Port of LA High School

Gender Inequality Behind-the-Scenes: The stars at Wango Tango open up

Sofia Carson, Jordan Fisher, Laura Marano and Alli Simpson talked about what it is like being their respective genders in the entertainment industry at Wango Tango’s 2016 pink carpet.

Gender plays a huge role in our society; from affecting the way one is treated to the amount one is paid. Often times, gender does not cross the mind when thinking about achieving success.

In a society where men have always been in charge, have always had higher positions, have always received better pay and have always had greater respect, oftentimes being a woman affects the opportunity for success.

In this regard, the entertainment industry, which is known for its glitz and glamour, is not as progressive as it may seem. Take, for example, the case between Kesha and Doctor Luke.

In October 2014, Kesha accused Doctor Luke of sexual harassment and battery and sued to end her contract, the media backlashed and a Manhattan court denied her case. This case highlights a recurring issue where a woman gets blamed for most conflicts involving both genders.

After the court verdict, many celebrities went to Twitter to describe the industry and how unfair it really is towards women.

Bea Miller tweeted, “the fact that Kesha has to choose to either freely make music or avoid the person who abused her is outrageous and degrading.”

At Wango Tango, celebrities shared their own experiences on how gender has affected their rise to success.

Laura Marano spoke about the difficulties one can encounter being a young girl trying to break out in the industry.

“I think sometimes, like for me being a girl my age, it kinda doesn’t give me quite the respect that I would like and I think that’s also on me,” said Marano. “Like when I started, I really didn’t know how to gain that respect, and now I’m like ‘yup this is the song I want to write and that’s what we’re doing, okay great,’” she added. “But you know it’s a learning process.”

Radio Host and blogger Alli Simpson talks about her experience in the industry.

“Being a girl can be tough sometimes, especially coming to events like these and doing your makeup and hair and not being sure if the people are going to like it or not or always worrying about your body,” said Simpson. “It’s all about being confident with yourself.”

The experience can be different varying on gender. Jordan Fisher, talked about the importance of discussing gender equality.

“We’re all human beings and just to think that a little testosterone or a chromosome can make a difference in how people get paid or how they get treated, whether they be in a blue or white-collar job,” said Fisher. “The conversation should be had, but it’s in the same way a conversation that shouldn’t be a thing.”

Other men in the industry that spoke about gender equality were the members of Heffron Drive.

“It shouldn’t be that way,” said Heffron Drive member Kendall Schmidt. “Nobody should be ridiculed or be given less treatment than anybody else, not just in the music business, but across the board.”

Sofia Carson tells HS Insider how she plans to use her platform as a singer to encourage girl power.

“Being a girl in this industry, I think it’s important to stand for girl empowerment like Beyoncé or J-Lo,”  said Carson. “It’s important for girls everywhere to know they can do anything they dream of and know they’re strong and beautiful.”

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