If You Are Not A Feminist, This Is Where You Stand

If You Are Not A Feminist, This Is Where You Stand She Rose Revolution
Photo by Kyle Cut Media

Feminism: the advocacy of women’s rights based on the equality of the sexes. The belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities.

I wasn’t raised to be scared of you, but I learned to be; every time I heard about another women raped in the back ally, another women shot by an ex lover, another girl abducted by a middle aged man, another girl beaten to death after saying no.

I wasn’t raised to be scared of you.

Through experience I know it’s not all men, but it’s enough. Its enough for me to buy a keychain with a window breaker and a seatbelt cutter. It’s enough for me to secretly hide a fork in my purse because carrying a knife is illegal. It’s enough for me to cover my cup at the bar, for me to have my friends track my location when I’m walking alone. It’s enough to give out a fake number instead of saying no. Enough for us to fear our lives when were alone in a room with you.

Do you understand that no means no? That stop means stop?

It doesn’t mean let me do this one more time to see what she does. The word no does not mean let me beg you until you say yes.

Do you understand that we don’t wear revealing clothes to provoke you? We don’t wear clothes to get assaulted, or show our shoulders for you to get distracted by, or wear shorts for you to make a comment on our legs.

When we say, “I am a feminist” and you laugh in our faces and say, “women have rights already,” you are laughing at the 33,000 girls that become child brides everyday. At the women in Africa who spend 40 billion hours a year collecting water. The women who are not being paid the same as their male co-worker for doing the same job. The young girls who are sold into sex slavery. The 70% of women in India who are victims of domestic violence. All the rape victims. The women in 189 countries that don’t give them legal work rights. And the missing and murdered indigenous women.

You create groups to supress us, mock us online, tell us our rape isn’t real; when you say feminism is “equal rights means equal fights” and use the movement as an excuse to hit a woman.

We think of our female ancestors who endured forced marriages, sexual abuse, physical violence, and who were completely deprived of education for centuries. We think of the 1 in 4 women who will have an abortion in their lifetime, and while they sit in silence you preach about how abortion is murder and they’re disgusting for making a choice that was best for them.

In El Salvador, women who have miscarriages have been charged with aggravated homicide. In Ireland, abortion laws up until 2018 treated women like criminals, sentencing them for up to 14 years in prison. In Alabama, there is a total ban on abortion, in five other states abortion is banned when a heartbeat is detected, which can be as early as six weeks. In Poland, abortion is completely banned with exceptions only for cases of rape, incest and the mothers health being at risk. In Malta, abortion is banned in all cases, including rape and incest.

When you have a rape allegation and can still continue at your place of work; but a woman’s nude photo can leak and her reputation becomes destroyed and her place of work fires her.

When you say she was asking for it, but she repeatedly said no.

When you say you can’t control yourself and she was a minor.

You dehumanize us repeatedly; and I am reminded why I can’t stand at the bus stop alone at night, or walk to my car at night, or get in a cab alone. The fear that we as women live in daily for being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

I am reminded by the women who can’t say their significant other raped them because being involved means “you always have consent.” By the young girls who are groomed by predators. And by the millions of girls who are taught from a young age that you can’t control yourself.

Feminists do not hate men.

Feminism, down to its very core, is about gender equality.

Feminism wants to create a society in which an individual’s gender doesn’t restrict them from success and happiness.

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