Right now, everyone is talking about job creation. It seems every candidate has a theory or plan to create more jobs. However, it’s not all about numbers. There is the issue of quality vs. quantity, and improvements that protect people while adding jobs.
I’ve gotten messages from Zandar readers, asking if I know I’ve linked to one certain news article a number of times. Yes, I know. I just think it’s terribly important, and reveals a largely overlooked issue facing working Americans. I’m taking about when Senate Republicans unanimously voted against the Paycheck Fairness Act. Their chief concern was the burden it would put on businesses.
Collins argued that the bill would place undue burden on small business, and “impose increased costs and restrictions on small businesses in an already difficult economic climate.”
“Many business groups oppose this legislation, including the National Federation of Independent Businesses, our nation’s largest small business advocacy group, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce,” Collins said.
In other words, with a straight face and self-righteous manner, we were told that they favor business needs over fair payment for half of Americans. There is no clearer example one can give, if you cannot see the problem here then you never will. There is no legal or moral reason for refusing the same payment given to people performing the same duties to the same standards. Of course businesses objected, paying women fairly hits the bottom line.
Let me reiterate, I’m not talking about women receiving extra benefits or demanding to be coddled, which was something I heard a lot. We’re talking simple equality, that two people can do the same job and expect the same pay. Workers should be able to expect fair laws that protect both parties. Sure, businesses are struggling. It doesn’t change the fact that paying women less for the same work should be illegal.
If the GOP’s ideal labor force is built on inequality in pay and medical benefits, that alone should say the system is broken. The only people who would go out of their way to deny equality would be people who stood to benefit from that inequality. Every single Republican voted against fair pay, and all but one Democrat voted yes. That should say everything you need to know about where the values lie for each party.
Job creation without oversight would just create a labor force of uneducated, uninsured, underpaid and overstressed people. This is also why it’s so very important that we protect the worker’s right to insurance. Workers need to know that when it is offered they can expect medical privacy and access to any services or therapies that their doctors recommend, for male and female family members alike. This includes access to birth control, but it doesn’t stop there. It won’t take long for insurance and business to whittle our coverage to where your insurance only covers what is approved of by the guys writing the check.
The end result could be that after job creation, people are merely moved to the working poor instead of the unemployed poor. Workers and families would be worse off, because they could make roughly the same amount as they did with unemployment benefits, lose health coverage (a death blow to budgets that can’t stretch any more) and have no protection or support from their own government. The GOP does not have women’s interests at heart. After reading their concern for businesses at our expense, there is no denying that.