Because Liberalism is not based on a consistent philosophical basis–but on the aesthetics of a supposed “elite.”
The essence of the article is that by companies providing as an optional benefit for women to freeze their eggs, companies are sending the wrong message: instead of making companies more “family friendly” they are telling women to work harder.
What other things do we do in the workplace that send the wrong message?
Could one argue that requiring companies to pay for women’s birth control pills (as part of a mandated health insurance policy required by the government for companies over a certain size) send the wrong message that women should be promiscuous?
Does requiring companies to provide health care send the wrong message that its workers not take care of themselves by leading a healthy lifestyle–by making unhealthy lifestyles effectively cheaper?
I can’t help but do an eyeroll here. Not because freezing eggs sends the wrong message to women–any more than providing birth control sends the message that a company believes in encouraging pre-marital sex.
But because–out of an aesthetic sense of what we should and should not be doing as a country–we are making decisions on behalf of millions of workers as to what they should and shouldn’t have. We are making decisions on behalf of thousands of companies as to what benefits they should provide and what benefits they shouldn’t provide. We are, in essence, limiting freedom–for what? Because a handful of supposed elite individuals have an aesthetic problem with a company encouraging women to postpone childhood yet have no problems with premarital sex?
I’d rather maximize freedom.
If a company discovers it can attract better talent offering a benefit to its workers (in the form of health care, freezing eggs, free trail maps and “hiking Fridays” or free maid service to its workers), it should be allowed to offer those benefits. Workers then can evaluate the value of those benefits in deciding if they want to work for a company or not.
It’s one reason why we have less vacation days in the United States than most countries around the world–and why we offer fewer paid leave days for new mothers or fathers: because on the whole, most workers would rather have a higher salary. And if you calculate the increased salaries in the United States, an expectant mother is better off in the United States taking 6 months unpaid leave, than getting 6 months paid leave in most of Europe: U.S. workers take home more pay than their European counterparts. Enough that a mother is still ahead taking 6 months off unpaid.
Now if a company discovers it can attract top talent by offering to freeze eggs, or to pay for health care, or to provide paid maternity leave, or to provide at-home nanny service, or free hiking maps, or free paid vacations to Europe–it should be allowed to do so.
And permitted to do so without a self-elected “elite” from tisk-tisking at the horrible aesthetics of it all.
Even if the life choices of millions of people and thousands of companies seems distasteful to my own sense of aesthetics.