The answer is that it's a stock, servicey way to cleave to a news peg: Women are still, by and large, making less money than men. There are not as many female CEOs, nor women in the highest positions at companies. These are facts backed by stats. But the response to these facts is woefully subpar, even so far as to be sexist in itself. Are we to believe that women aren't CEOs because they haven't learned to dress properly, to swing a golf club, or to work hard? Because that's not just the subtext of The Wall Street Journal piece; it's the text itself. We need to stop writing these articles from another time (and no offense to the author, Julie Steinberg; I'm willing to bet this was assigned, not pitched) because they simply don't further the conversation at this point. Instead, they set us back to a time and place in which the context is that men are in power and women need to catch up by acting more like men. With that in mind, here are eight more types of articles that need to go:
The world is dangerous for you, woman! Forbes has crunched the numbers on the cities that are most dangerous for women, and number one is...drum roll please...Saginaw, Michigan. Now, this is not to say that the information or work done to come up with this list isn't important—but making it a top 10 list with photo gallery is both an obvious pull for page views and undermines the valuable content within. Beyond that, what are women supposed to do with a list of most dangerous cities? Not move there? Quake in their boots? Yes, call attention to this! But let's talk not only about why these cities are dangerous and what made them that way, but also, what people are doing to change that, or what they should do. Ending the piece with "More foreboding: all the attacks are becoming more violent" makes what could be a great piece into something primarily just fearmongery, which we assume was not the author's intention.
How to be a good mom & wife & working gal & supermodel (aka, YOU CAN HAVE IT ALL!) This is the how to be a superwoman article, and you see it all over the place. Problem one is, it plays into female insecurities about what, exactly, their role should be, and if they don't have "it all," are they not any good? Are they, actually, failures then? Problem two is, no one can be superwoman. And you can't have it all. No one can. That's why we have this word, "compromise," a word that, oddly enough, men understand too. You have to make choices, and, really, unless Wonder Woman herself is penning this piece on how to be a superwoman, I don't want to read it.
You can't have it all, actually, because housewives are better. Or career women are better. Or whatever you are is better. Look, it's fine if you think this (keep it to yourself), but there's no need for an article (or articles) about it. You being you is what female empowerment should be about, not "I'm better than you," other woman. And "career women" and "housewives" come in very different forms these days, and in many shades of overlap. To assume you have to be one or the other and do that perfectly in your apron or " 500 S-class Mercedes-Benz" is silly. You can't be superwoman, but you can be a mom and have a career, or be some combination of many things. Again with that word, compromise.