North Texas Daily

Feminism is more important than ever

Feminism is more important than ever

August 04
11:27 2016

Morgan Sullivan | Staff Writer

@sadsquadch

Feminism. It’s a terrifying 8-letter word that’s causing a huge divide in our social structure. It must truly be a radical thought that a woman is anything more than what you want her for: breeding and house chores.

The Webster definition of feminism reads: “the belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities.” In what world should it be a radical belief that people are created equal? Women aren’t asking to take over the country; we’re simply asking to be treated fairly. In this simplistic definition, if you don’t call yourself a feminist, you might want to reevaluate your ethics.

On top of that, feminism isn’t just for women. You heard me. Feminism extends to so many more people than the strict boundary classifying women. Although the movement began as a way to combat the patriarchy, modern feminism fights against what some call “the kyriarchy.”

Kyriarchy is defined as a social system built around domination, oppression and submission. Many people are starting to use this word to describe what feminism is fighting against because the problems aren’t so black-and-white anymore. Modern day feminism fights for women of all colors and nationalities. It fights for non-binary people and even men. Feminists are some of the only allies that male rape and sexual assault victims have.

Modern feminism is an inclusive movement focused on making people’s lives better – regardless of what you look like.

Sure, things are better than they were decades ago. Women have the right to vote. There are women CEOs, and we might even have a woman president. However, the movement didn’t die when women gained the right to vote. There are so many issues, even today, that feminism is still fighting against.

In the land of the free, people should feel safe walking along the street, or at a bar or party. The sad fact is that a majority of people don’t feel safe in these situations. Girls are often mocked for going to the bathroom in pairs, but it’s been embedded into our mindset that we’re safer with a friend. We shouldn’t need someone we trust to watch our drink when we leave the room, or ask a male friend to walk us home. Friends shouldn’t have to be assigned to sustain our safety.

Imagine living in constant fear that you might be attacked on your way home, for no reason other than your womanhood. From a young age, women begin strategizing their every move. You plan to go certain places because you feel safe there. You tell your friends where you are, just in case. You learn how to defend yourself, because one day, you might have to.

Many women fear rejecting men because of how they might react. It’s ridiculous that in 2016, women fear telling a man “no” and being harmed for it. There are too many instances that have built up and instilled this fear. A woman can be raped, sexually assaulted or killed for denying a man’s advances.

There’s also the fact that women are still underpaid for doing the same job as men. However, this is still so ridiculous of a notion let’s not even dwell on it. Seriously, just pay us the same amount.

One of feminism’s biggest fights is against stereotypes; particularly the idea that women must be feminine and males should be masculine. Feminism fights against this ridiculous idea. Men can cry, and women can have armpit hair. People shouldn’t be expected to be anything. What’s so unique about people is that we are all so different.

The same feminism that fought for women to wear skirts above the ankles and for our right to wear pants is fighting against the stereotypes of today. Let people wear what they want. It’s a woman’s right to wear the least (or most) amount of clothing that she wants. Clothes don’t make you a bad person. Your actions do.

In a world where over half of the population is female, women are still underrepresented. Take the Bechdel test for example. You’d think it would be easy in 2016 to find a movie that would pass this simple test. There are only three requirements: a minimum of two women, they have to talk to each other and that the conversation must be about something other than men.

However, many movies don’t pass this simple test. Pop culture doesn’t see women as anything else but objects. If women solely continue to be portrayed as pairs of boobs, they will be treated as such. Young girls shouldn’t see women portrayed in that manner, or they’ll lose hope that they can achieve their dreams.

The recent reboot of “Ghostbusters” is a perfect example of flipping representation. The biggest complaint about the movie is that it’s flocked with women – and the men in the movie are useless. Once tables are turned, men don’t like the way they’re represented. Try dealing with it in nearly everything you see. You’d start a movement to change it, too.

Perhaps the most important thing about feminism is that it’s global. In America, we take it for granted. While we have issues, but we can openly speak out against them. This isn’t the case everywhere else. If oppression of women was a problem in only one country, you could make a case for not being a feminist. However, with people all over the world joining together in this cause, you’d be dumb to stand in their way.

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