The New F-Word (#WomenAgainstFeminism)

On Friday, this Buzzfeed article went viral, featuring posts from a tumblr called WomenAgainstFeminism. A handful of people shared it on my newsfeed, which was a handful too many for me. Most of the posts look something like this:


Equality? That's literally what feminism IS. Look, I changed some of it, now it makes sense. 


The tumblr isn't actually against equality, it just criticizes the feminist movement for being sexist. Ironic. Most of the signs focus on "real equality", not demonizing men, being capable of being independent. In other words, feminism. 


Feminism means equality. That's it. But feminism has become a dirty word. Here's how I see it: #WomenAgainstFeminism (I'll just say WAF from now on) attacks the extreme slice of feminists who equate feminism with misandry (the hatred of men) and play the victim card a lot.


Example. This isn't what feminism is about, this girl hasn't actually been victimized by men looking at her. "Stare Rape" isn't a thing, it just discredits people who have actually been raped. This is pretty damn offensive, and is part of the basis for WAF. So I guess I get it. WAF is attacking women for their extreme, and often offensive, viewpoints.

I say "attack" because of the aggression and insults they use. It's not just that they find some feminists misguided, they blatantly accuse all feminists of being "[j]ust a bunch of whiny brats looking for attention by competing to see who can tell the biggest 'weak woman' story... insecure narcissists who want to be praised for saying the glass is half empty and claiming they are victims, as if that makes them morally superior to the rest of us who stand on our own two feet."

WAF accuses all feminists of simultaneously projecting their issues with men onto all women, putting men on a pedestal, and accusing all men of being evil. WAF attacks feminists in a way that generalizes the entire group as being awful, and they're doing this because they believe that feminists generalize all men as being awful. In other words, they're doing exactly what they're criticizing.

You're getting pretty pretty damn hypocritical there, WAF
Every group has extremists, in this case, it's feminists who claim that the glass is always half empty and that all women are horridly oppressed by men, the "feminists" (picture me making big air quotes here) who confuse the movement with misandry. Extremists can make any group look bad, but that doesn't mean they represent the entire movement. It doesn't mean you have to demonize the group and remove yourself. Of course I'm offended by the extremists. I'd like to distance myself too, and claim that I'm not like that, but honestly, I probably fit their definition pretty well. I have a blog, and I tend to whine about feminist issues, so let me reiterate my mission for this blog here.

There have been three major waves of feminism. Currently, there isn't a fourth, but many people have advocated for one because of the lack of activism in other waves of feminism regarding current issues, such as domestic labor, harassment, discrimination, body and slut-shaming, reproductive freedom, violence, and so on. Look at how far we've come. I'm not oppressed; I can wear what I want and say what I want. I can make my own choices, and that's fantastic. But it's not universal. There's still more to talk about, and we won't get anywhere by demonizing men, and especially not by demonizing each other. I'm not comfortable sitting still with the way things are. That's why I write this blog. That doesn't mean I'm accusing men, and that certainly doesn't mean I see myself, or other women, as victims just because of gender. I know not everyone agrees with me, and I wouldn't force anybody to. At the end of the day, I support political, social, and economic equality regardless of gender, and that's why I'm a feminist.

The anti-feminist movement is not new. People have been accusing feminists as being man-hating and crazy for centuries. Look at the anti-suffragism movement in the late 19th century. It was composed mainly of women, and portrayed suffragettes (those who advocated for the female right to vote) as masculine, accused them of destroying their families, emasculating their husbands, and aiming for female supremacy.

There's a ton more of these over here, if you're into that sort of thing.

What's up with all this man hating? I don't hate men. I love men. Seriously, guys, call me. 

Real feminists do not hate men. Many real feminists are men. The movement is against female supremacy, it's against all supremacy, because sexism hurts everyone. Hell, look at the gender gap in prison sentencing, most women will be sentenced for less time than a man for the same crime, and I think that's sexist and unfair.

I understand the desire to separate yourself from the extremists who give feminism a bad name, even if you still believe in the same things. I'd like to do it too, but I won't. I call myself a feminist because I want to align myself with the movement before me. Because I recognize and respect how far we've come, and I'm proud.

I don't think its helpful to demonize an entire movement. WAF is destructive. They promote things like slut-shaming and belittle problems that are actually huge issues. They're trying to destroy a movement that promotes equality just because of a handful of extremists who don't understand what feminism is supposed to be.

This is called slut-shaming. It is not ok. Also, since when are feminists sluts?

If you don't want to be a feminist, that's perfectly fine. But you're not going to get anywhere by accusing other people of being "whiny narcissists". I don't agree with people who equate feminism to misandry, but I don't think they're weak or evil. I also don't think that WAF is evil, just misguided. As my personal favorite commenter put it, WAF seems to be saying one thing...




Laci Green, though I sometimes disagree with her, and who sometimes annoys me, makes some very good points in her video about why she's a feminist. Check her out here.

4 comments:

  1. awh why don't you like Laci Green?
    PS: good post

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    1. Thanks! I actually love Laci Green, I think she argues her points wonderfully, I just didn't want to cover my whole argument with hers. (And the way she edits her voice doesn't always make me laugh. Only about 80% of the time. ;) )

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  2. "Hell, look at the gender gap in prison sentencing, most women will be sentenced for less time than a man for the same crime, and I think that's sexist and unfair."

    But will still stand with movement that lobby to keep it that way in perpetuity.

    "I don't think its helpful to demonize an entire movement. WAF is destructive."

    But I will not challenge any of the extremist on my group, they would cast me out if I did so I will just generalise the WAF movement as destructive and evil instead.

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    1. Are you sarcastically challenging me? Or just awkwardly stating your own ideas in the safety of being anonymous?
      I don't agree with everything all feminists believe. I choose to call myself a feminist because the movement boils down to equality, and that's what I believe in. I don't agree with extremist feminists. I acknowledged that WAFs criticism of extremists is justified and understandable. While I believe that a movement against all feminists is destructive, I explicitly clarified that I don't think WAF is evil.
      Either way, if you clearly didn't read what I wrote the first time, I hardly expect you to read it now.

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