I am a feminist, and I don’t hate men!

Yes, I know, that may confuse some people.  A great many people think feminists are crazy radical women who don’t shave their armpits or legs, and carry on about how men are awful human beings who don’t deserve to be alive, and should just be servants to womankind forever.  Or something like that…..

First of all, as the mother to two teenaged boys who will someday be men, and a stepmother to a wonderful young adult who is already a man, that is the farthest thing from my mind.  If I hated men, wouldn’t I see my sons (i.e. future men) in that light?

However, to be perfectly honest, if I was brave enough to deal with the negative social feedback and nasty stares from people at the gym, I would NEVER shave my legs in the winter.  I just think that extra hair would keep me warmer….. however, I shave because I am not that brave……yet.  Maybe after I turn 50 in October I won’t give a shit about the social stigma.   There is always hope……

But back to the task at hand…..discussing feminism.

I am a double major Bachelor’s student at Old Dominion University.  I was a Psychology Major and then just for fun, I took an elective called Intro to Women’s Studies.  My professor for the class was a woman named Robin Ormiston.  Robin is an amazing Professor, and opened my eyes to so many things that I knew, but never really gave deep thought and attention to before.  Well, I started to give LOTS of things deep thought and attention once I started learning more and more!

So I decided to take on Women’s Studies as a second major because I think I can do something with a degree in Psychology and Women’s Studies to make an impact on the planet in which I live. Something to benefit the lives of women and hopefully make a difference. To be honest I really want to work with women of color in some capacity, because I believe white privilege exists (a post for another day), and I have a deep desire to do something to end that and to bring all women to equal status in our society, and abroad.

So what I have  learned about myself is that I am a feminist.  I have always been a feminist, I just wasn’t sure how to articulate that in a meaningful way.  Now I can put knowledge and my education to use to stand up for what I have always believed, but didn’t know how to bring it into my way of life, or speak about it in a meaningful way.  Now I have the knowledge from classes as well as my own research to do that.

Created by http://rebeccacohenart.tumblr.com/

Created by http://rebeccacohenart.tumblr.com/

Interestingly there are many, many people who don’t share my vision, or agree with my ideas.  Last year on Facebook, someone accused me of being like the guy at the bar in Good Will Hunting.  At first I was like, that is great, he thinks I am like Matt Damon, someone who thinks for myself, and can show that I am intelligent.  Then I realized he meant I was the ponytail guy who just reads stuff and “regurgitates” it without really knowing what I am talking about.  That actually hurt my feelings.  Because I DO know what I am talking about.  I am not so simple minded that I can’t read, and research, and formulate my own opinions about things like white privilege, and the wage gap, and the horrible way the media works against women and girls, and the genocide of Native Americans and forced sterilization of poor (mostly black) women.  I am almost 50 (as I am prone to say pretty frequently).  I have spent 20 years in the military.  I have been a single mom, and  I actually owned a house in an African American neighborhood in Chesapeake Virginia for 18 months. My two boys were the only white kids in each of their classes, and to be honest I thought it was a good experience for them to be the “minority” for a change.  In fact, I only moved from there because Karol moved back to Virginia from Pennsylvania and we needed more space than my small three bedroom house,  for our newly blended family of 6.

Then in class yesterday another student articulated what I feel about feminism in a two word response.  She said she believes feminism is “Common Sense”.  It was as if the sky opened and light shone down from the heavens.  COMMON SENSE!  YES!!!

So I want to list some of the “Common Sense” ideals feminists (including myself) strive for:

Equal pay for equal work….of course

Clean water no matter where you live or your economic status…….yup

No more gendered violence…..yupper

Treating humans with respect and dignity no matter their race, gender, orientations, ethnicity, economic status, etc etc etc….absolutely

The right to live as we choose……yes

Women have the right to be in charge of their own bodies: size, shape, contraception (or not), decision to have children (or not), and most importantly have agency over what happens to their bodies……..without a doubt

Unearned privilege is a system that oppresses and subjugates and marginalizes and should be removed from society………correct

That is just a few, but truly this blog is long enough, and I can write whatever I want here, so this topic can definitely be revisited whenever I want…..MWUAHAHAHA  I have the POWER!!!!!!!

I_Have_The_Power

Thank you Robin!!!!

 

 

 

 

 

11 responses to “I am a feminist, and I don’t hate men!

  1. I agree with everything you said. I have been a feminist since the 60’s and I love men. No contradiction for me. Just have to find the men who appreciate women for all our talents and contributions.
    Madgew recently posted..Last wrote to you on July 29thMy Profile

    • Madge,
      They can be difficult to find!! But I know you have perseverance and will find a male feminist who appreciates you!!

  2. Just wanted to say I love your blog, but don’t comment anywhere very often. I think it’s great that you are in school and taking womens studies. I think I would chose it as well if I did same. I’m 52 now and refer to my age often as well, I too have a better understanding of myself and have become pretty much fearless. Have a great day, looking forward to your next post.

    Mary

    • Mary,
      Thank you so much! That comment means so much to me! I am extremely touched that you appreciate what I write and can relate to it on a personal basis! I completely agree about the age we are and our self awareness. I am not quite 50….but I am READY!! (October 6) lol

  3. Wonderfully said! Feminism really is simply common sense. Thanks for sharing my comic — I’m glad to be part of any conversation about feminism.
    Rebecca Cohen recently posted..If you haven’t been reading The Adventures of Gyno-Star,…My Profile

    • Rebecca,
      Thank you so much for expressing yourself in such a creative way. I am glad to be able to share your work in this way!!

  4. Pingback: Friday Favorites 1/23 - Virginia BloggersVirginia Bloggers

  5. I love this post! Not enough people recognize this fact.
    Alanna @ Alanna and Co recently posted..Currently Listening To – JanuaryMy Profile

    • Alanna,
      You are absolutely right! Being a feminist is not about hating men or even wanting to be “above” men. It is about equity. It is about removing stigma and giving everyone a level playing field no matter your race, gender, or sexuality….

  6. ALL THE YES!

    *ugh* … apparently “ALL THE YES!” was not deemed long enough to be “useful” by your commenting system. Hopefully it’s long enough to be considered useful now. But just in case…

    ALL THE YES plus INFINITY. SQUARED. times FOREVER. and SOME.
    Andi-Roo (@theworld4realz) recently posted..In January I did the things. #ROW80My Profile

    • Andi,

      Sorry….. But SUPER glad you left your comment because I agree with you 1000%. I promise it was useful, comment system laws be damned!!! (I will check to see if it can be manually changed, thanks for the heads up). 🙂

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