Off the back of International Woman’s Day in New Zealand and Australia I was inspired to start the discussion of how modern-day feminism with its westernised agenda has created a global issue for females worldwide trying to achieve equality. It is to the detriment of third world women that we force our shallow agenda upon them and distract the world with self-serving societal issues when true oppression is rife.
What the western world has adopted and normalised is the view that the only type of feminism is the extreme left-wing feminism driven by raging activists who promote a strong hate towards men and have been stereotyped as “shouty” and aggressive as reported by the Independent (2018). This stereotypical modern view of what it means to be a feminist is in my opinion the reason why more the half of women do not want to be categorised or viewed as being a feminist. Which is a huge blow for females and the real fight for equality.
We’re exposed to social issues that are presented by individuals who confuse what it means to be a feminist with issues that should be considered separate (if considered at all). The truth is, is that while some of these issues have their own importance they merely act as distractions and dilute the real fight for equality and that’s where the danger lies. The self-serving nature of extremists or even people who think they’re spreading a positive message is making it extremely difficult for progression to take place and for females world-wide to be taken seriously.
Woman and men fought many generations before us and history presents these battles worth sharing. Kate Sheppard worked tirelessly to educate and organise meetings and lectures; putting forth bills to parliament that were rejected countless times until women were granted the right to vote in 1893; 126 years later and I’m worried that our legacy is taking selfies with your hairy armpits to show how much of a feminist you are.
When you start confusing perceived issues like
- “Free the nipple”
- Refusing to shave your arm pits to refute gender compliant stereotypes
- Intertwining gender roles and feminist issues
- Self-worth and self-love and the generation of female beauty and empowerment (or maybe just burdening each other with more issue and insecurities)
what once was a battle for equal opportunity has been replaced with superficial first world issues. The reality is as long as a female suffers it will be turned into a gender struggle. I would never diminish another person’s problems (maybe that’s what I’ve already done) because they are real for them, however this discussion is to bring awareness and to encourage people to reflect in a way that brings perspective to the issue. Which is that modern western feminism is dangerous and distracts from the true definition of feminism.
When we come to the realisation that our issues are minuet and what may seem like a worthy cause to fight for is so superficial when you take a minute to view the issue from another female’s perspective, living on the other side of the world in a less developed society. When you start to think about the issue on a global scale and categorise this as a global issue you start to gain understanding that, maybe someone who has disrespected you, or your struggles with body image or even taking a stand against social expectations and growing your hair lacks the importance and gumption you once thought it had.
To personalise this I’ve been disrespected as a flight attendant while at work numerous times, spoken to like I’m worthless or sneered at, but I would never think, “that man or woman has done that because they’re an anti-feminist and hate females”, my first response is always he/she has had a really bad day if they think it’s okay to treat me like that. I genuinely will brush it off because when I get off that flight in however many hours my problem will disappear like they didn’t exist in the first place.
While the trivial problems that we ferociously battle over disappear and my problems as well as yours disappear, on the other side of the world other female’s problems will not. A female who is genuinely being persecuted and demeaned because equality doesn’t exist on any level for her.
We’re the loudest generation because of the platforms we have, your problems are viewed because of how accessible you are in this technological age. However, what your noise lacks is global perspective and is overpowering the third world women who suffer a different kind of oppression, who in absolutely no way fall under the western women agenda. These women don’t care to have confidence, to not have to wear a bra or not have to shave their body parts, nor can I imagine them caring about self-love and body image when only last year Saudi females were granted the right to drive or a mere four years ago, they were granted the right to vote 122 years after females in New Zealand.
Maybe that will provide you with the perspective that you needed. There are countries that are over a century behind us when it comes to providing woman with the basic rights of all humans. Modern Feminism is creating a mockery of what it means to be truly oppressed and when you put such a focus on our new age issues, you’re distracting the world from what should be its main focus helping the women living centuries behind us.
Until all are free, no one is free.