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If You Are Not A Feminist, You Are Living In The Past

Feminism stands for equality, simple as that.


No one can refute that within the past few years, the social movement of women empowerment has sparked a (much needed) new flame with the 2017 Women's March, Me Too and the Time's Up movement. Women are the driving force of the world, regardless of the shockingly lopsided portion of men leading [ insert the majority of countries]. They all came from a woman if you know what I mean wink, wink. Regardless of how many times the previous statement can be shouted, protested, and interrupted, the word "feminist" is STILL being dragged through the mud- this must stop.

During the summer, I had the opportunity to catch up with an old friend from high school (keep in mind, I'm a junior in college, so it had been a hot second and ideologies had evolved). It was great, we discussed our goals and of course, former high school drama all in good fun. The conversation took a much-unexpected turn that left me stunned. My friend started off a sentence with "I'm not a feminist by any means, but…" In my head, I was like "wait, hold up." She proceeded to discuss how these self-proclaimed feminists (aka me and a lot of my other friends) are never happy with all the rights women already have and how they just like the sound of their own voices. Initially, my blood was boiling, but I just gave a soft smile and continued to nod as she explained her insight. I suppose I was naïve to think all 21st-century women would acknowledge the basic principle of feminism, which is simply equal rights between men and women. I told my friend this and how feminism cannot be put into a box.

She kind of rolled her eyes at me even when I uttered the word "feminist" as if it was dirty. She said she agreed with the equality aspect, but was reluctant to use the feminist label. I just do not understand why a word that stands for positivity can come across so negatively to people. Even my own mother (whom I adore) gives me a sharp eye when the word "feminism" escapes my lips as if the mere word is just too taboo to discuss at the dinner table.

To all the feminist-shamers out there: feminism is not a dirty word, so stop treating it that way.

The feminist movement is not advocating that women are the superior gender; it is simply stating that women and men are EQUALS, meaning we should be treated that way. Narrow-minded people morph feminism into this vengeance-driven monster that believes men are the scum of the Earth and will rip her fangs into a man if he has the audacity to open the door for a woman. Nope, not even close.

Obviously, I cannot speak for women everywhere; however, all I know is that equality should be considered in every aspect. That means equal pay for men and women, equal selective service systems for men and woman, fair maternity and paternity leave and a woman's right to her own body.

The small-minded mentalities that claim American women should be grateful for all the rights they already have just baffles me. America is an international stage for developing countries all around the globe. Our progression inspires women in majorly oppressed environments to fight for the fundamental rights that the badass American women in the 1920's fought for. Imagine if they had just stopped after the 19th amendment was ratified. We must progress for equality or we will regress and the work of copious feminists (both men and women) that dedicated their lives will be in vain.

Stereotypes aside, everybody should be a feminist because it just means equal rights for men and women. Nothing more, nothing less. If you are not one, you are a sexist. It is the truth, look up the definition.

Continue to tell me that this is just a ~feminist rant~ typed up by a brainwashed little girl filled with utter contempt for all men everywhere.

Continue to say that this is just so estrogen-fueled because it is "that time of the month". Continue to comment on how naïve I am because I believe in change and how I should just grow my armpit hair out and become "a full-fledged dirty hippie". Continue to patronize me, I can take it because I am an empowered, independent W-O-M-A-N. Everybody is entitled to their opinions. However, I will no longer be shamed because I am a feminist that loves romantic comedies and getting my nails done. I know the true meaning of feminism and who will be on the victorious side of the history books.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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