After finding myself typing a comment that nearly turned into an essay (here) I realised I wanted to turn it into a blog, So here it is. On Feminism. From a different angle.
“The feminist agenda is not about equal rights for women,” said Pat Robertson, a television evangelist and former Baptist minister during his GOP convention speech in 1992. “It is about a socialist, anti-family political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism, and become lesbians.”
A shocking statement. One that is no longer widely held but nevertheless one that does have a grain of insight to how society today sees feminism. I’ll start at the very beginning then. The word feminism is of French origin and it is a word that always has caused much controversy. It was first used by a philosopher who wanted to improve the status of women in society but did not care much for equality. Today the word is defined by Oxford Dictionaries as “the advocacy of women’s rights on the ground of the equality of the sexes.” A reasonable ideology one would think. So why the hatred towards Feminism?
Common stereotypical views of feminists
The reason behind why people associate feminism with unpleasant attitudes and misdirected hate of men is because that is how it’s advocates portray it. In our modern societies..in the West and other, women have reached a place in time where they are no longer discriminated against. Where they indeed , in civil rights, humanitarian rights, are generally equal to men. The movement in this case is no longer really demanding any rights and is therefore waning. So what have they done to keep the movement going? Perhaps they have begun to address parts of the world where this has not yet been achieved. Perhaps they have been advocating and supporting people like Malala Yousafzai in campaigning for this equality to become universally accepted. But no, most haven’t.
Malala was shot in the head by the Taliban but continues to inspire by remaining adamant about campaigning for educational and women’s rights.
Today, feminists in modern society are more concerned with the media it seems. Here’s a link to an example of their preoccupations. The banning of a controversial yet popular song. These words of course do not apply to all feminists but what the movement to most people today represents. A diminishing ideology that finds itself without purpose within it’s own society and instead of moving on to others which need it, begins to attack any small form of sexism that still exist and latch on to it. So while I would proudly have identified myself a feminist in the past, I am now hesitant to use the term.
An example of another well-known feminist controversy is the case of sexist remarks made off-air by Sky News Football commentator Andy Gray a couple of years ago – which caused a backlash so violent from feminists with no better cause, that he was sacked for it. I don’t mean to defend his remarks – of course they were inappropriate and overstepped a certain boundary. But then again, this is precisely the reason many people see feminism as an unwarranted and unneeded movement. There are simply more pressing matters that need to be addressed today than a sexist comment made by a man somewhere. It is illogical to begin campaigning against such things simply because they will continue to happen. Whether in private or in public.
We see people like Malal on TV and then switch to another channel to see Kate Walsh (here) debate a man over the insane injustice of calling a co-worker pretty and others often turning on other females for choosing a ‘non liberated path’ – the most recent headline stating “Model Attacked By Topless Protesters At Paris Fashion Week”. Feminism quickly then not only becomes unnecessary in the eyes of the general public but also becomes something of a fussy annoying sort of phenomenon that receives much more attention than is necessary.