Before I get into my weekly rant – and this is a pretty heated one – I want to say thank you to everyone who has been reading Femillennial. Friday was the one year anniversary of my very first post, and it’s truly been a wonderful journey. Having a platform for my beliefs and the opportunity to engage both with feminists and non-feminists through this blog has forced me to think deeper, become more critical, communicate more effectively and defend my views more fully. So a truly heartfelt thank you to everyone who has been a part of it.
Now… after seeing yet another video by an ill-informed YouTuber spouting hatred against feminism, I am truly sick of anti-feminist rhetoric that doesn’t even contain a true criticism of the movement.
This particular video was concerned with the “hypocrisy” of feminism for not including… well… absolutely everybody.
Newsflash: feminism does not have to include you. It is not obligated to change its definition to make sure everyone feels good or included. Feminism is about equality for women, and it is an ideology that you either believe in or you don’t. If we accommodated all beliefs, it would not exist.
For example, feminism has always been pro-choice. This is not exclusive to third wave feminism. (How do you think Roe v. Wade was won in 1973?!) And I would hesitate to say any wave of feminism would have been against a president who brags about sexual assault. So when you say ‘you can’t be a feminist and have voted for Donald Trump’ as if this is supposed to be some horribly offensive indication of the hypocrisy of third wave feminism… I don’t hear anything hypocritical at all.
Women of many conservative values have been and continue to be feminists – women who are in traditional marriages, women who are stay at home mothers, women who support capitalism and the free market economy. It is 100% possible to be conservative and feminist.
However, it is NOT possible to be anti-woman and feminist. You wouldn’t say “I believe Allah is God but I should be included by Christianity”. They are mutually exclusive principles.
Feminism is not about what it means ‘to you’. Feminism is not whatever you want it to mean. It has always had an exclusive set of beliefs just like any other movement.
And if all you take from modern-day feminism is that they hold marches filled with “crude” signs, you’re the one who is missing the point. The point that a wage gap still exists in this country. The point that female bodies are the hottest commodity in this culture. The point that human trafficking – frequently for the sexual exploitation of young girls – rose 36% in the United States last year. The point that sexual assault and rape culture are still rampant. And the point that women here and all over the world endure very real consequences based on their gender. And if a sign depicting vulva offends you more than any of the above statements, you are the problem.