Tuesday, September 6, 2011

On feminism and privilege

I don't get to not care about feminist issues. I don't get to say "I don't care because it's too hard." I don't get to look away, because these are the things which affect me every day.

I can care about individual issues without a feminist framework, but that doesn't lessen their impact. Without a feminist framework to draw the links between the types of privilege I do and don't have, the future seems bleaker. Without feminism, I see no predictable way to change the way I, and people like meare treated as less every day.

Without feminism, I see no change to the levels of harassment I face online and in meatspace. I see no change in the rates of gender based violence. I see no change in how seriously I am and will be taken as a professional. I see talent being lost at every turn.

Without feminism, I see no point in continuing to live in this society.


I can't opt out of society, and I can't opt out of caring about how it is broken. Especially, especially in the myriad of ways which affect me personally.

You may be able to choose to not care, but make that choice knowing that by making it, you are choosing to be part of the problem. People who are uninformed and perpetuate discrimination are almost (but not quite) excusable, but people who do it knowingly? They are not only part of the problem, but are preventing change. People who know better but do not challenge discriminatory views make it harder for change to happen. People who choose not to care are choosing to continue inflicting pain on others less well off than them, while having the power, time and energy to make it stop, because they are not wasting cycles on fending things off all the time. They are not using extra brain space on predicting whether the people around them care enough about consent not to rape them. They are not the ones fighting stereotypes about being lazy, suspicious, criminal, hysterical or less intelligent. In fact, perhaps because they are not burdened the stereotypes, they may even have a higher chances of actually bringing about change.

Links selected more or less at random from my feeds.

1 comment:

  1. Sigh, the sadest part of reading these articles is that I know that I probably wouldn't report if I were female either, I've had to deal with some terrible things and I haven't been strong enough to report those either even without the privliges of my gender. sigh sigh sigh...

    Feminism is certainly something I try to keep in mind as much as possible, I'm still learning but I like to think I'll get there some day. Feel free to call me on anything I say/do, I promise to try not to be too stupid about it :)


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