Women’s rights equally deserving

Women endure hardships to gain human dignity throughout all global societies


By Roxana Amparo, Associate Editor

Oftentimes the instilled belief of a feminist being a man-hating, hairy lesbian prevents the true form of feminism to prevail among a blinded society.

Feminists believe in equal civil rights and liberties regardless of gender, but it is believed that they only advocate for women.

At this point it goes deeper than wage gaps, although that is a significant issues. Feminists work to minimize threatening situations for women and young girls around the world. It is about keeping women alive.

Feminism does not equate to man hating. Feminism raises awareness about issues that pertain to women.

It is about teaching and empowering and bringing awareness to issues such as sexism, misogyny, rape culture and reproductive rights, among others. It is clear that women now have more opportunities, like being able to vote and getting an education. But why were these not naturally given to women to begin with?

It is those negative perceptions of feminism that prevent more women from joining the movement and cause men to be afraid of being called a feminist. Men can be feminists too.

Instead of joining the movement, meninist groups were created to advocate for men’s rights.

In the 1970s, during the women’s liberation movement, they were concerned with male disadvantages, discrimination and oppression, but modern day meninists mock feminists for their stance on women’s issues.

For those who advocate for men’s rights, are you fighting for male rape victims who are enduring trauma? For those men who are suffering mental illnesses but expected to “suck it up” and “man up”? What about conversations about hyper-masculinity and raising awareness about the dangers of rape culture?

There’s the notion that they are creating the meninist title to harass feminists online. Some meninists may even call feminists misandrists — people who despise men. But that is a misconception.

According to the Urban Dictionary, meninism is a mockery of feminism and proves that we can’t request equality without white men making everything about themselves. It takes away from the sincerity of the cause if a men’s rights activist only advocates when it includes bashing women who are taking a stance against the patriarchy.

Some men take offense when catcalling attempts make women upset and unresponsive.

Walking down the street and being verbally harassed by a group of men, and when ignoring them being called a “fucking bitch,” exposes the intentions of the group. Because society has adopted gender roles. Men have been told to man up and have learned misogynistic behaviors throughout their lives.

By tearing down those learned behaviors or seeing that there is a way to derail those dangerous acts there can be hope for unity.

Aiming to garner male support through an event that rattled up men from all over the world was a “pro-rape” men’s rights group’s decision to plan an international meeting of 165 events in 43 countries. Leader Daryush Valizadeh canceled his plans after a women’s wrestling club known as the Toronto Girls threatened to show up because he didn’t want to put any of the participants at risk. His proposal was that rape should not be punishable by law if it is done off public grounds.

Rape Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) reports 13 percent of rapes occur at home or at a friend’s or relative’s home.

The idea of men’s rights activism was a response to feeling threatened by feminist as men began to take issues into their own hands and stand up and empower each other.

Although not all men support the devaluation of women’s rights activism and some meninists actually stand with women, there are privileges men were born with.

Women have to work toward gaining respect based on education in order to be as respected as men.

But it is time to change those mindsets thinking it is OK to shame men for being feminine. It is time to teach young boys that boys will not be boys growing up to harass, catcall, rape and disrespect women in any way thereby fostering the understanding that everyone should be valued no matter what gender they are or how they look.

And in case the lingering question is not obvious, not all women shave. I know, the pointy, sharp hairs are threatening, but we all have hair. The difference is that women are expected to shave.