By Lorena Grajales, News Editor–
We’ve all heard the word, and we all have our own ideas and opinions, but what does the term “feminism” actually stand for? When I was younger, I used to think feminists were a bunch of angry women that were mad at men for who knew what reasons. But as I grew up, I realized the world we live in had given them the grounds to want equality and fairness. In no specific order, here are ten things I wish people understood a little bit more about feminism.
- We want to be happy with our own body, regardless of the unasked input of others. But how can we do that in a society that shows size 00 models? How can we do that when the “perfect body” is constantly evolving? Feminism encourages for women to acknowledge their own beauty, despite all the rules and demands our community puts on us. We want everyone to appreciate and embrace flaws, imperfections, scars and marks because they make us who we are.
- A woman’s worth is not lessened or defined by having children. We live in a society where women are capable of making their own decisions, living independently, and having fun all while contributing to society. Many women dream of being mothers someday, but for many, that’s their worst nightmare. Either way, their decision should be accepted, respected, and definitely not questioned.
- Along those same lines, not every woman wants to get married, and that’s okay. No need to shame them, or make comments.
- Women and men should be paid equally. In 2020, a woman makes 81 cents for every dollar a man makes. Not only is this incredibly unfair, but it teaches young girls that a man’s work and effort is more valuable than theirs.
- Women are not responsible for the actions of men on accounts of sexual assault. “How could he control himself?,” “but look at what she’s wearing,” “she was asking for it,” and “boys will be boys.” They are all phrases we have heard to justify awful acts committed against women, by men. Women covered up head to toe get sexualized and assaulted as well as girls who choose to dress more freely. I’m starting to think the clothes aren’t the problem, but more of the way we are raising men to think of women as objects.
- Women should have body autonomy. Whether I choose to act upon something or not, that is the privilege of bodily autonomy. Nobody forces me to do something that I don’t want to do with my own body, just like nobody legally prohibits me. That’s the entire concept. Why are men in power deciding what we should or shouldn’t do with our bodies?
- When we take on leadership roles or have good ideas, that doesn’t make us “bossy” or “loud”, it makes us strong. Why are women always labeled as “overdramatic”, “try-hards”, and “unoriginal” while men are viewed as “brave”, “independent” and “creative”?
- We don’t need to be nice to men who make us feel unsafe or uncomfortable. We are tired of suffering in silence, and will not feel guilty for standing up for ourselves when a man makes us feel uneasy.
- Please stop telling us to smile when we’re out in public, especially if you’re a stranger. You don’t say it to other males, why bother us to satisfy yourself?
- Feminism isn’t an “anti-men” movement. It’s empowered people who have seen and experienced enough injustice between genders, raising awareness to educate future generations of men and women, in hopes of building a society where equality prevails.