So, you say you're not a feminist?

by Maggie Draughn

So, you say you're not a feminist, but you believe in equal rights? While a complicated mentality, you're not alone in these thoughts. With so many misconstrued interpretations and a multitude of negative stereotypes surrounding feminism, it often feels safer to say you aren’t a feminist.  

I’ve heard it so many times: “I’m not a feminist, but I do believe in equal rights.”

Let’s get one thing straight. Feminism is about ending sexism, and creating equality between the sexes. Feminism is recognizing that there is a problem with gender and that something should be done about it. Being a woman is not a requirement to being a feminist, –everyone can and should be feminists.

Another stark and cold reality about feminism is the exceptionally negative stereotypes associated with the word itself. Hollywood and the mainstream media are notorious for depicting such extreme versions of women that they portray a seriously distorted version of feminism with little resemblance to true feminism. Because women want to distance themselves from such extremes, many women stray from identifying as feminists, even without knowing the true sense of the word.

Simply put, the truth is that feminism concerns ending sexism. In order for feminism to succeed, acknowledgment of gender-based issues is crucial. So, I dare you to  first recognize sexism, and next, to never be a bystander in such moments. Say something. It’s up to our generation to make gender equality important. Feminism is something we should be able to discuss openly and candidly without fear of societal backlash. So get it trending. It’s 2017 and we should ALL be feminists.