Why Maternity Leave Sucks, and Hurts Women

I am becoming ever more disillusioned with the Democrats and their social justice warriors and their endlessly contradictory culture of victim advocacy. Who has it worse? Black people, women, black women, the LGBT community, immigrants, blue collar workers, wealthy white women in positions of power who leave their job to have a child, and find that on returning to their role, someone who hasn’t left the work force for two years has, god forbid, advanced in that time period.

Show me an actual case of tangible discrimination and I’ll fight it. Show me a policy, law, or regulation that actually targets a particular group, and I’ll stand beside you against it. But don’t tell me that because there are fewer women in the laboratory, the board room, or tech that it’s sexism while refusing to offer a single piece of actual factual evidence.

I’m an educated, white, middle class, straight man. I don’t experience much in the way of discrimination, when I see it, I am sickened by it. But an outcome in which one group does better does not necessarily mean there is discrimination or bigotry. As a percentage of population, black men dominate basketball, football and baseball, I’ve never once thought that it was because there is anti-white discrimination in drafting policies of major league sports teams. Women dominate the university system, that’s not because of anti-male discrimination. That’s because the current testing environment produces more women who score better.

Just because fewer men leave the work force to have children doesn’t mean women are discriminated against. Maybe, wait for it, women are more inclined to want to spend time with their infant children. I don’t know how the same people who are so insistent that trans women have a “female brain”, can be so insistent that men and women would make the same decisions if only it wasn’t for the “patriarchy” preventing these poor women from working and downtrodden men from giving up their career to look after their children.

For starters, lets look at the greatest victory of social justice warriors in my lifetime, Maternity Leave.

Of course, not all women or social justice believers are deluded enough to think everyone is the same. But, even they push for career outcome equality despite differing choices. Guess what, when you leave the workforce for a while, you lose a chance at experience and greater learning, you may miss changes in the industry, you will lose some of your knowledge as you focus on different areas of your life, and someone else who has stayed in the work force will become better at your job. To deny this is ignorant at best and completely unfair to men and women who haven’t left the work force. Not to mention the business that has had to keep your job available to you in case you return, pay you maternity leave, employ someone else on a more expensive casual or freelance contract to do your job while you were gone, and file endless amounts of paperwork to facilitate this.

Rather than helping women climb the corporate ladder, maternity leave policies have actually made it more difficult for women to break through the glass ceiling as small business owners and human resource managers are forced to consider the long term potential economic disadvantages of employing women in their child bearing years. Of course, they could never admit this because it is illegal, it’s illegal to even ask a woman if she plans to have children even though it’s a perfectly reasonable question. Therefore the manager is forced to assume all women will. And, that if they do, they may wish to leave the workforce for years at a time. So instead of just asking a sensible question, we end up seeing less qualified men get the job and the decision justified by “intangible qualities” demonstrated in the interview.

If you could simply dismiss a woman from your staff when she becomes pregnant, the cost would be mitigated, and women who did not wish to have children would not be weighed down by those who do. I’m all for maternity and paternity leave so long as businesses do not have to carry the regulatory or financial burden. But forcing businesses to shoulder this, and women who don’t want children

In short, as long as we make considerations for social justice, we are going to punish an entire group of society for the decisions of some, or even most within their demographic. It doesn’t matter how noble the cause, if we ask individuals to carry the burden for the decisions or circumstances of another, we will create discrimination. Either we mandate paternity and maternity leave so that everyone is forced to take it and neither men or women will have an advantage, or we can expect men to continue to advance further and faster, women to be punished for having a child, and women who don’t have children to be punished for the chance they might.