Danger Pay

When I was 17, I did my time at McDonald’s. Working at Micky-Dee’s is a right of passage for Canadian teenagers. I stayed for 6 months, and left for another job after a) they raised my shitty pay at the same time that minimum wage went up in my province and called it my ‘scheduled wage increase’ which I was supposed to get after 6 months probation (funny how my ‘raise’ still meant that I made minimum wage…), b) they refused to give me training on other stations than the standard ‘chick position’ of ‘window’ (taking orders inside the restaurant) despite multiple requests, and c) one of my fellow employees terrorized me one night during closing, for which I got in trouble. I came to learn with time and experience that making a fuss when being attacked by a male will always result in you, the female, getting in trouble from others in addition to the trouble resulting from the assault. Always. Always. No one will ever convince me that men are held accountable for terrorizing, hurting, raping or killing women. It’s always a joke, an accident, a mistake, a misunderstanding, and the best one, her fault (she wanted it; I thought she was playing around; I didn’t realize she was serious when she said no/stop; I’ve held a knife to her throat before and she liked it…). Morons. Privileged, violent morons, supported by men and their female cocksuckers.

I think we need to raise the pay of all girls and women of all positions, ages, education levels, and experience. And we need to do this in the name of danger pay. Males have suggested to me before that if workplaces are too dangerous for women, then they should get married and stay at home. Yes, great solution. Really gets at the issue here. The problem is a female one, not a male one. I believe men, not wanting to be shown up by more capable women, deliberately threaten women in workplaces in order to force them back home and under the ‘protection’ of their own personal rapist/slave-owner. It’s quite the scheme.

Well, I like the danger pay idea better. I’m also in favour of the death penalty for all hate crimes against women, but we can start with higher pay. People receive danger pay when their lives are put at risk in the line of duty, and I think as a woman, working with and among men is much more dangerous than say, working on an oil rig. And an oil rig or a polar bear won’t rape you or force you to look over your shoulder every time you come and go! Women are in danger even when they have desk jobs.

So what happened at McDonald’s, that paragon of human rights in action? Well, I was forced to work ‘close’ every weekend. That meant that the restaurant closed to customers late at night, and a handful of staff were left to close down operations and clean the place. I didn’t love late-night duty, but such is the schedule of a part-time female worker. One night, I was on with an aboriginal guy from my high school. I didn’t know him. We worked different stations. We didn’t travel in the same circles at school. And he was scary-weird. My friends were ‘weirdos’, but the harmless kind. This dude had what you could only call ‘crazy eyes’. I’ve never met anyone with quite the same dead, but scary, dark pools that said to me, ‘I want to see your intestines spill from your abdomen while I eat potato chips and masturbate and hum in a high, off-key pitch’. I’d had plenty of bad encounters with boys and men by the age of 17, but I’d never before met and known I was in the presence of a bonafide psychopath. My psychologist father frequently talked about psychopaths at the dinner table, so I knew all about them and realized the truth when I finally met one.

Anyhow, I was doing my thing, trying to finish up my work as quickly as possible, when the aboriginal psychopathic teenager decided he was tired of cleaning and wanted to have some ‘fun’. This fun took the form of a long, sharp knife; crazy, dead eyes; and the pursuit of me around the restaurant.

Have you ever had the misfortune of watching a standard horror movie – you know the ones that provide masturbatory material for males and scare the shit out of females so much that they believe even more deeply that they need a ‘good man’ to protect them from all the psychos out there wanting to rape and kill them? You know, male-designed propaganda that does its job well? Well, there is always a scene in these types of films where the psycho finds the girl, and she runs. And she screams. And the crazy thing is that no matter how much she screams and how fast she runs, the psycho, who is actually just walking in a relaxed, but anticipatory, sort of way, always manages to catch up to her and corner her before killing her in some gruesome way.

Minus the killing part, this is EXACTLY what happened to me. He ‘chased’ me around the restaurant. But I was the one running. He was walking. Dead, crazy eyes pursuing me slowly. He had the butcher knife in his hand. And I screamed. I couldn’t get away. I will never forget the terror for the rest of my life. And feeling completely stunned that this was happening in my workplace of all locations (!?!)

We had a manager on duty. Yeah, we did. Really. And he yelled at me to stop screaming. Did he ask the psychopath to put the knife down and stop terrorizing me? Fuck no! Why would he do that? Women are to blame for everything that happens. They force psychos to pick up knives, to chase them, to do horrible things to them. Men can’t help themselves, you see. Women bring it out in them. Men have no control, and thus must be coddled. Women must be blamed. And the men around these violators will support their pursuits, because deep down inside, all men want to to this kind of shit. Not all go beyond their masturbation over the idea or the actual witnessing of horrors, but THEY ALL SUPPORT the terrorizing and destruction of women and girls. If your special hubby isn’t a rapist, terrorist, woman-beater, whatever, just know that a) he will never do anything to end the male privilege and feeling of superiority that comes out of males terrorizing women, and b) he secretly loves how vulnerable it makes you. When you are vulnerable and scared, it means you need him. When women are empowered and unafraid, they just don’t need men for anything whatsoever. Get it? It is a racket, and all men are in cahoots whether they are the perps or the beneficiaries of the terrorism. No one is innocent. And when you praise your big, strong man for protecting you or for being so big as to not beat you, you reinforce the lie. The lie that women need men.

Anyhow, after getting in trouble that night, after no repercussions for the psycho, after my faux pay raise, and after repeated denial of training to advance my skills and increase my pay, I left for another shitty restaurant job where I was at least allowed to make tips. The aboriginal dude stayed on and was promoted to manager (yes, aboriginal males have privilege and power over ALL women regardless of what myths and lies feel good on your tongue). Can you fucking believe it??? Kudos for the psycho, and another female is forced out of steady employment and establishing some workplace longevity due to fear and discrimination.

Think about how many women leave jobs due to threats from male colleagues, bosses or customers/clients. It’s much more common than we think, yet Human Resources Departments are oblivious to why women’s work histories look different than men’s, even when they have equal or more education. We wonder about all the factors involved in women’s increasingly diminishing pay, especially that of white women (ALL races of men as well as Asian women make more money than white women with the same education these days). We wonder why men tend to stay longer at jobs and have more success in their careers. Men don’t face sex-based threats at work. Ever. Fear is almost never a factor when men choose to leave or change jobs. Men can stay, increase their skills, standing, and pay, while benefiting profusely every time a woman is forced out due to harassment, fear or other sex-based harm/threats. And women can’t cite this kind of thing during interviews as the reason for leaving jobs or for short stays at companies. You won’t get a job if you seem like a trouble-maker. And as I said earlier, women are considered trouble-makers when they voice dissent when they are being terrorized or threatened.  The punishment continues long after the actual incidents are over.

Danger pay. I want it. And I want it retroactively for my 30-year work history.

 

 

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Posted on September 21, 2016, in Feminism, Human Rights, Violence and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Danger Pay.

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