So today on Twitter I had an interesting dialogue with a friend of mine.
It started with this
I use to think feminism was against men. I learnt it was against patriarchy. I signed up.
— David McQueen ♕ (@DavidMcQueen) May 5, 2014
What followed was interesting dialogue which went of it’s own after this comment
@DavidMcQueen …there more problems with feminism today than good. It was once critical, today not in the same kind of way.
— Thomas (@T_Mwadime) May 5, 2014
140 characters are not enough, so here goes.
- I am a feminist because I believe we live in a world where woman are treated unequally and advocacy is needed to address this imbalance. From both women and men.
- I am a feminist because I believe in challenging and changing the societal institutions and norms which are built around domination, suppression and oppression of women. Kyriarchy if you will.
- I am a feminist because I have seen women and men unable to live life to their best because they feel the need to stick to predetermined roles and traditions to keep the peace, even if they suffer.
- I am a feminist because gender equality is one of my core tenets as a secular humanist
- I am a feminist because I believe women should not have to be victims of sexual assault, shaped by patriarchal models which don’t place much emphasis on it.
- I am a feminist because I think it is important as a father to ensure my daughters don’t grow up with the notion they need to be better, or work harder, or have to prove they are more intelligent than a man to get ahead in life.
- I am a feminist because it provides key debates as to what feminism, is or is not about
- I am a feminist because it is a unified platform for advocacy for women’s rights in areas such as sexual health, FGM, employment equality, education and economic empowerment.
There are more but this is not a list rather some of the reasons behind it.
Now I should make it clear my definition of feminism is about activism that ensures equal treatment of women in all areas of life. I am cognisant that others see it differently. Whether they are exposed to the more extreme sides of political activity or totally unaware of the concepts of how race and class affect these rights as covered by intersectionality.
Why should someone think a man is superior to a woman because of some religious text?
Why should people think that women should not have as much agency of their body, sexuality and preferences without it being seen through the prism of manhood?
At its heart though for me feminism is actively being aware of the fact that our society, our language our behaviours, assumptions are not in the main favourable towards women.
Being able to challenge my own notions about this, and the notion of others about equality for women and learn from others who have paved the way before is rewarding. These and other reasons why I am on this journey as a feminist.