Vulakh’s View: Breaking down gender barriers

Gabriella Vulakh, Editor-in-Chief

An all-female extravehicular activity (EVA) or spacewalk with astronauts Christina Koch and Anne McClain originally set to take place in March 2019 was postponed because there was only one medium-sized space suit prepped for a spacewalk that fit the female astronauts. NASA restaffed the mission with male astronaut Nick Hague.

The suit is simply a symbol of the bigger issue: the ongoing gender disparity present not only in NASA, but in other jobs as well. The EVA reflects what is really going on with women in tech, sports, law, medicine and other professional fields.

Out of the 21 candidates running for president, only five are women. Out of the 20 members of President Trump’s cabinet, only three are women. Out of the 535 seats in the U.S. Congress, only 126 are currently held by women.

The societal issue is that employers continue hiring men over women even when both genders can equally complete the same job. 

Women also still make less than men, with only 79 cents for every dollar that men, according to The Washington Post. 

Although the wage gap has narrowed over the years, it is ridiculous that women still have to work longer hours to get the same compensation as men. The ever present wage gap feeds the patriarchal system and benefits men while restricting women since men get a greater salary than women for the same work.

Women are not only underrepresented in professional fields but also in clinical research and medical trials. While cardiovascular disease is the most prevalent cause of death for American women, only 39 percent of participants were women in clinical trials between 1993 and 2018, according to Quartz.

Men need to stop making decisions without thinking about how they will affect women, and women need to fight to be recognized in medical research and the professional workforce.

Women have demonstrated that they are capable of performing the same jobs as men. Society in return needs to recognize the work that women are doing and treat them equally in the professional world.