True Equality: We Aren’t There Yet

The year is 1920. For decades, women in the United States have strived to obtain the right to vote and become enfranchised by our government. The Senate has spent the past several hours locked in a heated debate about the topic, struggling with each other to decide whether or not American women should be given this fundamental right. After the debating ceases, the members of the Senate come to a final agreement: The 19th amendment to the constitution has been ratified, and women can vote! Men and women in the United States are officially equal in terms of rights, right?

Wrong. Even today, almost a century later, women are still not equal to their male counterparts, in more ways than one. An inexplicable wage gap between women and men still exists to this day in the state of Montana. At 74 cents to each dollar earned by a man in this state, Montana has one of the top ten highest gender-based wage gaps in the country. Despite more women graduating from college and going on to pursue further education than men, women still find themselves paid less than males in most professions and most fields of work. One might ask themselves why this is, why, despite higher qualifications, would a woman still be paid less than a man? The answer, readers, is control. Countless women, in all regions of the world, find themselves surrounded by controlling influences, whether it be directed towards their manner of dress, their sexual feelings or tendencies, or towards their wallet. We need to stand up against these ludicrous controlling influences and work towards making women truly equal members of this society, whether it be via writing about the topic on one’s own or by working with organizations like Bozeman Business and Professional Women.

 

David Atkinson

Anthropology