California Lutheran University's Student Newspaper Since 1961

The Echo

California Lutheran University's Student Newspaper Since 1961

The Echo

California Lutheran University's Student Newspaper Since 1961

The Echo

    Why Does It Cost More To Be Female?

    If women have to pay taxes on tampons, then men should also have to pay taxes on necessities. Women should not have to be the only ones who balance the budget.

    “Basically we are being taxed for being women. You can’t just ignore your period, it’s not like you can just ignore the constant flow,” California assemblywoman Cristina Garcia said about the “tampon tax.”

    According to the Washington Post, the term “tampon tax” refers to feminine hygiene products that are not exempt from the regular state sales tax.

    The “tampon tax” proves that women are still not treated fairly. Even though there have been many movements that promote gender equality, there are still steps that need to be taken to make women feel supported. The “tampon tax” should be removed in order to make the lives of women easier.

    There should not be a regular state tax on feminine hygiene products such as tampons because it creates gender inequality. Women have to pay a high price for these products in order to take care of themselves, while men do not. This is unfair for women, as men should have to contribute to taxes as well.

    According to Bustle, only 12 states do not tax feminine hygiene products.

    The remaining 38 states have a sales tax on tampons, which suggests that they do not believe feminine hygiene is necessary or even secondary to the needs of men.

    Some products for women are more expensive than products for men. Healthcare is also more expensive for women, as there are birth control and pregnancy costs. Since they do not make as much money as men, they have a harder time paying for necessities.

    Garcia has made an effort to abolish the tax on these products. She has found that women in California pay around $7 every month for tampons and sanitary napkins. This adds up to over $20 million in taxes every year statewide. Since women have their periods for about 40 years, a good portion of their hard-earned money goes toward purchasing these expensive products.

    Senator Melina Bush said to The Daily News; “This is just the start of a conversation about the unfair ‘pink taxes’ women face as they buy products priced higher than similar ones marketed to men or, in this case, as they have to spend on products that men don’t.”

    California assemblywoman Ling Ling Chang has joined Garcia in the fight against the tax on feminine hygiene products. She believes the tax is a form of regulatory discrimination.

    “The reality is, these institutions of power are male-dominated. It’s either they’re not thinking about it, or they’re afraid to approach it,” Garcia said to the Washingon Post.

    Chang claimed that a number of men have told her about how uncomfortable they feel about the issue. They want a woman to take charge so they do not have to deal with it.

    Robert Doyle, professor of sexual ethics at California Lutheran University, believes the “tampon tax” gives women a disproportionate burden, because it forces them to pay a tax on necessities.

    “These are necessities that create a healthy environment for women. Not only should we not tax them, but we should also make them free,” Doyle said.

    Doyle believes that some male products are not tax exempt from the regular state sales tax because they are considered medical expenses.

    “Any time you have a tax or product that is geared toward a particular gender and it is taxed in this way, it is gender inequality because we are expecting to collect a tax and balance the budget on the backs of women,” Doyle said.

    If men were treated this way, you better believe that they would protest.

    Kate Artmann
    Staff Writer