Monday, October 02, 2006

5 Things Feminism Has Taught Me

Some have suggested that the topic of Feminism is old news and not relevant today. I would disagree. Not only has it shaped our society in beneficial ways, there is still work to be done, so to me, it is very much alive.

We all have read horrendous stories concerning the abuse of women around the world, but all too often we think that we in the West have overcome all obstacles concerning women. The fact that we continue to require shelters for battered women, that we are underrepresented in government and other high profile positions, the fact that the trafficking of women still occurs, tells us that we still need to make strides and these are only a few examples.

That said, there can be no doubt that the Feminist Movement has benefitted society as a whole.

This is how it has impacted me personally:

1. It provided me with a role model, my mother, who never backed down from what she thought was right, regardless of conventional wisdom.

2. It created an environment where I was free to define myself and understand the importance of self respect and worth.

3. It made it possible for me to speak out and have the law support me when an employer felt it was justified to sexually harrass women.

4. It was/is an example of how important it is to stand up for and promote a just cause, until it is realised. That example has inspired me to speak up for and/or take action on behalf of those who have been unjustly persecuted.

5. It has allowed all people to moderate or redefine their role in society. Traditional roles are no longer the only avenue open to individuals and that has enhanced our society, by making it more balanced and accepting of all people.

Feminism has helped make what should have been obvious to all, (but sadly wasn't), a reality. That is that every person has value and equality for all is the only way forward for humanity.