Sexism is everywhere. It’s not like I’m the first person in the world to bring up this topic and write about it. Heck, I’ve already written a number of posts about it. Thankfully, now we’re reading about Feminism every day and I have hope that many people’s bias’ are changing in regards to Feminism as more people understand that it’s not standing for women being “better” than men, but stating that we need to be equal.
This is wonderful. And I’m so grateful for social media’s power in ending this misconception. However, sexism is still very much an issue in our world today whether it be the obvious misrepresentation of men and women in media, the wage gap, the lack of women in positions of power, etc. We know all of this. This is a problem.
I was under the delusion for a while that because of this increase in awareness of sexism that the issue was becoming less severe. In some ways it has (awareness is a vital step towards change), but it’s becoming increasingly apparent in my everyday life and interactions that sexism is very much still alive.
1. On Facebook, one of my (now former) Facebook friends posted a photo of a woman today standing in her underwear and underneath it stated that a wife should make sure that her husband is happy, that his clothes are clean and that his dinner should be made and to “not listen to new-age broads” who tell you otherwise. Many people liked the photo, no one opposed it in the comments.
2. I was on Pinterest and I saw a shirt that stated, “If you’re not dating a man with a beard, then you’re dating a girl.” Not only does this make no biological sense what-so-ever, but it’s horribly suggestive of what “masculinity” should be and what it isn’t.
3. In my Debate class last week, my students had an hour long discussion about Ray Rice and some of them unironically were stating that he didn’t abuse his girlfriend because she never reported him. Abuse is a complicated issue in which oftentimes the victim of abuse feels trapped in the situation and the psychological effects of it cause them not to report it. Just because it's not reported doesn't mean that it didn't happen.
I find all of the above to be horrifying. To expect any individual to be subject to pre-determined expectations set by society is squandering and dangerous. Sexism is not only discrimination based on stereotypes, but it’s dehumanizing.
I think that we have made amazing strides in regards to changing the way people think about gender, equality and sexuality. There is hope. But because I’m sure some people’s reaction to this post will be, “Oh, great, another Feminist article”, there is still a lot of work to be done.
I have faith that we can eliminate sexism and encourage equality. If we have the power to lift each other up, we need to stop tearing each other down. By giving everyone an equal chance to be their own selves and to accomplish their own goals, then we are giving ourselves the same opportunities. I don't think anyone is opposed to this idea and because of that no one should be opposed to feminism. Sexism is everywhere. But equality is coming.
How are you encouraging equality?