Can you be a feminine feminist?

First of all, I want you to ponder this question:  Are you a feminist?  As my friend and I sat at our local coffee shop enjoying our after work lattes, she said to me that she is not a feminist.  I love her, but at that moment it took everything I had not to slap her.  Literally, I even stared at her for a moment, dumbfounded by her statement.  Then I looked her square in the eye and said, “Yes, you are.”

According the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, a feminist is defined as: “advocating social, political, legal and economic rights for woman equal to those of me.”  So I ask you again, are you a feminist?  Since I have decided to post on my blog at least, I have been putting this post off.  Why?  I have so much to say about this subject, and yet, I am so passionate about it that I tend to lose my focus.  So I, the person who has no filter, has been sitting on my hands while I craft, edit, re-edit, and mold this into what I really want to say to you.

I read an article, at this website, http://lawflog.com/?p=476, and was infuriated.  Not by the man’s point of view, he has a good one.  However, but by this statement:

And why aren’t feminists saying more about the sexploitation of girls in popular culture? If feminists want a broader audience, maybe they should try expanding their coalition beyond abortion extremists and hairy-legged man-haters. How about promoting a girl’s rights to be a girl, not a sex object?”

I ever commented on my friend’s Facebook post about this, which within seconds of posted, was deleted.  I said that yes, I agree, children should be dressed as children, and while the shorts are too short, and leave nothing to the imagination, why is not one outraged by this man’s choice of wording when describing feminists?  No one, and I mean no one, even commented on it.

I know, as hard as it is to believe, I get carried away by things I am passionate about; however, this is just sad to me.  So many women commented on the article using the Bible and religion as stance against the shorts, and  even had heated arguments over whether religion should be included in this article at all; but no one, (out of 79 posts) not one woman, except myself, even mentioned the feminist stereo-type he threw out there.

This mentality is why people associate feminism as a bad thing.  I am a feminist.  I am proud to be a feminist.  I will butt heads with anyone, male or female, at any given time over any subject.  I am blessed to be able to attend any school of my choice, to wear pants when I want, to vote, to have religious freedoms, to be single, to get to own property, to have to pay taxes even.  I am blessed to have these rights.  This is what feminism has done for you ladies.

Feminism has not made you less of a lady.  I love men.  I do.  I love them.  I love to be held, petted, and even adored by men.  Just one in particular, but that’s not the point.  It makes me feel respected when a man holds a door for me.  It does not make me feel weak or humiliated.  It means that he realizes I am a lady, and he is being a gentleman.  I like when I get dressed up for date night, and I am complimented. (Now, having a man catcall to me has resulted in my speaking in a non-ladylike way to many men in random places; that, men, is not okay.) I like when I get my hair done and it is noticed.  I like when a man picks up the check for me. None is this does not make me a non-feminist.  It makes me a woman.

Somewhere along the way, feminism and feminine have been skewed and confused.  Being feminine, in the words of The Merriam-Webster Dictionary is defined as:

1. Pertaining to a woman or girl;

  1.   Having qualities traditionally ascribed to women, as sensitivity or gentleness.
  2. Effeminate; womanish
  3. Belonging to the female sex, female.”

In none of these descriptions do I see “weak,” or “unequal”.  When I asked my friend why she said she was not a feminist, she said, “Because I believe in traditional roles.  Woman should be at home taking care of the homestead, and men should be out working.”  I nodded, and said I too believed in traditional roles of gender; however, I stilled believed I should receive equal opportunities, jobs, salaries, and so forth.  She spoke up and said she did too.  I smiled, and I said, “Congratulations, you’re a feminist.”

So many women are not educated on what being a feminist really is. Check out the “Huffington Post” article, Meghan Trainor: ‘I Don’t Consider Myself A Feminist’ – http://huff.to/1rlTu5m. This poor girl has not a clue.  For that matter, neither do most men.  Most men, unfortunately, have the same attitude as Mr. Clevenger, the author of the blog above.  Now, please do not take this as a bashing on Mr. Clevenger, everything one says can be misinterpreted, and I pray that I am misinterpreting him.  I just believe it would be sad to have a father that does not support his little girl in every adventure she wishes to take.

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