Home > Uncategorized > An Open Letter to Every Female Celebrity Claiming She’s Not a Feminist

An Open Letter to Every Female Celebrity Claiming She’s Not a Feminist

I read a headline today – one is a veritable slew of its ilk – that left me fuming. If I were a cartoon character, smoke would be pouring out of my ears. But this proclamation, as if it were some kind of moral high ground, has been completely in a fit.

“I don’t consider myself a feminist.”

DARLING. Sweetie, perhaps you don’t understand. You see, I don’t think that word means what you think it means. It is not a prompting to burn your bra, eschew all men, and became a man-hating cave troll. Clearly, there’s a gaping chasm between the word and its actual meaning.

As such, let me explain. No, too much. Let me sum up – and I’ll use small words, so you can understand. (Are you catching on to The Princess Bride theme, yet? Good. I’d hate to send the Brute Squad after you.

Feminism means equality – that women and men are equal. It means that you think men and women should be paid the same for doing a given job. It means that women are people and have the same rights as men.

That’s it. Period. It’s not a complicated concept. Feminism is about choices. It’s about making them for yourself, because you have options. If you want to stay home and be a housewife, that’s totally a valid choice. If you want to become an engineer, good for you. Being a feminist means believing that you should have right to make that CHOICE.

So, when a famous woman makes a statement like that? It’s pure ignorance. But what I don’t get is the almost perverse sense of glee that accompanies it. As if you take pride in the fact that you don’t believe that inequality exists — like it is a myth or a child’s fairytale.

Guess what? If I don’t believe in gravity, I’m still not going to fly if I jump off my roof. (Don’t jump off the roof, kids! That’s how limbs get broken.) It doesn’t matter if you haven’t been confronted with the difficulties of being seen as unequal. They still exist, even if they haven’t landed on your head like an anvil. Also, I’d wager that you have encountered them, simply by virtue of the fact that they’re so engrained in our culture that we almost don’t notice anymore.

Yes, I’m a feminist. I believe that I should be paid equally for a job. I believe that it should be my choice to have children or not. I believe that any parent who stays home to raise children is a badass, and I applaud that decision wholeheartedly. Your mileage may vary, darling. Just be careful your closed eyes and open mouth don’t lead you into the Fire Swamp.

I hear it’s full of R.O.U.S. No one wants to build a summer home there, savvy?

  1. December 30, 2014 at 6:19 pm

    Reblogged this on prettyandink and commented:
    Couldn’t have said it better myself.

  2. December 31, 2014 at 9:41 am

    Reblogged this on wanderingbarkhumanities and commented:
    I agree completely. Well said, and of course the Princess Bride references are PERFECT.

  3. December 31, 2014 at 9:41 am

    Reblogged this on wanderingbarkhumanities and commented:
    I agree completely. Well said, and of course the Princess Bride references are PERFECT.

  4. prepwise
    December 31, 2014 at 10:05 am

    Feminism the word has long separated from the concept much like gay did decades ago. While lamentable, language is living. Dominant usage shifts. We need a new word because feminism the word has been co-opted. Let’s give the taste makers a new word to describe choice and equality bundled.

    Chooser ?
    Woman (shouldn’t that really be enough?)

    Just floating some ideas. I’ve had feminism the word batted against me in the most unpleasant ways. It presents professional hurdles and hijacks conversations. It is derisive and divisive.

    • January 5, 2015 at 6:30 am

      Good point prepwise – can we claim it back? Shift the usage back?

  5. Erica
    January 4, 2015 at 4:07 pm

    Sadly, misuse of the word goes both ways. I’m a feminist in the sense that I believe in equal treatment of all person regardless of gender. I shouldn’t have trouble getting a job because of my chromosomes, and neither should a man. I went to a girl’s college for a semester that thought the exact opposite, though—every woman I met (maybe my experience was just odd) thought very little of men, family, and married life. A classmate told me she wasn’t having children because she didn’t want to get fat. As if that’s a valid reason—she was indeed serious. Everything was a woman’s issue, or a perceived injustice. I once commented that I wanted children, and hoped I would be able to stay home with them when they were young. My friends stared at me like I had two heads. It got so unbearable, I left as soon as I could.

    Honestly, I’ve just given up. I don’t want to be a feminist, because I don’t think equal treatment of the sexes should have a preference either way. Men get discriminated against also; a good friend of mine was called a chauvinist pig for holding open the door and pulling out the chair for his date—as far as I was aware, that was called having manners and meant you respected a woman. This issue is about equal treatment of all people, not just women. The problems are there, especially for women, but I think we can make more progress if we make this more universal.

  6. January 5, 2015 at 6:29 am

    Excellently put! Why do people insist on blurring feminism beyond this and confusing those poor souls wandering through life with “closed eyes and open mouth”.

  7. January 12, 2015 at 2:30 am

    Thank you Ali,
    you have done great job.

    • January 22, 2015 at 5:07 pm

      Thank you very much! I appreciate you taking the time to read and comment.

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