How are you? I’m good thank you, although it’s a little bit early for a Saturday… 05:30 to be precise. I’m here with my cat, who keeps waking up, meowing and then promptly drifting back off to sleep… Ah bless.
I want to talk about gender equality, feminism, and ideas relating to them. It’s a sensitive topic which I’m having to write with care, to prevent any backlash.
Feminism, to me, is the idea of equal rights for women and girls, creating gender equality. Feminism is the idea that women should have equal pay, equal rights and an equal place within modern-day society. And yet, after so many years of feminism, why have we STILL not achieved gender equality? Why is the feminism movement still necessary?
Personally, I feel that some [I dare not say most, but I mean most] boys and men feel threatened by femanism.
There, I said it.
I think that men feel that their rights, their authority and their power is threatened by women and girls. Boys feel that they are the dominant sex, because that’s what their fathers have taught them, and their Fathers’ fathers before them. And so the idea of femanism – this scary movement of women who want equal rights for all – suddenly threatens this male dominance, which is frightening. It’s frightening because it’s different, and we as humans are very much stuck in the past.
I don’t see it as scary. Everyone deserves equal rights, regardless, quite frankly, of their hormone balance. Why does an uncontrollable biological difference divide our race so brutally? What is so different between a son and a daughter? Every day, we see women in positions where they can demonstrate their intelligence, and that in itself is something we can be proud of, because 100 years ago, there would never be a woman in any kind of power.
In the 2016 US Presidential Elections, there is a woman, Hilary Clinton, running for president, and she’s the leading candidate as I understand it. That is something that, as a race, we can be proud of, because things have developed and improved in the last century alone. But, across the globe, there are millions of people – millions Of men and boys – who will write hateful, cruel things about Clinton. They will say that she’s “just a woman”, a powerless, incapable woman.
These are the men who are bringing down femanism. It’s not because feminists aren’t trying hard enough, because I think we can all say that that is most certainly not the case. Instead, it’s the woman-haters, as I shall refer to them, who are using the power of social media to spread a socially wrong message.
Maybe it’s the word femanism – the fact that it is so female. Maybe, secretly, more men and boys are femanists, but feel demasculated by claiming this label. Perhaps they feel that they’d be ridiculed not only by fellow men with opposing, more traditional masculine views, but by other women, who would say that a male’s involvement in the femanism campaign is just another example of men wanting power and dominance.
I feel that there will never be gender equality until all men, women, boys and girls can stand together and openly say: “I believe in gender equality”, in all societies, all cultures and all countries across the world. There are countries today – and not just third World countries – who have nowhere near as many rights for women as, for example, we do in the UK, or in the US. Until that happens, we’ll continue living without gender equality: women will have unequal pay, unequal rights and an unequal place in modern-day society.
And that is sad.
Personally, I’ve always labelled myself as a femanist. I believe that women should have equal rights to men, no questions asked, no exceptions. But, for the sake of trying to get other men and boys involved in femanism, I’m going to say this: “I believe in gender equality”. As I said, I think many males are frightened of the word femanism, and so gender equality is less feminine.
I believe in gender equality, and I hope you do too.