You have to laugh or you would cry and perhaps never stop.
As I perused the morning paper (Herald Sun, Nov. 15, 2014), I came across an article entitled “Sorry lads, ladies rule.”
You may well know the name Miranda Kerr, but have you heard of Joel Meacock?
She is Australia’s No. 1 supermodel and he is king of our male catwalkers. But there the similarities end.
Our top male models earn a fraction of their female equivalents with the modelling industry one of the only professions in which the gender pay gap is reversed.
The top male, American Sean O’Pry made 31 times less than the industry’s highest money maker, Brazil’s Gisele Bundchen.
This should not cause me the slightest angst as this is clearly a market-driven industry where public demand decides who gets paid the most. It’s simple and fair. Except that when this same principle is applied to the film industry, sports, or other areas dominated by males, it is no longer considered appropriate. How many times have you heard female actors who have made millions and just collected their fifth Golden Globe or Oscar bemoaning the lack of roles for females in movies or the sexism inherent in the film industry?
Cate Blanchett, a woman who has made millions from her acting career, felt it necessary after just receiving an Oscar to attack the industry that provides her with her luxurious lifestyle and fame.
The Oscar-winner expressed hope that the success of “Blue Jasmine” and films starring fellow nominees Sandra Bullock (“Gravity”) and Amy Adams (“American Hustle”) would break the myth that “female films with women at the center are niche experiences.”
“They are not,” Blanchett said. “Audiences want to see them. In fact, they earn money.”
It is interesting to note that the financial success of a movie is based entirely upon the number of people who wish to see it. No one is forced to see a film that does not interest them. Movie moguls are in the business to make money. They may get it wrong occasionally, but they are the experts in this field. If what Blanchett says is true, then she is suggesting that the producers and directors of Hollywood are deliberately overlooking women for lead roles or blockbuster movies simply because they are sexist. These businessmen (and women) are choosing to lose millions of dollars in revenue just to keep women off our screens.
Blanchett says movies with women in them “earn money.” Of course they do—but just not enough to justify the risk of replacing men in lead roles or action films with chick flicks. I might add that women make up at least half (and probably more) of those who regularly go to the movies so why aren’t women and girls flocking to movies with females in the lead roles?
Let’s return to the world of models. Imagine for a moment what the reaction would be if Australia’s leading male model spoke out and said the reason Miranda Kerr earns so much more than he does is because of the inherent sexism in the modelling industry.
He would be laughed out of town. The modelling industry would point to the facts, which are:
Globally, the womenswear retail industry is worth $621 billion while the menswear industry comes in around $400 billion. In Australia’s $12.8 billion retail market the difference is even more pronounced, with womenswear accounting for 46.9% and menswear 20.2%.
Martin de Courtenay, from Chadwick models said, “The discrepancy in income for models arises with the release of advertising campaigns-that’s where we see girls earning significantly more.”
Few men were able to make modelling a fulltime career living solely from catwalking and campaigns.
So, clearly, the facts show that there is more demand for female models because there is more money in womenswear. Male models could bleat and whine, but they would simply look stupid. Unlike Blanchett, these men understand the industry and they know that if they don’t like it they can always leave.
But there are other aspects to this article that interest me. We continually hear of the poverty of women or lack of financial security. Yet here in Australia women are spending many more billions on essentials like shoes, dresses, hats, and lingerie than men do on clothing.
Whenever I walk through a shopping mall, it is clear that women are the overwhelming market for our retailers. How does this tie in with the notion of patriarchal oppression and subjugation?
The shops I frequent have beauty salons in which rows of women sit in chairs and have their nails on their feet and hands painted. Every time I go past one of these salons, I am reminded of the days of queens and princesses having their servants cater to their every whim. They sit in their padded seats while attendants kneel at their feet. I always mutter quietly to my wife:
Behold, the oppressed!
Where are all the men? Probably at work earning the money that pays for this weekly pampering. However, I digress!
The world of sports is another that leads female athletes, cricketers, netballers, and soccer players to complain about the lack of sponsorship and coverage of female sports in the media.
They argue that the reason males bring in the big crowds and high ratings is the fact that they receive so much more attention than their female equivalents. In other words, the TV networks are sexist and deliberately choose male sports over female ones simply because they think women are an inferior species.
If only netball or women’s cricket were given saturation coverage, the crowds would come flocking to their venues and we would have female sportswomen becoming household names and adorning posters on bedroom walls.
The problem once again with so much feminist drivel is that this is simply untrue. What comes first—the chicken or the egg? Male sports receive huge coverage in our media because huge crowds pack stadiums to watch them. Many of those who pack the stands are female. Why are they attending a male sporting event when they could be watching their sisters throw a netball around or smack a cricket ball to the boundary? The answer is simple. They prefer male sports because the athletes are bigger, stronger, faster, and more spectacular in every aspect of the game they play.
If a female sport started gathering crowds of 50,000 on a regular basis, you can be certain the TV networks would be lining up to win the TV rights.
Here’s what some believe is the reason for the focus on male sports. Caitlin Horsham in her article entitled “Women Deserve a Sporting Chance in the Media” states:
During the year the men’s AFL, cricket, rugby league, soccer, rugby union, tennis and golf dominate Australian sport via national television coverage. Why is this so? Men’s sport does have the advantage of incumbency. It has been around for a long time which enables teams to be build long-lasting loyalties that can even be passed down through families. In addition, there is the stereotypical prejudice against the level of women’s athletic ability as not as strong as a males and the large variety of sport available in a crowded marketplace is also a contributing factor.
So the fact that every sports fan can see that men jump higher, throw farther, run faster, punch more powerfully, and perform everything they do at a faster, more explosive manner has nothing to do with the huge crowds that attend their performances. It is all due to “long lasting loyalty” and the worrying fact that the large variety of sport makes for a crowded marketplace.
Again, it is also prejudice that makes us prefer male sports—not preference. Could I say the same of the modelling industry? Only if I wished to be branded a moron.
Isn’t the marketplace the one and only factor in deciding who gets the big bucks and dominates media coverage? Isn’t that what competition is all about? We put our best out there, and if people like what they see, they vote with their feet or wallet. If female sports are as entertaining as Caitlin claims, why can’t they compete?
The UFC brand has become a worldwide phenomenon, yet it was unheard of 20 years ago. It has had to compete with sports like boxing, kickboxing, and wrestling, which have been entrenched in our sporting psyche for decades. The product was so well presented and the quality of the athletes so impressive that fans (both male and female) went to the events in huge numbers. TV wanted in on the action and this created even more interest and passion. The promoters of mixed martial arts didn’t squeal about the “crowded marketplace”—they jumped in and competed, believing their product was superior.
It seems that when the marketplace dictates that women should receive in some cases 31 times what a male receives (modelling), there is no problem to be fixed. It is a simple matter of supply and demand. However, when this same equation is in play in areas where men receive bigger rewards, we have an urgent issue that needs to be investigated and “fixed” as actors whine about sexism and injustice even as they win prestigious awards and pocket millions.
The final paragraph of this article is what truly underlined the absolutely Orwellian capacity feminists have for the ability to doublethink. Doublethink is the act of ordinary people simultaneously accepting two mutually contradictory beliefs as correct, often in distinct social contexts.
Workplace Gender Equality Agency representative, Yolanda Beattie said,
“It’s great to see a profession where women are finding success—but it’s a shame it’s that one that is based on looks.”
So this woman for gender equity thinks it is wonderful to see some women earning ten times the money males do in their profession. She calls this “finding success.”
However, she is still flying the feminist flag by reminding us what a shallow, objectifying form of employment it is to make money based on your looks—just so we realise that these mulit- millionaire female models are still the victims in this story. Making money based upon your ability to punch another man or tackle him to the ground would not be considered demeaning or objectifying. Yolanda would probably call this privilege.
Can you imagine Yolanda congratulating male CEOs for finding success in their chosen profession? Success earned by their capacity to devote long years of their talent and time to their career—something many women are not willing or are unable to do?
Don’t hold your breath.