These days, the word “feminism” or “feminist” can scare people a little bit because there are a few people who think of angry hippies who hate men and think women are the ultimate sex… which is not the case at all.
I identify as a feminist because I think all men and women deserve the same rights and that we are equals. That is what I believe feminism stands for, yet even when I explain this to some people they still don’t really get it. Maybe it’s because they don’t want to know, or they don’t want someone to prove that their view on feminism is actually wrong…
I’ve always thought that men and women should be treated equally, and I’ve been lucky enough to be brought up in an environment where I’ve been told that I can achieve anything. I haven’t had people tell me that I can’t do something just because I am a girl. And if I ever have kids, I will make sure that they know this too.
The main argument I get is that the word “feminism” causes many issues, and that the word itself is hypocritical. And I get that argument- how are men supposed to support something which is leaning more towards the support of females? This is where my GCSE history lessons come in handy. Did you know that feminism really took off when the suffragettes fought for the vote?
Back at the start of the 20th Century, men were in a higher position of authority over women, and something had to be done about it, so that is why the suffragette movement came about. When the term “feminism” came into practice, they aimed it more towards women because it was a female problem- women were not being treated as equally as men and at this point, we were not allowed to vote! So of course the word has links to the one sex that has had more of a struggle in the past, but things have changed.
Women now have the vote. Women are now being respected more and more and yes, things are getting better for both sexes in terms of equality. But that doesn’t mean the fight has been won. I still believe that we need feminism because, yes, in many Western countries, women are able to go about their day freely. But there are many countries where women do not have this right, and that is why feminism is so important.
I know people who say that they believe in equal rights but they don’t consider themselves a feminist, which I think is fair enough. I’m not going to force you to call yourself a feminist if that’s not something you want to do. It would be like saying to someone who’s not sure they believe in a God that they are definitely an Atheist because it’s only that person’s choice. I think, as long as you respect others then it doesn’t really matter how you identify yourselves. But that also goes for respecting those who identify as feminists.
I have had a lot of comments in the past about being a feminist, and it sucks. Especially when it’s from someone who supposedly believes that everyone is equal and apparently has the same values as I do.
So those are just some of the reasons as to why I identify as a feminist, and I know for a fact that it’s not going to change any time soon. Even if we get to the point where every man, woman and child is equal one day, I will still identify as a feminist because it’s so important to remember why we stand for certain values.