It has been a while since I have posted an I Am World Post, and if you are wondering why, it is because I have been working to bring you this post here. Today I am going to be sharing my thoughts and views on feminism, sharing the intention behind I Am Woman, and honoring the just recently passed 100 year anniversary of women’s rights to vote. I am very excited to bring this article to you so I hope you enjoy it!
For a very long time I was against calling myself a feminist, and I would tell people I support women having equal rights, but I’m not a feminist. I was scared to label myself as a feminist because of the many negative and toxic traits linked to the movement, which I did not support. However recently I looked up the dictionary definition of feminism and concluded I was a feminist because I stand for achieving equality amongst the sexes. The definition of feminism taken from the Oxford English Dictionary is “the advocacy of women’s rights on the bias of equality of the sexes.” Another important definition I’d like to highlight is the definition of equality which states equality is “the state of being equal, especially in status, rights, and opportunity.” Based on these two definitions feminism is the push to see complete societal fairness between men and women.
So if you’re thinking why I was so afraid of label, it was because I had read and heard so many negative outlooks people who claimed to feminist had and did not want to support those outlooks. According to the textbook Introduction to Women’s and Gender Studies by Melissa J. Gillis and Andrew T. Jacobs, many people stereotype feminist to be female, bitter, hairy-legged, and I disagree with all of the above because in actuality anyone man or female who supports equality of the sexes can be considered a feminist.
Those stereotypes are not the only falsehoods linked to the word feminism, another big toxic characteristic of feminism is the hatred/disapproval of men. In this present time, "man-hating" is a common theme promoted by the media. Lately I have seen myself on many accounts, on both Instagram and Twitter, where there is a feed primarily based on beliefs that all men are inferior to women. When I come across accounts like this it really makes my stomach turn because they also promote themselves to be feminist. In my opinion that is not feminism and should not be a branch of feminism because the definition of feminism clearly states that being a feminist is someone who advocates for equality of the sexes, not the rise of females. While doing my research for this post I happened to come across the correct term for this kind of ideology, which is misandry. The definition of misandry is the “dislike of, contempt for, or ingrained prejudice against men”. Those who support this kind of thinking should not be considered feminist, they are called misandrsits.
This leads me to say that while I Am Woman is geared towards empowering and supporting women, this blog is a community welcome to all people. So no matter who you are, where you come from, or what your gender is I Am Woman is a supportive, encouraging place that welcomes all.
This also brings me to point out that feminism heavily emphasizes on strong, independent, and powerful women. Recently an artist, Lana Del Ray, came out with what was considered to be a controversial statement on her dislike for how people treated her because her music wasn’t based on making women feel empowered. She also went on to say that she felt as though within the feminist community women who are more timid, shy, and dependent are not represented and looked down upon.
While I do think she could have presented her point better, I completely agree with her stance on the lack of different women being represented within the feminist movement and I do think it’s time for a change. We as women need to come together and promote one another, whether they be shy, black, loud, or Asian. No matter who they are, where they come from, or what they look like, women need to realize that the battle against inequality among the sexes is a group fight and stop battling against one another.
While I have listed many reasons why I dislike feminism and certain traits linked to it, I still am a feminist because I still believe in the equality of the sexes and I do not think women have achieved the goal set out for us by many before us. Many question whether or not feminism should be dead, many think “Well, they got the right to vote. What more?” However, there is tons more! What about the pay gap? What about rape culture? What about microaggressions? There is still so much to ground to cover.
According to the textbook by Melissa Gillis and Andrew Jacobs, Intro to Women’s and Gender Studies, in 2018 there was a 5% pay gap between men and women of the ages 16-24, men having the higher pay. I also came to find that the gap widens as the age increases. Some might think, well who’s to say the men and women hold the same job, or title. But I also came to learn that as women earn higher levels of education, the gap also widens, meaning that women who have PhD’s in their field earn on average, the equivalent to a man with a bachelor's degree. That is outrageous! It is known that as you further your education, the more it costs, so it is a slap in the face to hear that typically women only earn the standard amount of money a man with a bachelor's degree would earn. It is circumstances like this that cause the need for active, motivated feminist, like myself.
In case it was unknown I started this blog with 3 main goals in mind, that I believe will help the world achieve equality among the sexes. The 3 main goals are to shine light on hard working women, promote women owned business, and start needed conversations within the world of feminism. I believe these goals will help close in on the feminist goal, equality. By highlighting the women I feature, I bring a spotlight to the hard working, caring, giving, and loving women in our world, who deserve equality. By promoting women owned businesses I bring wealth to the female community which is a key component to demanding social equality. Finally, by starting “taboo” conversations within the feminist community I am creating needed change in order to move forward with fighting for equality.
To conclude this post I would like to briefly highlight the 100 year anniversary of the 19th amendment, which was ratified on August 18, 1920. Let this be a reminder of all that has been overcome and give strength to everyone reading to more forward! Make sure to register to vote and have a great day! ;)
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