What’s a “feminist economic recovery plan”? Exactly what you would expect: A document full of policies aimed to help women at the expense of men that will ultimately end up hurting women as well.
Such a proposal has been developed by the Hawaii State Commission on the Status of Women, part of the state’s Department of Human Services. The plan is ostensibly called “Building Bridges, Not Walking on Backs,” even though it does exactly what it claims it won’t.
The Lily summed up the policies included in the proposal:
A universal basic income. Special emergency funds for marginalized groups, including undocumented immigrant women, domestic workers, women with disabilities and sex-trafficking survivors. Waived co-payments for covid-19 tests and treatment, including for incarcerated women. A 20 percent pro rata share of the covid-19 response funds the express recovery needs of the indigenous population. A $24.80/hour minimum wage for single mothers. Free, publicly-funded child care for all essential workers.
Let’s take a look at just one of those proposals: The $24.80 per hour minimum wage for single mothers. What about single fathers? What about merit? How long until stores start hiring anyone but single mothers to avoid having to pay them so much extra simply based on their circumstances and not their performance or skill?
This proposal could backfire spectacularly as businesses realize it would be cheaper not to hire single mothers. It’s the gender wage gap put into practice – in reverse. One of the arguments in the gender-wage-gap myth is that women are simply paid less than men even though it is illegal. And if it were true that companies could get away with paying women less than men, then far more women would be hired so businesses could save the money. The fact is this is a myth – but Hawaii appears to want to make it a reality by paying a certain subclass of women more than anyone else.
In the actual plan, the minimum wage proposal is touted because it would “work to reduce homelessness, dependency on men, and costs to the state/DHS in terms of benefits to assist women because they comprise the majority of the state’s impoverished.”
“Dependency on men?” Some may notice that as a slight toward marriage, co-parenting, or any other situation where the father is involved in a child’s life.
Defense attorney Scott Greenfield suggested proposals like these would raise “a great many curious issues” due to “would appear to be outrageously unlawful sex discrimination with some serious likelihood of backfiring.”
“Higher min wage for women? Then hire men at lower min wage,” he added.
A great many curious issues raised by what would appear to be outrageously unlawful sex discrimination with some serious likelihood of backfiring.
Higher min wage for women? Then hire men at lower min wage. https://t.co/vaOHcvrs8D
— Scott Greenfield (@ScottGreenfield) May 23, 2020
The economic proposal doesn’t just benefit women over men, it benefits “indigenous and immigrant women, caregivers, elderly women, femme-identifying and non-binary people, incarcerated women, unsheltered women, domestic abuse and sex trafficking survivors, and women with disabilities” over everyone else, according to The Lily. The website, it should be noted, did not present the proposal as a legal or moral mess.
The outlet spoke with Khara Jabola-Carolus, the executive director of the Commission on the Status of Women, who helped develop the plan. Jabola-Carolus revived the ridiculous claim that the coronavirus hurts women more than men, saying that men are more likely to die from the disease because of sexism against women. Seriously:
Even the fact that the virus is more deadly for men is tied to sexism, a form of inequality. Mortality is always higher for men because self care and health-seeking are seen as things that women do; men often don’t want to be associated with women-type behaviors. It’s well documented that men often don’t take care of their health for these cultural reasons. Meanwhile the impacts of covid-19 outside of the virus itself are more devastating to women, for cultural reasons as well as systemic sexism.
It’s not “women-type behaviors” that keep men from seeking healthcare. Rather it’s a fear of being called weak and people like Jabola-Carolus who see sexism in everything and who call for constant attention to women and their problems at the expense of men and their problems. Does Hawaii have a Commission on the Status of Men? No. It has a commission on fatherhood, but it doesn’t get nearly as much attention.
As The Daily Wire previously reported, Jabola-Carolus’ other claim – about the coronavirus being more devastating to women – is also a form of sexism. She at least acknowledges the men are more likely to die from the virus, but gives a blanket statement that women are hurt more. Women are more likely to choose lower level health care work, placing them on the front lines of the virus. The fact that they are on the front lines yet less likely to die should tell Jabola-Carolus something about her worldview.
It appears her statement is along the lines of Hillary Clinton’s 1998 claim that “women have always been the primary victims of war” because even though men were dying, the women were losing those men, making them the real victims.
Another policy proposed by the commission is to further raise property taxes and corporate taxes “once the recession ends.” This will ultimately hurt low-income women who own their own home and the corporate taxes will be passed on to the workers. It’s yet another policy in this proposal that ultimately hurts women.
The proposal also brings up gender-based domestic violence without acknowledging that men can be victims, too, and are often shamed for admitting they have been hit by their wives or girlfriends and lack any services that could help them.
Another proposal seeks to waive COVID-19 testing fees (which is fine) and specifically mentions waiving those fees for incarcerated women. What about incarcerated men? Prisons have been releasing inmates (who are mostly men) over coronavirus fears, yet this proposal would only benefit women. Further, the proposed economic plan elevates incarcerated women over incarcerated men for no reason. It requests a “program specifically aimed at ensuring green jobs go to women is needed, including special programs for women who are in recovery from incarceration.”
“In recovery from incarceration?” Did they or did they not commit a crime?
Later in the proposal, the commission requests free personal protective equipment to at-risk people, “especially incarcerated women.” As if incarcerated men aren’t also at risk. The commission also wants special mental health programs for incarcerated women without mentioning incarcerated men.
This is what a proposal from the commission on women looks like. It’s just a proposal, meaning the legislature doesn’t have to even consider it, but it’s a frightening document from a government commission that blatantly and unabashedly promotes women over men to the detriment of both sexes.
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