According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, feminism is “the belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities.” We live in a world where the genders are far from equal, which serves to harm both men and women alike. While we believe that feminism is a positive movement that continues to bring beneficial social change to society, some people still aren’t convinced. Here are 39 reasons that explain why we should all be feminists.
1. Because the U.S. has never had a female president.
That is, the U.S. hasn't had a female president YET.
2. Because the wage gap is a real thing.
Women shouldn’t be paid less for the same work as their male counterparts.
3. Because we think only girls can be feminine and only boys can be masculine.
Feminine and masculine are only social constructions.
4. Because we had to have an #AskHerMore campaign to start asking women meaningful questions.
5. Because men are criticized for showing too much emotion.
Men should be able to express their feelings freely without feeling judged. Period.
6. Because the sexualization, objectification and constant critiques of women’s bodies are a normal recurrence in society.
And that’s simply disgusting.
7. Because women should have the right to decide what happens to their bodies.
You don’t get a say if you don’t have to live in this body.
8. Because we think a woman is a bad wife or mom if she has a demanding career.
But when do we ever think the same thing about men?
9. Because it’s "weird" for a man to be a stay-at-home dad.
Even though men make amazing parents, too.
10. Because victim blaming is still a massive problem.
It should NEVER be okay to blame the victim.
11. Because so many girls are denied an education because of their gender.
Everyone is entitled to an education, regardless of gender.
12. Because sexism in the workplace is still a very real thing.
No, we don’t like being referred to as "sweetie" or "love" instead of our professional titles.
13. Because most movies still don't pass the Bechdel test.
Ask yourself whether the last movie you watched did or did not feature at least two named women talking about something other than a man.
14. Because women are supposed to be flattered when they’re catcalled.
Harassing someone is not the way to flatter her.
15. Because rape is too often said to be the woman’s fault.
No, dressing a certain way does not mean she's asking for it. Ever.
15. Because men are still generally thought of as the breadwinner in the family.
Why do we even care who’s bringing home the money as long as the family is being supported?
16. Because most women feel unsafe walking home at night.
You shouldn’t have to carry pepper spray in your bag to feel safe.
17. Because most dress codes primarily target the appearance of women.
This just adds to the sexualization of women.
18. Because a lot of modern music still has misogynistic lyrics or themes.
This should not be the criteria for a top-selling hit.
19. Because "taking care of the home" is still seen primarily as a female responsibility.
Who even came up with this idea anyway?
20. Because women’s sports teams don’t get nearly as much coverage or funding.
Even though women are just as awesome at sports.
21. Because women are blamed as a distraction if they dress in a revealing way.
Yet no one ever blames the people who are allowing themselves to be distracted.
22. Because career experts advise women not to report sexual harassment.
23. Because birth control is still a contentious issue, but Viagra isn’t.
Viagra has been covered by health insurance for a while, but some companies won’t cover the cost of birth control. SERIOUSLY?
24. Because “stop acting like a girl” is still an acceptable thing to say.
Acting like a girl should not be an insult.
Related: 13 Things Not to Say to a Feminist
25. Because women aren’t allowed to be on the front lines of the military.
What, are women better off serving their country by baking apple pie?
26. Because women, but not men, are expected to change their last name upon getting married.
Shout out to Zoe Saldana’s husband for challenging this norm!
27. Because, in domestic abuse situations, we ask why she stayed so long but not why he abused her.
Evidently it’s her own fault for putting up with the abuse for so long.
28. Because women who don’t want kids are seen as strange.
Sometimes people just don’t want kids. Yes, it really is that simple.
29. Because we think men cannot be victims of domestic abuse as well.
That’s ignorance at its finest.
30. Because women are expected to wear makeup, but it’s odd if men do.
If makeup makes you feel good, then you should wear it, regardless of your gender.
31. Because girls are told that when a boy picks on you it means he likes you.
So, does that make it okay for someone to be mean to you?
32. Because skirts and dresses are seen as clothing items for women only.
Who even decided that certain clothes were only for certain genders?
33. Because women who are promiscuous are called sluts.
But men who are promiscuous are (generally) deemed legends.
34. Because jobs are still categorized as "women’s work" or "men’s work."
Women should be able to be construction workers, and men should be able to be nurses—without all the negative comments.
35. Because women with kids are less likely to be hired then men with kids.
You can argue that this isn’t discrimination. But you'd definitely be wrong.
36. Because we still say a woman "must be on her period" if she expresses passionate emotions.
Nope, we can still be angry without all the other symptoms.
37. Because women’s prefixes (like Miss, Ms. and Mrs.) define women by their marital status, yet men only use Mr.
Why do we need to point out whether a woman is married or not?
38. Because the word "feminism" still has a negative connotation.
It’s kind of controversial when someone announces they’re a feminist. Huh?
39. Because who doesn’t want equality for all genders?
Seriously, why wouldn’t we want everyone to be equal?
Like Emma Watson said, if you believe in equality of the sexes, then you are, in fact, a feminist. This list is in no way exhaustive; there are still countless other reasons why our society needs feminism. Even though the feminist movement has already yielded many positive results, we've still got a long way to go. That’s why it’s crucial that we all assert ourselves as feminists and fight for equality of the sexes.