Feminism not about bra burning

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   Bra-burning. Man-hating. Lesbian. 

   To many people, these phrases are what it means to be a feminist. I’m here to tell you those people are wrong. 

Feminism does not mean you hate men. Feminism is a movement that means wanting equal pay, rights and opportunities for everyone, regardless of race, creed or sex .

A feminist is someone who believes that, even though you’re not a white male, you deserve equal and fair treatment without being seen as a ball buster.

Many people think women already have equal treatment when compared to men. But, when you get statements from government officials saying that women should be home from work in time to cook dinner, or that women don’t get the right to control their own reproductive organs, I beg to differ.      

Politicians this past year have tried to pass laws banning abortion, cut the funding of organizations like Planned Parenthood, and defined a woman being pregnant as two weeks before pregnant. That is not equal treatment. 

If women were truly in equal standing, issues like abortion wouldn’t actually be an issue. We wouldn’t have men redefining rape every five seconds. Women would be able to be CEOs of major corporations without being deemed too masculine.

I’m not saying that every woman wants to become a big-shot lawyer or CEO. Staying home and raising a family is just as respectable, and I know plenty of feminists who do just that.       

However, if we do choose to raise a family, that should be our choice and not someone else’s.

Feminism gets a bad rap for its extremist sects–what people stereotypically call the “man-haters.” And some feminists hate men, this is true. However, not all of us do. Personally, I respect a good number of men; what I’m standing for is not for a statement of female superiority, but for an admission that women are not treated equally and for that wrong to be righted.

Think of your mothers, your sisters and your daughters. Think of yourself. Would you want to be denied rights based on a biological difference and old-fashioned societal gender roles?

Hopefully, many of you said no. If you did answer no, you are a feminist. It doesn’t matter if you’re a man or woman; if you believe in equal rights for both men and women, you’re a feminist. 

Stand tall. Be proud. Being a feminist means you hope to achieve a world where everyone can coexist without one group of people being socially and economically superior to another.   

A feminist wants to achieve a world where fathers can stay home and take care of the children while mothers work; a world where being a man, or a woman, doesn’t make you better than anyone else.

So, I ask you to do something about this. Every time some one’s rights are questioned, every time someone is oppressed, change that.   

Vote in politicians who won’t oppress masses of people. Oppose the laws that deny people rights. You can do something to ensure equality. Treat people like your equals, no matter what their race, sex or ideals are. If we all do this now, in the future none of those things will matter and humanity as a whole will truly be equal.