Can women have it all? More importantly, can Beyoncé have it all? Should Bey even "get to be" a feminist? These are the questions that have ignited the feminist blogosphere over the past couple years, and now Queen B herself is joining its ranks.
On Monday, Maria Shriver and the Center for American Progress published the annual Shriver Report on women in America. It's a mix of research and essays about "the millions of women who are doing it all and barely scraping by, struggling to provide and parent in a nation that hasn’t kept pace with the modern realities of their lives." While everyone from Jada Pinkett-Smith to Hillary Rodham Clinton contributed, Beyoncé's essay was released on the web as a special preview. Because honestly, who's going to get a wide swath of people to read the Shriver Report? Beyoncé Knowles-Carter (her official feminist blogger name), that's who.
In "Gender Equality is a Myth!" Bey writes,
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 unless women and men both say this is unacceptable, things will not change. Men have to demand that their wives, daughters, mothers, and sisters earn more —commensurate with their qualifications and not their gender. Equality will be achieved when men and women are granted equal pay and equal respect.
This basically echoes what she said in her HBO "documentary" last year, and it's a smart issue for her to attack. Equal pay isn't sexy, but it's something most Americans agree on. She keeps the tone light, positively chirping at the end, "We have a lot of work to do, but we can get there if we work together." It's basic, but it's a lot more than other female pop stars are willing to say (Taylor Swift, for example, still thinks feminism is about "guys versus girls").