31 July 2014

What Feminism Means to Me


I heard about “Women Against Feminism” on Tumblr. 

Brushing aside some of the sillier posts such as “I don’t need feminism because my boyfriend treats me right” I wanted to go through some of the comments I had seen (the below are not all verbatim but are collated via many posts) 

  • You live in a first world country, you’re employed and you have a good judicial system. You don’t need feminism.  Feminism has done its job for you”. 
  • Rape culture does not exist.
  • Women are not victims and we don’t need protecting.
  • Being a stay at home wife is my choice

As to the first point, it is mostly addressed in the replies to the other comments but I can honestly not understand anyone who says that feminism is no longer needed or relevant. 

 Rape Culture

So what is rape culture?  Rape culture is:
  • Thinking that it is funny to wear a t-shirt saying “I’m feeling rapey today”.   
  • Blaming a woman’s clothing/amount she had to drink on the fact that she was raped.  I’ve actually heard it compared to “don’t put expensive items in your window if you don’t want to get burgled”.
  • Teaching women how to not get raped, instead of teaching men not to rape.
  • When girls are raped and then photographed and harassed online. 
  • Judges telling a convicted rapist “You are not a classic rapist, you simply couldn’t resist” and overturning rape convictions because “she didn’t act like a victim”.

 The important thing to remember about rape culture is that it is both sexes that perpetuate it.  I have seen both men and women doing and saying things on the above list.   

Women are not victims and we don’t need protecting. 

You are right, we aren’t and we don’t, but what we do deserve is basic respect.  Sexual harassment, catcalling and grabbing at you is still very much in play in society.   

My own personal experience is of (countless) excuses over the years that it is ok to grab my breasts because “they are so big”.  The last time this happened (two days ago) the man in question when I confronted him with anger told me that I was overreacting and that I should “cover them up more”.   

We still live in a society where it is socially acceptable to treat a woman in this way.   Again though, I have also had experience of a woman telling me “Well he must fancy you if he grabbed you”.  Oh well that makes it alright then.  No. 

Being a stay at home wife is my choice

Well of course it is and don’t let anyone tell you differently.  Feminism is about having the right to choose what you want to do.   

So why am I a feminist?  Because I believe in breaking free of the restrictions that society imposes on me and creating my own.   I believe that basic respect should be afforded to both men and women.  I want the same opportunities, pay and treatment as everyone else.  I want to be able to make choices without being judged on what sex I am. 

Being a feminist for me doesn’t mean that I want preferential treatment.  It doesn’t mean that I hate men or disregard their rights.  I just want to be treated equally.

If only society with its antiquated views and perceptions moved as quickly as technology did, we would be a very evolved society indeed.

4 comments:

  1. Amen! I'm sorry people are still grabbing your boobs as if it's okay! What the f*ck is wrong with people? xx

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  2. I would say that I am well used to it by now after it happening for years in various bars and clubs over the years, but this one was in broad daylight and gave me one hell of a shock. Obviously neither are acceptable, but I have my defence mechanisms up more at night time. I shouldn't have to have them up at any time.

    ReplyDelete
  3. True!
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    http://ochasia.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete

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