Feminism and Foot Size (NSFW)

standard November 14, 2014 Leave a response

I’m a feminist.

There. I said it. Bring out the pitchforks and torches.

Did your opinion of me change? Do you think I hate men? Avoid razors like the plague? Look down on women who choose to be stay-at-home moms?

Here’s a secret: Only the second one is true, and that’s because it’s cold outside.

Warning: This post contains information about sexual assault and/or violence which may be triggering to survivors.

When two people love each other very much, they want to share this love with the entire world. They take a little bit of Mommy and a little bit of Daddy and mix it in a bowl. As soon as these bits are mixed, the goop establishes a gender, XX for girls and XY for boys. But you won’t notice the differences until the goop is seven weeks old! After that, sexual differentiation occurs, and you will learn more about that in biology class with Mr. Franklinstein.

So, boys and girls, what does that mean?

We all started off the same – we were a little itty bity zygote that grew and grew and grew into a living, breathing person. The outsides might be different, some might be tall, some might be short, some might be pale, some might be dark, some might have dangly bits on their chest, some might have dangly bits between their legs.

A rather complicated way of saying: We. Are. All. Human. We* have different strengths, different weaknesses, but we are all deserve a basic level of respect. I’m not arguing that we should become a matriarchal society, or that all need to stay at home with the munchkins. I’m not demanding that men be displaced from their jobs simply to give it to a woman.

*By “we” I mean humans, people, the unwashed masses, not a specific gender.

Let’s pretend this is a game of “What do you want for dinner?” Instead of me trying to decide what I want, I’m going to tell you what I *don’t* want and we’ll go from there.

I don’t want to be treated like an object.

I don’t want to be handled with kid gloves because I’m “just a woman.”

I don’t want to be looked at with surprise when I’m browsing the power tool section at Sears.

I don’t want customers demanding a “real” help desk tech, because I’m “just” a secretary.

I don’t want my (possible future) daughters growing up believing that they are worthless, that they are nothing unless they have a husband, 2.3 children and a yellow SUV.

Comparing men to women is pointless, our differences, our strengths, our weaknesses, have been established (sometimes erroneously) throughout the ages. Men are more likely to have increased strength, women are more likely to have small feet. Men are more likely to have better distance vision, women are more likely to have larger kidneys. Men are more likely to have testicular cancer, women are more likely to have a shorter head.

One in six women in the United States, and one in 33 men, have experienced an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, 73% of victims were raped by someone they knew – relative, friend, acquaintance, sexual partner. 26% of rapes were committed by strangers.

I am tired of being afraid – afraid that if I say the wrong thing, someone will think I’ve led them on and I “owe” them sex. News flash: It’s the same thing as someone asking you for $100 – you say yes on Monday, but change your mind on Tuesday. You are in no way obligated to give them *your* money.

I’m tired of being considered a possession, that someone can “steal” me from the Boyfriend Unit. News flash: in the United States, you cannot legally possess or own another human being. You may kidnap them or forcibly remove them, but you cannot steal them.

I’m tired of the subconscious assumption that a woman is at fault for being raped. “What were you wearing? How long was your skirt? Did you orgasm? Did you call out for help? Have you ever had sex before?”

If someone breaks into your house, does it matter what type of flowers are in your front yard? If someone rear-ends you, does it matter if what color your socks are? If someone beats you with a baseball bat, does it matter what color the handle is?

Rape is burglary. Rape is vandalism. Rape is assault. Rape is breaking into someone’s body. Rape is stealing someone’s peace of mind. Rape is leaving scars on a person’s mind, spirit or body.

So yes, I’m a feminist. I believe my body is just as valuable and precious as yours. I believe that anyone can contribute to society, regardless of gender, race, religion, foot size. I believe that I make my own destiny, my own fate, my own future. I believe that I’m just as special as you are, in my own unique way.

And you can’t take that away from me.

Sources and other info:

I believe in equality for all, not just women. I believe rape is rape, regardless of gender (victim or assailant). I am not trying to downplay any crimes women perform against men, or stereotypes men deal with every day. I am writing from my experiences, my observations. 

Header image // Christopher

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