The Bruce platform

Isn’t the reality that we’re still having a conversation about paying women and men equally a little bit—uhh—you know … embarrassing? I mean, jeez, who the heck is against this position? And who exactly is paying their lobbyists?

This debate, if you can call it that, was recently refreshed by both President Obama, who mentioned it in his State of the Union speech, and Oscar winner Patricia Arquette, who reminded viewers that the gender pay gap still exists, and it still sucks. But it's odd. We'll talk about it, everybody will nod and agree that it sucks, and then—forget about it.

In '89, Laurie Anderson released a song called “Beautiful Red Dress” in which she noted that women were making, on average, 77 cents for every dollar a man earned. As of 2013, that figure had skyrocketed all the way up to—78 cents. At this rate, women will achieve salary equality in approximately 2525. No, really. The year 2525. Work it out. Of course, the planet at that time will look a lot like the conclusion of the film A.I., where lots of slim, elegant cyborgy humanoids will be cruising around in their sleek submarines, darting in and out of the submerged skylines of Manhattan, Miami, Tokyo, etc., so something like gender pay equality will be about as significant as your basic Anasazi petroglyph.

In fact, there are two propositions that should be passed into national law instantly, as in the next five minutes, but instead just continue to dangle, avoided by our Congress as fervently as Kryptonite enemas are avoided by Superman. The first of these props is, obviously, equal pay for equal work. You know. Duh. In fact, not just duh, but duh, duh, duh. Argument for—it's the decent, fair, and right thing to do. Argument against—it allows us white men to hang on to a considerable chunk of one of our most beloved precious resources, namely our apparently inexhaustible reservoir of dickishness. The sobering fact that an equal pay for equal work referendum would probably just barely pass by a vote of 52-48 percent or something equally squeaky speaks volumes about Reasonable Behavior's current status in the USA, which resides somewhere between Stupid Clod and Troglodyte.

And the other bill that should be instantly passed, but is held in the same strange limbo as equal pay—background checks at Fucking Gun Shows. Ninety percent of us want this idea to become law. And yet, nada. So once again, a weary, bewildered nation looks around and says—WTF? And then, “Top off my drink, please.”

In last week's rave about the DAMV, I opined that we need a spiffy new DMV office here in Reno. To be clear, I didn't mean we should shut down the Galletti office and replace it, but build a gleaming new DMV office in addition to the current faciity.