Hello one and all, and welcome to my column! I feel very lucky to have been given the opportunity to write it, and I hope with all my might that it can provide you with at least a smile if/when you read it. I intend to make it feministy and I imagine that it will (naturally) at times be really really funny, because I am (lol). This is my first piece, and so I thought I’d begin by introducing you to my concept of feminism. Hope you like it. Here goes:
We will all assure one another that we are ‘different’. Different in height, hair colour, gender, diet, attitude…the list is endless. It’s a trap you might particularly fall into if you attend QM; we all know living in East London makes you well edgy and hip and stuff. Of course, we should celebrate these differences as often as we can – yours make you you, and you, whoever you are, are fantastic. However, so as not to be self-indulgent, something we can perhaps celebrate more, I think, is that we are all very much the same.
THE factor – as far as I’m concerned – that determines the validity of the movement for equality is the fact that we are all people.
You might be taller than your girlfriend.
You might have ginger hair, or dark hair; you might vote Labour, or you might vote Tory.
You might identify as a gender that differs to the one you were classified as at birth.
But we are all humans, and you do not need me to tell you that.
Humanity is what life is about. We are the dominant species, a status that provides us with the responsibility of our planet, and so the inhabitants of that planet (each other). We have a duty to ensure the happiness of yes, ourselves, but also humans in general, and establishing equality will help us do this more effectively. It genuinely, properly will. Promise.
The feminist movement is there to serve humans. It may be specifically angled to leveling the gender gap – ie establishing equality between men and women, but there’s more to it than that. Feminists want equality for everyone, and I am personally of the opinion – please note the term ‘opinion’ – that in attempting to achieve equality, it is a testament to women that we address the patriarchy from the point of all genders, all perspectives. Many of us understand the way in which the patriarchy has impacted our society as a whole, yet it has, at various stages and across various sectors, reduced women to nothingness whilst males have been elevated to heights that we only hope we can reach. We might be angry about the position that our sisters and ourselves are in, but we’re nevertheless trying to make it better for everyone.
So that is why feminists are not man-haters. That is why feminists are not just women. Feminists are those of us who want humans to be happy and ok and equal, and we should all be feminists because we should all want equality. Labeling yourself a ‘humanist’ or an ‘equalist’ is pointless, and it makes you, sadly, a bit sexist. No, the fight isn’t just about women anymore, but we still have a way to go and to be quite honest, women started this thing, and we’re likely to finish it too. Feminists are making things equal, and making things better, and you know what, women have had so much taken from us already; please do not take this title as well.