the thought police are after our vocabulary: the progress of dirty words

How did feminism become coupled with misandry? There seems to be a notable misunderstanding, a missing of the point. Feminism isn’t about proclaiming superiority of one sex over another, it’s about insisting upon equality. And no, things aren’t equal, despite what some may wish.

Racism is not eradicated because we have a black president. Homophobia isn’t a thing of the past because marriage equality has been reached. Anti-religious and spiritual phobias, hatreds, and mistrusts are still firmly in place, in spite of the many steps forward that have been taken. And acknowledged. And achieved.

Women are not on equal grounds with men. Consider that nearly 100% of women have been sexually harassed, abused, or assaulted in one form or another. Nearly 100%. Consider that there are barriers to careers, to religious orders, to physical and psychological respect granted to more than half of the human population. Think about that.

Now consider feminist strivings and goals and gains, and losses throughout recorded time. Consider the right to vote, the sexual revolution aided by reliable birth control. Gains, yes. The end of the conquest? No. There is no end, and there is no sense in pretending we have reached the close of our prejudices. And even having to point this out is one more barrier in the way of progress.

Feminist is as misunderstood and reviled as atheist. Declaring one’s self a feminist does not equate to “I hate men” any more than atheist means “I hate morals,” yet both seem to raise the same fears of destruction of society and a frightening new world order. Finger pointing would be so easy at this juncture, because the source of these unfounded fears trace back to the same rule keepers. But I don’t want to add fuel to the fire by pointing out difficult truths that the world seems as yet unable to confront. No need to encourage further digging in of the heels – we’re unable to move as it is.

Do I sound angry? Yeah, I am, just a little bit, yeah. Angry women – that goes against every projection of Mother we’ve had to fulfil since the start of the human race. Sex and child rearing don’t go off well with angry women, now give us a smile make yourself amenable, please – there’s a good girl.

…Why is it not okay to take a position against this warped view? The answer to that should be clear. And it is very much not okay. It is at the crux of this issue, and of most other prejudices, too. Superiority against inferiority, right against wrong, quite literally white as opposed to black. Unquestionable declarations made by the ancient authorities on everything. Aren’t these antiquated proclamations beginning to sound a bit outmoded? Slowly, we’ve been crawling along toward the realization of yes, they do. That Yes has only really picked up true forward momentum in mid twentieth century, and when thought of in that light, we begin to see how daunting this is, and why.

The forces that be are very good at vilifying the words that define opposing ideology. So effective, that 20 year old women seek to distance themselves from the word Feminist. Marriage is so sacred that even the word was sought to be divided from nonhetero unions, and now is qualified with the word Gay. Black Lives Matter somehow is twisted to imply that all other lives do not. Words are powerful, and can be used as very effective weapons. Against progress, against ideas, against us.

Words are essential in communicating our views and experiences. We can’t allow them to be taken and distorted and used to block progress. The words aren’t dirty, nor are the thoughts behind them. Take them back and use them proudly, and without hesitation. We very well might make our voices heard after all.

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