Girls running the world might be a perfect topic for an empowering pop song, but even Beyonce knows that's sadly far from reality in America. As far as the fight for gender equality has come in the United States over the last hundred years, the facts show that women aren't treated the same as men in society.
That's the focus of Beyonce's contribution to The Shriver Report: A Woman's Nation Pushes Back Against the Brink. Entitled "Gender Equality is a Myth," Bey's no-nonsense essay has none of the reality-sweetening gloss of…well, a Beyonce music video.
"We need to stop buying into the myth about gender equality," Beyonce wrote. "It isn’t a reality yet. Today, women make up half of the U.S. workforce, but the average working woman earns only 77 percent of what the average working man makes." But don't just take Beyonce's word for it—that's what the U.S. census bureau definitively states.
"Humanity requires both men and women, and we are equally important and need one another. So why are we viewed as less than equal? These old attitudes are drilled into us from the very beginning," Bey wrote. "We have to teach our boys the rules of equality and respect, so that as they grow up, gender equality becomes a natural way of life. And we have to teach our girls that they can reach as high as humanly possible."
Beyonce ended her essay with a blunt, reasonable demand: "Women are more than 50 percent of the population and more than 50 percent of voters. We must demand that we all receive 100 percent of the opportunities."
In addition to Beyonce, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Jada Pinkett Smith and Eva Longoria also contributed to The Shriver Report. You can download the entire report for free at Amazon.