Her fame made her much of her money and now it's costing her much of her money. The law can't stop the public from reacting and harming people socially and financially in this way for anyone. It happened to O.J. Simpson who lost most of his money. This is not necessarily a gender issue. When you are famous and get convicted of a crime, you will get hurt more by it socially and financially. Obviously O.J.'s crime was far far more serious than Martha's, but it illustrates that this wasn't a gender issue.

This is not a pleasant thing that happened to Martha and she didn't deserve this much punishment. I'm not pleased this happened. In general it shouldn't be pleasant when almost anyone gets convicted. However, she was punished mostly by public opinion and not by the law. She didn't object to making money through public opinion so this just happened to be a double edged sword for her. She made a vital mistake; when your fortune depends on what the public thinks, you better act decently. This goes for anyone regardless of gender. This may be unfair, but that's what happens.

Martha Stewart has not lost every she worked for. She's still a very wealthy woman. Her fame made her money and now it is causing her financial harm, but she won't go hungry anytime soon. It's still too early to tell how this will all play out for her, but she does have a lot to show for all her hard work.

More people need to get into the mindset that the media doesn't always speak the voice of the majority. Many people do objectify women. The sexes aren't equal in the eyes of the public unfortunately. However there is plenty of inequality to go around.

To say that so few women are Fortune 500 CEOs is true. Is this prejudice? There is undoubtedly prejudice there.

However Fortune 500 CEOs are a very small percentage of the public. Less than one out of ten million of the public. The general public tends to have as much in common with them as they do with a space alien. This is not how the public acts towards the sexes in general.

On lower rungs of employment, when a woman files a sexually based complaint against a guy the following happens regardless of evidence 99% of the time
1. The guy gets fired or transfered
2. The woman gets a pay off or promoted
The only real defense a man could have for this is to get the woman to drop the charge somehow, but even this isn't foolproof. The man almost always has the stigma of it regardless of evidence. I've seen it happen too many times.

I have been sexually harassed by a woman on the job and I had no serious recourse when I didn't respond to her advances (her grabbing my crotch). No one takes something like that seriously. The sympathy I got even from people I know consisted of the response, "Why didn't you go for it?" I got fired that very same day for not accepting the advance and there was absolutely nothing I could do and I couldn't even talk about it for a very long time. It opens up too much ridicule for a man to be sexually harassed and even talking about it can be a career killer. What did I do? I got another job eventually and moved on. This is what most men in the work place have to do. Men can't afford to be victims because it usually only hurts us.

It's not fair for women at the top. It's not fair for men on the bottom. A woman may have a harder time reaching the very top but they also have a harder time reaching the very bottom too and there are far far more people on the bottom. Women are a protected class and men aren't. Women are limited in society, but so are men in other ways. However men rarely get sympathy when they suffer and women usually do regardless of what they might have done.

Out of the many people who have been executed in the USA, less than 1% have been women. Are women less evil in general than men to this degree? Women tend to get lighter sentences for violent crimes in general. This is prejudism too.

In entertainment when a woman gets hurt or killed, everyone is supposed to be shocked and appalled. It's played usually in slow motion. When a guy gets hurt or shot or killed it's good family fun. It can even elicit laughter. Do men hurt any less?

Women get objectified in entertainment too. Women over 50 find it nearly impossible to get a good acting job because they're not young and hot looking. This is unfair too.

The law was fair with Martha Stewart, but the general public and media weren't. I simply don't think this particular issue was about gender when looking at only the law and its execution by law officials.

There is significant gender prejudism and there needs to be more equality for both sides.
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