The issue is that we need to separate the group averages from the individual experiences; (we are constantly mixing these where they should not be mixed)
If an individual is discriminated against for any reason, or is treated unjustly, that is a terrible thing and needs to be rectified; And this mistreatment cannot be justified by deferring to statistics that “women score higher on the neurosis scale”; as averages have no bearing on individuals.
However if we are complaining that only 24% of STEM employees are women, (this is a group average) then citing that only about 18% of all STEM graduates are women (so they are OVER-REPRESENTED in the workplace compared to their populating in the talent pool) is fair game, and at least a good place to start the discussion.
Then if we want to explore WHY women make up on ~20% of those with STEM degrees(again, a group average), we should very well look at the studies of job preferences and other personality trait studies to determine their affect on women’s inclinations towards (or away from) STEM, (we should also look at other causes as well, as there is most likely many causes of this phenomenon — and if we find unfair treatment or other societal problems, then we should fix them)
But the “bigger” issue raised in this “manifesto” is his allegations of unfair hiring practices.
This is a big deal: having a goal of 50/50 male-female in STEM hiring is, at this time, unfair, as, above, women make up about 20% of the applicant pool. There is no equitable way to allow a group that represents 20% of the pool to equate to 50% of the hires unless you are implementing unfair and discriminatory hiring practices.
Lets reverse this and talk about a female dominated field: Nursing.
about 10% of all nurses are men, this is a far worse ratio than women in stem; If we wanted to achieve 50/50 split in nursing we would have to greatly preference hiring male nurses to the detriment of female nurses; which means that this practice would leave many, many qualified female nurses out of the nursing profession (deprive them of their fair access to their chosen employment) all for an arbitrary ratio, a ratio that may NEVER be met as there is, at this time, in this culture, a low rate of interest in nursing among men.
50/50 isn’t some magical fairness number; instead we should aim for having NO UNEQUAL barriers to entry for ANY FIELD; and then we will get the “correct” number of people in each position (maybe 80% female, maybe 80% male, maybe somewhere in-between)
*someone told be an analogy that fits this pretty well: This is like a restaurant demanding that it has a 50/50 split male/female among it’s customers; but that would require the restaurant actively bar members of a certain group from entry(sorry sir you have to leave…), but, while this will achieve the equal split, it would be unfair. The actual fairest way to allow access is to just open the doors an let in whoever walks through.