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I'm feeling inspired.

I have been asked, many times, by many people, whether or not I am a feminist. After all, I'm a socially liberal female; I believe in gay rights, sex education, and Roe v. Wade, among other things. Doesn't feminist fit right in with that?

My answer every time is no. I am not a feminist.

To many, this conjures up an image of an Ann Coulter-esque self-hating woman, especially when coupled with my moderate Republican political affiliation. They see me as someone who would deny her own womanhood and everyone else's, who falls in line and subjugates herself to the moral male majority. Someone who agrees with "honor" killings and the suppression of strong young women.

This isn't me, either.

I am an equalist.

I believe that everyone should be treated with dignity, respect, and fairness, and that everyone should get exactly what they earn.

I believe that everyone should have the same opportunities, and that what you do with it is what matters, not the color of your skin, the equipment in your pants, or the gender you prefer.

I believe that no one should be given assistance above and beyond what would allow them to be on the same playing field as everyone else, but there is very little in this world that can stop anyone from achieving SOMETHING.

I believe that both the female white student from Redondo Beach and the male black student from Compton should be given the opportunity to do the same work to go to the same college.

I believe that gays should be allowed to live and love and fight and marry just like any other couple, and that a 17 year old Iraqi girl should not be stoned to death for having a boyfriend.

I believe that Jane Doe has the right to an abortion, and that Mary Smith has the right to say that she doesn't believe in abortion.

I believe in the right to free speech for all, but that doesn't mean I agree with everything you say.

I believe that the 16 year old girl can play football, if the 16 year old boy can dance ballet.

I believe that if I can hold hands with my boyfriend without a second glance, then Sami can hold hands with a girlfriend and expect the same.

I believe that Jessica can be a successful businesswoman and baker and still have blue hair.

I believe that there is nothing wrong with my mum choosing to marry young and be a stay at home mother.

I believe in single parents and the traditional family.

I believe that my generation can do ANYTHING if they try.

I believe that we can all change the world with a little elbow grease and a lot of effort.

And more than anything, I believe that one day, I will change the world. That one day, all of these things will come true, with a little contributed effort from me- and everyone else.

One day, a 17 year old girl will be able to have a boyfriend anywhere in the world without being stoned to death. My daughter won't know what it's like to be treated like dirt for being a girl, and my son won't be forced to treat girls like dirt to be "cool". My friends will be able to marry whoever they want as long as they're both consenting adults. I'll have patients who make the effort to learn about their health and their bodies, instead of being in their 20s and not knowing what a cervix is or that oral sex isn't always safe. There will be more companies with morals like LUSH, and less like Proctor and Gamble.

And one day, I'll be President.

I believe in these things and hope for these things, not just because I am a woman, but because I am a human.

"All I ask is this: Do something. Try something. Speaking out, showing up, writing a letter, a check, a strongly worded e-mail. Pick a cause – there are few unworthy ones. And nudge yourself past the brink of tacit support to action. Once a month, once a year, or just once...Even just learning enough about a subject so you can speak against an opponent eloquently makes you an unusual personage. Start with that. Any one of you would have cried out, would have intervened, had you been in that crowd in Bashiqa. Well thanks to digital technology, you’re all in it now."

Inspiration thanks to this livejournal post, which I read thanks to metaquotes.


( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 25th, 2007 11:48 am (UTC)
Beautifully said. I believe you'll change the world, too. And thanks for the shout out. -Libba
May. 25th, 2007 05:34 pm (UTC)
Thank you. :]
May. 25th, 2007 05:06 pm (UTC)
*applause* This is pretty much exactly what people in my "women in justice" class need to wrap their brains around. I think I was one of maybe 2 or 3 people who occasionally got offended by the rabid feminist theories our textbook was outlining.
May. 25th, 2007 05:38 pm (UTC)
*bows* thank you, thank you, feel free to spread. :]
May. 25th, 2007 05:53 pm (UTC)
Shiny :-)
May. 25th, 2007 05:22 pm (UTC)
You were expecting a response from me right?

Feminism is more than women's rights. While its true that was the main focus in the beginning many new wave feminist realized that you cannot stop there. Feminism [from my understanding, my reading and my classes] is about equality for all people regardless of Gender, Race, Economic Class, Sexual Orientation or Religion [as well as a few other hundred catergories I'm sure] As long as you believe in gender equality you're a feminist. That is not to say you cannot be both.

Pft and clearly when I'm a business woman I'll have purple hair.
May. 25th, 2007 05:38 pm (UTC)
Of course! I wanted a response from you. :]

I just feel like labeling myself as a feminist limits myself as a human, in that there's many misconceptions about what a feminist is. I'm sure there are many people who would consider me a feminist because I believe in equality; I feel better, though, calling myself an equalist.

But I completely respect and believe in feminists like you. :]

Of course you will, because you're cool like that. :]
May. 25th, 2007 06:21 pm (UTC)
Ah well according to a certain asshole I'm not a feminist because I'm not gay >_
May. 25th, 2007 06:24 pm (UTC)
Is this the same asshole that thinks I'm settling because I'm a nursing major?
May. 25th, 2007 06:35 pm (UTC)
haha no. But that asshole once called me a raging lesbian
May. 25th, 2007 06:41 pm (UTC)
Ahh, different asshole. Well, both assholes are wrong.

You? A raging lesbian?
May. 25th, 2007 07:15 pm (UTC)
yeah. Chase doesn't know though and neither did i
May. 25th, 2007 08:41 pm (UTC)
I don't think anybody knew ... I mean, all this time, I thought you were in love with a boy ... who knew?
Sep. 12th, 2007 04:48 am (UTC)
i really like everything you had to say in this entry. :)
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )

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