There are still women who eschew the label of feminist. I get it. I was there two years ago in a post I wrote on this very blog. Before reading up on variety of viewpoints, I believed in the mass media perpetrated straw man argument of the man-hating feminist. So I called myself a humanist because I believed in equal rights and treatment for all people.
That’s what feminists want. They don’t hate men. They don’t want special treatment. They’re not going to force you to stop wearing dresses if you have a vagina or start wearing them if you don’t. They are just people who think every human being should be treated like a human being regardless of what reproductive organs may be attached. I told a friend on facebook that feminist is no dirtier a word than virgin, slut, or hello. Tip: none of those are dirty words.
If person A does x quality and y quantity of work for a business and person B does x quality and y quantity of work for the same business, which one should get paid less? If your gut reaction is to say neither, then you’re a feminist. If your gut reaction is to ask if either one menstruates or wears pants more often, then maybe you’re not.
If citizen A researches a legislative proposal x amount and citizen B researches the same legislative proposal x amount, whose opinion is less important? If your first thought is that both are equally important, I’m afraid you’re a feminist. If your first thought is to wonder if the proposal is about birth control or if either citizen wears makeup, then okay, maybe you’re not.
If coffee-drinker A sits in a Starbucks wearing a tight shirt and tight jeans and coffee-drinker B sits in the same Starbucks wearing a tight shirt and tight jeans, which one is asking to be fucked? If you think neither, you’re a feminist. If you think both, you’re an asshole. If you wonder if either one is sitting cross-legged or has cleavage, you’re probably an asshole and not a feminist.
I don’t even think feminism is an inherently liberal position. I know many amazing conservative women who are clever, bold, compassionate, and kick ass. I don’t believe a single one of them would think it’s okay for a guy to do the exact same work they do but get paid more just because of gender. I don’t believe a single one of them think that their opinions matter less than those of the men around them. I don’t believe any of them would feel okay about having no choice in whether or not they get treated like sex objects. They might still vote Republican and Libertarian and Tea Party. But they think their votes matter as much as anyone else’s. These are feminist views.
I personally like women more than men. I’m allowed to have that opinion and that preference. I don’t think women should get special treatment; I do think women usually get crappier treatment than men.
I don’t think women are just breasts holding up vaginas to be ogled or molested by anyone who feels like it. I do think both men and women treat women poorly, on average.
I want it to stop. I’m not a virgin and I don’t think I’m a slut. But, hello, I am a feminist. You might be, too.