Time's Up On Women Resisting Gender Equality
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

Time's Up On Women Resisting Gender Equality

It's time to start at the top.

328
Time's Up On Women Resisting Gender Equality
Unsplash – Alex Jones

An open letter denouncing the #MeToo movement was signed by 100 French women and published in French newspaper Le Monde on Jan. 9, reported CNN. Among the signatories was film star Catherine Deneuve, as well as other performers and academics.

The letter questioned the benefit of the #MeToo movement. The two-word hashtag spread on social media in October 2017, though the movement was coined by Tarana Burke in 2006. At the time, Burke sought "empowerment through empathy", in particular for women of color in underprivileged communities who experienced sexual abuse.

Now, the movement still strives to acknowledge society’s rampant issue of sexual assault and harassment. More so, as sexual misconduct allegations succeed the ones aimed toward film producer Harvey Weinstein, it is clearer than ever that countless women and men experience varying degrees of intimidation, and the movement offers them a sense of empowerment and the knowledge that they are not alone.

However, even in 2018, men and women are still met with resistance.

Resistance against feminist movements such as #MeToo is an interesting concept because many people believe that men are the sole discouragers of the progression of women’s rights. However, men are usually only part of a much broader, unspoken problem.

Women are historically staunch opposers of equal rights, and their preference to maintain traditional values can limit the agency of all genders.

To better understand our current socio-political landscape, and how women still oppose equality, it is useful to observe past movements and women’s roles in opposing them. After all, it was less than a century ago that voting rights for women was ensured, and "anti-suffragettes" were at the forefront of the suffrage movement opposition.

Corrine McConnaughy, the author of the 2013 The Woman Suffrage Movement in America: A Reassessment, said that women who opposed the United States’ suffrage campaign “were generally women of wealth, privilege, social status and even political power.” McConnaughy further argued that these women, who were protected by the systemic power that they were afforded, did not see the value in upsetting the balance, reported NPR.

These women valued the “femininity” inherent in society’s gender norms, and viewed autonomy as a threat to that standard. In 2018, CNN reported that the signatories of the letter possess a similar viewpoint, including their quote that stated, "Rape is a crime, but insistent or clumsy flirting is not an offense, nor is gallantry macho aggression."

When considering their argument at its most fundamental level, these women — protesting either in the early 20th or 21st century — yearn to maintain the status quo, even if that means silencing women. Their supposed desire for “sexual freedom” that they claim women are threatening to deprive men is granted solely toward men.

Moreover, they further validate the mentality that women exist as objects to be appreciated by men, even if the situation is allowed to escalate due to men’s so-called “freedom to pester.”

The women in support of the recently published letter are, like the "anti-suffragettes", in a position of power or higher-standing. They are not exempt from encountering any acts of aggression, but they do have resources that the individuals Burke seeks to support do not.

Therefore, rather than exude their privilege in a way commonly done by those not fearful of social ostracizing if they tell their stories, these women should offer their support and solidarity.

After all, “empowerment through empathy” regretfully yields stronger results when exercised at the top.

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

Unlocking Lake People's Secrets: 15 Must-Knows!

There's no other place you'd rather be in the summer.

933412
Group of joyful friends sitting in a boat
Haley Harvey

The people that spend their summers at the lake are a unique group of people.

Whether you grew up going to the lake, have only recently started going, or have only been once or twice, you know it takes a certain kind of person to be a lake person. To the long-time lake people, the lake holds a special place in your heart, no matter how dirty the water may look.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Top 10 Reasons My School Rocks!

Why I Chose a Small School Over a Big University.

109671
man in black long sleeve shirt and black pants walking on white concrete pathway

I was asked so many times why I wanted to go to a small school when a big university is so much better. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure a big university is great but I absolutely love going to a small school. I know that I miss out on big sporting events and having people actually know where it is. I can't even count how many times I've been asked where it is and I know they won't know so I just say "somewhere in the middle of Wisconsin." But, I get to know most people at my school and I know my professors very well. Not to mention, being able to walk to the other side of campus in 5 minutes at a casual walking pace. I am so happy I made the decision to go to school where I did. I love my school and these are just a few reasons why.

Keep Reading...Show less
Lots of people sat on the cinema wearing 3D glasses
Pinterest

Ever wonder what your friend meant when they started babbling about you taking their stapler? Or how whenever you ask your friend for a favor they respond with "As You Wish?" Are you looking for new and creative ways to insult your friends?

Well, look no further. Here is a list of 70 of the most quotable movies of all time. Here you will find answers to your questions along with a multitude of other things such as; new insults for your friends, interesting characters, fantastic story lines, and of course quotes to log into your mind for future use.

Keep Reading...Show less
New Year Resolutions

It's 2024! You drank champagne, you wore funny glasses, and you watched the ball drop as you sang the night away with your best friends and family. What comes next you may ask? Sadly you will have to return to the real world full of work and school and paying bills. "Ah! But I have my New Year's Resolutions!"- you may say. But most of them are 100% complete cliches that you won't hold on to. Here is a list of those things you hear all around the world.

Keep Reading...Show less
Lifestyle

The Ultimate Birthday: Unveiling the Perfect Day to Celebrate!

Let's be real, the day your birthday falls on could really make or break it.

56187
​different color birthday candles on a cake
Blacksburg Children's Museum

You heard it here first: birthdays in college are some of the best days of your four years. For one day annually, you get to forget about your identity as a stressed, broke, and overworked student, and take the time to celebrate. You can throw your responsibilities for a day, use your one skip in that class you hate, receive kind cards and gifts from loved ones and just enjoy yourself.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments