Monday, 7 March 2016

My Take on Feminists and Feminism

I will preface this by saying this is just my own thoughts...not a manifesto to take over the world.

Since we, women, have been butting our noses in voting practices and burning our bras in the 1960s there now comes a new sort of movement of women disrupting society and the notion of Feminists.  Wouldn't it be nice if Feminists were all hairy man-hating bossy loud mouths (maybe...we could add butch...or lesbians to that characteristics just to make it real segregating)? I mean, come on, it would real help us out if we could identify the Feminist in the room, and snub her for her audacious thoughts and appearance.

To me, looking at history and the present situation, Feminism is not about woman taking over the world or shutting men down.  It is about gaining respect as a person and being able to get paid the same as a man.  It is about putting our own walls down around other women and building them up as we build our own selves to the best of our potential.  It's not a contest between genders or within our own gender.  Yes, we fought to be in the workforce but that does not mean that being a stay-at-home mother is less a being than a surgeon.  Sometimes I think we are too busy critiquing our own gender and bringing them down that we only allow the caricature of a Feminist to continue.  Next time you see a woman try to just smile...genuinely.  Be happy being you and be happy for a woman doing her own thing.  And seriously, it is not a true Feminist bickering with men over changing things like the word "manhole" covers...we are not claiming those people.

So does that mean I identify as being an Feminist?  It's a label as good as any.  While I am not religious, I grew up in the Sikh faith and attending Gurdwara (Temple) quite often with my mom and paternal grandmother.  When I did let go of the religion I took with me the principle of equality.  No one is less or more than me and therefore we all deserve love, acceptance and the freedom to be ourselves - human, animals, even that evil cat next-door who gives me the stink eye every time it sees me (shudder).  I will admit now I sometimes do fall into gender stereotypes...but I am working on it.  So maybe I am a Feminist in the making.  I am an only child and my parents never treated me less and always held high expectations for me.  They taught me to survive on my own if I needed to and not accept less than what I deserve.  Being in a romantic relationship with a man who supports me in anything and everything maybe I take it for granted that all men are like him...and I appreciate his good manners of opening doors and driving because I dislike it and I am sure he's just as thankful I do our dishes and clipping the coupons ;)

 *This unfinished essay was inspired by Emma Watson joining Goodreads and starting a reading group.  Her first selection is Gloria Stienem's My Life on the Road.  Watson has really brought Feminism to the forefront of discussions.  Agree or not she's bringing it to our attention.

Your own thoughts?!

k (My Novelesque Life) 

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