Equality. Honouring the 3%

July 9, 2012


Just wow.

Although this story is fairly old, it still shows that a man doing the mundane is expected, when a woman does it, it’s a celebration (link).

City Honors Female Garbage Collectors

When you think of a sanitation worker — riding on a garbage truck and dumping trash can after trash can — most people would picture a big, tough guy in their minds. But out of 7,000 uniformed city workers nicknamed “the strongest,” 200 of them are women. In honor of women’s history month, the department celebrated some of the the first females to suit up in green.

Hmmmm… let’s do some quick math shall we? Math was never my strong suit but i’ll give’r a shot.

[glad i rechecked.. almost posted up the wrong number. ouch.]

7000 / 200 * 100 = 2.85%

10 collectors in this pic. 1 is a woman. 10%. This pic is 7% off reality.

This story takes place in New York. Now i don’t have labor statistics for the City of Toronto, the GTA or outlying burroughs, but what i do have is keen eyesight enough to tell me i have NEVER seen one woman picking up the curbside refuse, litter and detritus. Cool words huh.

Now i’m not here to harp on the 3% of women doing this. I actually think they should be commended, tho i believe all the collectors should get honored, not just the women. They’re all performing the same duty right?

But in the name of equality what in Sam Hill is going on? I thought women wanted 50% of every job (instead of dominating the safer positions)? I thought they would be lining up to collect trash and heave bins into the trucks like men. I thought anything a man could do, so could women… ONLY BETTER! 

Turns out they only want the glamorous ones, the easy ones, the ones that will put them in a position to be noticed.

Still, all the above gives me more reason to respect the 3%. Who knows.. maybe they DO deserve special recognition, for going so far beyond their sistah’s in terms of trying to attain true equality rather than just pay it bullshit lip service. I guess women should be proud to have other women joining the ranks of men in the proud service of keeping our cities garbage, disease and pestilence free right?

Someone should have given this woman the memo (link): From YAHOO answers. [emphasis mine]

Best Answer – Chosen by Voters

The number of women holding university qualifications has overtaken men for the first time, according to figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). The ABS found that 28 percent of Generation X and Y women (i.e. aged between 20 and 39) held a bachelor degree or higher in 2006, 7 percent more than men in the same age bracket. Each generation holds more academic qualifications than the last, making Generations X and Y the most highly educated on record.
Women go out of their way to gain higher education so they aren’t stuck with jobs like ‘garbage man’. Given a choice who would want to pick up rubbish for a living?

Yes you fabulous 3% ladies.. your job is rubbish. So says this dumb moistened bint.

Yes indeed why? We wouldn’t want to see history repeat itself would we? Equality. I say.. I say… Foghorn Leghorn wants to know what it’s good for?
Someone please call the coroner and let them know the Patriarchy™ is dead and awaiting pickup in the back ally.
[update: looks like the post will have to be renamed 3% to 1%… i was just going by old NYC figures.. looks like the national rate is actually much worse, but why am i not surprised? http://stakedintheheart.com/2012/08/07/do-any-women-work-at-the-dirty-difficult-and-dangerous-jobs-that-men-do-any-women-at-all/]


  1. I chuckled at the stat about “women holding more degrees than men”. I’m sure the raw numbers say so, but would they dare break it down by degree type?

  2. Degree type doesn’t matter that much. If you have a college degree, there’s no excuse for you to be shoveling shit for a living.

    Now, it is an honest income. I’m not disparaging garbage workers. But realistically, when you have the option, who’s going to line up to be a garbage woman? No one. If you can make more money per year, or have a more secure income, and do other things with a college or hs degree, then why not?

    Now I do agree that there won’t be many women getting M.Eng degrees. But that’s unrelated to this present discussion.

  3. Thanks for stopping by stormy!

    I will concede that if you’ve gone to higher ed, it would be a waste of the degree taking a hard labor job.

    But the contention of this post is twofold. A) As you said who wants to shovel shit? Nobody.. but men do it because someone has to. Nobody throws a parade for them doing what is required to keep the city free of rats. But the minute we get a few women doing it, it’s time to celebrate and party like it’s 1999. B) Feminists always argue about why 50% of CEO positions, positions of political office, etc.. jobs aren’t held by women. They don’t care that many women aren’t willing to put up with the sacrifices required to hold those positions, they simply want them filled out to 50% for equality’s sake. So the reverse must also hold for the non glamorous jobs at the bottom too.

    Lastly, and a whole separate post, is that now women earn more higher ed degrees than men, slowly taking even more of the ‘glam’ jobs, leaving men to only hold down the labor and industrial jobs women don’t want or find glamorous, and women’s tendency to want to get together with successful men of higher stature, will lead to a sort of civil war amongst women who will fight over the very few men, while the majority of men walk out of the game altogether. We’ll keep seeing more ‘Where are all the good men’ and ‘Man up’ articles exploding at an exponential rate.

  4. I agree with everything you’re saying. There have been some studies that have proved discrimination, but overall, I don’t think that I’ve been discriminated against so far in my life. And I’m in a field that is mostly male.

    I don’t understand the “where are all the good men” things. I’ve been intimidated and afraid of men, due to reasons I’d rather not share, and things I acknowledge are my own issues. But I do recall my first year of college a friend asking me how I knew a guy was a nice guy (after I got a pretty nice, but very socially inept boyfriend; I love engineers, can’t you tell?). “It’s pretty freaking obvious,”I said. “He’s the exact opposite of [the guy who kept using her for sex].” I think some women just lack the ability to discern which men would make a good mate. It’s not men’s fault as a whole they can’t make good choices.

  5. “I think some women just lack the ability to discern which men would make a good mate. It’s not men’s fault as a whole they can’t make good choices.”

    I’m confused. Are you saying it’s not men’s fault that the women you’re describing continuously chose poor mates? Or are you saying its not the women’s fault they continuously chose poor mates?

    I’d agree with you on the first – if a woman consistently chooses to sleep with suave, sexy, player guys that use them for sex…. Well, if that’s who the guy is, its not his fault she tried to convince herself he was something other than what he is.

    if the second…. Well, I don’t agree with it, but I have a feeling you mean the first interpretation anyways.

  6. I’d disagree with you on the importance of degree type Stormy. Any degree with the word “Studies” in the title is likely to pretty much qualify you to do nothing unless you get a PhD in it and proceed to teach it to others. Nice work if you can get it I supposed but the number of positions are not huge relative to the number of graduates.

    Also there are plenty of stories of people with things like PhD’s in physics or Engineering who prefer something less stressful like teaching or even janitorial work. Plus generally speaking garbage men get paid pretty well and have fairly short hours. It isn’t exactly a pleasant job, but the money is good and the hours are short. These are not inconsiderable advantages to such work.

  7. I mean that the poor choices some women make aren’t men’s fault. There we go.

  8. I said degree type is fairly irrelevant to our conversation. A college degree even in something as stupid as “women’s studies” or communications can at least get you a manager’s position in retail or an office job. You don’t see many degree holders cleaning toilets.

    Though I guess, now that I think about it, professional degrees are hugely different from say, just a bachelor’s. I’ve been thinking strictly in terms of BS/BA, then Master’s, then PhD, but there’s also DVM, and MD, and JD, and PharmD, etc. etc. Even nurses have secure jobs with decent pay. So I see the point to your argument. We’d have to get some statistics and do some surveys to see more depth lol.

  9. Really? What kind of a moron would employ a women’s studies major? Just what you want, a person with a degree in grievance mongering who likely has an enormous chip on her shoulder and who as imbibed the idiocy that the personal is political.

    I wasn’t thinking something like a nursing degree (why isn’t this a trade though?). I think we basically agree, vocational training and degrees with hard science components etc, I am sure we agree are generally of value.

    I was just thinking there are a tonne of soft degrees out there that don’t really qualify you to do anything but flip burgers (and then only marginally so) and whine about how oppressed you are. Apparently women like these sorts of degrees far more than more vocation oriented degrees.

    I laugh every time I hear about women earning more degrees while leaving out what the degrees are in. I remember back at uni the number of women doing “early childhood” degrees, which basically qualifies you to do child care.

  10. My perspective of bs degrees is a bit skewed because I don’t know anyone majoring in “…. studies.” That said there are a ton of minority/women’s right group organizations, magazines, journals, etc. in which you could do something with those degrees.

    I think someone can do something with essentially any degree, it just depends on the work experience, internships, volunteering, and connections you make in college. And how many people you spam with your resume. But there are also people who are largely successful without any degrees at all so we can also talk about that. (Are men without degrees more successful than women without degrees? Could this be a reason for why women degree earn at a larger rate, because it’s an easier road to some sort of success?)

    I think women are shifting more and more to professional degrees (though soft degrees are still more popular), over PhD’s in the sciences. For example, engineering and hard research still don’t appeal to women. But women who are interested in science might like being able to consult with individuals over their health…and that’s where you enter nursing, medical school, pharmacy school, etc. Pharmacists are mostly female, I believe.

    I think it also depends on the science. At my school I notice chemical engineering, neuroscience, chemistry, biology, biomedical engineering, and the environmental sciences tend to attract women. These are sciences of living things, or related to living things. Things like math, physics, astronomy, and mechanical and civil engineering tend to attract men. It’s interesting.

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