Well, I guess it's about time I broach the subject. I can't avoid it forever. And after a screaming match with a few friends over some casual drinks, I decided to channel my thoughts in a perhaps more productive (less wine-y, by that I mean less wine) way....
In truth, inclusivity was the inspiration for the beginnings of this website, an attempt to remove obstacles for the further discussion of feminism, and yet I found myself avoiding it until my fourth post. Maybe I was just warming up.
Femin(H)ism, The name, comes from a hope to begin to dismantle this seeming barrier between men, and women and our allegiances towards feminism, some of those felt because the word itself wasn't inclusive enough. Therefore, a letter was added (and can as easily be removed) to prove, that perhaps the word itself is not the problem, as we are still in actual fact not talking about feminism.
Of course we are talking about feminism! (I hear the imaginary groups of people shout in my head) Actually, I hear more conversations about the 'idea' of feminism, rather than the actual issues that feminism is trying to repair, or revolutionize. Talking about feminism in a past tense, or as a concept, is actually for me becoming a little redundant. I do not want to sit and talk about how feminism needs to change in order for men and women to accept it any more. I want to talk about, resolve, and question the actual issues we have at hand. As a feminist, I spend most of my time defending feminism, than actually being able to have open discussions about women's rights. As a feminist, I'm tired of talking about feminism.
In order for the movement, to move, then evolution and change is inevitable. This cannot happen until there is a further diversification in the movement as a whole. (This is basically common sense). Meaning, If more men, and women, and all the fabulous inbetweeny not-suresies, collaborate, create, and eventually evolve, then of course we will have a more well rounded, and well represented feminism, suitable for all ages.
This change is impossible, without some realization that feminism may not be for you, even as a feminist. I know feminism is really mega confusing.
If you say the words, "I believe in gender equality, but I'm not a feminist" I'm sorry (not sorry), but technically by definition you are. This will either :
A) Make your life easier because, now you know you are a feminist and all these inner feelings towards equality make sense, and you can finally come out of the closet, or
B) Make you well up with self-hate because YOU couldn't possibly be a feminist?! You don't have armpit hair, and shout at men in the street.
Weirdly, I think feminism sits exactly in between those two lines, but hey so do most things in life. We do not need a clearer answer, other than that you do believe in equal rights for women, and men, and basically humans, everywhere. Saying that all feminists 'are' and 'think' a certain way, is technically discrimination. (Just so's you know. It's basically saying that all Jews like donuts, and I already know for a fact that isn't true*).
*(I am a Jew and I don't like donuts. Point proven)
Feminism isn't a nasty man hating party that you aren't invited to. Feminism isn't even really a party. Feminism is basically a collection of minds and human spirit that are trying to somehow connect and bind together to keep the world moving towards the direction of positive change. So why are you waiting to be invited?
If I could write you an invitation, with beautiful balloons on it, in amazing hand-typed, hand-made paper, saying exactly why you should be a feminist, then I would, if we had a special feminist office, in a special feminist tower, in an amazing city that loves gender balance. But none of these are here. So many people are trying to reach out, in the hope that more and more men and women, will come together to assert these positive changes, and learn from each other. Feminism can teach you something, but also your personal opinions and experiences can teach feminism too.
We are, and should be an evolving species. Change, evolution and movement Is inevitable. Assert positive changes and stop waiting for an invitation. Did anyone invite you to get a Facebook account, No you just did it - nobody is forcing you to be a feminist, but I just wonder why so many people don't just try it- and change it for the better.
And for those of you that are waiting for an invitation?