Feminism is a word that seems to prickle many around me; I do have a problem with saying the word at times because of the reactions that I have gotten; it is like dropping a bomb or mentioning something that is meant to be a taboo except for I haven’t gotten a memo for this. The discussions that I have had with both male and females about feminism have led me to conclude that this word has a negative connotation and this is because of the many beliefs people have about it. I heard someone saying that feminism equals to hating men which is totally ridiculous because the idea of feminism doesn’t revolve around men being kicked out of planet earth – at least this is what I think!
From what I have understood from stories, interviews and literature I have come across, feminism is all about advocating for women’s rights in order that we are treated the same way men are; without any of the genders being shown preferential treatment. It has been described as a political movement, social movement, ideology and I do believe that whatever kind of definition it gets, the heart of feminism is about advocating for gender equality and there is nothing wrong with that.
I have grown up in a majorly chauvinistic society and it is really annoying to be defined as the one who should do house chores, the one who should get married at a certain age, the one who should get to a certain education level, the one who should give up their career in order to have kids or to ensure that they don’t have a better job than their husband. It is exhausting when people try to squeeze you into a box with all these expectations just because society says so.
Questions is: why are we allowing ourselves to be governed by ideologies of the past when we should be changing our thinking given the rapidly changing world we live in. Why is it okay for us to pursue technological advancements with all our might but not okay for us to pursue knowledge-based, societal-norms kind of advancements without being given labels such as rebels?
As an educated society, it is our responsibility to ensure that we make responsible choices about what decide to believe in or what agendas we decide to push because all that we do now affects future generations. As much as feminism may have gotten out of hand due to some people interpreting it in extreme ways, the ones that truly stand for advocacy of women’s rights should not be ashamed or put down for identifying as such. There’s nothing wrong with standing up for what you believe in; there’s absolutely nothing wrong with being a feminist.