11 General Beliefs About Feminists That Aren't Quite Accurate

11 General Beliefs About Feminists That Aren't Quite Accurate

Equal rights are something that shouldn’t have to be earned. As human beings, we are all made equal.
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I know in today’s world anytime someone says they believe one way there is someone else willing to argue against, and as I have found they don't always disagree.

Some people just want to argue for the sake of argument. Often people are unwilling to listen to someone else’s view, and block out what they do not wish to hear. As I am still young I do my best to stay out of matters I don’t fully understand until I have more information.

However, as a feminist I feel the need to share some issues I have either when I say I am feminist or when discussing my view of something.

1. All feminists are radical.

This is one of the most important things to understand. Not all feminists are radical. It can be frustrating to say you are feminist and have people look at you like an abomination because all they can think about are what they see on TV with women walking around dressed as vaginas. T

here is also this common definition of a feminist as someone who believes women are superior.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines feminism as “the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes.” There is not one place in that definition that says feminists are extreme and want to take over the world.

Now that isn’t to say some feminists aren’t extreme and don’t want to take over the world, but it’s not exactly fair to say that’s the goal of all feminists.

2. Feminists hate men.

I love this one. Why do people believe that because I am for women, it means I am against men? Sorry but that’s not how this works. Okay, I’m sure for some people that could stand true, but not for all. Feminists are for equality of the sexes, not women for everything and men for the junkyard.

I personally love the men in my life, and I have nothing against the men I don’t know. Now, of course, there are bad men in the world, but there are also bad women in the world

3. Feminists don't care how others see them.

There are some feminists who don’t shave and others who don’t dress up, but that is their choice. That is what all of this is about, a woman’s choice to be how she wants and not be chastised for it.

I for one dress for myself, I take care of myself however I want, and I do things for myself.

This is my choice. If I am wearing a dress it is not for other people; it is because it makes me feel good. I don’t care how others see me physically so long as that isn’t the only thing they see in me.

4. Feminists do everything for themselves.

As a feminist I do enjoy opening my own doors, paying for my meal, and I will fight to do those things sometimes. That isn’t to say I don’t also enjoy having doors opened for me. I also hold doors open for other people, even men.

This one is especially fun because they don’t like having a woman open their door, but what can I say.

Something else to consider is if I am struggling with something I would prefer to ask for help rather than someone help me because they think I can’t do it. Let me try first. Honestly, women just don’t like being told they can’t do something, much like men. Starting to see how this works?

5. The feminists' agenda is only for women.

This goes back to the definition of feminism. Equality of the sexes. Let’s take down the ads with half naked women. Well, we should probably take down the ads with half-naked men in them as well.

Granted there aren’t quite as many of those. As a feminist, if I believe something is not right for one sex then I don’t think it’s right for the other. If a man gets paid a certain amount then I believe a woman in the same position should get pain the same amount, and vise versa.

6. Feminists over exaggerate the lack of female rights.

Here it is. One of the worst arguments. Truth be told, everyone exaggerates. Now to find real information there are sources that will give it accurately, but there are fakes too. Do women have rights?

Yes, they do.

Do women have equal rights? Yes, they kind of do. There are equal rights in some situations and not others. It isn’t right to say women have equal rights when it isn’t generally accepted for a woman to do the same thing as a man. That is not equal rights.

7. Feminists bring too much attention to their cause.

To be truthful there are so many things in this world that are not fair.

There is abundant of issues to fix, but we have to start somewhere. There is honestly a large issue with inequality. Not just in the U.S., but around the world. We have a nice set up in the U.S. Granted it’s not perfect, but it’s better than it could be.

If I have the ability to discuss my issues with equality then should I not be allowed to voice that? I can’t even begin to imagine what it’s like to not be able to speak for myself or about my beliefs.

There are places like that in the world and if there is even the smallest chance to change something or bring more awareness to it, then that’s what we should do. I will be a feminist for those who don’t have the freedom to be one.



8. Feminists don't like hearing they have rights.

Actually, I love hearing I have rights. I do have rights, a lot of them in fact. The key phrase though is they aren’t equal rights. That is the goal. I know I have rights. I have rights to moon and back, but not all women do, and not all are equal. For example a female preacher.

This is often not heard of where I grew up. Why can’t a woman be a preacher? Go ahead and tell me what the bible says. That’s fine, but it also says a lot of things we don’t pay attention to because they are outdated, it was in reference to a specific group of people, or simply we don’t want to hear it.

A woman does not have the equal right as a man to be a preacher. Some places she might, but others not so much.

9. All feminists are women.

This one is good, but oh so very wrong. A man can be feminist. I know it’s hard to believe, but it’s true. The only requirement is that a person has to support equality of the sexes. Simple as that. Now that you have this new information, are you a feminist?

10. Feminists are the result of strong female guidance.

My mom was a huge factor in me being feminist. Now we don’t always share the same beliefs, but she did teach me at a young age what a strong woman looked like. My grandmothers also were factors in this.

They taught me to be outspoken, and that I didn’t need a man to make me successful. Although they also showed me those supportive men, aka my grandfathers, are a good thing to have. My stepmom showed me that I can bark back if it’s necessary, and not to shy away.

My dad taught me that I by no means have to do anything a man tells me to. I and my dad don’t always agree, but that’s okay. I don’t have to agree with everyone. My stepdad showed me that men can believe in strong women, and help them when they need it. See, not just strong women make a feminist.



11. All feminists have the same views and beliefs...

But they don't. Not all feminists have the same belief? That’s crazy! ...It’s not though. Any other group of people can have whatever shared and different beliefs they want and it’s understood.

I have had it happen where I was debating one topic and my opponent turned around and told me because of my belief on that topic, I had a specific belief on a different topic.

To be clear my opponent was wrong. Just because I have one belief does not mean I have another. I can believe the sun isn’t real, but believe the moon is. That is my choice and my right.


I wholeheartedly believe we have the right to, as our constitution puts it, the pursuit of happiness. Let me say that again. The PURSUIT of happiness. Transferring this to feminism means that women should have equal opportunity.

I am by no means saying a woman should receive something she does not deserve because she is a woman and it is needed to give the appearance of equality. I am saying a woman should receive the same things a man, as her equal, would receive.

Equal rights are something that shouldn’t have to be earned.

As human beings, we are all made equal.

Cover Image Credit: WIkimedia

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'As A Woman,' I Don't Need To Fit Your Preconceived Political Assumptions About Women

I refuse to be categorized and I refuse to be defined by others. Yes, I am a woman, but I am so much more.

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It is quite possible to say that the United States has never seen such a time of divisiveness, partisanship, and extreme animosity of those on different sides of the political spectrum. Social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are saturated with posts of political opinions and are matched with comments that express not only disagreement but too often, words of hatred. Many who cannot understand others' political beliefs rarely even respect them.

As a female, Republican, college student, I feel I receive the most confusion from others regarding my political opinions. Whenever I post or write something supporting a conservative or expressing my right-leaning beliefs and I see a comment has been left, I almost always know what words their comment will begin with. Or in conversation, if I make my beliefs known and someone begins to respond, I can practically hear the words before they leave their mouth.

"As a woman…"

This initial phrase is often followed by a question, generally surrounding how I could publicly support a Republican candidate or maintain conservative beliefs. "As a woman, how can you support Donald Trump?" or "As a woman, how can you support pro-life policies?" and, my personal favorite, "As a woman, how did you not want Hillary for president?"

Although I understand their sentiment, I cannot respect it. Yes, being a woman is a part of who I am, but it in no way determines who I am. My sex has not and will not adjudicate my goals, my passions, or my work. It will not influence the way in which I think or the way in which I express those thoughts. Further, your mention of my sex as the primary logic for condemning such expressions will not change my adherence to defending what I share. Nor should it.

To conduct your questioning of my politics by inferring that my sex should influence my ideology is not only offensive, it's sexist.

It disregards my other qualifications and renders them worthless. It disregards my work as a student of political science. It disregards my hours of research dedicated to writing about politics. It disregards my creativity as an author and my knowledge of the subjects I choose to discuss. It disregards the fundamental human right I possess to form my own opinion and my Constitutional right to express that opinion freely with others. And most notably, it disregards that I am an individual. An individual capable of forming my own opinions and being brave enough to share those with the world at the risk of receiving backlash and criticism. All I ask is for respect of that bravery and respect for my qualifications.

Words are powerful. They can be used to inspire, unite, and revolutionize. Yet, they can be abused, and too comfortably are. Opening a dialogue of political debate by confining me to my gender restricts the productivity of that debate from the start. Those simple but potent words overlook my identity and label me as a stereotype destined to fit into a mold. They indicate that in our debate, you cannot look past my sex. That you will not be receptive to what I have to say if it doesn't fit into what I should be saying, "as a woman."

That is the issue with politics today. The media and our politicians, those who are meant to encourage and protect democracy, divide us into these stereotypes. We are too often told that because we are female, because we are young adults, because we are a minority, because we are middle-aged males without college degrees, that we are meant to vote and to feel one way, and any other way is misguided. Before a conversation has begun, we are divided against our will. Too many of us fail to inform ourselves of the issues and construct opinions that are entirely our own, unencumbered by what the mainstream tells us we are meant to believe.

We, as a people, have become limited to these classifications. Are we not more than a demographic?

As a student of political science, seeking to enter a workforce dominated by men, yes, I am a woman, but foremost I am a scholar, I am a leader, and I am autonomous. I refuse to be categorized and I refuse to be defined by others. Yes, I am a woman, but I am so much more.

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It's Hard To Stay Friends With A Kavanaugh-Lover, But It's Possible

Or hater.

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If you don't have your head buried in the sand these days, it's impossible not to realize how viscerally raw most people's political emotions are. And unless you live in a bubble, you likely have friends or family who have very different political beliefs with you. If you want to cut off those relationships, read no further. But if you view your relationships more T. D. Jakes style—"I like to see myself as a bridge builder, that is, me building bridges between people […], between politics, trying to find common ground"—then play on.

Before beginning a conversation with a politically-differing friend, put yourself in their shoes. Ask yourself: what aspects of their life might have influenced them in this way? Accept that you just don't know what their experiences have been like. Maybe your gun-supporting friend had her house traumatically burglarized when she was quite young; maybe your friend who believes the government should solve all our problems was only able to get hot lunches at school because of government aid. View it as a thought experiment if you will: imagine a sympathetic reason (rather than a judgment-worthy reason) that your friend has this differing viewpoint.

We have two ears and one mouth. Ask them questions and then genuinely listen. As humans, we often listen to respond, not to understand. Try to understand without demonizing or judging your friend. David Livingstone Smith, author of Less Than Human: Why We Demean, Enslave, and Exterminate Others, said that when we dehumanize or demonize others, it acts as: "a psychological lubricant, dissolving our inhibitions and inflaming our destructive passions. As such, it empowers us to perform acts that would, under other circumstances, be unthinkable." Try to accept that your friend's point of view—no matter how much you disagree with it—is (in their eyes) just as valid as your own. Your goal is to listen first, persuade later, argue rarely (or never).

It's not about you. Your friend's support of Kavanaugh's confirmation to the Supreme Court means just that: they think he should have been confirmed. Or if they are angry that he got confirmed, it means just that: they think he should have not been confirmed at the time. Use our earlier thought experiment: perhaps the supporter found fault in the accusations against Kavanaugh or genuinely viewed it as a false accusation, and (whether that happened here or not), we can agree a false accusation is concerning. It doesn't necessarily mean that they think the assault he was accused of is okay—perhaps they think any form of sexual assault is utterly appalling and should never be tolerated, but just didn't happen here. Your friend's view is not personal to you, no matter how personal it may feel.

There's a difference between supporting a politician and supporting an action. If your family member voted for Trump, that doesn't mean they support his personal behavior. (If they DO—that's a different story.) It's like watching Lady Bird (great movie) and someone saying that means you think all children should treat their mother like Lady Bird treats hers. The two could be equated but aren't necessarily. Have you ever gone to the theaters and seen a movie that had elements you didn't agree with or like? The same can be said for politics.

If it seems appropriate, when they are done sharing and seem receptive to conversation, share why you may disagree with them. Times to NOT share: if they are angry or closed off. (Observe both their words and their body language. If their voice was raised or their arms are crossed, not the time.) If they just shared something vulnerable with you (eg. they are vehemently pro-choice because they've been assaulted and got an abortion), now is not the time.

Remember, your goal is not to argue, but to listen and then to persuade. If they're not in a place where they can listen to you being persuasive—then let it go and try again some other time.

When you got skin in the game, you stay in the game. However—sometimes you shouldn't always maintain these relationships. Politicians your friends support don't necessarily fully reflect who your friends are, but political views are an aspect of who they are. To use the above analogy: when you see a movie at the theater, you are supporting it. Even if you disagree with it and warn your friends away, you still paid for the ticket.

And sometimes you don't. Understand when you need to disengage. It's okay to have some things you can talk about civilly and rationally and some things that you just can't. If my friend thinks communism is the way to go, for example, I am able to speak respectfully and rationally about it. But if a person tries to support child abuse, I absolutely cannot have a conversation with them where I try to understand where they're coming from and listen to them without telling them how wrong they are. It's okay to have some topics that mean so much to you that you can't engage with all of them or respect every differing point of view.

When you win, be gracious. And lastly, if you supported Kavanaugh, your friends who opposed his quick confirmation are crushed right now. It's okay if you think that's silly or not a big deal. But go back to the first point: put yourself in their shoes. How would you feel if some political issue you felt really strongly about was dealt a crushing blow? You'd want the people on the winning side to be gracious, or try to understand, or at least not rub it in. Maybe you didn't like how the situation unfolded, but your guy's in now. Think of the golden rule and be kind to your friends who are struggling with this.

Just remember:

"Be sure when you step—step with care and great tact. And remember that Life's a Great Balancing Act. Just never forget to be dexterous and deft—and never mix up your right foot with your left."
Dr. Seuss.

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