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Social Inequality Essay

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Social Inequality Essay

  1. 1. Social Inequality Essay There are currently a number of various social inequalities that face our society as of today. These issues range from social control, to social stratification, to racial/gender inequality. Among these, the biggest issue related to social inequality today is gender discrimination. The implications of this are discrimination of women in sports and in the workplace, as well as the perpetuation of gender inequality by the media. Statistics have shown that women’s sports do not carry nearly as much value or attention as men’s sports do. In fact, “male athletes get $179 million more in athletic scholarships each year than females do” (Collins). Society places a much higher value on male athletes than they do for females. This in turn leads to “unequal wages and coverage when compared to men’s sports” (Collins). And when women do make to a high level of competition in their given sport, they are more than often objectified and perceived as nothing more than mere sex symbols. For a male athlete to make it to the professional level, he simply needs to have the talent and work ethic for it. For a female athlete to do the same, she must be beautiful. Too many times spectacular female athletes are overlooked because they are not considered “beautiful” enough by the rest of society. Actions need to be taken to help this problem, such as promoting female athleticism just as much as male athleticism, and giving female sports more coverage and value in the media. Such discrimination carries on over into the workplace. It is a known fact that a wage gap exists between men and women. When comparing the earnings made by both groups, the “median earnings of full-time female workers are still just 77% of the median earnings of their male counterparts” (Shriver). Not only do women make significantly less than men on average, India Simmons
  2. 2. they also have to combat the “glass ceiling”, which refers to the invisible barrier that keeps women from taking corporate jobs. So while you may have a woman who is putting in the same amount of work and dedication to her profession as her male counterpart is, she will only ever make 77 cents to his dollar, and opportunities for her to move up are very limited, all due to the fact that she simply is a woman. Changes need to be enacted, such as making corporations and businesses equal out the paychecks between men and women, and giving women the opportunities to move up the corporate ladder but without being discriminated against for their sex. Unfortunately such discrimination is only furthered by the media. Today, if someone was to look at a random magazine or advertisement, chances are it will be adorned with images of impossibly skinny, young women with flawless faces- society’s “perfect woman”, in other words. Such images and characterization continues into movies and television shows, and “of the limited female characters in a film, animated female characters still tend to show much more skin than their male counterparts, and are more likely to be portrayed with diminutive waistlines and other exaggerated physical features, and are often sexy in appearance” (McSweeney). What is more, is that in television shows women are more likely to be depicted as some sort of homemaker or sex symbol, while the men are shown as confident businessmen in the workforce. The media needs to recognize the problems they are creating by demeaning and degrading women, and giving both sexes equal screentime but minus the stereotypes. Women are just as capable as men of achieving great things, and should be treated as such. But yet, gender discrimination is prominent in our society today, ranging from discrimination of women in sports and in the workplace, as well as the media promoting gender
  3. 3. inequality. It is critical that actions be taken in order to promote gender equality, and to rid society of the discriminations it has placed upon women and men. Works Cited: • Collins, S. (2013, October 13). Gender Discrimination in Sports. In LiveStrong. • McSweeney, M. (2012, August 12). Gender Equality in the Media: The New Social Movement. In Insight. • Shriver, M. (2014, January 8). The Female Face of Poverty. The Atlantic Daily newsletter, pp. 1, 2.
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