It is easy to forget that the early women’s movement began only 100 years ago and the modern one about 40 ago. We have certainly come a long way since then, but have women closed the gap in leadership or is there still work to be done? This article below, inspired by a question posed on the floor of an all-male Congressional committee hearing, posted by Leslie Bennetts on the Daily Beast offers some real-world statistics on the subject.
Have Women Closed the Gap in Leadership?
When a Congressional committee hearing presented an all-male panel of witnesses to discuss female contraception last month, Rep Carolyn Maloney made news by demanding, “Where are the women?”
Her question was surprising only because it so rarely commands public attention these days. Far less unexpected was the relative absence of women among those making decisions about their welfare. Throughout American society, the dramatic underrepresentation of women at the top remains the norm, despite widespread misconceptions to the contrary.
Nearly 50 years after the modern women’s movement began, many people assume the battle for equality is largely over. “Perfectly nice guys will say to me, ‘You must be so happy you’ve won!’” reports Gloria Steinem. “I say, ‘But are you working for a woman?’ And they look appalled.”
The truth is that men continue to run most major institutions and make most of the important political, executive, policy and other decisions in the United States. And as demonstrated by the current battle over contraceptive coverage in health insurance, the dearth of women decision-makers often results in policies that fail to serve women’s needs, let alone the larger goal of equality.
So, where were the women on that panel? Please tell us what your ideas are: have women closed the gap in leadership? What would be the approach of an Enlightened Leader to solve this issue?