Despite the progress we’ve made, there’s still a lot of sexism in the world. I surveyed other Her Campus chapter members on at least 10 reasons why we still need feminism, as well as coming up with my own list. I got more responses than I asked for, which already says a lot about sexism in our society. Take a look for yourself on at least 10 reasons we still need feminism.
- Women Get Paid Less Than Men
The gender wage gap is still a very prevalent issue and highlights how we regard the worth of women’s work.
- Violence Against Women is Prevalent
The World Health Organization (WHO) has named violence against women as a “major public health problem” all across the world. The fact that 35% of women have experienced violence is an indicator that this is still a pressing issue.
- Slurs Insulting Women Are Used
Words like “bitch,” “slut,” and “cunt” are often used against women. It’s also used toward men and others, but the fact remains that the language is rooted in sexism.
- Women Aren’t Taken Seriously
This is especially serious in cases such as sexual assault. Even when women come forward thanks to initiatives like the “Me Too Movement,” women are still disproportionately disbelieved, even though most accusations are true.
- Women Are Judged For Their Appearances
The criticism of Jennifer Lopez and Shakira’s performance being “inappropriate” at the 2020 Super Bowl Half Time Shows proves that women are always judged for their appearances, whether they’re “too sexy,” not “sexy enough”, not attractive, etc. The fact that this sort of criticism was aimed at two Latina women exposes the added layer of racism women of color experience in addition to sexism. Finally, there’s the double-standard of the Super Bowl’s history of sexist ads, showing that women’s behavior being “appropriate” is dictated by men.
- Reproductive Rights Are Debated
Cisgender, heterosexual men are usually the loudest ones to speak when it comes to reproductive rights. Aside from being a woman’s body and choice, limiting reproductive access to procedures such as safe abortions does not help when there are several unsafe abortions carried out worldwide. There’s also the fact that femmes, nonbinary, and trans women are often left out when we discuss reproductive rights.
- Male Entitlement Exists
The expectation that men “deserve” attention from women is prevalent. The “nice guy syndrome” in which a man acts “nice” to date and/or sleep with a women, is just one of the many examples of how male entitlement pushes itself onto women.
- Women Are Seen As “Too Emotional”
Women are seen as more emotional than men and are criticized for it as if being emotional is a personal weakness. But anyone can be “emotional” (which is relative), and it’s time to stop judging people who express their emotions differently than others.
- Assertive Women Are Labeled “Bossy”
On the flip side, when a woman is assertive, she’s bossy; when a man’s assertive, he is just being a “good boss” and is well respected.
- Women Are Told to “Be Nice”
There are so many issues faced by women in society that need to be addressed, and there’s no way to discuss all of them at once without going into a dissertation-long essay that would take weeks (if not longer) to get through. But I hope by pointing out several instances of sexism will help people realize how pervasive it is and why feminism is an asset to combating them.