Femi*!$T

Misconceptions about the goal of equality

Art+made+by+Celine+Herberson+and+Molly+Larson
Art made by Celine Herberson and Molly Larson

Art made by Celine Herberson and Molly Larson

Art made by Celine Herberson and Molly Larson

McKenzie Worley, Opinion and Editoral Editor/ Design Editor

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Feminism: the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes. Too many connotations, so many positive intentions.

I am a very passionate person, I love talking politics, society and current issues.  But more often than not my opinion is already thought to be invalid with the prenotion of me being a feminist. When my mother, right-sided relatives, and classmates with differentiating opinions call me a feminist, it is almost said as a bad word.

Now, why is wanting to improve humanity and wanting for both sexes to be allowed the same opportunities a negative thing? It may be the many, many misconceptions that come along with this strong word.

What misconceptions come along with being a feminist? Well, isn’t feminism based on hatred and being anti-male? Isn’t feminism about gaining power and destroying the patriarchy to create a matriarchy? Being a feminist just means you’re overly sensitive and easily TRIGGERED, right? Or isn’t feminism only exclusive to women? Aren’t men and women already equal?!

I’m going to gladly inform you those misconceptions are incredibly false.

Hatred

Let’s start on the claim, “feminists are man hating.” The very definition of feminism is the equality of the sexes, meaning women AND men. I don’t wish to be greater than men or even equal to men; men are not the standard of humanity. I believe each human should be given equal opportunity with fairness and respect. So if you’re a man, chances are you are a human. I don’t hate you. You face gender bias as well, recognized or not. Feminism is not detrimental to males, only egos who allow themselves to feel as though it is.

This or That

Matriarchy or Patriarchy. Potato or Potato. Patriarchy is a system of society or government in which men hold the power and women are largely excluded from it, matriarchy being the opposite and sexes reversed.  It is very clear of the patriarchy in today’s society (that’s for another day). However, matriarchy can be scorned just as much as Patriarchy. Feminism isn’t a cult to take over the world and oppress men. It is for both genders to hold equal power and the same voice.

Triggering

Like I said before, I am passionate. A very passionate intersectional feminist. Can I hold an informing, calm, political conversation? You’re darn right I can. Am I sensitive? You’re darn right I am. If being overly sensitive means I passionately voice my educated opinion on politics and the countless flaws in society, you got me. I choose not to turn my head and pretend 62 million girls are denied education all the over the world.  4 out of every 5 victims of human trafficking are women. Only 22% of all national parliamentarians are female, what about wage gap? Women make 78 cents for every dollar a man makes. I also do not turn my head away to the oppression men face as well. 80% suicides are committed by males. Men lose custody in 84% of divorces. Men are 165% more likely to be convicted than women. These statistics are disheartening and do make me very sensitive.

Being passionate does not make me triggered. Caring and wanting to see change does not make me “overly sensitive” (how patronizing). Ignorance is not bliss when oppression is ignored.

Exclusive

Feminism is NOT exclusive to just women. ANYONE can be a feminist or have the same beliefs. I know the connotations that come with the word, with all that aside the core of feminism fights for all sexes. People often face oppression and exploitation, maybe we are used to offensive language, hurtful or “comical” comments and integrating these elements into our everyday conversations and actions. Whatever the reason may be, I do know, recognizing these faults is not something to be seen as negative. Men can be feminist. Yes, I typed that. They are not just the antagonist of Feminism or the “enemy.”

Males fall victim to sex inequality as well. Gender roles kill individuality. A man cannot show his feelings, because feelings are not a human trait, they are a feminine trait. Crying is seen as not a natural body function, but a trait of weakness. Being a man comes before being a human. This is detrimental to mental health and needs to be recognized. We cannot gain complete equality without the other 50% of the human race.

 Already Equal

Men and women are not equal (as you just read). It is not about being sensitive, it is not about ruling the world and taking over men, it is not just an annoying young girl complaining about something she cannot change. It is the woman who wants to be paid the money she worked hard for, it is about the woman who wants higher education. It is the man who wants to show affection to his significant other without negative comments from his friends. It is the man who wants to be able to cry and not be seen as feminine and weak. It is people wanting to be seen as humans.

Opportunities should be allowed to all, not just some. We are accepting the bare minimum of society. Stop excluding strong, brilliant, people who have something to offer to our community. It is not acceptable to allow disadvantage because of gender. Gender is not a description of your skills, your emotions, your knowledge or your worth. Feminism is the fight for equality. Feminism gives a voice to the discrepancies many face. Feminism gave a voice to an annoying young girl who believes she can change whatever the hell she wants.

 

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