I’m back again and you guys better buckle in because I’m about to school some people. That’s right, this post is about the dark and frightening topic of feminism! [Insert distant screeches and organ music here.]
Yes, if you weren’t aware or I’ve never mentioned before – I am a feminist.
Oh, the horror! The female empowerment and sometimes women-centric atmosphere should give you a hint to that. Hold it right there, fellas! I can hear your mouses heading to the ‘back’ button through my computer screen. There’s nothing to fear. A general standard I try to maintain on my blog is a hate and judgement free zone. Everyone is welcome here and I try my best to make you guys feel comfortable. Even if my opinion on certain matters might differ from readers. So don’t be scared off, you can make it through this post. You might be wondering what brought this on, well a fairly popular actress had the following to say this week:
No [I’m not a feminist] because I love men, and I think the idea of ‘raise women to power, take the men away from the power’ is never going to work out because you need balance. -Shailene Woodley (x)
fem·i·nism(noun) the advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men.
Long story short: feminism = equality. That’s it, plain and simple. Equality amongst the sexes. The fact that so many people, including Shailene, seem to equate it with hating men is disturbing. That is not what feminism is or what makes you one. Feminism is about equal rights and opportunities for all sexes. It’s about allowing women to choose who and what they want to be without prejudice, persecution or pressure. It’s about evening out the playing field to give all people the same chances, no matter their gender or race or socio-economical class or sexuality or whatever. Here’s a real doozy – men can be feminists too. Don’t let the ‘fem’ in feminism fool you, it can apply to everyone. For me personally, I also think feminism is about giving women the choice to become whatever kind of woman they want to be. To allow them the space to define themselves and their own womanhood. Whether it’s to get married or not, to have 3 kids or none, to stay at home or work their whole lives, to wear dresses & makeup or shun everything girly, or to only answer to Khaleesi and become a dragon queen . That is the woman’s personal choice and right.
A younger and more ignorant version of myself probably would’ve scoffed at my sister, who had a kid at 26 and decided not to work. Then my current self would hop into a time machine and smack younger me across the head. No, past Ariana! Bad past Ariana! Don’t you see what you’re doing? You’re going against the very thing feminism is about. You’re telling women what roles they should fit into and what makes a “true and real” woman. The naivety of my younger self pains my heart. Feminism is not about guilting women who choose to be wives and mothers or shaming those who do the opposite. And the notion that feminism intends to make women all powerful by getting rid of men? Sweetheart, it’s in the definition. “Political, social, and economic EQUALITY to men.” Equal standing on all fronts. You don’t fight to change an imbalanced social and power system by replacing it with another one.
As a side note, mainstream feminism really needs to include the voices/stories/struggles of WoC and transwomen! Get on that, feminism. You really need to be inclusive to every kind of woman, not just a select few.