MRA’s have been sending me this video they’re very excited about — it’s done by a pretty young woman who comically repeats every stupid stereotype of feminists by anti-feminists everywhere. Did you know feminists don’t want you to be young and slender and pretty, and you shouldn’t wear makeup or pretty clothes, and most of them hate men, and it’s all about competing to see who is most oppressed? We don’t need feminism any more, because men and women are already equal in all things, and besides, she has never experienced any discrimination, so nobody else can have. It is funny. Funnily bad.
I thought about writing a rebuttal, but shortly I have to go to work, and it would take hours to dismantle it nonsensical misconception by outright flaming stupidity, sentence by sentence. There’s so much of it.
Fortunately, I don’t have to. One of the sensible people who sends me things (They exist! Really, my in-box isn’t just a shitstorm of derp. Usually.) sent me this most excellent common sense general defense of feminism by the Bloggess, so I’ll just tell you all to go read that instead.
Feminism is inherently good. It’s not even close to perfect and still needs lots of work and sometimes it gets all fucked up and backward and awful but that doesn’t mean it’s not still worth fighting for. Now go back and replace “Feminism” with “The human race”. It works, right?. That’s because feminists are made of human. Men and women. In fact, one of my favorite feminists is Sir Patrick Stewart.
I’m not saying you can’t choose to not be a feminist but know what you’re choosing. Don’t make a decision about a group based on the most radical beliefs of a group. Don’t get defensive if you get deeper and are exposed to difficult ideas about intersectionality and race and gender and colonialism and patriarchy and male liberation. Just listen. Some of it will make sense. Some of it won’t. Some of it will later when you’re a different person. Some of it you’ll change your mind about throughout your life and the world will change too. Some of it is bullshit. Some of it is truth. All of it is worth listening to.
And now you get to decide. Are you a feminist? Yes? No? Well, don’t worry because tomorrow you get to choose again. And that keeps happening every day for the rest of your life.
As for me, I am a feminist (among so, so many other things). I believe in equality and I think we still have work to do. I’m thankful to the men and women who worked to give me the freedom and rights I have today and I am proud to be a part of a movement that I hope will make the world better and safer for my daughter (and for the men and women she’ll share that world with). I’m happy we’ve come so far and I’m glad that we’re becoming more aware of feminist issues that don’t just focus on straight, white women, even though confronting those issues is sometimes painful. And I’m happy that the womenagainstfeminism tumblr exists. Because even though I disagree with most of them I’m glad that those women have a platform on which to speak, and also because if we know what the arguments or misperceptions are against feminism then we can better address them. Or agree with them. Or ignore them. Or discuss them with our sons and daughters so they can make informed decisions for themselves. It’s up to you.
That pretty young woman’s video? The most important part of the description is that she’s young. I hope she grows up to be just like the Bloggess.