Why do we need feminism?

October 22, 2014

 

Guest Column

 

 

 

 

Stephanie Phillips

 

In recent years, the word “feminism” has gotten a pretty bad wrap. It’s been largely viewed as man-hating women who don’t believe in marriage or having kids.

 

The reality of it is that you can be whoever you want. Whether that be a stay-at-home mom or a boss.

 

As long as it’s a choice you make.

 

A fundamental issue with our society, I believe, is that we still ascribe to the saying “boys will be boys.”

 

We teach women of all ages to not dress provocatively, to go to the bathroom in groups or walk to our cars at night with keys between our fingers.

 

Instead we should be teaching men to respect women.

 

I personally am tired of living with fear of being assaulted if I want to go out for a drink by myself and I am exhausted with having to say sorry before I say no.

 

Because I’m not sorry.

 

There is shame bred into the culture of being a woman.

 

From adolescence we are taught to be quiet and demure while boys are expected to get dirty and break a few bones. 

 

Gender equality is a myth we’ve somehow accepted.

 

Even in the workforce on average women make 78% of what men are paid regardless of their degree or occupation.

 

How we’ve let this go on for so long is beyond me. 

 

I don’t feel equally represented in a society where the major decisions on my reproductive rights are made by men.

 

I don’t feel safe when a woman is sexually assaulted and the first questions asked are “what was she wearing” or “how much did she drink”.

 

Also, feminism is not just for women. 

 

Regardless of your gender, you can be who you want to be.

 

While women are traditionally oppressed in many ways that men are not, the current system we have is harmful for all.

 

There is pressure put on men to hide their emotions in fear of being seen as too soft or to be ashamed of their interests if they don’t include sports or video games.

 

As long as one group is oppressed, all groups are.

 

Yes, I know.

 

Not all men are horrible, but anytime I’ve been made to feel uncomfortable in public it wasn’t by a female.

 

In a time where women are apologizing for their private photos being leaked and accessible by anyone with an internet connection, I think it’s clear to see that though we’ve come a long way, feminism is still necessary in our current culture.

 

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