We Need a New Word for Feminism

Let me start off by saying that I have never taken a feminist political thought class, nor am I apart of the Feminist Majority Foundation. I am simply writing this article in the viewpoint of a hard working, second semester college senior who is about to enter the working world, in which holds some daunting truths about women. I never even technically considered myself to be a feminist, until I started thinking about why that is. The more I thought, the quicker I realized that it is the negative connotation the word brings. Why is it that, as women, when we call ourselves feminists, we feel the need to counteract it? We say things like, “But I’m not the bitchy, man hating type” or “Don’t get me wrong, I’m not the hairy legs type who refuses to wear a bra or anything.” Why do we feel the need to give feminism a “type” at all? In this day and age, if you ask me, everyone should be a feminist, or better yet, believe in equality. Everyone should believe that with hard work and perseverance they can achieve whatever they set their mind to, regardless of race, religion, and/or gender. We’ve all seen it done before, yet for some reason we still hold this stigma that the business type. white alpha male is the only contender for a CEO position. Not anymore.

            A large fallacy about feminism is that only women are feminists. Some celebrity men who have already spoken out about feminism are Matt Damon, Taye Diggs, Ryan Gosling, Louis C.K., and Seth Meyers. John Legend recently came out saying that he was performing a concert to raise money for Chime for Change, an organization working to improve the well being of women around the world. He quotes, ““All men should be feminists. If men care about women’s rights the world will be a better place. We are better off when women are empowered – it leads to a better society.” Men who choose to ignore feminism should think about their mothers, their girlfriends, their wives, and their daughters. Wouldn’t you want a hardworking mother who sacrifices to provide for you and puts up a strong hand when you need to learn life’s lessons? Wouldn’t you want a strong willed, funny, and assertive wife or girlfriend who can be an excellent life partner and not just a wet blanket? And most importantly, wouldn’t you want your daughters to grow up in a world where they aspiring to be beautiful minded innovators, instead of focusing on their body image and always make sure to keep their mouths shut, even when there is something important to be said, solely because they are afraid of not being taken seriously? If you answered no to any of those questions, make no mistake, it does not make you an “alpha male.” It makes you weak, scared, and ignorant. The real man in our society is one who breaks the “us and them” dynamic between men and women and demands equality. After all, us women are too foolish, weak, and emotional to get any job done well, so why be afraid to give us a shot? (Ha.)

            Jokes aside, it is now more than ever that we all just need to start appreciating each other for our work ethics, our minds, our efforts, our ideas, and even our flaws. I’m done with the double standards and I’m done with confident woman being looked at as bitches. It’s time to stop the script. I don’t know about you, but I’m sick and tired of having to clarify for myself or feel embarrassed when I say I’m a feminist. The only reason anybody was labeled a “feminist” in the past was because they were the minority and introducing an unwanted change. Nowadays, “feminists” should just be recognized as normal, kindhearted human beings searching for equality, and anti-feminists should be the minority going against society getting the bad wrap. Because hey, guess what, we ARE beautiful. We ARE smart. We ARE able. We DID kill that interview. Our legs DO look amazing in that dress. We DO work hard. We ARE funny. Our opinion DOES matter. We CAN when society says we can’t. And we WILL prove it.