With this presidential election featuring the first female presidential nominee to represent a major party, sexism is back in the spotlight.
Throughout the election — as well as her career — Clinton has had to endure moments of sexism repeatedly. Last week, I wrote about how Fox News host Brit Hume deemed her "not necessarily attractive" after the first debate. Being the first woman with a chance at the presidency has also reinvigorated conversations about equal pay for women, paternity leave, and the underrepresentation of women in Congress.
In a new Vox video, Avengers director and Buffy the Vampire Slayer creator Joss Whedon tackles a few of these issues. Standing alongside Vox reporter Liz Plank, Whedon explains that women still make 21 percent less money than women and Congress is made up of 80 percent men. He also references the fact that nobody tells Donald Trump to smile, although Clinton receives that critique all the time.
Throughout the video, Plank is cheekily writing the messages down for Whedon to read off. The presumption, of course, being that men might listen to another man but not to Plank. Especially about such important issues as the wearing of cargo pants. (
There is good news, though: in Massachusetts, one of the most progressive equal pay laws ever was recently signed. The law "promotes salary transparency, restricts employers from asking candidates about salary history, and gives legal incentives to companies that conduct salary reviews," according to The Boston Globe. The salary history component is huge for women, who will no longer be restricted by previous salaries that may have been driven down by gender inequity.
As far as Congress, well — Clinton could change things. Several studies have shown that female leaders inspire more female leaders, and with more women in government things like women's issues are spoken about a lot more frequently.
In other words: sexism is real, it's here, but it's losing.