Tomorrow's marking of Equal Pay Day on the last Tuesday in April tells half the story: that on average a woman earns 77 cents for every dollar a man is paid. So, she comes even with his weekly wage on the following Tuesday; she comes even with his 2005 wage at the end of April 2006. Discrimination in hiring and pay -- some of it unrecognized and unintentional -- account for most of the difference.
The rest of the story is that women are not only being paid less, they are being asked to make a choice their male peers don't face: career, or family. In many professions, they can earn an equal wage only by sacrificing home life -- and often that means saying no to motherhood.