Education Opinion

If Men Rule the White House, How Bad Can It Be?

By Richard Whitmire — September 14, 2011 1 min read
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That’s a question I come across often. Look around you, urge the leaders of the national feminist organizations. Men rule the White House, Congress and the Fortune 500. How bad can it be?

To me, that fact of life had little to do with the relatively recent problem of boys lagging in school. But the question has to be answered, and Atlantic writer Hanna Rosin, author of ‘The End of Men’ and a panelist in the upcoming debate on this issue, answers the question in a Slate piece worth reading:

Rosin: The question I always have to respond to is, '[if women are taking over] why are there so many more men in power?' If you look at Hollywood, or you look at the Fortune 500 list, or you look at politics, there's a disproportionate number of men in the higher positions of power. Slate: Why is that, then? Rosin: Men have been at this for 40,000 years. Women have been rising for something like 30 or 40 years. So of course women haven't occupied every single [high-powered] position. How would that be possible? The rise of women is barely a generation old. But if you look at everything else, like the median, the big bulge in the middle, it's just unbelievable what has happened: Women are more than 50 percent of the workforce, and they're more than 50 percent of managers. It's just extraordinary that that's happened in basically one generation. It seems like whatever it is that this economy is demanding, whatever special ingredients, women just have them more than men do.

That’s what I found as well. Take a deep look at certain professions, such as veterinary medicine and broadcast news, and you’ll see dramatic changes. As for when more women will take on risk-taking challenges such as running for office or lonely professions such as code writing ... it’s only a matter of time. The sooner the better.

The opinions expressed in Why Boys Fail are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.