Pay-Check Equity: Demolishing 100 Percent of the Right's 'Arguments'

Although we all know the real reasons the Right opposes pay-check equity for women -- their corporate paymasters do not want it, just like they opposed the Family Medical Leave Act, the Lily Ledbetter Act, and so forth, and many believe women should only be housewives anyhow -- they have created a series of arguments opposing it that have been rebutted.

Instead of rebutting them, however, which is playing on their turf, let us just demolish each of them:

1. There is already pay-check equity if we correct for years of experience, training, level and so forth. There are, of course, factual rebuttals to this assertion, which proponents of simple fairness in the workplace muster.

But, really, why bother? Instead, let us recognize that, even if their assertion were true, then there is no harm in passing the law as nothing would change, but it would at least prevent backsliding into the way it "used to be".

As Lily Ledbetter is a known victim, one might add the question, "you really think Lily Ledbetter was the only such case?" In my conversations, that is met with "oh that was a long time ago." One reminds them that the theft of Lily's pay began 40 years ago, but it persisted.

The pay-check equity law would prevent backsliding to the practices they admit occurred in yesteryear.

2. If women were indeed paid less, then rational companies, seeking the lower paid workers, would hire mostly women. Hence, since that has not happened, there is no pay-check inequality. Since even the rightiest righty recognizes that sometime in our past there was pay-check inequality, and companies did not behave as rational capitalists by predominantly hiring women, that is the end of this nonsense.

3. But, this is their all-time favorite: all the law will do is create work for trial-lawyers (whom they cannot stand because trial lawyers often sue their dearly-beloved corporate executives).

The Right especially loves this argument because they believe they fool people that they really, truly, honestly, cross-their-hearts-and-hope-to-die, want women to be paid equally in the workplace, but they just do not want trial lawyers to make all that money. They wish they could protect women, but gosh-darn, dagnabbit, they just cannot. Or, as Ann Romney exclaimed in her Republican convention speech, "we love you, women". [We just cannot do anything for you].

This whole line of BS is easily demolished, by posing a simple question:

Please name a right that is not protected by lawyers. No takers?

Look how many trial lawyers are employed protecting the right to guns, to free speech, to freedom of religion, to freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures.

All rights are enforced by lawyers. Without enforcement, there is no right. If the criterion for a right is that it create no work for lawyers, we would have no rights at all.

So, why, pray tell, is it that the "no work for lawyers" criterion is uniquely applied to a vote on a right for women, the majority of people in this country, when it is applied to no other right we have by law or in the Constitution?

Indeed, if it were up to me (which it clearly is not!), I would use this last point as the primary rallying point: we are in the 21st century; women are the majority in the country; and, they are being denied a right because it would be enforced by lawyers, just as every other right is?

Of course, the Right will still vote against pay-check equity. It may help, however, to demolish the phony excuses, especially to right-wing women members of Congress.

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