Why I'm Proud to Say I'm a Feminist

I was sitting in my Interpersonal Communication class, and my teacher looked at all of us and asked a simple question: “Who here thinks they’re a feminist?” Well, she immediately recanted her statement and changed her wording by saying: “Who believes all men and women should be treated equally?” Now, this is the first communication class I have where the ratio of men is larger than the women, so I was nervous to look around when the hands went up. Even though the majority of the class raised their hands, it still made me think about why people are so scared of the F word.

The definition of Feminism is the following: the advocacy of women's rights on the basis of the equality of the sexes.

Now, that is a simple explanation. “On the basis of the equality of sexes” means ALL sexes. When you break it down, it is just basic equality. Why is that so scary? If I want to be paid the same as my fellow male employee, what is wrong with that? If I want to walk the street at night and feel safe, why can’t I? That should never be a fear, but, sadly, it is. Let’s face it, women are just not treated the same.

Being a feminist is not always about burning bras and marching the streets naked. Being a feminist is doing what you believe is right to help other women, not even solely in the U.S., but everywhere. It’s sticking up for unfair pay wages, sticking up for the women sharing “me too” stories, and it’s sticking up for women around the world that have fewer rights than we do.

Just because I don’t have a certain male organ doesn’t mean that I need to be treated any differently in society. No one should be treated differently because of their sex, their gender, or their sexuality. We are all humans, and we all have similarities someway or another. Just because I say I’m a feminist does not mean I hate men. It does not mean I think I’m better than men. It does mean that I want to be treated as an equal to a man. Yes, I might not have the physical strength he has, but we might share the same way of thinking or the same strengths in our talents.

Comparing men and women based on physical appearance is not a valid argument against feminism. People don’t say men and women are equal physically, because sometimes, we’re not. However, we can be equal mentally, and that’s what people need to focus on. Give women a chance to prove themselves. Let women be proud of their wits and knowledge instead of only being judged by their appearance. Let women be treated equally.

Photo by Nicolas Postiglioni from Pexels https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-standing-on-rooftop-putting-hands-in-the-air-under-clear-sky-816233/