What is Feminism?
The other day, I was conversing with a guy I had just met. All of a sudden, he asked me if I was a ‘feminist’. Of course, my answer was yes! I am not really sure how my answer was relevant to the conversation, but somehow it was relevant for him. His response to my admission of being a ‘feminist’ was, “Oh!” So I asked him, “What’s that supposed to mean?” He told me that he thinks ‘feminists’ are scary. Scary, I thought to myself. You think equality is scary? I didn’t quite understand why he thought ‘feminists’ are scary. Honestly, I don’t even know what that was supposed to mean in any context. He began to explain that the reason why he thought ‘feminists’ are scary is because he perceives ‘feminists’ as desiring to be stronger than men. He also told me that ‘feminists’ are females (and even some males) who want females to be the superior gender.
He had it all wrong. And it was completely baseless! Feminism is the act of advocating for equal rights based on grounds of political, social, and economic equality among men & women. We, the feminists, are not looking to be a dominant gender. We just want to be treated equally. We want equal pay, equal healthcare, and equal everything imaginable.
Do men know what it is like to be told “you can’t”? How about being told you can’t because of who you are i.e. your gender? It is truly irritating! It is always like the world is saying, “You are not good enough to do something because you were given a different chromosome.” Not only is it hurtful, but in some cases it cultivates a helpless feeling. It is as if the world is telling you that you won’t succeed because you don’t have the physical ability for it. This is just wrong! We should never tell this or a part of it to anyone. These are baseless and non-sensical remarks that hold no ground whatsoever. But the reality remains that society doesn’t agree with us.
So, we fight! We fight for equality because the world is telling us that females will never be good enough. We know this isn’t true. Together we unite, and together we try to change the minds of others around who think we cannot.
Sareana Kimia is in high school, and is a concurrently enrolled student at the University of Maryland College Park. She is a youth activist and believes in community organizing. Sareana serves as a Student Member on Montgomery Democratic Central Committee; the President/CEO of Youth for National Change; and an Advisory Board Member of both EntrepreneuHer & MissHeard Magazine, among other roles. She is biracial, half Indian and half American, and knows five languages - French, English, Spanish, Chinese, & Hindi; Sareana is looking forward to learning about various cultures through her participation with Her Culture.
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