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The Article Infuriated Me.

"Her analogy of women in the workplace…is not only patently offensive but is also a faulty premise," says Mara Felsen, an attorney at Sedgwick, Detert, Moran & Arnold in Orange County, CA.

March 17, 2000
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I just read the article on the purportedly mythical gender gap and it infuriated me. I found it to be incredibly one-sided, utterly lacking in facts and more of a forum to air the author's views on comparable worth theory rather than the actual existence of the gender gap.

Ms. Hattiangadi offers no factual bases whatsoever for her opinions. The mere fact that she is an economist at the Employment Policy Foundation fails to lend credibility to her assertions, especially in light of her unabashed conservative viewpoint and thinly veiled agenda for attacking comparable worth theory.

Her analogy of women in the workplace being like 25 year olds and little league coaches versus men as 45 year olds and coaches of major league baseball teams is not only patently offensive but is also a faulty premise upon which she bases many of her opinions. Ms. Hattiangadi's opinions are clear -- if a woman is less experienced in a particular profession or works less hours than a man at the same job she should be paid less.

The issue of the propriety of employers' failing to acknowledge or consider the overall benefit or societal necessity that a woman take time off or work reduced hours due to childbirth/child rearing when making decisions regarding hiring or pay is the problem that the comparable worth theory seeks to address.

This is an entirely separate issue from whether or not equally qualified women who work the same amount of hours are paid less than men are for doing the same job. This is the issue to which the gender gap speaks and is also the issue which Ms. Hattiangadi's article fails to address. However, merely because the concept of comparative worth, as a method for addressing the gender gap, is problematic, does not mandate the conclusion that the gender gap itself does not exist.

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