Apr 30, 2004
If you’d logged onto the Department of Labor’s Women’s Bureau Web site in 1999, you would have found a list of more than 25 fact sheets and statistical reports on topics ranging from “Earning Differences Between Men and Women” to “Facts About Asian American and Pacific Islander Women” to “Women’s Earnings as Percent of Men’s 1979-1997.”
Not anymore. Those fact sheets no longer exist on the Women’s Bureau Web site, and have instead been replaced with a handful of peppier titles, like “Hot Jobs for the 21st Century” and “20 Leading Occupations for Women.” It’s just one example of the ways in which the Bush administration is dismantling or distorting information on women’s issues, from pay equity to reproductive healthcare, according to “Missing: Information About Women’s Lives,” a new report released Wednesday by the National Council for Research on Women.
In an e-mailed statement to Salon, New York Rep. Carolyn Maloney said, “I’m grateful to the National Council for Research on Women for confirming what many of us in Congress have insisted for years—we can’t continue to advance as women if the cold, hard facts of our status are unknown. We’ve seen a disturbing trend toward hiding the information that helps us improve women’s lives. I hope that this is the beginning of a successful effort to uncover the missing data.”
California Rep. Barbara Lee also sent a statement, saying, “This report outlines a disturbing pattern of decisions by federal agencies to close down, delay, alter, or spin data about what is happening to American women and girls. Science must not be sacrificed and silenced like this. We must take every opportunity to point out the Administration’s attempts to twist, distort, and subvert science to advance its right-wing based political agenda.”
Now this is clearly a systematic and therefore calculated campaign, but what I don’t understand is the motivation. Is this “pro-family,” is that the idea? These women need to stop getting riled up and go make dinner?
Tom DeLay did famously imply on the House floor that children going to daycare caused Columbine, but is that what they really believe? Given the fact that a middle class lifestyle in America almost depends on two average incomes, and getting more so all the time under the GOP, isn’t it kind of gobbly-dee-gook to say “get back in the kitchen”? (Aside from the fact that nobody would be looking for those documents except somebody doing research, who would - as we see - have a much better story with the fact that they weren’t there.)
More in the March story in today’s @Stake. More pictures in there that you should see.