Happy Friday Feminist Funtimes, Beauty Coup ruffians!
For starters, I want to acknowledge some late submissions to our Beauty Coup 100 – Celebrating You! post. If y’all keep sending us these great selfies and reasons why you’re awesome, we will keep posting them. It’s always a good time to revel in your fabulousness, you beautiful starfishes.
***There’s a late submission that I’m saving for our next FFF post, because Liz D. had a lot to say, and I want to address some of her thoughts more fully.
Now on to our FFF topic!
How many of you have ever heard these words uttered (from your own mouth or someone else’s): “I’m not a feminist, but…” ?? Chances are most of us know someone who uses this phrase or its equivalent. For today’s edition of FFF, we’re going to talk about why it’s a bunch of hogwash.
It’s quite simple, really, because the words that often come after the disclaimer are almost always one hundred percent in line with feminist ideology. In nearly every instance where someone proclaims “I’m not a feminist, but…”, what he/she might as well be saying is “I’m a feminist because…”
Let’s look at some prime examples:
“I’m not a feminist, but I do believe in the power of women.” – Katy Perry
“I’m not a feminist or anything but I definitely think that it is unfair to allow a woman’s sexual history to be used against her in a trial.” – random student quoted on the interwebs
“I don’t consider myself a feminist, but I’m down for my first opportunity to say something to the world to be so meaningful. If you asked me, ‘What do you want to say?’ it would be, ‘Love yourself more.” – Meghan Trainor
Q: Do you consider yourself a feminist?
A: “No because I love men, and… I’m very in touch with my masculine side… I’m 50 percent feminine and 50 percent masculine, same as I think a lot of us are… We have to have a fine balance.” – Shailene Woodley
Q: Are you a feminist?
“Absolutely not… I’m a 24-year-old woman that lives in the United States and feels like I should be treated the same as anyone else.” – Katherine Fenton
“…women are just as capable… I believe in equal rights…” – Marissa Mayer (‘not’ a feminist)
As a brief reminder, here is the actual definition of feminism, courtesy of Merriam-Webster:
: the belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities
PLEASE NOTE: Nowhere in this definition does it say that feminists believe that women are superior to men. Women who believe that they (we) are superior to men are not feminists, they’re sexists. (Are we fighting now? I’d love to hear from those who disagree; tell me why I’m wrong!)
So really, what all of these women are expressing are Feminist Values. What they’re also saying is that while they believe in such values, they’re also afraid of/don’t like/have stigmatized ideas about the word Feminist. It’s the very root of our patriarchal society that presents Feminist as a dirty, extremist, man-hating, pinko commie, witchy, lesbionic word. Which, as we’ve just covered, it isn’t.
***To be clear, a feminist can Also be dirty, extreme, a communist, a witch, and/or a lesbian. But a feminist cannot hate men based on their gender alone, because that is the definition of sexism. (Seriously, we can totally fight about this. I’d love to hear your arguments.)
If you’re still confused, or know someone who is, here’s a handy chart that should clear things up once and for all:
Anyone feeling uppity about “And you probably suck as a person”? If so, riddle me this: If a person doesn’t believe in equal rights and opportunities for men and women, then that person believes in the inherent superiority of one gender over another, right? (i.e., that person is sexist) …Is that someone you want to hang out with, or do they probably suck?
So, once more, with gifs!
Believing in the inherent equality of all people, regardless of their gender: