A Warped Way of Twisting Feminism?

I got in an argument with a Facebook friend today about Feminism.  She put up some meme about how Feminism was about protecting rights for all people or something like that.  The usual: Feminism is for Everyone!  Feminism is for men, transwomen, everyone who could ever be hurt by the patriarchy!  Because patriarchy is so tough on the male gender.

I commented that no, Feminism was about Women’s rights & Women’s issues.  Not that men don’t have their own civil rights issues (I guess) & that trans-women do have civil rights issues to fight for, as do homosexuals & many other people but that’s not Feminism.   Feminism is about Women.

She answered, “… that’s a really warped way of twisting feminism. I have never seen it defined that way. I’m aware of some fringe groups who have expressed ignorance towards trans people but I have never accepted their statements as a part of what the majority of feminists believe or strive for. There were feminists who didn’t want to include women of color or lesbian women and the movement certainly evolved beyond that and continues to evolve as we all learn more and come to appreciate new identities and new ways of being.”

OK, I’ve been reading books & articles about Feminism since 1970 (at least) & I took classes about Feminism at the State University of New York at Buffalo’s Women’s Study College – renamed the Gender Studies College in 1984 & currently called the Global Gender Studies Program – which gave me a firm foundation not only in Feminist Theory but also Marxist-Leninist collectivist theory, cultural gender studies, the politics of white supremacy & the beauty of lesbian love.  I also read women writers – many that I had heard of & many more that I was new to & grew to love.

I also said that there is no such thing as a “lady brain” & a “man brain” & to think along those lines is perpetuating the very patriarchal thinking that Feminism is trying to eradicate & has been trying to FOR YEARS & YEARS.

This Facebook friend – who is no longer a friend, since debates on Facebook always seem to end that way! – is about 30 years younger than me.  I always find it interesting that younger women seem to think that they invented Feminism – or they’ve reinvented it -because we older women don’t know what it is or should be.  & I also find it interesting that they think that trans-people never existed before the 21st century.  I mean, give me a break!  She – & another friend who joined in to school me on what I should be reading & how I should be thinking – seemed to think that I had stopped learning in 1980 or something.  & that I was just some old fuddy-duddy who didn’t know anything.

She also said, “Feminism needs to evolve & grow beyond the binary of male & female.”  I disagree.  Feminism doesn’t need to evolve & grow at all.  Feminism is fine working to promote the rights & issues of women & women alone.   & honestly – there is no other binary except male & female.  Women have XX chromosomes & men have XY chromosomes & that’s the way it works. You can change your hair, your breasts, your voice, your clothing – but you’re not going to be able to change those chromosomes.  & there’s other things you can’t change as well – which I’m not getting into here.  You can say all you like that there are other genders – that there are 4 or 5 or 6 or how many you want – but again – that’s a cultural construct – that’s not sex.  When it comes to sex – we’re talking biology.  Not gender.  There is no such thing as a “lady brain” or a “man brain”.  We’re not color-coded pink or blue.

Why do so many women feel the need to include men in feminism?  Is it because they are in a relationship with men?  Because they think the transgender ideology is groovy & cool & they want to be part of the in crowd?  I don’t know.  But being a crone, I don’t care.   I am at the age where I just end the conversation & move along.

Because I AM a feminist.  Since I was 10 years old.


4 thoughts on “A Warped Way of Twisting Feminism?

  1. Howdy Aunt Polly!

    I agree that feminism is about women. But, men can be hurt by the patriarchy. My mother divorced my father in 1968. Her boss told her he would not recommend her for a promotion because she would be taking a job from a man who had a family to support. He knew she was a single head of household with a family of her own to support. The bank would not give her a credit card or loan if my father, long since gone, if he wouldn’t co-sign for it. I went with out food; I went without a winter coat; I went without toys; I went without books; we lived in poverty because of the patriarchy. I was hurt. I still am being hurt. I will forever be hurt. It is the hurt that keeps on giving. Don’t tell me I didn’t suffer from the patriarchy. I did. There are a lot more.

    I support feminism as best I can. I am very aware of my advantage and privilege as a man but I try not to hurt women with it.

    Your FB friend has internalized misogyny just like many have internalized homophobia, racism, sizism, or any of the other quaint ways we discriminate based on physical or life style features.

    Good article, otherwise.


    • Hi Jack, Back in the 70’s there was a feminist slogan, “The personal is political” & you certainly made my political post personal.

      I think most men look at feminism like white people look at #blacklivesmatter & then turn it into #alllivesmatter. It becomes not about the women, but the men. & just like men, they get the women to do the work for them, like my Facebook friend & so many other bloggers that I read. “Oh but we have to include the men!” “Oh but what about trans-women? They’re women too!” So it turns into #menslivesmatter. We’re not talking about you.

      I understand the pain of your childhood & even the pain you still feel. Honestly, it sounds a lot like what my own son went through, although when he was born in 1993 & of course I could do my own banking. But the dynamics of going through a divorce & having a man withhold child support & what that does to a child … having to go on Welfare … & the emotional wreck it makes of the mother … the kid always being the “poor kid” in school … yeah, I get that, I lived through it too.

      But feminism is not about men, even though it does benefit men. #blacklivesmatter is not about white people, even though creating a better world for blacks & other minority makes a better world for white people as well. I think this is a hard thing for most people to understand. Most people … including me … make everything about themselves because that’s the only way they can understand anything. But that’s not really how it works. That’s really egocentric in the extreme.

      The thing is … you can support a political cause even if it is not about you. & feminism is NOT about you. Feminism is about women & women’s issues. Perhaps children’s issues, I’ll grant you that. But men … you don’t have to be a part of everything. Be supportive. That’s all we ask.

      • Howdy Silver Apple!

        I know it is not about me. I am supportive. The only thing I have to do is think about what my mother went through and what was done to her. My points were that (a) the patriarchy does hurt men and (b) feminism is about women. I realize that when I got a job I was more likely to get a promotion because I was a man all things being equal. No matter what I do, I cannot erase my privilege. I get that.

        Just as I am supportive of black lives matter, I am supportive of feminism.

        One of the things I really like about being a part of the WordPress blogger community is the opportunity to interact and discuss important issues. I appreciate the time you’ve taken to respond. It seems we are in agreement about much.


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