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Many professions today still have gender stereotypes associated with them. In the past decade or so, many, such as the military, nursing, sports media/broadcasting, and law enforcement, to name a few, have begun to "open their doors" to other genders. Why has it taken so long for these gender barriers to come down? Why did they exist in the first place?

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Each of the professions that you listed has been traditionally dominated by one gender. In all cases except nursing, men have traditionally been associated with each of these professions. However, that's begun to change in recent years. Why is that the case?

First, it's important to look at how these...

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Each of the professions that you listed has been traditionally dominated by one gender. In all cases except nursing, men have traditionally been associated with each of these professions. However, that's begun to change in recent years. Why is that the case?

First, it's important to look at how these professions became dominated by one gender in the first place. The military, sports broadcasting, and law enforcement are all jobs that align with what our society traditionally thought about men. For example, society (falsely) believed that men are stronger mentally, physically, and emotionally than women. It makes sense, then, that professions like law enforcement and the military were dominated by men. These organizations wouldn't hire women because society taught those in charge that women couldn't handle the job.

Additionally, for a long time, sports were considered the domain of men. This was probably the case because they replicate the physicality that's needed for police work and being in the military in a different way. Therefore, companies hired men to broadcast sports games because they didn't believe that women were suited for sports to the same degree that men were.

We've come a long way since then. As a society, we're recognizing that our long-held beliefs about women are based on nothing but prejudice. Many professions are making a concerted effort to recruit women to make a more diverse workforce. The fact that these gender barriers took so long to fall speaks to the prevalence of gender stereotypes in our social consciousness. There's still work to be done, but we're moving towards a more equal society.

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