Karen Fratti
June 05, 2017 12:17 pm
Team GT/Getty Images

It can be irritating when you hear men claim that they’re a feminist because of how they think of their mothers, daughters, and sisters. The problem with that mindset is that it’s like someone needs to know a woman personally to see her as a human being who deserves equal rights. Alas, it turns out that men get less sexist when they have a daughter.

Is this good news or bad news?

It’s hard to tell. But the “daughter effect” is real. For certain groups of people at least. A new study out of Harvard University found that venture capitalists who have daughters are more likely to hire women to work at their firms, which in turn is good for business. So men who have daughters are more likely to help close the gender wage gap and also make good business decisions.

This is in line with other studies one in the past. There are studies that congressmen who have daughters vote more liberally. That judges with daughters are more likely to rule “in favor of women’s issues. Also, CEOs with daughters apparently care more about social causes than those who do not.

Of course, for every male CEO with a daughter that donates to Planned Parenthood, there is a politician with two daughters who does not vote in favor of women or who won’t even eat alone with women unless their wife is around. So it’s not a perfect science.

But the “daughter effect” is apparently real.

But, apparently, having more daughters is a legit way to change a man’s perspective. And while it’s always good when people “turn” feminist and start sharing their views, it’s just so, so, so very sad that it takes the birth or adoption of a girl for something to click in a man’s head when it comes to sexual assault or picking away at women’s rights. Would it be so hard to hire a woman at a firm even if they didn’t have kids at all?

Apparently not. So the next time you see a male ally write on Twitter, “as a father…” understand that it’s not really their fault. It’s obviously just not in a male’s nature to care about women’s issues unless they “have” one of their own. Yeesh. Let’s hope that’s one day not the case.

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