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Why Are Women Falling Behind?
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Why do women keep getting pushed to the back of the line?

The sociological history of the United States has been defined by struggles for equality with the landed white males, presenting as straight, who founded the republic. Though it’s still a continuing effort, the abolitionist movement and the fight for racial civil rights scored the first major triumph, emancipation in the mid-19th century.

Gender equality and feminism achieved the second big win with the ratification of women’s suffrage in 1920. Since then, however, equal rights for women have frequently taken a back seat to other liberation struggles that got off the ground later. The Equal Rights Amendment was never ratified, putting the United States among the tiny minority of nations that do not specifically guarantee equality between men and women in their constitutions. The Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health decision made the U.S. one of just three countries in the world to have rolled back the federally guaranteed right to an abortion since 1994.

The worrisome stalling of women’s progress is highlighted by the bipartisan passage in the Senate of a bill that will codify same-sex marriage at the federal level. The bill is now headed to certain passage by the Democratic-controlled House and will be signed into law by President Joe Biden.

In this era of extreme polarization, it’s newsworthy that 12 Republicans crossed the aisle to vote alongside Democrats. What’s really interesting is that the Respect for Marriage Act addresses a theoretical threat to liberty over one that is extant. In the Dobbs opinion, Justice Clarence Thomas argued that the Supreme Court’s newfound skepticism of a constitutional privacy right undermines the case law used to legalize contraception and same-sex marriage, and invited petitioners to bring test cases to the high court. But there was no indication gay marriage was on the judicial chopping block. Nor did the incoming Republican House leadership signal it wanted a ban — not that one would have survived the Senate or a presidential veto. This was a “just in case” move.

Abortion rights, on the other hand, were actually eviscerated by Dobbs. Half the states, comprising most of the area of the country and nearly half its population, ban abortion. Only 15 states allow the procedure without restrictions. Yet there is no possibility that the incoming Republican House will consider codifying Roe v. Wade at the national level. Even Democrats, packing their bags, offered only tepid lip service. As with the Equal Rights Amendment, women will have to wait.

As seen with the progress on same-sex marriage, the movement for LGBTQ equality keeps moving forward — and at an impressive rate.


It’s harder to identify a discrete official start of the transgender rights movement, but media and political consciousness began to focus on the T in LGBT in the 1970s and 1980s. There still isn’t a federal law designating transgender people as a protected class, but the Supreme Court’s 2020 Bostock v. Clayton County decision prohibits employment discrimination against transgender people. By way of comparison, it remains legal to fire someone because they are too young, specifically under age 40.

Stonewall augured the rise of the gay rights movement 121 years after the Women’s Rights Convention in Seneca Falls, New York, did the same for women. Why does the women’s struggle, which got off the ground so much sooner, seem to have stalled, or even lost ground compared to more recent movements?

Barbara Jordan, the trailblazing congresswoman from Texas who won national attention during the Watergate hearings, said that she found it even more challenging to be a female politician than a Black one. In a country built on slavery and cursed by racism still embodied by racist policing every single day in every single town, that’s saying a lot.

Yet evidence that women are stuck is everywhere to see. Looking ahead to the 2024 presidential campaign, the growing buzz around Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, coupled with the poor approval ratings for Vice President Kamala Harris, raises the possibility that we might see a gay man become president before a woman — and remember, it’s been 38 years since Geraldine Ferraro became the first woman on a major party presidential ticket. Progress in closing the pay gap between men and women has stalled at 84%, with no sign of improvement in sight.

It is ironic that women, who comprise the biggest demographic of any of the traditionally oppressed minorities in the United States, are having such a hard time compared to smaller groups who got started later.

Hell, women aren’t even a minority at all.

Ted Rall (Twitter: @tedrall), the political cartoonist, columnist and graphic novelist, co-hosts the left-vs-right DMZ America podcast with fellow cartoonist Scott Stantis.

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  1. UR2 says:

    Perhaps the mystery you perceive has to do with generalizing ‘women’. ‘Men’s rights’ would have people scratching their heads. Never have l ever imagined that men are so simple that they can all be put into one catagory on any issue. Lets give that same respect to women. Most/many women are against abortion and divorce; they have no interest in breaking the glass ceiling or proving that they can do anything a man can do. They know their life’s work is significant and unique.

    • Agree: Bardon Kaldian
    • Thanks: Roger
  2. Are you physically capable of posting even a single truthful statement? Or are you just here to be a foil to how retarded communists are, as others have suggested.

  3. Could you post actual data instead of tropes?

    Women are about 50% of the population, a huge number. It is very hard to generalize. Even pay disparity comparisons are problematic; taking account differences in profession, less risky jobs, and hours the pay difference is hugely reduced, to the point it’s within a small error margin.

    So many causes are co-opted for social power or to divide. Female narcissists love to use feminist language as much as possible to extract as much social power as possible. Rich corporations love bland generalities of racism and sexism so long as it distracts from their wealth extraction. Poor white men are significantly more disadvantaged in general than middle class white women.

    This has got to be one of the worst articles ever on this site.

    • Agree: Achmed E. Newman
  4. The idea of “equal rights” for women begs the question. The question really is why should men be allowed to have as many rights as women have? Who gets alimony? Child support? Child custody? Is expected to be the primary bread winner? Who is presumptively able to allege sexual harassment? Why can men be charged with creating a “hostile environment” for acting like men? Why isn’t that men can contend that women create a “hostile environment” by not allowing men to make grotesque sexual references and statements? The problem is that men and women are not the same.

    • Agree: Achmed E. Newman
    • Replies: @Curmudgeon
  5. Why are women falling behind?

    Because they won’t kick faggots in the balls.

    • Agree: A. Clifton
  6. What a load of garbage. Some eunuch cuckold nonsense…

    “It is ironic that women, who comprise the biggest demographic of any of the traditionally oppressed minorities in the United States, are having such a hard time compared to smaller groups who got started later.”

    Women get away with murder. Women can do just about whatever they please. Law enforcement, the legal system, the media, academia, etc. are all completely giving women a free ride (and have been for a long time). Culturally women can do and say as they please, they can demand whatever they want and treat men, including their sons, however they want with no repercussion. They can claim rape at any time against any male and be believed and destroy the male. They can be proven to lie, cheat, steal, make false rape allegations, etc., and nothing will be done to them. Males being raped is funny and accepted to a large extent, even little boys, but not with females, that will bring a huge outcry and violent revenge (even with no evidence and just a whore’s/slut’s claim).

    I hope I am wrong and this is satire that I just missed on a quick read.

    • Replies: @Jim Richard
  7. Mac_ says:

    – As seen with the progress on same-sex marriage, the movement for LGBTQ equality keeps moving forward – and at an impressive rate. –

    The word impressive should have instead been –disturbing. The equal rights con has been about destruction of masculinity and tribes, to put child assaulters over us . Whatever empowering women was on them to do, not being ignorant breeders but fighters first, not focused on breeding or monotheism femy religions, failing to fight the cabalers. Everyone needs to man up, and stop following a fake script, otherwise there isn’t going to be males or females only a bunch of perv robots on a dead planet.

    The cons don’t give a rip about homos, they’ve were used to ‘work in’ the plan for dictator world disorder. Men posing as women, by just taking hormones to stop beard growth and wear female hair length and makeup it’s easy to fool people. The bogus ‘equality’ scheme is to put down everyone else for pervs and dictator schemers.

    Proof of schemes is next paragraph, supposed ‘courts’ have many smiley scheming cons, which no ‘group’ should be ‘protected’ including weemun. That’s to force some people on others, a coluded situation people are ignoring. The supreme cons dictating who you can’t refuse to hire, is dictator scheme. Ignoring has consequence.

    This isn’t my favorite article but appreciate others from Ted. On ones like these maybe he has a drink of hard cider before hitting the keyboard

    I did that once inadvertently, about ten years ago was drinking some kombucha and making a comment and found myself typing out semi-funny smart alek, coincidentally, mocking turning boys into girls, and realized kombucha has some alcohol content.

    Probably need to do more of that, since no one seems to want to go round up evil-doers with me.

    I offered Ted to do that with me before but he didn’t reply yet. He may not read comments so I will have to send a smoke signal. It would be easy to round up cons, just need some horses and ropes . . and maybe some hard cider.

  8. Anonymous[203] • Disclaimer says:

    It is ironic that women, who comprise the biggest demographic of any of the traditionally oppressed minorities in the United States, are having such a hard time compared to smaller groups who got started later.

    To answer the question “Why are women falling behind”, the answer is “marriage has been made much more difficult through legal and propaganda changes: by ‘feminism’”

    And here’s how that worked:

    Did it ever occur to anybody that women want abortion to be illegal? Some unknown but large number of marriages, I’d guess 40%, used to be “shotgun”, women marrying men who had made them pregnant. This was quite functional for women who wanted a family:
    * It was a way of establishing fertility.
    * It promoted family formation.
    * The man was obviously attracted to the woman, and vice versa.
    * The marriage was started with the man saving the woman from having to be pregnant without a husband; the man could feel good about the marriage, and the woman had found a man who (perhaps with the encouragement of a shotgun) would take care of her.

    All gone with abortion. Man says “I don’t have a problem, she has a problem — that she can solve easily.” Supposedly the unhappiest women in the US are those over 45 with an income of over 85,000 $/year and no husband or children.

    “Shotgun marriages” are the way that human societies have solved the problem of fertile family creation as far back as recorded history.

    Women know this, but are afraid to admit it. The only difference between men and women in the OCEAN personality classification is in “Neuroticism”. In English, “Neuroticism” means “Fear”. Women are routinely afraid for their lives, and afraid of men, and especially afraid of husbands. This fear of husbands is prospective as well as actual, and historically founded in fear of abandonment or pregnancy without marriage. Women will not admit to men that they prefer the protection of no abortion and shotgun marriage, as they fear that the men would then not marry them or perhaps even that their fathers and relatives would not then face the marriage. (Actually, women getting pregnant to get married has been an open secret that everybody pretends not to know).

    When feminism was first introduced in England, it was opposed by the majority of English women, but imposed after the First World War when things were confused. Looks like the English women knew they had a lock on men, and didn’t want to give it up.

    Give it up they did, though, as the 20th Century political machines incorporated women as a voting block malleable through fear, and systematically eliminated women’s security in marriage so as to maximize women’s malleability.

    Isn’t it amazing that human practices so solid, so historically rooted, can be changed through a reliable working majority and a bit of propaganda? Women’s protection from abandonment became women’s “oppression” in propaganda, and, bingo, family formation dropped like a pebble in water while women’s happiness declined like a falling rose petal in air.

    Just watch. The approaching Western breakdown of political party rule is going to be used as an excuse by women to re-institute something like coverture law. And the women, who want this change to ease their fear but don’t want to admit that, will blame the change all on men.

    Today’s koan: “If a man speaks in the woods, and no woman hears him, is he still wrong?”

    • Agree: Jim Christian
  9. Doesn’t matter if he’s right or wrong. He’s wasting our time with identity politics. That’s all that matters. Anytime anybody brings up identities, talk about how poor we all are, and where the money went and how we wish we had a union, and what to do about being evicted, and how to shore up the safety net, money money money money, the only thing that matters, and the one thing they keep trying to, and mostly succeeding in, diverting our attention from.

  10. meamjojo says:

    Woman are supposed to be home popping out and taking care of the kidz. Then they wouldn’t have to be concerned with being left behind or getting ahead in the corporatocracy.

    • Agree: Achmed E. Newman
  11. @RedpilledAF

    What makes it funny is that Ted believes this bullshit. This is how progs sound when they are trying to get laid. The whole feminist movement is anti-woman and anti-family, end game being all this gender blending going on today. “I identify as a woman.” Women should gather and beat the crap out of any guy spouting this crap. Ted, if you want to get laid, go fuck one of these tranny bitches. I’m sure you can find someone using the right gender pronoun to satisfy your every need.

  12. george 1 says:

    Well if being left behind means that you can engage in any irresponsible activity you want never be held accountable and have wildly greater employment and educational opportunities than straight men then I guess they have been left behind.

    In the area of crime victims a lot of women are that. Mostly because as a group they have supported allowing 3rd world animals into the country to the point that in most major cities they can’t walk down the street without putting themselves at risk. The poor dears.

    • Agree: Achmed E. Newman
  13. Anonymous[730] • Disclaimer says:

    This is your complaint? One subordinate clause of one section of one article of one of the nine core human rights instruments? And some whining about insufficient women in electoral figurehead positions? Your grievances are fully programmed by statist propaganda. This is why you shitlibs are so useless.

    CEDAW is the only measure that will do anything for you because it goes over the head of your kleptocracy with independent compliance review. One of the corpse-collagen zombies CIA props up as figurehead, the mortal remains of Nancy Pelosi, stormed the Senate to demand passage of CEDAW. She got the bum’s rush. Of course, she did this when Republicans controlled Congress. Then when Republicans were discredited and Democrats controlled the both chambers… not a peep about it. Your fake democracy doesn’t give a shit what you think.

    There was a time when you could withhold your puny vote if Dems didn’t ratify CEDAW. That time is past. Dems don’t need your vote now because CIA steals them the votes they need as long as they keep blowing shit up as directed.

    So until you are ready to demolish your fake democracy and impose world-class standards on the successor states, you should just shut up and masturbate to Japanese sex cartoons. That will be much more helpful to women’s rights.

    • Agree: Bill Jones
  14. ANSWERS:

    1. Lazy

    2. Vindictive

    3. Fat

    4. Smelly with perfume that triggers allergic reactions in many

    5. Constant hand lotion (don’t touch the office phone)

    6. Crabby (more polite term than the real word)

    7. Constantly hiding behind their tears

    8. Can’t cook (they make Del Taco look good)

    9. Can’t operate heavy equipment

    10. THE SHOES, the shoes

  15. @Harry Huntington

    This has been going on for centuries. Women committing murder or other crimes routinely received lesser sentences than men. Women could move away from their husbands and co-inhabit with other men, but the husband was still obliged to support the wife. “Feminism” and “women’s liberation” have never been about equality with men, it has always been about total domination of “the patriarchy”.

  16. Legba says:

    Maybe it’s because if they didn’t have pussies, there’d be a bounty on them

  17. anon[294] • Disclaimer says:

    “Progress in closing the pay gap between men and women has stalled at 84%, with no sign of improvement in sight.” – Ted Rall

    Liberal canards are so tiresomely behind the times. When controlling for various factors that pertain more strongly to women as a class than to men as a class . . .

    “. . . differences in profession, less risky jobs, and hours the pay difference is hugely reduced, to the point it’s within a small error margin.” – @Parrot Tax #3

    I learned this first in a Labor Economics course in 1980. The unexplained margin remaining, which *possibly* might have been ascribed to discrimination, was less than 5% at *that* time.
    This very little room for left improvement even then.

  18. Women are getting cucked hard. In another 50 years we’ll be dunking them in the freezing creeks like our much more stronger ancestors did.

  19. Enough of this conspiracy theory talk. Men are not conspiring to hold down women. Women have been failures throughout history because men have more ability.

    Men are bigger and much stronger and more aggressive and more confident. And a bit smarter. That’s why we still have female only chess leagues and female only math olympiads. Even in intellectual sports women can’t compete at the top levels.

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