Kassie Rutherford wrote that it took a break up for her to realise that what she believed in was a form of feminism. I was floored at the way she was shocked into re-evaluating herself through this question: am I a feminist? It sounded like my own vague recollection of when I started my studies at Newman. I never would have believed myself a feminist (I mean, aren’t they the hippie loving, bra-burning, angry, angry women out there?) but as I found myself challenging unfair treatment of women, challenging unfair derogatory beliefs about women and so forth, it became more and more apparent that in fact, yes, I do hold to a type of feminism. A feminism that holds its rightful place in the underlying value of all humanity from conception to natural death. Obviously, our only experience of humanity is gendered, so the full value of all humanity resides in full value of our masculine and feminine natures.
Feminism has a definition from nearly anyone who holds to that term. I found myself cheering and resonating with how Kassie described how she sees feminism. I don’t know if I could write it more succinctly, so I will just re-post what she said in her comments defining of feminism:
Supporting the dignity and equality of all people, male, female, child, adult, and unborn.
Taking a stand against systems that fight against the worth and dignity of women and girls; like gendercide in India and China, certain fundamentalist circles of Christianity that treat women as possessions passed between father and husband, the pretty princess culture, the reduction of women as sex objects in popular media and entertainment, the attitude that women are to be looked at and used, whether for their sexual or childbearing functions, but not treated as individuals with equal say, responsibility, and decision making abilities.
I also support the decision of women who choose to stay at home and raise their children. I support women who choose to have a career. I support life, and stand against philosophies that treat women’s fertility as a disease to be cured versus something that makes us uniquely feminine.
I believe that there are differences between men and women, but that does not mean inequality — and that many of those differences are the result of culture.
Amen, sister. Amen.