I am a feminist.
I am heterosexual.
I occasionally wear dresses.
I usually shave my legs and underarms, unless I'm in a hurry.
I believe in equality for all.
I believe every person has basic rights.
I don't believe a fetus is a person. I believe it's a potential person which should be more valued than say, a dog; but less valued than an existing person.
I don't believe anyone is superior to anyone else.
I don't believe all____ are inherently_____. People are different, there are usually exceptions.

At it's core, I think feminism is about equality. It's not about superiority, it's not about man-hating. What do you think feminism is about? What do you think makes a feminist? Why are you or aren't you a feminist?

Tags: abortion, chauvinism, equality, feminism, misandry, misogyny, rights, sexism

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I am surprised this is still going on. I haven't commented in... prolly almost two years now? Anyhoo,

Yes, I'm being slightly ironic and tongue-in-cheek, but the bottom line is, most of the arguments calling for "clarification of what 'feminism' means" and saying stuff like, "Women hit their kids, domestic violence isn't just done by men!" and stuff are missing the point entirely.


I prefer humanism to feminism. 

Define 'humanism'.

what misconceptions in particular are you talking about?

Okey dokey smokey. That makes sense to me yung-un.

I disagree with feminism because it is connected to awful awful things and i don't feel that woman should attempt to reclaim that word ever. I think we should just burn that term with fire and come up with a new one.

Things like SCUM manifesto and Cosmo are feministic.  

SCUM is bad for obvious reasons, the woman was insane, the book is insane, and no one who shot andy worhol is good.

Cosmo is kinda a devil in disguise, if you don't read the content you won't understand why it's so bad. 

But it gives us quotes such as "Can i vagazzle and still be a feminist?" or "Put your hand in your pants, If you have a vagina, and want to empower it. Congrats your a Feminist"

It's patronizing to women and hateful to men and generally getting nothing done.

I'm for equality and I don't think I need a special word for every group i want to be equal. 

With the utmost respect and sensitivity, you have no idea what you're talking about.

The first wave of feminism brought about the 19th amendment and birth control. The second wave brought Title VII, Title IX, Equal Pay Act. The third wave is working on Queer Theory, Transgender politics, Intersectionality, and Masculinities. Feminism is not just about women. It's about learning about gender and sexuality. It's about fighting for a place in this patriarchy. It's about fighting hundreds of years of discrimination. It's not hateful to men. It's not patronizing to women. You are a white male, you're not oppressed, and you never have been, and you never will be, so why do you think you could not only understand, but then pass judgement?

Women in Utah are still paid 55 cents for every dollar men make. How is that equal? 

Women still don't have the right to their own bodies, their own sexualities, their own lives, and their own reproductive systems. 

Women are still getting raped and then being blamed and judged and looked down upon for allowing themselves to be a victim. She had it coming. She was being a tease. Did you see what she was wearing? She was asking for it. 

Are men able to crossdress yet? Women can crossdress. We do it every day. Why can't men?

Does everyone have the right to marriage? The right to love? Feminists help fight for marriage equality.

Is 50% of Congress female? Have we had a female president? Are 50% of CEO's women?

This is why we need feminism. We do need a special word. This is the only way we can bring attention. If we don't have a name, if we can't call it out, if we don't have an identity, then what are we? We'll fade into the background and be overtaken. The world loves labels. Humans can't escape them. 

The world still needs feminism. We're not a bunch of bra-burning hairy-legged manhaters, like the world likes to perceive us to be. 

You say you think we're getting nothing done. How hard have you looked?

Women in Utah are still paid 55 cents for every dollar men make. How is that equal?

I'm getting really fed up of having to explain time and time again why stats like this are complete and utter statistical rubbish. Let's make this very clear. These stats cannot be considered outright evidence of discrimination. How they are gathered is by taking a sample of X men and X women and totalising their earnings and comming up with a avaerage. While yes, its true that on average women earn less, the truth is that there are far far far too many intervening factors to say that this is entirely the result of the patriarchy. Some of this is the result of choices women make independently. Some of this is to do with the fact that women in some places do not make up a majority of the labour force etc. This may be in part the result of patriarchy, but not entirely. It's too simplistic to say "This vague statistic has only one cause!". Learn to accept that the world is complicated.

Women still don't have the right to their own bodies, their own sexualities, their own lives, and their own reproductive systems.

Last I checked, no one has been arrested simply for being a woman or possessing a vagina. If you want to make this kind of argument, stop using inflamatory vague language and come down with some specifics.

Women are still getting raped and then being blamed and judged and looked down upon for allowing themselves to be a victim

Lets be very clear about this. While there are some uninformed stupid people who say that women on a night out wearing provocative outfits were 'deserving' of getting raped, the statistics here arn't that helpful to your case. Most rape isn't backstreet attacks, or behind the bushes leapings. Most of them are by people the person knows. The reason that this kind of "victim blaming" often comes up is because so often rape is the result of a breakdown in respectful communication. The reason "no means no" isn't always clear is because sometimes, in a given relationship, there will be people who say no playfully etc. I'm not trying to justify rape, I'm saying that rape is complicated, and your attitude of simplistic rightious indingity doesn't really work with the complex and difficult scenerios presented to juries with regard to rape.

Is 50% of Congress female? Have we had a female president? Are 50% of CEO's women?


Studies have found that, somewhat controversially, the fact that there hasn't been a female president, and that there arn't more women in congress is largely the fault of women themselves. Studies repeatedly show that women who stand for political office tend to get as many votes and as much campaign finance support as do men who stand for the same office. So yes, there is equallity in the process of getting to Congress. Now its up to women to use that equality.

You say you think we're getting nothing done. How hard have you looked?


Here is where many people get fustrated with feminism. It's the fact that despite all its acomplishments, despite all its achivements, the anger that fuels it hasn't changed. It's completely inapropriate to have the same kind of zeal to get the vote as to get 50% of women in your elected assemblies. It's just not the same. It's like a relationship where one party has made dinner, cleaned the house, walked the dogs etc, and yet the other party is still massively angry that they havn't set the video to record program X. The reason people get fustrated with feminism is that it never seems grateful, only angry. No matter how much it has achieved, it always wants more, and while I agree there is more to do, I think what people might apreciate is a little humility and thankfullness from the feminist lobby. If you persist with the same anger at issues that are smaller as you do with issues that are larger, people are going to get bored and ignore you, because as far as they can tell, you won't ever be satisfied.

I agree with nearly everything you say except your second and last points.

On the second, you are radically over-simplifying and seemlingly dismissing a truly complex and pressing issue. Yes, the way it was phrased was a bit sensationalistic and rallying, but I think you know what she meant.

And your last point paints the entire movement with a broad brush, and personifies it to the degree I suspect you are truly projecting your own experience with one or more feminists upon the whole movement.

First of all, I wasn't talking to you. I was talking to Tom. I wasn't trying to give an entire overview and history on feminism and all its inner workings. I was simply trying to raise a few questions and ideas that perhaps he hadn't heard of before or hadn't thought about before. 

To your first point, I don't think you've actually done the research. Researchers have done experiments and controlled for everything you could control for: age, race, sex, education, major, job, number of hours, experience, part-time vs full-time, family status, and still there exists a gap between men and women. An unexplained gap. 

Also, another researcher did a different experiment where she sent out nearly identical resumes to employers--one for a single man, a single woman, a father, and a mother. (You can hint at family status on a resume by putting experience down such as president of the PTA and so on.) She sent out 3,200 resumes to real employers, and every time the single men got the most callbacks and the mothers got the least. 

Things such as the sticky floor, the glass ceiling, the glass elevator, and the glass cliff actually exist, and they are not just things us hairy-legged feminists like to perpetrate in pamphlets. 

There's also a Motherhood Wage Penalty, wherein mothers are docked 7% in pay for each child they bear. There have been studies on this. I've read them, and the others too, and others past that. 

And while women in the United States have not recently been arrested for trying to get an abortion or birth control or exercise their right to their own sexuality. But they have been in other parts of the world. But here in America, we have women banned from their own reproductive system choices, and we have mostly men trying to decide these choices for American women. Women don't have equal access to birth control. And in some places, if women ask for their work insurance to cover birth control, they can get fired from their job. 

If women don't have complete control over their bodies, they don't really have control over their lives, and thus they aren't really free. 

Next, it's not just uninformed stupid people saying that women deserve to be raped if they are acting slutty or dressing slutty or whatever excuse tickles your fancy. Well educated, influential people say it. Sometimes, they even say it in a court of law. So you can't just write that off. And I never said it was the movie back-alley way. I was actually thinking a party where alcohol is involved. A woman is there. She drinks a little. She hangs with her guy buds, the ones she's hung out with before at other parties. She joins the party with her group of girlfriends, but maybe they're drunk. Maybe they leave or get distracted. Either way, their not a closely knit group anymore. It's a guy she knows. He gets her away for a second. Maybe he follows her into a room while she's looking for a place to lie down. Or maybe its her ex boyfriend and he's angry. Rape is rarely about sex. It's usually about power. That is where, in my opinion, your argument against me, the argument I never asked for, is simplistic. 

You think rape is just a breakdown of communication? She says no playfully, so obviously it doesn't mean no? Rape is usually vicious. 

Alright, now onto the Congress thing. Wow. This is even more simplistic then the last. You're actually blaming the women this time. Nice. Classy. Eloquent. 

No. It's the double sword. Women are unsexed by success. All the characteristics that one needs to succeed in a male-dominated workplace (and even if the workplace is not male-dominated, the workplace is taking place in a larger male-centric society), such as ambition and aggressiveness, are unfeminine. Women who possess these traits are considered unfeminine. 

Women who are nice and friendly are likable, but they are seen as not competent enough to wield power. Women who are strong enough to wield power are not likable. Hilary Clinton was repeatedly called cold, a bitch. People would talk about her hair and her dress and her makeup instead of her politics. I watched it happen on the news. Sarah Bachman was called crazy. I don't remember any male politician being called crazy, but maybe I'm remembering wrong. People are talking about Marissa Meyer's motherhood ability instead of her great success at turning the failing Yahoo company around so well so far. 

And lastly, feminism is not driven by anger. I'm not angry right now. (It is my own personal feelings that those are your feelings projecting onto me. Perhaps that is the bra-burning remnants of extremist feminists all those years ago echoing through your fingers across the interwebs and attaching onto me.) I wasn't last time either. Not even close. I just want understanding. I think that's what everybody wants. But, just to clarify, women still have every right to be outraged.

On December 6, 1989, an armed gunman named Marc Lepine entered an engineering classroom at Ecole Polytechnique in Montreal, Quebec. He demanded all 48 men in the class leave the room, lined up all 9 women against a wall, and, shouting “You are all a bunch of [expletive] feminists!”, proceeded to shoot them. He went into the hall and shot 18 more people, mostly at random. He finally shot himself.
He had killed 14 women all together, and injured 9 more women and 4 men.

Are we not still supposed to be outraged just because it was a while ago? Are we supposed to forget about these people who died, about the wrong that was committed, about the people who were hurt. Are we still not supposed to care? Just because it was a while ago, just because something has floated around for a while in the ethos, doesn't make it any less potent. As the saying goes: "Men are afraid women will laugh at them. Women are afraid men will kill them." Margaret Atwood

And we are grateful. (I feel like that was really close to you projecting your own feelings onto half the population.) We're just not satisfied. You're right about that. We want it all. We want full rights. Full equality. We don't want to be afraid to walk home at night. We don't want to wonder why we didn't get the promotion at work. We don't want to be afraid to tell the guy we like that we're a feminist. Unapologetically feminist. 

And maybe we will never be satisfied, just like those people wishing for World Peace will never be satisfied, but that does not mean that the fight isn't worth it. 

And we are not fighting for the same things over and over again. Like I said to Tom, the Third Wave feminism is focusing on Intersectionality, Queer theory, Transgender politics, and Masculinities, which are all new ideas born from critiques of the Second Wave. We are always changing and adapting and growing and seeking out new ideas in this ever-changing world of heat and chaos. 

Sarah Bachman was called crazy. I don't remember any male politician being called crazy, but maybe I'm remembering wrong.

Not a major retort or anything, just an unimportant side: but you're definitely wrong here. Different news stations handle political coverage differently, so I'm not speaking about any specific station or show right now, but in general I see male politicians get called crazy all the time.

I more or less agree with everything else you said.

Alright, thank you. That was just my own personal experience of what I saw. And I did say that when I brought up that point, that perhaps I could be wrong. 


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