Dear 2018 "Feminists"...
I use the word “feminist” loosely here. If you’re a feminist who believes in equal rights for all genders then this is not directed towards you. I am talking to the extremists amongst us or as the media call them - “femi-nazis” that are plaguing our world with hate, misandry and bigotry. Whilst you believe you’re a feminist - I will not accept you as such and neither will the rest of the feminist community. Your hypocritical behaviour that you’re spreading throughout the media is making modern feminism, while still powerful and a cause I believe in, a movement that is inspired by hatred and mocked across the world.
I know I am not the only one who feels this way. Just recently, I was talking to another woman, someone that I look up to and regard as a strong, powerful person about the way feminism is now portrayed. It’s represented by angry women who blame everyone else (particularly men) for their misfortunes, parade themselves as victims, make feminism “exclusive” to certain groups, and use any excuse to bring other genders down to build females up. We both agreed that this isn’t the majority of feminists but it is the majority of what is shown through the media and heard by the public. Why? Well simply because it makes a more entertaining story than a true feminist arguing for women’s rights when it comes to issues that matter to the community like the pay gap, FGM, poor parliamentary/political representation and the list goes on.
However the media isn’t only to blame here. We must first question why some “feminists” are behaving in such ways in the first place. We have all problems in our lives however is it logical to blame majority of your downfalls on the fact that you are a woman? I understand that in some cultures and societies it can be a huge disadvantage. But in the western world where many women have lead the way in various industries such as science, politics, technology, literature and art how can we still justify that we haven’t achieved what we wanted because men are ruining it for women? Don’t get me wrong - we still have a long way to go in the western world when it comes to making things equal amongst genders, races and cultures however slapping a victim badge on yourself just because of your gender is inherently wrong. Just because you are a woman it doesn’t mean you are a victim. Obviously here I am not saying women cannot or shouldn’t be victims, I am simply stating you are not a victim simply because you are a woman.
I want equal rights - not just for women, but for all genders globally. I don’t want to live in a world where one gender is treated differently from another. However there are some within the feminism sphere who are adamant on making women the top of the social and economical food chain. They even go as far to exclude people from identifying as a feminist or even being a supporter of the feminist community. I have heard of many reasons why I cannot be feminist according to some of these people. The most popular one amongst these extremists is that I have a male partner. Also that I cook and clean, like to wear make-up - that is apparently adhering to beauty pressures thrusted upon us by men (the same goes with “fashionable” clothes), and that I don’t continuously go to rallies in my lingerie and slur hate speech at the unsuspecting public. However, it’s not how they exclude me that outrages me so much - it how they exclude others through gender, race and even age. Being a feminist is not being one gender, race, age or culture. The best things about feminism come from the fact that we are not all the same, yet believe in the same cause. It’s about coming together, no matter where you’re from, and fighting for an equal future side by side.
When women parade the streets stripped down to their bare skin with the words “slut” and “whore” painted across them whilst chanting that all men are pigs and that the world would be better if it was run by women - it makes all of us look stupid. Not only that but why not instead of angrily shouting and screaming about how the world is so unfair do you not spend the time to educate people on how to help make the world a fairer place? After all, if you give a man a fish you can feed him for a day but if you teach a man to fish you can feed him for a lifetime.
But back to the bigotry of it all - no not all men are pigs and it is extremely un-feminist for you to make such sweeping generalisations. After all, I believe the whole point of being a feminist is to stand up against generalisations made about females. Therefore, if we are making generalisations about other genders how does that make us look? We must practice what we preach in treating everyone with the same respect that we want to be shown. Otherwise why would anyone take us seriously?
Also, sorry to break it to you but the world would not be better off if it was run by women. It would be better off, however, if we strived to make it more diverse. Diversity is something that is needed everywhere in life. Take a workforce for example - a diverse workplace helps workers not only see situations from different perspectives and learn about different cultures, it helps them solve problems in different ways and ultimately come up with an original solution that wouldn’t have been possible with a workforce of people all from the same background.
Diversity helps breed diverse ideas and solutions - paramount to not only work but life. Therefore a world where one gender is dominant over the others doesn’t help fuel such ideas and solutions. It instead fuels more of the same ideologies. Which, in my opinion, is not helping us evolve and not helping us take care of some of the bigger issues that are going on in the world today. We need to constantly develop and change to truly make a difference.
I believe in feminism that encourages diversity within the feminist community. I believe in feminism that fights for equality but doesn’t make that fight exclusive to certain groups of people. But most of all I believe in feminism that is spreading the word through education, kindness and understanding - not one that is spreading messages through hate.