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Lady K's Big Fat Feminism Talk Part 3

I was about to write that what 2015 feminist have to do is "grow up", but the adults they know have too often not let them do that. In a world where playgrounds no longer have sharp edges and parents helicopter over their offspring in order that no negative experience ever plague them, growing up has become something that doesn't happen with age.

They would do well by realizing that the world is a harsh and dangerous place. Like any wilderness, it's full of peril and beauty. It is not safe. Fullstop.

Every girl should be taught to throw a punch and use a weapon. Adults of both sexes should strive towards a world where needing to use those tools is rarely necessary, but since the world is not and never will be safe, they need to know.

2015 feminists need to understand that they have to close the Tumblr app, leave their houses, and participate in society. They need to set actual goals for feminism. They need to set actual goals for themselves. Once they've set the goals, they have to realize the work will be hard. People WILL call them mean names. The answer isn't to cry on the internet about how oppressed you are, but to see yourself as a bulldozer smashing through the obstacles thrown in front of you. You are not a baby, you are an adult. Act like it! 2015 feminists have resources at their disposal that generations of women have not had. Take advantage! Resist! Fight! Break! We laid the groundwork for you, and the laws you need to back yourself are now in place. Use them.

In closing, I'll quote Margaret Atwood again: "Refuse to be a victim. And that is ultimately what it comes down to.

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
selenite
Mar. 1st, 2015 08:38 pm (UTC)
Which is why my daughter has had some karate classes and learned to use a pistol.
kishiriadgr
Mar. 2nd, 2015 12:28 am (UTC)
I'd expect that of your family, absolutely.
sonria
Mar. 1st, 2015 09:07 pm (UTC)
I <3 this and wish there were more places to share it.

This touches on some of the reasons that I've finally stopped calling myself a feminist.

I was steered away from math and science while growing up because "girls are supposed to be good at language arts and boys are supposed to be good at math." THAT is oppression...and it was done to me *by* the state/government in the form of public school teachers. My parents were the ones who told the school to Stop It Right Now. So seeing so-called feminists run to the state for protection drives me crazy, because the state will only protect girls for as long as it benefits the state.

The same is true of any interest, public or private, group or individual. Its protection and advocacy ends where its goals do. Given that, it's incumbent upon everyone, male AND female, to recognize and be ready to act for one's own protection. But that requires growing up and accepting responsibility for it.

Most of the other reasons I've finally rejected feminism have to do with the feminist movement's attempts to redefine gender, as you mention. It's interesting to note that the feminist definition of "what's good for women" is remarkably masculine.

As an example, rather than celebrating the uniquely female ability to bear children, modern feminism buys into the patriarchy's myth that fertility is a disease (why else would birth control be considered "preventive medicine" for women but not for men?) and pregnancy is an abnormal condition. In addition, women who go into traditionally female careers are attacked for "selling out" and traditionally female interests such as hair and makeup are considered "frivolous" and "shallow" pursuits of time to the modern feminist (girls should be more interested in sports because physical activity is good for you).

This isn't the definition of gender equality that I signed up for, and it's the reason I finally left the movement. For that, too, I got attacked: I'd supposedly given in to the patriarchy.

We won't even get into the fact that the men's rights movement actually has a number of valid points. I'd be drummed right out of my own gender if I admitted that despite the fact that I've SEEN some of those allegations actually happen in real life, including in my own family.

That's not what I signed up for either; I don't need to oppress men in order to gain my own freedom as a woman. That, too, is something feminists need to take responsibility for. We all need help and advocacy sometimes, and pretending that only women have been victimized is deplorable. Of course, recognizing that means recognizing that sometimes, a woman really isn't a victim...and what good feminist would do that?

Edited at 2015-03-01 09:09 pm (UTC)
kishiriadgr
Mar. 2nd, 2015 12:27 am (UTC)
I think you're missing the fact that if you are a woman, you are damned if you do, damned if you don't. If you decide to drop out of the work force to have a family, people of both sexes will say "See? This is why it's a bad idea to hire women. They get trained, start the work, and drop out to have babies". If they have kids and keep working? Seen as ineffective because they take so much time out for family reasons. We can't win.

Personally, I am all FOR contraception being easily accessible. The right to control one's fertility is about as basic as it gets. As for why it's not preventative medicine for men...men can't get pregnant. I don't understand what you're trying to say there.

Men's rights movements are currently having the same issues as feminism. Sure, they have valid points, but they have also been conflated with the gross types who think they are entitled to women and also My Little Pony. I am so not kidding.

I will never not call myself a feminist, because I am hoping to keep setting the standard.

catdraco
Mar. 7th, 2015 12:05 pm (UTC)
It's an aikido thing, but I don't think women need to know how to throw a punch or shoot a weapon - despite the fact that I can do both.

Self defence is necessary, but can be pretty much nonviolent - in very physical ways.
kishiriadgr
Mar. 7th, 2015 06:07 pm (UTC)
My point is that you need to know how to defend yourself, and not expect that anyone will come to your rescue. Violent or nonviolent, that's an individual choice, but you must know how to do it.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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