THE FARCE OF 18 MILLION CRACKS
by Marc H. Rudov
September 2, 2008
Women Under Glass
Within minutes of Senator John McCain introducing Sarah Palin, governor of Alaska, as his vice-presidential running mate, the talking heads on radio & TV were consumed with one question: Will Joe Biden, Barack Obama’s choice for veep, be able to debate her with his trademark brusque, adversarial manner? The answer was, universally, no. Why? She’s a woman.
Nothing is more condescending to women than kid-glove treatment, yet most men reflexively provide it and few women protest it. Such hypocritical deference, in a country where women “claim” to want equality and men “claim” to honor it, is tantamount to keeping them under glass — like Barbie Dolls arrayed on a toystore shelf.
Ironically, women who desire to be coddled and placed in a protected class — where they receive free wining & dining from men; are allowed, with impunity, to falsely accuse men of rape and domestic violence; get automatic child custody; benefit exclusively from Roe v. Wade; and are encouraged, with EEOC endorsement, to wear cocktail wardrobe at work — actually wish to be encased in glass.
The result is the so-called “glass ceiling,” an imaginary boundary that many women believe men built to prevent them from advancing into executive positions. It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy: boundaries exist only if one believes they exist. Ask Michael Phelps, the Olympic swimmer who this year won eight gold medals by believing anything’s possible. Beginning any journey with the belief in failure will, in itself, cause failure. And, blaming others for failure, as the glass-ceiling adherents do, is also failure.
If you’ve ever watched me debate women on Fox News, you know I refuse to participate in this anachronistic but still-popular custom of deference. Instead, I treat them as equals, focusing on their words — not their genitalia. Secure, fair-minded women appreciate obeisance-free discourse, and the men with the balls to engage them in it.
Everything I’ve read about Sarah Palin indicates that she’s one tough cookie who will easily withstand and counter the in-your-face salvos of VAWA Joe. If that’s not the case, she’s unfit for the VP job. Trust me: Putin, Achmadinijad, Asaad, and Chavez won’t put Governor Palin under glass.
When Hillary Clinton conceded to Barack Obama on June 7, 2008, she bragged about having received 18 million primary votes, a US record. Quite an accomplishment, right? Not after she diluted it by equating each vote to a crack in “the glass ceiling.” Clinton didn’t come clean to admit that her campaign was rife with problems. No, instead, she bloviated with vintage victimspeak: Ladies, men are the reason we women fail.
As I listened to Sarah Palin accepting John McCain’s invitation to join him on the ticket that historic Friday in Dayton, she instantly impressed me with her intelligence, style, gravitas, strength, vision, independence, and energy … until she transparently pandered to Hillary’s voters:
“It was rightly noted in Denver this week that Hillary left 18 million cracks in the highest, hardest glass ceiling in America. But it turns out the women of America aren’t finished yet, and we can shatter that glass ceiling once and for all.”
What glass ceiling? If it exists, how did Palin, with virtually no experience, ascend from mayor of her small town to governor of Alaska — a very macho state? She did it with brains, guts, hard work, sharp elbows, and no victimhood whining. Despite being antithetical to her own experience, she felt that the “glass ceiling” would resonate with Hillary’s acolytes. Frankly, I think she blunted her otherwise powerful message.
The Wage-Gap Crap
Another form of the farcical glass ceiling is the oft-mentioned wage gap between the genders. It’s crap. At the DNC in Denver, Barack Obama said: “And now is the time to keep the promise of equal pay for an equal day’s work, because I want my daughters to have exactly the same opportunities as your sons.” Senator Obama, your daughters have more opportunities than our sons. Stop your nonsense.
In American universities today, 42% more women than men graduate. Women in their 20s outearn their male peers in cities such as Los Angeles, New York, and Dallas. Women on corporate boards of directors outearn their male peers.
If men in similar jobs aren’t paid equally — and they’re not — how is it possible to mandate equal pay between genders? It isn’t. Everyone is paid what he or she is worth, and that compensation is determined by job skills, job requirements, personality, geography, industry, company size, and negotiating skills. When a company offers a woman a salary, and she accepts it — without negotiating a better deal — she is agreeing to the amount. She can’t later complain that some man outearns her.
People often cite, and blindly accept, a mysterious “statistic” indicating that women earn 70 cents for every dollar a man earns. Surprisingly, few ask how that figure was derived. It’s meaningless. Moreover, it does not factor in child support and alimony, which women receive in at least 90% of cases. And, let’s not forget the imputed income to women when men pay for their entertainment and travel. All told, according to Allianz, the financial-services behemoth, women control 60% of American wealth.
Take a man earning $2M per year and another living under a bridge, earning nothing. Lump them together: each has an average annual salary of $1M. Makes sense on a calculator but not in reality. Men and women, in general, have different jobs. In addition, more women than men are in low-paying, part-time jobs. Yes, there are men and women with equal jobs in the executive ranks. But, rarely do you find women welding steel atop bridges or men changing diapers in daycare centers. So, if you take a group of women, ranging from CEO to secretary, and a group of men, ranging from CEO to Navy SEAL, the arithmetic averages of their wages will not be equal. But, because most men feel guilty for being alive, let alone walking upright, they easily succumb to this glass-ceiling wage-gap crap.
Biden’s VAWA Trap
In an amazing twist of fate, Joe Biden may fall into his own misandrist trap. Biden created the unconstitutional Violence Against Women Act in 1994 to vilify men and encase women in glass. Ironically, if he attacks Sarah Palin in the presidential debates, she would, according to VAWA, be justified in calling 911 to have him arrested.
That’s right: by making Governor Palin fearful with his hostile tone, Joe Biden will be breaking his own hateful law — thereby cutting himself on a shard from one of the cracks in the proverbial glass ceiling. What sweet justice. So, it remains to be seen whether Biden will assail Palin or keep her under glass. I guess we’ll have to wait a few weeks, won’t we!
The NoNonsense Bottom Line
In the short term, victimhood sells the feminist cause, but in the long term, it fells the feminist cause. Men never will respect women who want special treatment. The “glass ceiling” and victimhood are synonymous. Never confuse deference with respect: they are mutually exclusive.
If women want to shatter that so-called glass ceiling, all they need do is drop their desire to be kept under glass. Then, they will discover, magically, that there is no glass ceiling — only the myth of a glass ceiling, which is both a farce and a crutch.
Women have two choices: Either stay home to bake cookies as unequals, with reduced rights and deferential treatment, or compete and coexist with men as equals, with equal rights and equal treatment. Trying to have it all by cherry-picking the best features of each is a blatant attempt to be kept under glass — engendering disrespect and resentment among men.
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Sarah Palin, governor of Alaska, Meg Whitman, former CEO of eBay, and Carly Fiorina, former CEO of Hewlett-Packard — all in the John McCain circle — made it to the top. How was this possible? Because they didn’t let boundaries, glass or other, stop them. Do they have bruises? Of course: that’s life in the fast lane.
The glass ceiling is a farce, as are the 18 million cracks in it. In fact, the only ceiling on your success is the one you put there.