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Feminists pronounce winner of the Coronavirus Oppression Olympics: Working women!

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Op-ed views and opinions expressed are solely those of the author.

Move over, older people and people with underlying health conditions, the real victims of COVID-19 are working women!

Since the novel coronavirus has come to the shores of the United States, we’ve received a deluge of scientific research that indicates that immunocompromised people, people in poor health, and people with a number of co-morbidities are the main groups that will be hit but this virus.

But according to a Bloomberg opinion writer, more attention needs to be given to the women who are being forced to leave the workforce to adapt to our new reality.

Entitled “Covid-19 Explodes the Myth That Women ‘Opt’ Out,” the piece laments that 80% of all people who dropped out of the workforce as the result of the pandemic were women. You know, as if nobody else has it hard at the moment.

In August and September, more than a million people dropped out of the workforce. Eighty percent of them were women. Women have been losing jobs at a rate far higher than that of men throughout this recession, figures that can’t be entirely explained by industry effects. And it might get worse.

The post goes on to note that while working parents are the hardest hit right now, (aside from the people in the hospital, or worse) working women are more likely to quit and – be ready to gasp in horror – take on a bulk of household duties.

The indignity of it all.

A FlexJobs survey of working parents found that 25% of fathers and mothers had reduced their hours to cope with child-care demands. But women were much more likely than men (17% to 10%) to quit. While the pandemic has forced all parents to take on more housework and child care, studies show mothers taking on the vast majority of it.

The entire point of this post is to end the “women opt-out” myth that has apparently been floating around in the ether, perturbing feminists and irking opinion writers. Because somewhere out there, someone said that women choose to leave their careers and because one person said something, now we have to sit through preachy “well ACKshully” articles from people who need to be offended by something. And they’re using COVID-19 to do it.

The next line from the piece illustrates this point beautifully: “What’s happening here is pretty obvious, and predictable: A lot of extra care work is falling on women and driving them out of the workforce.”

And there we have it, folks. The winner of the Coronavirus Oppression Olympics is… Working women!

The opt-out myth looms large in our culture. In a survey, Harvard Business School professor Robin Ely found that large majorities of women and men think that women “prioritizing family over work” is the primary barrier to women’s career advancement. In fact, only 11% of women are out of the workforce to care for children full time at any given time. Of Gen X women, only 28% had ever taken a break of six months or more to care for children. That’s not enough to explain why there are so few women in the halls of power.

I’m just so glad the feminists haven’t let a global virus responsible for the death of 1,159,009 people (as of this writing) stop them from finding a way to make everything about them.

The piece goes on to blame ” inflexible workplaces, oblivious husbands and bad public policy” for women being forced out of the workplace, but I’ll spare you the gory details because I like you. Basically, bad husbands who don’t pull their weight around the house and governments who won’t subsidize child care are to blame for holding females down these days. Women feel “forced” to leave their jobs because if they don’t, who will do the laundry? Wash the dishes? Make sure the kids get to their Zoom classes on time?

The pandemic has been hard on everyone, and some more than others. Parents, employees and employers have had to adapt to new hours, new regulations, and new schedules. But when did we go from “we’re all in this together” to “let’s see who actually has it worse”?

Always eager to stress their plight to anyone who will listen, the loudest Twitter users took to social media to discuss the op-ed:

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