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Why we still need feminism.

Once again, while scrolling through tumblr I saw another post that really got me thinking about women’s role in society and the inequality we deal with on a daily basis and how its just considered a daily “norm” at this point.

“What if all women were bigger and stronger than you? And thought they were smarter? What if women were the ones who started wars? What if too many of your friends had been raped by women wielding giant dildos and no K-Y Jelly? What if the state trooper who pulled you over on the New Jersey Turnpike was a woman and carried a gun? What if the ability to menstruate was the prerequisite for most high-paying jobs? What if your attractiveness to women depended on the size of your penis? What if every time women saw you they’d hoot and make jerking motions with their hands? What if women were always making jokes about how ugly penises are and how bad sperm tastes? What if you had to explain what’s wrong with your car to big sweaty women with greasy hands who stared at your crotch in a garage where you are surrounded by posters of naked men with hard-ons? What if men’s magazines featured cover photos of 14-year-old boys with socks tucked into the front of their jeans and articles like: “How to tell if your wife is unfaithful” or “What your doctor won’t tell you about your prostate” or “The truth about impotence”? What if the doctor who examined your prostate was a woman and called you “Honey”? What if you had to inhale your boss’ stale cigar breath as she insisted that sleeping with her was part of the job? What if you couldn’t get away because the company dress code required you wear shoes designed to keep you from running? And what if after all that women still wanted you to love them?”

For the Men Who Still Don’t Get It, Carol Diehl (via pakizah)

This post really got to me because it reminded me of the article we read in class”Still Needing the F Word” as well as “A Day Without Feminism”. It shows that we do still need feminism, because this is far from over, women are constantly being discriminated against to the point where we just consider this the norm. It has become so ordinary that we take cover from it and expect it to happen rather than fight against it and eliminate as a whole. The lines that really stood out to me from this quote were “What if you had to explain what’s wrong with your car to big sweaty women with greasy hands who stared at your crotch in a garage where you are surrounded by posters of naked men with hard-ons?”. Growing up in Egypt where harassment is considered the “norm” or part of the culture, there was not a day I could get away walking the 2 minute walk from campus to my friend’s house without getting verbally and sometimes physically harassed by someone. It didnt matter what I was wearing, what time of day it was, or the fact that I was barely 13 years old, all that mattered was that I was a woman, a girl, a female, and this made me a target, and according to the harassers, this made it “ok”. But this isnt just in Egypt, almost everyday I face a situation that puts me in a completely uncomfortable position. Why? Because I’m a woman.  There are nights when I go on runs, and the whole time instead of being relaxed or taking my anger our on the pavement, I’m running faster because of this fear or paranoia that there is a chance that I will be attacked. Or when I’m driving home late and have to pick up something from the store on the way and its dark, and the parking lot is half empty, I breathe a little faster and pace a little quicker for the door. Its become an automatic process, a constant fear and uncomfortableness I have to deal with almost everyday. The saddest part is that this has become the norm, it’s just something I have unconsciously accepted as part of my life without protesting as to why me? and how come? We still need feminism because we still deal with these fears, uncomfortable situations and discriminations on a daily basis, but it seems to have been accepted as a daily “norm”. We still need feminism because this needs to change.


2 Comments

  1. falmuhan says:

    Harassment has been known in most, if not all, Middle Eastern countries. Like you said age doesn’t matter because I remember when i first went to Syria I was 12 and was harassed vocally every time i walked down the street. It was my first time being exposed to harassment and know what it is, it was so shock to me because even men who are as old as a girl’s father or even older would harass young girls.

  2. hebasha says:

    ^I can vouch for that as well. I was in Syria at the age of 13 and constantly heard cat calls as I walked down the street. A middle aged man once looked at my cousin from head to toe in the most disgusting way, and proceeded to stop a taxi for us, as if he was doing a service to us as a man. Ugh, gross…

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