Something new is trending on twitter. It's not grumpy cats, unfortunately. I wish that were the case.
What's trending is a growing group of women -- of all ages and nationalities -- coming together to give testimony to their experience, beliefs and strong identity as anti-feminists. Their group is called "women against feminism" and they are open to all women who don't support women.
Pardon me while I take another antacid, breathe slowly, channel my inner strength and proceed.
Yes, women are taking to the Internet to provide their reasons for being an anti-feminist. Most say that they don't want to be a victim, somehow associating fortitude with fragility. Some say they don't believe in having a superior attitude, confusing advocacy for arrogance. Some say they believe in equality. [Pause. Stunned. Silence. Pause.] I really don't even know what to say about that . . .
Here's the thing: this is important. It's important not only because is it inaccurate and ignorant (which needs to be addressed and corrected) but because it so clearly demonstrates that we have done a mediocre job at explaining what feminism is, its tenets and its purpose. Not only that but we have done a mediocre job of communicating to ... to ... women of all people. We really need to clear this up. We need a clear message with explicit definitions, along with a number of principles we can all agree on and then a few measurable goals in place. Since there is no time like the present, I'm going to go ahead and lead the conversation.
By definition, feminism is "the advocacy of women's rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men."
What do feminists believe in? Equality.
What do feminists advocate for? Equality.
What do feminists strive for? Equal pay, equal political representation, equal rights.
I'm not going to address everything feminists don't believe in because that's just a time-consuming distraction. Let's stay focused on our core beliefs which are all built on the simple notion of . . .altogether now . . . equality.
And the truth is, we need feminism because we are not on equal footing with men yet. The data does not lie. Women's wages -- for the same job and work -- are less than men's earnings; there are fewer women in political office; there are fewer women in leadership positions; studies have shown that fewer investors are willing to put their money behind a woman entrepreneur than a man, even when it's the exact same idea, concept, business and sales pitch.
Our society simply does not support women and men equally. The last thing we need is a tragic misunderstanding where women feel that feminism is a dirty word, is obsolete, and doesn't represent them and who they are. Because understand this: feminists are the ones who got you the right to vote, the right to divorce, the right to be in office. And there is a lot more work to be done. So be respectful. Put down your sign promoting anti-feminism and join a community of women for women.