77 Cents

I’m mad at myself about something that I missed. This post is my attempt to make up for it.

Like a lot of people, I get a lot of emails. Like a lot of people, I forget about a lot of emails. So when I got an email from HeForShe – an organization fighting for gender equality – and then promptly forgot about it, well, that might not seem like a big deal, but the truth is that it made me feel like quite a dick.

You see, the email was asking for people to raise awareness of National Equal Pay Day (April 17th) by posting a picture to social media of themselves holding 77 cents. Why 77 cents? Because, in the United States, women make 77 cents for every dollar made by a man. That is what we call gender wage inequality.

This is an issue that I care deeply about, in no small part because I grew up in a house that was supported by a woman’s wage. And I’m proud of that. I’m also proud of the fact that my mother is an unrepentant badass who has earned every damned dollar that she’s ever made. What I’m not proud of is that we live in a world where my mother’s badassery is statistically worth 77% of what it would be worth if she were a man.

That is some serious bullshit right there, my friends.

We live in a challenging world where there are a million problems all around us that seem impossible or unsolvable. This – gender wage equality – is not one of them. Everyone should have an equal opportunity for an equal wage. That’s it. Full stop.

We, as a people, can fix this.

So I encourage you to join me in making a donation to the HeForShe campaign and its commitment to ending gender inequality. You can make a donation and learn more about HeForShe here.

And Mom? Thanks for teaching me not just how to fight but also what things are worth fighting for. I’m proud to be your son.

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