(Before you start this, I’d just like to warn you that this is a 603 word mini ‘essay’ on why we shouldn’t start using the word equalism instead of feminism.)
We need to use the
word feminism because, if we were to replace it with equalism, we would be
erasing the struggles of the women who first started the feminist movement. If
we don’t call feminism such, we will be ignoring the fact that it is women who
have been oppressed for centuries. The term feminism is used, because it is
largely people who have been assigned female at birth (AFAB) who are oppressed
in modern society. We all know that life is safer if you are a straight, white,
cis gendered male. Of course, many of these issues are to do with transphobia
and racism, but we must also appreciate the fact that the people who are least
oppressed are not AFAB. As you know, women are hugely oppressed in all of
society, which we need to accept and it is generally only so called
‘meneminsts’ who want to reinvent the term, which adds light to the fact that
the attempt to rename the term is done so to erase feminism and female
struggles, such as female infanticide, so it obviously is ridiculous to want to
rename the it.
I do support equal
rights, but if we are to rename feminism we are taking power away from the
feminist movement. The feminist movement has given many people, of all genders,
ethnicities and sexualities a place in society and to rename it would be to
deny this fact and to begin to erase feminism as a concept and a movement.
marches were named as such because they were a call for women’s rights to be
improved. They were not the men’s marches because men weren’t having their
reproductive rights and choices, such as the ability to get an abortion
threatened by politics. The women’s marches were not called as such because
they happened in an effort to oppress men or to hide the problems that people
who are not female experience due to today’s political climate.
connection with the term is very long and complicated, but, I need the word
feminist to be used in all of society because the word feminist is the only
word that I have identified with for my entire life. There are a range of words
that I have identified with for short periods of time and have identified with
in a range of different ways throughout my life. I have identified with a range
of different words surrounding my gender, sexuality and religion but the term
feminist has been a constant for my whole life. It was always assumed in my
younger life that I would be a feminist and that I would associate with this
term, but I then grew up to identify with it more, especially when I began to
meet more people who would, sometimes sarcastically, insult and challenge my
feminist values. This meant that I would begin to research more into feminism
as a topic, which expanded my knowledge of and ideas about feminism, meaning
that feminism was not something I identified solely because my parents did and
expected me to, but because it was truly something that fitted me as a label.
Feminist is my permanent label, the constant label of my life, which means that
I, personally, feel that it shouldn’t be changed to equalist because of the
personal connection that it has always had for me.
I may only be one
person with a small view and understanding of the world and limited
experiences, but I do know and understand that we cannot rename feminism
because that would be erasing feminism and feminist struggles and progresses.
It’s come to my attention recently that a lot of people are completely oblivious to what the notion of feminism actually means. Feminism does not mean that women should be placed above men. Being a feminist simply means that you believe bothmen and women should have equal rights, equal treatment, and equal opportunity. Despite living in the 21st Century, women have been fighting for equal rights since the 19th century and its completely ridiculous that 2 centuries later, we are still fighting.
We are fighting for an equal pay.
We are fighting to be able to wear what we want, when we want without being name called.
We are fighting for women to stop being told how to avoid rape and instead start telling men it’s wrong to rape.
We are fighting for women to be allowed to decide what happens to their bodies without being judged for it.
We are fighting for women to stop being cat-called on the street for the way she expresses herself.
If Young Boys Can't View A Female Time Lord As A Role Model, That's Society's Problem, Not Doctor Who's
In the week since Jodie Whittaker has been announced as the new lead in ‘Doctor Who’, I’ve seen a number of arguments floating around about why the role should never have been given to a woman.
They’ve all made me incensed, but I’ve tried not to get too much on my high horse about it, because left, right and centre I’ve seen a number of articulate and intelligent women stepping in to shoot these invalid arguments straight down. I don’t want to step on anyone’s toes when there’s a debate about feminism, particularly when it looks like the women have got this covered.
But over the past few days, there’s one argument in particular that I’ve seen cropping up time and again, and it’s one that’s now been expressed by former 'Doctor Who’ actor Peter Davison.
He reckons that the ones really losing out in all of this are the young boys who regularly watch the show, who are suddenly being painted as victims of a system that is taking something away from them.
For the past 50 years, the Doctor has been a hero to all those boys and men who feel like outcasts, who act with their brains, rather than with physicality.
Speaking to crowds at Comic-Con in San Diego, Peter said: “If I feel any doubts, it’s the loss of a role model for boys who I think Doctor Who is vitally important for.”
This is where I feel compelled to step in, because I was one of these young boys once upon a time. I didn’t identify with the Action Men I was given to play with, the footballers and wrestlers that other boys my age were looking up to didn’t resonate with me. And when it seemed like all my peers were getting themselves wrapped up in the world of sport (I grew up in the North East where football is pretty much ingrained in our local culture), I’d much rather have been sat inside with a book than doing anything of that nature.
Trust me, I know how these kids are feeling, because their experiences were my experiences.
I know what it’s like to feel different, to feel like an outcast, to feel like I just couldn’t deliver what was expected of me.
Perhaps surprisingly, given their questionable feminist credentials, but it was the strength of the Disney princesses I was presented with at that time that inspired me.
It was Belle in 'Beauty And The Beast’, Ariel in 'The Little Mermaid’, Jasmine in 'Aladdin’. All of them frustrated, all of them wanting to explore a world that felt impossible to reach, all of them misunderstood or underestimated. And all of them got what they wanted in the end.
So when I see people complaining that young boys are losing out now that a female actor has been cast as The Doctor, I struggle to accept that as a valid argument.
And if I was an exception, and boys and young men really don’t relate to a female role model, isn’t that a problem we need to correct, rather than cater to by keeping things exactly as they have been for the past 50 years of 'Doctor Who’?
Young girls who watch 'Doctor Who’ have spent the show’s entire run watching a male actor in the role, getting by just fine and not struggling to identify with him. Why? Because his gender was never once called into question. It was never once important to the plot of the episode. So why would this change with a woman in charge?
The way I see it, there are no losers with this new setup. Boys get to watch the same show they’ve always loved, and girls finally get to see themselves represented on screen.
And if I’m wrong, and boys really do start switching off, well they’re in luck, because there are already a plethora of episodes with a male Doctor in the show’s history that they can watch whenever they want.
Or, alternatively, maybe they can tune into one of the five million other programmes on TV with a strong male lead, and take comfort in those instead.
[disclaimer** I’m really sad I have to make this because the person that posted this was a close friend of mine and someone I deeply respect. I’d also like to state that I am a cis female so no one can say that I’m just a man who doesn’t understand the problems of being a female]
As you can see someone posted this image on Instagram. I happened to know this person very well so I liked the photo then was going to comment.
Momentarily, I was baffled then realized that the comments were disabled. I got a pit in my stomach and soon realized EVERTHING wrong with this post.
1. NOT AN ACCURATE REPRESENTATION OF WHAT FEMINISM STANDS FOR
My idea of feminism is equality for all genders. Each one has their own problems in society. (For example women being catcalled. Or men having to be “manly” or not cry. Non binary not being called the proper pronouns). This post implies that All genders are victims except males. Tell me one time you saw a female rape a man on a crime tv series. I can’t think of one time. But just because it doesn’t happened on TV doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen in real life. Many men are subject to sexual assault. But the problem is they can’t come out about it without being bullied relentlessly about how ‘feminine’ they are.
2. PUTS DOWN MEN!!!1!!1!¡
Everyone who sees this is included except a man. I just realized something….
…..I’m pretty sure that is sexism.
3. JUST BECAUSE YOU HAVE BEEN DISCRIMINATED AGAINST DOES NOT GIVE YOU THE RIGHT TO DISCRIMINATE!
For example: just because a gay man gets called a faggot does not mean he has the right to call a black man a negro.
PUT GAYS IN MOVIES CAUSE YOU WANT TO CAUSE YOU LIKE THE DRAMA AND UNIQUE ADDED PERSPECTIVE OF A PERSON THAT PROMOTES HEALTHY IMAGERY OF MINORITIES NOT CAUSE U WANT CASH IN YOUR BIG WALLET. CAPITALISM, STOP USING US AS OBJECTS.