As a working woman, I’m offended by California’s new law requiring corporate boards to consist of up to half female members by 2021.
Proponents of the law praise it as “glass ceiling-shattering.” But having the ceiling dropped down on women through mandatory gender quotas is hardly the same feat as climbing to new heights on their own ability.
Woman have made huge strides in the workplace over the past decades—gaining higher educations, filling more advanced roles, earning higher incomes, and pushing the envelope on flexibility and family-friendly policies that benefit men and women alike.
California’s new law not only fails to recognize the gains women have made, it implies that women are undeserving based on their own merits.
A 2017 PwC analysis found that while a majority of companies in the S&P 500 had at least one woman on their boards, only 25 percent had two or more. Certain lawmakers don’t think that gender ratio is adequate.
They seem to think they know how to run businesses better than corporate managers. One of the bill’s sponsors, Democratic Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson, reportedly said, “We are going to require this because it’s going to benefit the economy. It’s going to benefit each of these companies.”
That’s a scary notion. What other ways do politicians think they need to interject themselves in private businesses’ operations for the supposed benefits of those corporations and the economy?