Women In Other Countries Having Fewer Rights Doesn't Make Sexism In America Any Less Problematic

Women In Other Countries Having Fewer Rights Doesn't Make Sexism In America Any Less Problematic

Women should never be told to just accept that their society is sexist because conditions are worse elsewhere, and it's important to keep making steps toward equality.

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Lately, I've seen many complaints about feminism in the United States and a plethora of reasons why people don't support it. There has been no shortage of articles like this on Odyssey. In many cases, it is specific issues related to feminism that deter people from considering themselves feminists, or sometimes it is a misunderstanding of feminism and assuming that feminists think women should be superior to men. These reasons aren't anything new and tend to not have any effect on me. What has been bothering me is when people try to point out that women have much less freedom in other countries.

Yes, I am well aware that women in many other countries have it much worse.

I am aware that there are places where women aren't allowed to go to school, and I know that there are countries like Saudi Arabia, where the ban on women driving has just recently been lifted.

I know that in the United States, women have much more freedom in comparison to these countries.

That doesn't mean that sexism doesn't exist in the United States, and it certainly doesn't mean that sexism in the United States should be ignored.

Everyone is different and has had different experiences, and it's unfair to judge someone by the experiences of someone else. Women should never be told to just accept that their society is sexist because conditions are worse elsewhere, and it's important to keep making steps toward equality.

Furthermore, people are allowed to be concerned about more than one issue at a time. Women can address sexism in the United States while simultaneously opposing the oppression of women elsewhere. Some argue that there are bigger issues that need to be acknowledged, but there is no reason for sexism to be brushed aside in order to address those issues.

The experiences of American women aren't any less valid than those of women in other countries, and women shouldn't be told to settle just because someone has it worse. If there's a problem, it needs to be addressed, and with issues such as the wage gap, slut-shaming, and rape culture still being major concerns among American women, there is still plenty to address with sexism in the United States.

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This Is How Your Same-Sex Marriage Affects Me As A Catholic Woman

I hear you over there, Bible Bob.
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It won't.

Wait, what?

I promise you did read that right. Not what you were expecting me to say, right? Who another person decides to marry will never in any way affect my own marriage whatsoever. Unless they try to marry the person that I want to, then we might have a few problems.

As a kid, I was raised, baptized, and confirmed into an old school Irish Catholic church in the middle of a small, midwestern town.

Not exactly a place that most people would consider to be very liberal or open-minded. Despite this I was taught to love and accept others as a child, to not cast judgment because the only person fit to judge was God. I learned this from my Grandpa, a man whose love of others was only rivaled by his love of sweets and spoiling his grandkids.

While I learned this at an early age, not everyone else in my hometown — or even within my own church — seemed to get the memo. When same-sex marriage was finally legalized country-wide, I cried tears of joy for some of my closest friends who happen to be members of the LGBTQ community.

I was happy while others I knew were disgusted and even enraged.

"That's not what it says in the bible! Marriage is between a man and a woman!"

"God made Adam and Eve for a reason! Man shall not lie with another man as he would a woman!"

"Homosexuality is a sin! It's bad enough that they're all going to hell, now we're letting them marry?"

Alright, Bible Bob, we get it, you don't agree with same-sex relationships. Honestly, that's not the issue. One of our civil liberties as United States citizens is the freedom of religion. If you believe your religion doesn't support homosexuality that's OK.

What isn't OK is thinking that your religious beliefs should dictate others lives.

What isn't OK is using your religion or your beliefs to take away rights from those who chose to live their life differently than you.

Some members of my church are still convinced that their marriage now means less because people are free to marry whoever they want to. Honestly, I wish I was kidding. Tell me again, Brenda how exactly do Steve and Jason's marriage affect yours and Tom's?

It doesn't. Really, it doesn't affect you at all.

Unless Tom suddenly starts having an affair with Steve their marriage has zero effect on you. You never know Brenda, you and Jason might become best friends by the end of the divorce. (And in that case, Brenda and Tom both need to go to church considering the bible also teaches against adultery and divorce.)

I'll say it one more time for the people in the back: same-sex marriage does not affect you even if you or your religion does not support it. If you don't agree with same-sex marriage then do not marry someone of the same sex. Really, it's a simple concept.

It amazes me that I still actually have to discuss this with some people in 2017. And it amazes me that people use God as a reason to hinder the lives of others.

As a proud young Catholic woman, I wholeheartedly support the LGBTQ community with my entire being.

My God taught me to not hold hate so close to my heart. He told me not to judge and to accept others with open arms. My God taught me to love and I hope yours teaches you the same.

Disclaimer - This article in no way is meant to be an insult to the Bible or religion or the LGBTQ community.

Cover Image Credit: Sushiesque / Flickr

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I'm A Christian Girl And I AM a Feminist, Because Everyone Is Equal In The Eyes Of God

If you were waiting for me to post a picture of me in front of an Olive Garden you've come to the wrong place.

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Recently, I saw an article here on Odyssey that has been swirling around on twitter titled, "I'm a Christian Girl And I'm Not A Feminist, Because God Did Not Intend for Women to Be Equals."

As a Christian Girl who IS a feminist, I have a critique for this article.

I'm all for freedom of speech and people having their own opinions, but the argument that this woman makes needs to be challenged. She asked for Feminists to back up their arguments and I have delivered.

Let me give you some background into my own religious story. I grew up in a very religious family, my dad is even a pastor of his own church, so you could say that I am relatively well versed when it comes to the Bible and Christian Beliefs. Not once was I told that I could never do anything a man couldn't. I had every capability of doing anything a man could, and I'm grateful that I was raised to have my own autonomy. That being said, I also grew up watching my Christian, feminist, single mother be the head of OUR household, and NOT submit to a husband. That did not make her evil, nor did it make her sinful in the eyes of God. She was my provider during this time and I wholeheartedly believe God intended me to grow up this way.

You can say I'm biased, but let's take a closer look into what arguments were made.

God Made Man First

Photo by Dmitry Dreyer on Unsplash

While this is true, God did make man before woman, God also recognizes that Adam needed a HELPER. Not a servant, not a sandwich maker, not a sex slave. A HELPER. "It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him." (Genesis 2.18 NKJV) Another key thing to note here is that comparable is written. Meaning that women are equal enough to be compared to men, they are parallel, different yes, but equal in importance just the same.

We Are to Submit to our Husbands

Photo by Chiến Phạm on Unsplash

I don't know how many of you know this, but not everybody has a husband. That's just a fact of life. However, something you might find interesting is that submit has two definitions. The first is the kind where we are under the authority of someone, and the other being subject to a particular process, treatment, or condition. Perhaps this is God telling us to let go of fears and EMOTIONALLY give yourself and your love to someone. As it is later stated in Ephesians 5 (NOT Proverbs BTW.) Husbands are meant to love their wives in return. (Also why aren't we calling out the men who left single mothers behind and not loving them?)

"Proverbs 31 Woman"

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What does this even mean, and why is it relevant? Proverbs 31 is about a prophecy the mother of King Lemuel, who we don't even know to be quite honest, had laid out for him. Not ONCE did Jesus utter these words, and why should it be up for interpretation as this book was not made by Jesus himself.

Women and Men are not equal in God's Eyes

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First of all, how do we know? Second of all, I could have 5lbs of apples and I could have 5lbs of pears, and I would still have an EQUAL amount of each. Different things with different features that appeal to different people, but I still have an equal amount of each. Equality does not mean that we don't acknowledge differences, but rather we allow each other the same opportunities because when it comes down to it, we are all human beings, and for me personally, we are all children of God.

I love my church, I love God, and I love others just as I was taught. That does not mean it's my job to judge people, nor does it mean I need to shove my beliefs in their face. I also do not have to accept what each church tells me, the Bible has many different translations and is up for interpretation, who are we to decide which is the correct one? My faith does not restrict me from being my own individual, and trivial interpretations do not stop me from standing with and caring for my fellow women who are raped, molested, slut-shamed, sold, murdered, harassed, oppressed, beaten, and married off as children every day. Being a feminist is recognizing that women have the same fundamental rights as men, and are equal in the eyes of the law. Being a feminist is looking out for my fellow women. It is me loving my neighbor as I would love myself, next to loving God with my whole self.

To non-feminists and those that are, you are loved despite your differences. You are loved equally. Just like men and women should be.

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