Feminism is defined as the advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men. In our society, the term is a dirty word, a bad word, and one that people immediately dismiss. When did we as a society get to the point where we dismiss equal rights for both genders? Why is feminism such a dirty word that we shy away from, turning the page or closing the link before we get too far into it to and *gasp* actually start to believe it?
The truth of the matter is that feminism is for everyone, and it’s about time we start being courageous enough to accept and advocate for it!
If you think you might be a feminist, here are 30 ideas that may help you solidify that thought!
1. You don’t see why your daughters shouldn’t enjoy the same rights as your sons. They should be able to get the same education, health care, job opportunities, and legal rights.
2. You are a supporter of rights and equality for men and women.
3. You think men and women should have equal access to resources. A man should have no advantage over a woman when they both apply for a business loan.
4. No means no. Consent over everything. End of story.
5. You don’t see anything wrong with women in the workplace or men in the home. If a woman has a higher income than her husband, no big deal! If a man decides to stay at home with the children, more power to him!
6. You thought this year’s Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show once again lacked diversity.
7. You pay special attention to how gender roles are portrayed in the media.
8. You’re OK with women having short hair and men having long hair, if that’s what they want. Women could go without makeup even if it isn’t for a Facebook challenge, and men can wear eyeliner and wax their brows if they feel like it. Everyone should wear as little or as much hair and makeup as makes them feel comfortable.
9. You believe in equal pay for equal work. There is no way there should be a disparity in pay for a woman and man doing the same job.
10. You prefer to be recognized for your talents and not for your looks.
11. You think women should be in charge of their own bodies. Women should not need to get permissions from their husbands or the government to have medical procedures done or access medication.
12. You are highly offended when you are given specific tasks based on your gender. Actually, I can go lift heavy things, thank you very much.
13. You’re OK with men and boys crying. Men and boys deserve to be able to express their emotions—whether joy or sorrow—by crying a river if they so want to.
14. You don’t see anything wrong with women who run their own households.
15. You think a woman can be assertive without being a bitch. You will never be caught calling a woman “bossy” because she knows what she wants, says what she means, and acts with strength and resolve.
16. You often wonder why men are still being paid more than women in the workforce.
17. You believe laws should change as society changes. You have no issue with progress. In fact, you love it. You welcome the changes that level the playing field, and bring women and men closer to having equal rights across the board.
18. You are interested in advocacy and have strong opinions about issues that affect everyone.
19. You know traditional gender roles don’t work for everyone, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Men stirring pots and women doing oil changes on the truck doesn’t disturb you. Women who body build and men who dance ballet get your applause every time.
20. You’ve thought about taking self-defense classes in order to protect yourself from walking home those late college nights.
21. You don’t have a problem with boys playing with dolls or liking the color pink. You see no need to put limitations on boys with the goal of making them “real men.” They’re already real, and they’ll grow into men.
22. You believe patriarchy is an unjust system that is oppressive to women.
23. You know some of the best hairstylists are men, and a lot of brilliant engineers and technicians are women. As a matter of fact, you patronize a lot of them because you want the best, not the most ordinary.
24. You enjoy movies with a strong female lead. For example, you prefer “The Hunger Games” over “Twilight.”
25. You don’t think girls always have to wear dresses, stay clean, or focus on the developing the skills of a homemaker. They can wear shorts and t-shirts, make mud pies, and figure out how to build the tallest possible tower with Jenga blocks without it tumbling in less than 30 seconds.
26. Unlike Katy Perry and other celebrities in the spotlight, you wouldn’t be afraid to call yourself the forbidden f-word, a feminist.
27. You would never stop any of your children from doing what they want because of their gender. Your daughter can play the drums, take her toys apart, and fight her school to play on the boys’ soccer team until there is a girls’ team. Your son can take baking classes, style his sister’s hair, and join the dance team.
28. You recognize the benefit of having more women in politics. It would be even better if, when voted in, they actually raised pertinent issues and became women’s rights champions.
29. You cringe every time you hear a celebrity denounce feminism, especially if it’s because they “love men.” You yell at them through the television, write open letters to them on social media and on The Odyssey, and make a mental note not to support them in the future.
30. You knew the definition of feminism before you read this article. You’ve been yelling it from the rooftops for weeks… months… years. It’s about time people started talking about it!
This is what is important to remember: You can have a child, or not have a child, have a career, or not have a career, get married, or not get married, curl your hair, or shave it off, buy a mansion, drive a minivan or sell your possessions and roam the world in an airstream trailer … and be a feminist. If you create the life that you crave — and believe that every human being deserves the tools and resources to create the life that they crave — then you are a feminist.
And no matter what you are “wearing” … feminism looks so good on you!