Feminism: a controversial word that still makes many people’s eyes roll.

There’s a misconception about feminism and so in my first blog post, I’d like to share my point of view. 

Feminism is NOT a movement aimed at destroying men, but at destroying the patriarchal ideas that are cemented in society. Feminism is NOT aimed at making men lesser than women, but at improving the status of being a woman so that it’s equal to that of being a man.

Feminism is NOT about treating men as trash, but rather pointing out the ‘trash’ things that some men do that increase the degradation of women. Feminism is NOT about reversing the status quo and oppressing men, but about challenging the status quo to stop oppressing women.

I’d like to talk about an important issue within feminism: gender-based violence. This is a sensitive topic all over the world, because the idea of rape, in particular, has been non-existent in the past. Rape was not rape. Rape was a woman who had ‘asked for it’. It was shameful and women were resented for being abused. Rape was not a topic up for discussion.

Recently, with movements like #MeToo, more and more people have been sharing their experiences of sexual abuse. It has become a more openly discussed topic now than ever before.

Many women have spoken up and made accusations, and in response (to no one’s surprise) came comments such as “she’s lying”, “why only come out now?”, “she’s trying to sabotage an innocent man”, “what was she wearing?”, “she was drunk yes, but she consented so it’s not rape”. The list goes on.

To anyone asking the question, if a woman was raped 30 years ago, why only come out now? I can give you an answer – rape was not up for discussion in the past. As soon as it became a topic that was no longer so much of a taboo, and as soon as more people were supporting women who sought justice for the offence committed against them, women decided it was time.

Time to stop holding back and to stop feeling guilty for someone else’s wrongs. Time to use their voices and turn the tables on the powerful men who thought they could get away with abuse because “she was asking for it” or “she consented” (even though she had been underaged or intoxicated), or “how could I have controlled myself with her looking like that?”.

Men who don’t rape, don’t abuse, don’t seek superiority, it’s also your job to stand up against those who do.

If you are a man who supports equality for all, doesn’t support patriarchal views on sexual abuse, doesn’t treat women as objects, doesn’t stereotype women as emotional and unfit to be in charge, then YOU ARE A FEMINIST.

Being a feminist is not just for women, but for all who support equality. 

If you are sexualizing a woman because of what she wears, and if you think that it gives you the right to sexually abuse her, the problem is with you, not with her.

If you see intoxicated consent as consent, you are mistaken.

If you think that an underage child’s consent gives you any rights over her, you are wrong.

And if you think that the patriarchal ideas of society will protect you from justice, then again, you are mistaken.

The movements will not stop, feminism will not stop and you will not beat them. So, educate yourself on equality for all, on the accurate statistics of rapes and sexual assaults, on the reality for women in the world. You might surprise yourself and find that feminism is not a tool to defeat the male species, but rather to empower all people in the world to enjoy equal rights and freedom of choice.

Who knows, whether male or female, you might just find that you are a feminist.

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Category: Feminism    Gender Based Violence    Rights
Tagged with: #16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence    #MeToo    16 Days    Consent    Gender Equality    patriarchy    Rape    Victim blaming

Kyla Müller

21-year old LLB student, optimist, humanist, humanitarian. I believe in equality and human rights for people of all genders, races, cultures and religions. Living in South Africa and loving life.

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    Matt Davis

    That is true as far as the original definition, and the definition given by feminists themselves when asked. In practice though, feminists only seem interested in equality when it suits them. Anywhere women are leading and men need support, and any problems faced mainly or exclusively by men, are usually ignored, both by feminists and wider society. Evolution has programmed humans to respond quickly to female suffering, but men’s problems are trivialised, ridiculed or ignored. Feminism has a paradox: women are powerful, have full agency to do what they want and are equal to men. But at the same time they wallow in perpetual victimhood, want special protection from violent men and deny women’s agency when they perpetrate serious, violent crimes; either excuses are made such as claiming it’s less serious when a woman is the perpetrator or claiming women don’t do these things, therefore a man must have instigated it. These beliefs are incompatible with the tenet of equality yet feminists actively promote them. Either women are fully equal to men and responsible for their actions (including crimes), or women are delicate flowers needing extra legal protection from men while constantly living in fear of those same men being violent towards them. If the latter, there is no room in this theory for female perpetrators and male victims. All perpetrators must be held fully accountable, and all victims must be supported.

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