‘People misunderstand feminism’

05 May, 2019 - 00:05 0 Views
‘People misunderstand feminism’

The Sunday Mail

Phoebe Nyashanu
Zhejiang Gongshang University

The idea behind feminism is equality and equity. That means I’m fighting for my right to choose whether or not I want to marry; have children or take your last name.

Not whether or not I should — just the freedom of making the choice. A man chooses not to marry and society doesn’t bat an eye, but a woman chooses not to marry and it’s as if society got a beach of sand in it’s stupid eye!

As such, women who proudly state that they are feminists face all sorts of criticism likened to a serial killer.

Those opposed to women’s free will, often say that one of the reasons so many women say “I’m not a feminist but . .. ” (and then put forward a feminist position), is that in addition to being stereotyped as man-hating Amazons, feminists have also been cast as anti-family and anti-motherhood.

Believe me when I tell you we are not all this way. Even those who are criticised for choosing not to be mothers and wives are fully justified because the choice is theirs and has nothing to do with anybody else. The only problem begins when these views are imposed on other women who choose differently — that just defeats the purpose and argument.

Let’s back-pedal a little bit. Most of us know of Margaret Thatcher — the iron fist lady — first female Prime Minister of Britain. The one aspect that mostly stands out in her legacy is her toughness, her thick skin.

From what we read in history books, she worked tooth and nail to climb up the political ladder.

However, she was one woman who was not delusional about the world she was rising in — a world made by men, for men and she realised it. Consequently, she used her femininity to her advantage in an act of balancing out the male element that surrounded her.

She used her natural feminine power to level herself on the very masculine playing field she was on. This was one woman who understood the science of nature, the importance of both elements of the human race and the possibility of harmonious co-habitation and progress with both elements at the reigns.

In order to understand Thatcher’s story, it is imperative to underline the need for the male element. She never saw them as irrelevant or unnecessary. She was also actually never known to fight for women specifically but she never found her power in hammering down the men around her. They were just people in the same battle who needed target-specific tactics to be overcome.

However, in this age, both parties carry substantially equal blame. Men, on the other hand, have an extensively long history of terrorising women in any new way they found exciting.

Some of the most brutal gender-based crimes like murder and rape are just heart-breaking examples of what the male species is capable of.

Indiscriminate rape from days-old babies to old helpless women has become common norm. Turmoil in the homes as many women are physically abused by their husbands in front of their children, the list is endless and the effects are lifelong. Young women nowadays learn from a very young age what it feels like to be abused in one form or the other.

Men are emotionally destroying women in relationships and punishing them for believing in them to be something other than the stereotypically aloof and indifferent man that has been pushed into the limelight by society’s ignorant legends. In the home, a father will protect his daughter from men he has allowed his son to grow into.

Multitudes of them are horrendous infidels who forget that their sons will never follow their advice but will instead follow their footsteps.

They forget that their daughters will one day leave their embrace and face a world with men just like them. At the hands of misogynistic men like these, women have become renewable commodities, a mere resource- subject to change and renewal at the pleasure of the male.

They reserve respect for their mothers and sisters and yet they treat other people’s mothers and sisters like dog crap at the bottom of the totem pole.

To quote Jose Chox, “They have created a society that teaches them toxicity disguised as masculinity. They will tell you to “man up” when they expect toxic masculinity from you and yet there has never been an obligation to prove your manhood to society.”

But, there is also a budding group of these men who support equality of the sexes only when it suits them — when they want to excuse themselves from helping you carry your bags, lending you their jacket or other small acts of chivalry, “You said you’re a strong independent woman, right?” They scoff. Most of them in all honesty, are actually not bothered at all. It’s all fun and games, in fact, it’s not even a game worth playing to them, like I said, they can’t be bothered. But fear not, these are not men of any quality”

No one is more arrogant towards women, more aggressive or scornful, than the man who is anxious about his virility.” I wouldn’t be intimidated by them at all. They are the same ones who “mansplain” to your subject of specialty, talk over you and in actual fact, think that your drive and passion (especially for equality) is “cute”. According to them, feminism is the radical notion that women are, wait for it . . . human beings! Radical. Mind-boggling, I know.

However, on the other hand, feminism (when misconstrued by the perpetrators) has posed a very large problem- women who want to be men. If you want to be a man; then you can change gender but don’t taint the movement in the name of feminism.

We have become so occupied with trying to be men that we are losing the uniqueness and beauty of womanhood. The sanctity of the female form alone should never be overlooked! We are mesmerizing in our element, those who believe in God would agree that we are the true manifestation of Him on Earth.

In addition to this joke of an idea, some “feminists” have really just become extremely entitled humans. They want the rights that men have but not responsibilities. Unfortunately, rights come with responsibilities. If you want the freedom, you have to be able to bear its responsibilities.

I always have a problem with differences in how the media chooses to portray rape by men and rape by women, “Harare man forcefully enters home and rapes tenant at gunpoint” versus “Harare woman breaks into a house, lodges gun and forces man to have sex with her”.

Well, sorry to break it to you but SHE RAPED HIM! That’s the crime fair (unfair?) and square. And you will see that while the man is more often than not the recipient of the standard jail term, a woman can get off with a slap on the wrist.

Now this is more on the part of the legal system being too lenient for violent crimes but if we are fighting for equal rights then we have to be prepared to also accept equal responsibility.

Instead of fighting to defend a clear rapist, it’s better for us to fight for better amenities in prisons for women who are biologically susceptible to more health problems because of the female biological or anatomical make up and things like menstruation and maternity which pose health risks when shabbily handled. There’s the equity, there’s the feminism.


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