- The Foundry: Conservative Policy News from The Heritage Foundation - http://blog.heritage.org -

Marissa Mayer & the Gender Gap That Wasn’t

Posted By Ericka Andersen On July 18, 2012 @ 12:00 pm In Economics | Comments Disabled

[1]

A woman won’t become the CEO of anything if she is overly focused on the so-called “gender gap” in her field. Marissa Mayer is the perfect example.

Mayer, 37 and pregnant, was just named CEO of Yahoo! [2] after spending 13 years at Google. She reportedly doesn’t prefer to focus on gender inequities in the tech world.

Mayer told Slate’s Hanna Rosin [3], “I am much less worried about adjusting the percentage [of women in the field] than about growing the overall pie.… We are not producing enough men or women who know how to program.”

Facebook also has a female COO, Sheryl Sandberg, and the latest Fortune 500 lists more female CEOs than ever before. They didn’t get there with a preconceived notion of victimhood leading the way.

Sandberg is quoted as saying [4], “If I spend one hour talking about how I’m excluded, that’s an hour I am not spending solving Facebook’s problems.”

That’s the kind of attitude Mayer and other powerful women also carry, setting positive examples for young women following in their footsteps in the tech industry.

However, liberal feminists and the Obama Administration haven’t caught on to the “secret” of many successful women: good choices, hard work, and no excuses.

In reality, the gender gap claim is truly unsubstantiated. As Carrie Lukas wrote [5] in the Wall Street Journal:

The Department of Labor’s Time Use survey shows that full-time working women spend an average of 8.01 hours per day on the job, compared to 8.75 hours for full-time working men. One would expect that someone who works 9% more would also earn more. This one fact alone accounts for more than a third of the wage gap.

As some complain about gender inequity in high-power job environments, it’s actually men who are suffering the most in America’s unending state of high unemployment. Men have lost twice as many jobs as women in the current economic crisis—but nobody’s talking about that.

In fact, the Obama Administration is basically ignoring men to focus on women. That was proved when the National Economic Council report “Jobs and Economic Security for America’s Women” promised that the President “is committed to continuing the push for an economy that provides economic security and jobs for America’s women.”

So while the Administration and feminist groups lodge complaints about inequality, they’re actually doing an injustice to men.

To liberals’ dismay, there’s a reason that more CEOs, scientists, and Presidents are men. As National Review’s Kate O’Beirne put it [6], “Women make very different [career] decisions than men do. This is frequently prompted by their desire to balance very demanding careers…with their desire to also have families.”

More women in high-powered fields is something to celebrate, but it’s not a better career choice than, say, being a stay-at-home mom. It’s just that—a choice.

Heritage’s Jennifer Marshall writes: [7]

Too often feminists tend to categorize women as a class. Demanding conformity to the feminist norm, they fail to respect a woman’s intellectual freedom to think for herself—the ostensible goal they fought to achieve.

The end goal for any career field should not be gender equality across the board but to acquire the best and brightest—without government intervention or pressure from liberal groups with an equality agenda.

As Mayer said to CNN this week [8], “You can be good at technology and like fashion and art. You can be good at technology and be a jock. You can be good at technology and be a mom. You can do it your way, on your terms.”

And, really, may the best man or woman earn the top seat.


Article printed from The Foundry: Conservative Policy News from The Heritage Foundation: http://blog.heritage.org

URL to article: http://blog.heritage.org/2012/07/18/marissa-mayer-the-gender-gap-that-wasnt/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://blog.heritage.org/wp-content/uploads/MarissaMayer.jpg

[2] was just named CEO of Yahoo!: http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/marissa-mayer-yahoos-ceo/story?id=16794252

[3] Mayer told Slate’s Hanna Rosin: http://www.slate.com/blogs/xx_factor/2012/07/16/new_yahoo_ceo_marissa_mayer_does_she_care_about_sexism_.html

[4] Sandberg is quoted as saying: http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2011/07/11/110711fa_fact_auletta

[5] As Carrie Lukas wrote: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704415104576250672504707048.html

[6] As National Review’s Kate O’Beirne put it: http://www.rightwingnews.com/interviews/kateo.php

[7] Heritage’s Jennifer Marshall writes:: http://www.heritage.org/research/commentary/2012/04/homemakers-in-an-age-of-feminist-mystique

[8] As Mayer said to CNN this week: http://articles.cnn.com/2012-07-16/tech/tech_web_marissa-mayer-bio_1_google-maps-first-female-engineer-igoogle

Copyright © 2011 The Heritage Foundation. All rights reserved.