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Not a parody! Actual Washington Post headline: “Christmas stokes gender inequality”

December 22, 2013

And here’s the headline on the jump page:  “For women, it’s not the most wonderful time of the year”

Yes, according to the Washington Post’s Brigid Schulte, ’tis the season to be sexist:

Despite making advances in education, shattering glass ceilings in the workforce and in politics, and gaining more economic independence in the past 40 years, women, on average, still do twice as much housework and child care as men, even when they work full-time outside the home. This “second shift” of housework and child care, which sociologist Arlie Hochschild first described in the 1980s, is alive and well in the 21st century. And holidays such as Christmas send that unequal division of labor into overdrive, creating a “third shift.”

And of course it’s All Society’s fault that working mothers feel compelled to bake nine different kinds of Christmas cookies and sign 250 Christmas cards when they get home from the job:

[J]ust look at the December issues of Good Housekeeping and Better Homes and Gardens in any grocery store check-out line, with calm and perfectly coiffed women showing off their Nutter Butter reindeer or hand-crafted gumdrop wreaths. Or the Wal-Mart ads that proclaim: “Mom, you own this season.” Women’s magazines and blogs even publish Christmas checklists with to-do items that begin in January — buy next year’s ornaments and cards on sale — and continue throughout the year, with reminders to plant amaryllis bulbs in October for holiday blooming, make a freezer inventory in November and begin a holiday journal in December. In contrast, the only mentions of Christmas in the December GQ and Men’s Journal concern gifts to buy for her — black Agent Provocateur lingerie — and the best Gear of the Year for him.

The message may not be as blatant as a TV ad that ran in Britain last year showing a young Mum single-handedly doing everything for Christmas; the spot drew hundreds of complaints that it was sexist. But the sentiment is the same: We expect Christmas to be more magical than ever — and Mom is the one responsible for creating that magic.

Right–because Mom is a brainless automaton who does everything TV ads tell her to do. We need to do something about those TV ads–and let’s ban Good Housekeeping magazine while we’re at it.

Posted by Charlotte Allen

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