HEY YOU GUYS THIS IS IMPORTANT WE NEED GENDER EQUALITY: an intro thingy about feminism *content warning, suggested for ages 11+*
Posted June 23rd, 2013 by L.S.Trendom
L. S. Tredom |
in some alleyway in sweden crying
June 23rd, 2013
HEY YOU GUYS THIS IS IMPORTANT WE NEED GENDER EQUALITY
an intro thingy about feminism
written by L. S. Tredom, Lily09, DragonRider, and cheezemziez
Alrighty, KidPubbians. So, the four of us, L. S. Tredom, Lily09, DragonRider, and cheezemziez, are approaching a topic that’s a little more serious and more touchy: feminism. Now, please don’t get scared and run away. A common misconception is that feminism is the hatred of males, but it’s not! The hatred of males is misandry, the complete opposite of misogyny, the hatred of females. Feminism is a movement that helps bring equality and eradicate gender stereotypes for EVERYONE, including females, males, and non-binary genders. And if feminism is designed for everyone, then why does it sound a lot like female? Well, feminism is primarily for women, to bring empowerment to women but it also helps males and non-binary genders. By bringing down sexist ideas, it allows men to express themselves freely, too. And feminism doesn’t just deal with sexism, it deals with many other problems in society. Being a male feminist doesn’t make you feminine or a traitor to your gender. Feminists aren’t necessarily celibate out of hate for men, nor are they all lesbians, nor do they collectively want to take over the world and kill all men. Fitting a gender stereotype doesn’t make someone anti-feminist or a promoter of negative ideas. Gender equality doesn’t mean stopping people from identifying as a particular gender, it means equal rights for every gender.
So, the main thing that feminism deals with is sexism, judgement and discrimination based off of a person’s gender. A huge part of this sexism is patriarchy, a social system where males are more dominant than females. Patriarchy can occur on a smaller scale, such as romantic relationships or in a family, to a much bigger scale, like the government. In patriarchal societies, males are viewed as if they are higher and better than women. This creates an unequal society, a society where females are often ignored, objectified, treated like they are of less worth than men, and expected to fulfil the expectations of men. If you think that patriarchy isn’t happening everywhere across the world, you’re wrong. It is happening everywhere, just look around! It’s happening in romantic relationships, where the male partner may act as if they are better than the female. It’s happening in families, where the father may be deemed as the leader. It’s even happening in the government and military. Where does feminism fit into this scene? It should be obvious by now. Feminists are trying to get rid of patriarchy so that both women and men are viewed as equals, not one gender higher than the other.
Another part of sexism is the stereotypes of females and males. Probably the most general stereotype for females is that females are feminine, they stick to girly and frilly things. Females are supposed to like pink and make up and be obsessed with their looks and their clothes. The most general stereotype to males is that males are masculine, they stick to more manly and tough things, such as video games and sports. They are expected to not shed tears because feelings are for women. Well, that’s WRONG. Females can be masculine, and vice versa, males can be feminine. Females can also be feminine AND masculine. Males can be masculine AND feminine, too! It doesn’t make you a ‘dyke’ to be masculine as a girl just as it doesn’t make you ‘gay’ to be feminine if you’re a male. Your sexual orientation does not have anything to do with the way you act or dress. Feminists are constantly trying to eradicate these stereotypes, so males and females can act however they want!
Expectations are also part of sexism. Expectations like what? The expectation that females must be the housewives, the cookers, etc. and the expectation that a male has got to protect and provide for the female. These expectations date back to a long, long time ago, so it’s kind of easy to see how they are still carried out today. But they SHOULDN’T exist now, because believe it or not, women can actually protect themselves and men should do the chores in the house too. I mean, it’s perfectly fine if a female WANTS to be a housewife or cook for the man, that’s great! And if the male WANTS to provide for the family, that’s fab too! BUT, these expectations should not be a requirement. They’re sexist, because it implies that women can’t be independant and do things for themselves.
Sexism used to be a lot more prominent before, and sure, equality has improved, but it still exists and it still shows in aspects of everyday life.
RAPE CULTURE *HEAVY TRIGGER WARNINGS, you may skip this topic if it triggers you*
Your friend makes a joke about how someone’s behaviour was ‘totes rapey’ or maybe you’ve seen a popular internet meme about sloths and rape?? Yes? No? Mebbe? Well, we’ve all heard rape jokes, and maybe we’ve made some ourselves. You might be saying, “Wait a minute. What is rape culture and what the heck do rape jokes have to do with it?” Rape culture is when you tie rape to the culture of a society together, trivializing rape and making rape acceptable. You might think that rape jokes don’t make rape acceptable, but it does! By making rape jokes, you’re making rape a normal thing and a funny thing. People begin to see rape as funny. Don’t believe me? If you haven’t been living under a rock, you know about the the Steubenville rape case, how a girl who was intoxicated(being drunk doesn’t make it okay for anyone to get raped, guys :I) was raped by her peers, which was later viewed as funny. It’s disgusting and awful and it shows how people can be taught that rape is alright. You trivialize the problem of rape and make it alright. Not to mention how triggering rape jokes can be for a rape or sexual abuse survivor.
An example of how terrible rape culture can be is, well...the Steubenville case. Not only was a sixteen-year-old girl raped, but the football players who assaulted her—and peers who had just watched it happen—later posted pictures of her. She was shamed for being a ‘slut’, and people sympathised with the rapists. One CNN reporter said, “It was incredibly difficult … to watch what happened as these two young men that had such promising futures, star football players, very good students, literally watched as they believe their life fell apart.“ A legal consultant for CNN stated, “The most severe thing with these young men is being labeled as registered sex offenders. ...That will haunt them for the rest of their lives.” (However, he’s incorrect; they may or may not be put on the sex offenders registry, WHAT THE F***?!) People who sympathise with rapists are called rape apologists. They shift the blame from the rapist to the victim, as if it was the girl’s fault. They say that the rape was justified because she was drunk so she couldn’t say ‘no’ (an absence of ‘no’ is not consent), because of how she was dressed, because she was acting flirty, etc. But just because she dressed a certain way, at a particular place or she was acting a certain way does NOT make rape okay! You don’t blame murderers if the person they killed was bothering them, so why blame victims of the rape, just because how they were acting or how they were dressed bothered the rapist? It’s disgusting that the Steubenville rape case happened, and it’s also disgusting how people are sympathising with the rapist. *lily is heard swearing and angrily ranting in the background*
Rape culture is an actual thing, not something made up by angry feminists. It makes rape a normal thing and many, many times, it slut shames. And what is slut shaming, you ask?
Most people know what sluts are, right? Girls who date too many guys, wear too show-y clothes, act a certain way. Well, lemme tell you something.
There’s actually no such thing as a slut.
*collective gasp from the crowd* It’s true. Acting a certain way, dressing a certain way, dating a number of people, does not make someone a slut. They’re still a person, they just like to wear certain clothes and act a certain way and date however many guys they want and sleep with whoever they want. It’s none of your business. Slut shaming is when a person is labelled as a slut and they’re shamed, basically. They’re brought down from from human status to less than human (I just stole that from Laci Green, I’ll link to her at the bottom of this thing.) Slut shaming is not alright, at all! Why should a person be judged for not conforming to society’s standards by wearing clothes that expose skin? Like, c’mon guys. It’s just skin. Stop sexualizing body parts. Her body is not yours and she can do what she wants with it. Why should a person be judged for the way they act? Or because of the number of guys she’s been with or slept with? Is it really any of your business?
Slut shaming is also a huge double standard. There are far fewer derogatory terms for sexually promiscuous guys, and sometimes they’ll even be praised by their peers, instead of shamed.
This is a big deal with feminism because unacceptance is everywhere. Unacceptance of oneself or unacceptance of others. We’re going to start with unacceptance of oneself because it’s HUGE, HUGE, HUGE deal. I know a lot of you guise are having problems with accepting yourself, your body and personality and what makes you, you. A lot of this pressure to be society’s standard of ‘beautiful’ comes from the media, where images of women are edited to make them more ‘attractive’. Almost all feminists think that people should love themselves. Body positivity, you feel me? Your weight? It doesn’t matter! Fat? That’s great! Skinny? Cool! Average? Awesome! And how you look, well, you look just fine! What does matter is your personality. Are you a good person? Great! That’s all that really matters. And maybe it’s hard for you to accept that you’re a good person, maybe you’re not hatin’ your body but maybe you hate the way you are and the words you say and the thoughts you think but... really, you’re probably a good person. And acceptance of yourself is a long, long road. It’s going to take a long time to love yourself for who you are, but it’s important that you do love yourself. Love yourself, guys (:
And not only should people accept themselves but it’s important that people accept others too. A lot of people shame others for their weight for how they look but they shouldn’t. There’s nothing wrong with being fat (except for health risks, but even then you can’t determine someone’s health by their weight) or looking a certain way, but still, people are judged and shamed every day for it. It’s not alright, it lowers the person’s self esteem and it creates pressure and an ignorant, and narrow-minded society.
Unacceptance is a huge thing, but it really needs to go. It’s close-minded and allows no room for change. And maybe the change unacceptance is rejecting might actually be a change for a better community and a better society.
So, what is feminism, again?
Feminism is a movement for equality, especially for women, but it solves many problems among men too. The things we discussed are just a portion of what feminism really is. And if you’re interested in becoming a feminist, we’ve got tons of resources...
If you have any questions, or if you disagree, feel free to comment or contact any of us!
CHECK OUT - got any other sites? comment!
Feministing - a site for young feminists
Feminish - blogs about feminism
Femusings... - a site about sexism in pop culture
Who Needs Feminism? - a blog about who needs feminism and why
FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture - a site about getting rid of rape culture
This Is Rape Culture - a blog of what rape culture looks like
Sex+ with Laci Green - figuring out sexuality, body postivity, gender, and equality
See more stories by L. S. Tredom