February 21, 2020

This week on To The Contrary with Bonnie Erbe, our panelists discuss Michael Bloomberg’s women problem, the Boy Scouts filing for bankruptcy, and why women aren’t prepared for retirement.

On the panel this week joining host Bonnie Erbe is: Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC); Frmr Rep. Donna Edwards (D-MD); Genevieve Wood, Senior Advisor, The Heritage Foundation; Patrice Onwuka, Senior Policy Advisor, Independent Women’s Voices

Click read more to see what they had to say!

Bloomberg’s Women Problem

Michael Bloomberg criticized by Sen. Elizabeth Warren for his past comments about women

  • Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton: ”When the bar is being lowered on health, or releasing of taxes, that everybody is held to a much lower bar, and that is what has happened to this whole set of candidates, Trump and the Democrat.”

  • Genevieve Wood: “I think the public's gonna say what's good for the goose is good for the gander, and if Elizabeth Warren continues in the primaries, [Bloomberg] better find better answers than he had the other night.”

  • Donna Edwards: “He won't release the women, mostly women, from these non disclosure agreements, which he absolutely can do. And then the ones who want to talk and come forward and do that, and we can find out what's behind them. And I think that he's going to be if he wants to be the standard bearer for the Democratic Party, he's got to fix this.”

  • Patrice Onwuka: “there is a reason why NDA exists and sometimes it is to protect the victims themselves, to prevent retaliation. It's so that a woman or a man who's a victim of sexual harassment or assault doesn't have to be held back because of something that happened in their past.”

  • Bonnie Erbe: “When you don't release these things up front, they have a nasty way of biting you in the behind later on, because they get leaked to the media.”

Boy Scouts of America Bankruptcy

BSA leaders’ abuse of children brought to light

  • Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton:”We don't know about this because the Boy Scouts came clean. We know about this because the Boy Scouts went bankrupt.”

  • Genevieve Wood: “I think the vast majority of folks out there who had experienced the Boy Scouts, it was a very good one and a very good thing and that young man's life, but that can be said for the Catholic Church and all other organizations as well. But you have some very bad things that happened and covering it up isn't going to make it go away or get better.

  • Donna Edwards: “The Girl Scouts membership is actually growing and thriving and elevating girls in a very unique and special way. And so I don't know that the sort of integration, if you will, around gender really has done anything to improve the prospects of The Boy Scouts.”

  • Patrice Onwuka: “Well the scripture that comes to my mind is ‘what you sow is what you reap’. I don't know if that's necessarily applicable but I think the idea that you can just take girls in and and they become scouts and all of your problems are solved, I think it has backfired.”

  • Bonnie Erbe: “My dad who came from a poor immigrant family in Brooklyn, the only way he got out of there as a child was through the Boy Scouts. And it pains me to see this organization falling apart”

Retirement Readiness

Women are by and large not ready for retirement

  • Del Eleanor Holmes Norton:”And [social security is] all that increasing numbers of women have, and I really don't see any way for them to get out of it. Because if you start with their pay, and you go through their entire financial lives, you really end up where women are today over-relying on Medicare. That's why those of us in Congress fight so hard to keep that from being reduced.”

  • Genevieve Wood: “this is also a matter of yes, having the right setup in advance, go into college, getting a degree, but you also have to make the point of saving or it's not going to be there. And a lot of people, unfortunately many Americans, aren't making those choices”

  • Patrice Onwuka: “I actually have many moms who pick me up [using Uber] in the middle of the day because they're able to do their caregiving for their children or drop off their aging parents at the doctor's office, because the market is suddenly providing these new freelance independent contract type work opportunities that are really popular among women.”

  • Donna Edwards: “The wages that women are paid when they are in the workforce do not allow enough opportunity to save in the kind of way that is going to protect them in their retirement. ”

  • Bonnie Erbe: “But the way for women to get out of poverty is to get their college degree first and have babies later.”

Be sure to tune in this week for more discussion! Click here to check your local listings.