After a couple of years in the Air Force.....I came to note one simple psychological conclusion.....guys are more prone to risk-taking than women. You take three guys out into a dense housing area and yank on them to cut down trees within fifty foot of a house.....they will do with barely any thinking or calculation over the tree falling the other way. You take three women out to the same housing area....same trees near the houses....and they start to talk about impact, calculations, and really don't feel thrilled over the work required.
Over the years, I've noted various professions that have high-risks involved....which tend to be dominated by guys. Coal-mining, prison guards, fire-fighting, policemen, oilmen, farmers......all dominated by men, and a few women. Low-risk jobs? Opposite numbers.
I occasionally read over at AEI Ideas on economic issues, and they brought up an interesting point....in 2012, around 4,045 men died in work-place jobs. Women for 2012? 338 women died in such jobs over the year. A nine-to-one statistic? Yeah.
Course, you get around to my Air Force experience.....women tend to sit there and think about safety issues, the potential for a screw-up, and don't take actions unless it's safe enough to survive.
If the oilfield industry was dominated by women....there would likely be less oil pumped because of schedules slipping....due to safety planning.
If the farming industry was dominated by women....tractors would be sold only with 100-percent of the safety gear available. The same industry would breed out hostile angry bulls, to get more docile bulls into the mix.
If the mining industry was dominated by women.....there'd likely be a longer process to open new mines, more safety reviews, and fewer accidents....but also more man-hours built into the product and less profit.
If the prison guard industry was dominated by women....they'd be armed and hostile prison members would be kept in isolation or limited in freedoms.
So you come around to the pay difference question. Guys make more than women....no one argues about that point. Guys taking more risks than women? Well.....we might want to admit that too. Women out-surviving men? Well, yeah....due to planning and safety concerns.....they live longer. Maybe the question is.....if equal pay is such a big deal.....should we force women into marginal safety jobs, or force more guys into maximum safety jobs that pay less?