Media Moves

Shafer: What's the fuss about Forbes' story?

August 24, 2006

Slate’s Jack Shafer comments on the recent hullabaloo about an article posted on the Forbes website titled “Don’t Marry Career Women” by Michael Noer that has been criticized widely in the past few days, but Shafer doesn’t see the problem.

Shafer wrote, “But I’ve yet to read a blog item or a protesting e-mail from a reader that convinces me that the article—as opposed to the deliberately provocative headline—really insults women, career or otherwise.

“Some of the sensational findings presented in the Forbes piece appear to be gender-neutral and hence don’t bait feminists at all. For instance, Noer holds that the literature indicates that ‘highly educated people are more likely to have had extra-marital sex,’ and ‘individuals who earn more than $30,000 a year are more likely to cheat.’ So, if career women are bad marriage bets, so are career men. It’s a wash.

“Noer also cautions against marrying career women because it’s ‘financially devastating.’ ‘[D]ivorced people see their overall net worth drop an average of 77%.’ But if your overall net worth is going to drop an average of 77 percent, wouldn’t you want your net worth to be higher, which it could be if you marry a career woman, as opposed lower with a non-career woman?”

Read more here.

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