Don't call yourself a feminist...

in feminism •  last year

...just let women think for themselves

Last day I went to a bar. There was good music, lovely people around and two beautiful girls sitting on high chairs, elbow on the bar and chatting each other too close to leave any possible misinterpretation. I knew one of them (lucky me) and would have loved to be introduced to the other. I was invited to talk to them, and, lucky me again, the conversation tone didn't change much. Both girls were lovely, sexy and smart. The three of us were eager to get closer. Some moment later we were massaging each other's hands over the bar, and the one of the six hands that was not busy with that exercise was lascively feeding peanuts to the two others.

Life was beautiful

Then came the barmaid. Don't feed that guy she said. I'm a feminist, this is shocking.

Well...

Dear Barmaid,

I'm writing to you because you're a feminist. Because in a world where women have been heavily oppressed for centuries, and still mostly are, you want this world to change. You want equity between men and women, even if you mistakenly call it equality. You want girls to respect themselves, and men to respect them too. You want a better world, where you, as a woman, would not be whistled at in the street, would be free to dress sexy whenever you feel like it, with only good possible consequences. You want equal paycheck, or at least a fair chance to get it. You don't want your father or husband, or whoever else for that matter, to decide for you.

So do I. So did the two ladies. The world has lots for us to share and oppressing your neighbor, be they female, black or gay, is bad medicine; on top of being the result of a wrong long-term calculation. We all agree on that.

I'm not saying I give women fair treatment on everything. I've been raised in a patriarcal culture, and even when I want it to change; I am lazy, greedy for love (among others), selfish and more. I don't act always cosistent with my words. I benefit from patriarchy, be it only when I get my paycheck. I'm concious of that privilege. I could do more, but I'm doing my share.

Part of my share, our share, for this tremendous task to bring a little more equity between people is to stay aware of what I hear. To listen to seemingly innocent remarks that target women in a way it would not be accepted if they targeted men. To ask that shy blonde why she introduced herself as, quoting, "only his girlfriend". To politely point out, even to sober people, that if she wants to get fucked, which may very well be true, then the best source of information on that subject is her. That wanting to get fucked does not necessarily mean wanting to get fucked by you. And so on. Train your ear and you will understand what they call rape culture.

And the worst rape culture samples don't come from men. Women often give the stick to get beaten. Because they don't realize. Because they've grown up in it. Because it's easier to accept their burden thanto fight it. I understand that very well, lazy as I am. Let's all be vigilant. I was that night.

Dear Barmaid,

But you, dear barmaid, this is a different problem. You are aware. You are a feminist. You are vigilant. THanks to you, men won't oppress women. I won't use my traditional power to force those girls to feed me peanuts, not under your watch. Because, you know, this does wrog to the Cause. I shall not tell those ladies to act as I want. No. They shall do what you want, and for good reason: because you're doing so for their own good. They can't complain because, you know, you're a feminist

You tried to defend your lost sheep from a menace that didn't exist, to free them from orders I didn't give. You did. And I'm glad we disobeyed.

Dear Barmaid,

I forgive you. You wasn't knowing what you were doing, you had good intentions. I'm not wishing you seven years without sex, that's not my style. But I'd like to bring you light. Make you think a little before intruding other people's lives. I even thank you: you were a good conversation topic that night

So let them be. And bring more peanuts, please

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haha xd