“…That means there’s something in even the most liberal societies that’s nudging women away from math and science, even when those are their best subjects… Then again, it could just be that, feeling financially secure and on equal footing with men, some women will always choose to follow their passions, rather than whatever labor economists recommend. And those passions don’t always lie within science.”
Click The More Gender Equality, the Fewer Women in STEM – The Atlantic for the rest of the article.
Note: This is a powerful article, if you can really grasp what is being said. The fact is, it is foolish to believe that women would have precisely the same academic/occupational interests as men but for gender stereotyping. It is foolish to say that whatever differences there are are due, not to biology also, but strictly to societal gender expectations. Clearly there is a large overlap between male interests and female interests; however, there are statistical distinctions, distinctions not just grounded in enforced “gender roles,” but in clear biological differences between the two sexes. Ignoring these variances would be absurd… as would unjustly penalizing people for them.
We should not be working to make men and women the same; instead, we should be working to give men and women the same opportunity to work in whatever field interests them (so long as each individual, regardless of gender/sex, is qualified to work in said field). Men should be as free as women to be teachers, nurses, radiology technicians, etc. Women should be as free as men to be University heads, neurosurgeons, mechanics, etc. The only limitation should be whether the individual is fit to do the job at hand [i.e. without unduly modifying the requirements in a way that lowers necessary (and not arbitrary/purposely-but-unnecessarily-discriminatory) standards].
To sum up, there are plenty of women who want to be in STEM fields; there are plenty who do not. It should not be the government’s job, or responsibility, to steer any group towards one area of study or another. All we should be doing is removing unnecessary roadblocks related to real bias, real discrimination, and real inequality. Saying that women who are not interested in STEM fields need governmental correction, or assistance in “changing their minds,’ is folly… and it is dangerous (same idea as “re-education” camps)… and it doesn’t work (ultra-liberal Sweden proves that). Some will say “no one is saying that…” To which I would respond, nonsense… many are saying that. Many are saying that the government needs to have a role in “undoing old indoctrination,” and thus “enabling” more women “to want” to enter STEM fields. I remember one prolonged conversation in particular, with a third/fourth wave feminist who was adamant that the government should be involved in spending taxpayer dollars to make women interested in STEM… Clearly she and I had very different views of what the role and responsibility of the federal government should be. I believe in liberty+responsibility and clearly she believes in state inculcation+societal manipulation. Sadly, far too many people want their children, teens, and younger adults like they want their medicine and natural resources — (state) socialized.