Until recently, if you’d have asked me whether I identify as a feminist a big, fat, resounding yes would have been my answer.
Of course I’m a feminist. Shouldn’t everyone be a feminist? Wouldn’t I be betraying my gender if I didn’t believe that women should expect an equal playing field in all aspects of modern day life?
For me, it is illogical to hold the belief that women are effectively men’s subordinates. Why should the gender that someone is born into, have a negative impact on their life? On the choices and decisions they’re able and wanting to make?
So yes, of course I’m a feminist. Equal rights for all! No exceptions.
And this is a big however.
I’m beginning to pick up on something that is making me feel uncomfortable. Really fucking uncomfortable. And I do not like it one bit.
The dictionary definition of feminism is clear and concise. Unequivocal in fact.
The word “equality” is there in black and white. There is no mistaking it.
So why is it that the equality that we’re still fighting for is seemingly replaced by divisiveness?
Over the last 12 months I have come into contact, quite frequent contact, with extreme feminists. These feminists I have encountered don’t believe in equal rights.
“Men no longer have a voice. Their opinion means shit”
“I hate men”
“All men are trash”
That last one enrages me. Fucking enrages me. And usually my retort is “I’m sorry the men in your life are trash, but the men in mine are far from it”. I’m yet to read or hear a coherent response that leaves me conceding.
I’ll hate someone if they’re a dick, not because they have a dick. Your gender holds no bearing on my opinion of you. Blaming a whole gender for something is blatant sexism. The very thing that feminism is purportedly trying to end.
I’m the Mother of a son. A fiercely protective Mother, at that. He can’t help the sex he is born into, anymore than I can help the sex I was born into and so on.
We, as people, are responsible for our own actions. Not the actions of our fellow man or woman. If a woman does something horrendous, commits a heinous crime shall we say, then who is to blame for that woman’s act? Me? My best friend? My Mother? Jane who lives in London and works a 9-5 job? Is it fuck. It’s the perpetrator of said crime. She is the one to blame for her actions. Blaming it on her gender is lazy.
You could counter that it’s generations of the balance being disproportionate in favour of males. We need to readdress that balance! We need to right the wrongs of years gone by!
It’s a no from me.
My son isn’t to blame for that. Declaring that you hate his gender is divisive. It’s dangerous. It’s unhelpful. Saying that all men are trash, puts him on the backfoot before he’s even stepped foot into the big, bad world. The onus is on me and his father to instil him with good values, respect and morals. His gender won’t make a blind bit of difference.
Going back to the feminism that I subscribe to. I’m all about women making their own decisions. Autonomy over their own bodies.
“Formula 1 will end the long-standing practice of using walk-on grid girls, commencing with the start of the 2018 FIA Formula 1 World Championship season.”
LET. WOMEN. DECIDE
And, if you’re so concerned about objectification. If you feel that being a grid girl for Formula 1 is degrading someone to being seen as just an object then shouldn’t we stop men from choosing to be ‘Butlers in the Buff’ at hen parties and the like? Because, you know; fair’s fair.
The feminism that I subscribe to allows women to be who they want to be. Free from judgement with no barriers curtailing them from living the life they want to live. Not bowing to pressure from people who do not know them, do not know their journey’s or their experiences in life.
I’ve spent a great deal of this week questioning whether I really am a feminist.
Yes, I want equality for all.
However, the more I read about feminism in 2018 I’m beginning to realise that I don’t want a part of it. My hopes for my son to grow up in an equal world are naïve.
Lastly, I’ll leave you with this.
I’ve put my question to the Metro but unsurprisingly I’m yet to hear back. I won’t. I know I won’t. It’s already fallen on deaf ears.
Trivialising male domestic violence. What a world, eh?