From October 22-26, The Wanderer Online is participating in the “Who Needs Feminism?” Call to Action Week, which you can read more about here. Throughout the week, we’ll be posting 2-4 articles per day where writers answer the question “I need feminism because…” If you’re interested in writing something, please send us your piece at firstname.lastname@example.org.
During a recent discussion in an English class one of my peers raised her hand and said, “If we read this text from a feminist perspective, it could be seen as degrading.” She then wasted no time, quickly reassuring the class that “don’t worry, I’m definitely NOT a feminist” before continuing her argument, in case any of us were alarmed by her use of the word “feminist.”
Well I, for one, am not frightened, or embarrassed to say that I, am a feminist. I am not afraid to say this because I am not afraid of women, I am not afraid of my colleagues, and I am not afraid of the potential of humanity. I am not afraid of saying that I believe all people deserve equal opportunity and equal rights. I believe that there are too many incredible human beings, female and otherwise, on this planet, for any one of them to be kept from succeeding as a result of qualities which are in their basic construction and in no way impede their abilities to contribute to our society.
Too often “feminism” gets lost in a hurricane of connotations which have people shrinking away from the term. Well I would like to tell you that feminism comes in many forms. Do you believe women deserve rights? Do you believe that the action of choosing “F” in the category of gender on a questionnaire should in no way affect a person’s ability to access opportunity and succeed? Do you believe that we should uplift and encourage female involvement in our society as much as we should uplift and encourage male involvement and the involvement of all individuals in our society? If you answered yes to these questions, well then you may need to sit down for your diagnosis. You are displaying very clear signs of feminism. No need to be afraid, in fact it is recommended at this point that you embrace it, do something about it, as it will better your society.
I believe in feminism for my sister, for my friends, for all of the women in my life because I want them to succeed in life with access to opportunities which are still being withheld as a result of their gender. I believe in feminism for the men in my life so that they may develop relationships with the women in their lives which are built on a foundation of equality and mutual respect. I believe in feminism for education, economy, and government because the more views which are represented and the more competition which takes place in those sectors as gender-related barriers are removed, the stronger and more understanding our society will become. Most of all I believe in feminism because I believe in people. I believe that instead of every individual’s differences being ignored, supressed, and shamed, gender and individuality should be recognized, celebrated, and used to the betterment of our society. I will not say that we are all equal because to do so would be denying the obvious and closing the door to possibilities that arise when we recognize differences, but I will say that we can all contribute to our communities in different ways. Once we recognize that, and put a stop to the systematic oppression of peoples based on inherent characteristics, we will open the doors to a freer, stronger society.
My name is Blue Knox. I am feminist, and so can you!