Starting Women’s History Month with a reminder

Why it is important to remember the root of the feminism movement

Chloe Forbes, Editor-in-Chief

I grew up very privileged. The roles my parents had were much different from those a typical household would have.
At an early age, I was watching my mom get ready for work as my dad made me breakfast. If the boys who babysat me were busy, my dad would play Polly Pocket with me because my mom was busy studying in her room.
When I was in elementary school, my mom received her doctorate. My dad never had an education past high school. My dad was always the empathetic, affectionate parent while my mom was more stern and less forgiving. But I always thought of them as equals.
The first time I heard that women get paid less than men for the same amount of work, I just about came short of a quarter-life crisis. I grew up in the U.S., where men and women both receive the same education, not a third-world country, so why was this even an issue we were struggling with? This question and many others plagued my mind as I became aware of things like the glass ceiling and feminism.
Today, I find that women who identify as feminists have much different experiences than the women who started the movement.
Feminism, at its root is a movement for the equal treatment of women and men socially, politically and economically.
These women took great issue in not being able to have a spot in the workplace, not having a spot at the table in politics when there were policies being made about their rights and their bodies and even having the right to vote on these policies being conjured.
Yet today, I find so many women have flipped the switch from male chauvinism to female chauvinism.
There’s a strong hatred of men and the idea that all men are evil. This idea is that women are superior. This unfortunately can’t be feminism because socially, men aren’t being treated as equals.
A lot of this seems to be “trauma-centered feminism,” a term that scholar Christina Sommers coined.
Trauma-centered feminism is when something horrific happens to a woman that is linked to a man and, in return, there is pent up anger that manifests itself in a woman’s values. It may be easier to blame men rather than that one man because it’s a story heard too often.
I can say that I have done this. I had some life-altering experiences that led me down the “all men must die” trail. At this point, though, it makes me more of a feminist.
I want to address those transgressions that cause social and personal inequalities. If a man treats me that poorly, it is because he does not see me as an equal. That encourages me to fight more. Not all men are bad. Not all women are good.
I’m grateful I live in a country where feminism is much further along than other countries that still practice genital mutilation, marry off children or don’t let women leave the house. I am here to fight for them too.
I am a feminist in all countries and in all aspects. I hope as we enter Women’s History Month that all genders and sexes take the time to reflect on what equality would look like in their lives and how much better life would be.



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