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Feminism Explained

Why Feminism Is Important

Trigger Warning: Topic includes abortion and rape.

Many people in my community have made it clear that they don’t believe in feminism anymore, mostly directing their disapproval at “femi-nazis.” The term refers to women who hate on men and are trying to take down everything involving the male gender. Because of their irrational actions, true feminist activists are losing supporters.

Despite the horrific representation given to true feminists, their stance on events and society today still remains important and relevant. The arguments, “You can vote now,” “You can work with men now,” and “You don’t have anything to fight for anymore,” are ignorant and close-minded to the issue we’re giving attention to.

Feminism isn’t just for women in the United States. It’s for everyone in every country and culture. Feminism is the idea that women are treated equally to men, and aren’t seen or treated as property/inferior or a sexual object.

For hundreds of years, women all over the world have been seen as a body not worthy of opinion or to be in a position of power and authority. Feminists are trying to demolish that type of mentality.

A striking affair in relation to feminism is the debate on abortion. Men in power are denying women’s rights on abortion, even though it is not their body or gender. Abortion is something a woman should have the choice to do for many different reasons, personal or physical.

Another case is rape. Women don’t come forward with their accusations because society has rooted in their heads that it is their fault, and that the man is the real victim. The man has something to lose, and the woman doesn’t, which is another hint of superiority, despite the allegation against him. However, it also goes both ways. Rape accusations towards a woman should be treated with just as much fire, and the man shouldn’t be shamed for coming forward. They aren’t “asking for it,” because despite that assumption, it’s never true in any situation.

Feminism is also the outlook on femininity. It’s perfectly fine to be feminine or to be masculine, boys or girls, and shouldn’t be society-shamed. Being “girly” as some claim shouldn’t be something that makes someone embarrassed. Societal standards make femininity a rather shameful characteristic when it shouldn’t be, and it also masks that women can’t be masculine, either, because they have to live up to an unrealistic expectation of womanliness. It’s a paradox and should be broken.

In Middle-Eastern countries, women still don’t have equal rights, and are seen (once again) as property. They’re stuck in submission to men and aren’t given fair treatment due to traditional gender roles.

Just this year, according to The New Arab, women rejoiced after recent parliaments revoked the idea that rapists could “avoid punishment if they married their victim.” It’s a small but relieving victory for Arab women, and they’re still fighting for equal treatment. A UN report, The New Arab writes, says only 26 percent of men believe in equality, and 52 percent of women are diagnosed with depression. That’s a hard fight to win given such strict and almost unbreakable traditional roles, but it’s possible to conquer.

Although it’s easier to be free of gender roles in the U.S., that doesn’t mean feminism has run its course. Women of color are still given expectations that are unrealistic and offensive, and are treated more unfairly and unjustly compared to their Caucasian comrades. It’s clear that women all over the world, no matter their culture or race, need feminism, and true believers and fighters will never give up on the changes that need to be done. So, please, support feminism, and don’t be ashamed of it.

Word from the Author:

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