seeing red

And now for the stuff that has pissed me off recently. Inequality, violence, sexism, homophobia – you get the picture. Do read on…

Break the Glass. It’s a campaign for women’s equality in Canada. I know, equality, yada yada, it’s fucking old already. But it’s kind of intriguing to see the stats they’ve got on the site:

  • Women make about 71% of what men earn for full-year, full-time work.
  • Even women with university degrees earn 74% as much as men with degrees.
  • New immigrant women with university degrees fare worse, earning on average $14,000 less than Canadian-born women.
  • This wage gap ranks Canada 38th in the world, behind countries such as Switzerland, Cambodia, Kenya, and the Czech Republic.
  • Canada ranks 25th in the world in terms of the representation of women in professional and technical occupations, after the US, Barbados, Lithuania, and many other countries.
  • Even in female-dominated professions such as teaching, nursing, and clerical work, men still earn more on average. In 2003, the average full-time, full-year female teacher earned $47,500 while her male counterpart earned $63,300. In sales and service industries, where women are concentrated, they earn 55.7 % of their male colleagues’ earnings for full-time, full-year work.
  • The majority of minimum wage and part time workers in Canada are women.
  • 37% of single mothers with paid employment are raising a family on less than $10/hour.

Seriously. This is one of those times when I am happy to have a background in second-wave feminism. Certainly I tend to espouse a third-wave ethic in most cases, but all the gender-binary deconstruction in the world doesn’t erase this kind of inequality. What a fucking crock. 

– On a rather darker note, Nova Scotia guy was arrested a couple of days ago for murdering gay men. (On the eve of May 17, the Montreal-born International Day Against Homophobia, no less.) For all those who thought same-sex marriage would erase homophobia because we’d be all nice and normal now… think again. Men still fuck in parks (you go, girl) and homophobes still think it’s OK to kill us. The murders prompted a “rare public warning” for the gay community in Halifax. “Careful! Ya might not wanna be gay today, there’s a murderer on the loose!” I’ve put Doug Janoff’s book Pink Blood: Homophobic Violence in Canada at the top of my reading list – I want to understand how often this kind of thing happens and why we don’t hear about it in more than the occasional snippet of news.

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