MOMENT | Feminism in 2014
This is mostly a style blog, but this weekend I was lured in by a click bait post called 14 Women Who Don't Need Feminism and I felt the need to comment here. It made me aware of a Facebook page with 3000+ likes called Women Against Feminism. One thing is clear: there's real disagreement on the connotation and definition of the word feminism. It reminded me of watching the Makers documentary last year where Marissa Mayer, the first female engineer at Google and current CEO of Yahoo said matter-of-factly, "I don't think I would consider myself a feminist." She went on to say, "I certainly believe in equal rights and believe women to be just as capable if not more so in a lot of different dimensions, but I don't have the militant drive and the chip on the shoulder that sometimes comes with that." That really made me pause. There are still women, even extremely successful business-minded women, who are seemingly afraid of identifying with the word feminist because they see it as a negative.
Feminism isn't about style choices. It's not about hating men. It's not about sexuality. It's really at its core about believing that men and women should have equal rights. I'm a feminist. My husband's a feminist. My dad's a feminist. President Obama is a feminist. If you're afraid of identifying as a feminist because you think that makes you a "bitch" or a "slut" or a "man hater" or associates you with a political party (as suggested by many of the 14 Women Who Don't Need Feminism), then you're letting someone else define you. We've come a long way in this country as we near the centennial anniversary of the women's right to vote, but equality doesn't just land in people's laps and sit safely there for eternity, we have to protect it and foster it as it evolves—there are plenty of nations around the globe that prove women can be considered and treated as second class citizens.
Don't be afraid to be a feminist.
[Related: A post from a few years ago on the word tomboy.]