“Why do people say "grow some balls"? Balls are weak and sensitive. If you wanna be tough, grow a vagina. Those things can take a pounding.” 
~Betty White~

What does it mean to be a feminist? What does it mean to be equal? What does it mean to be genuine? How do we fight for equal rights? How do we view ourselves as women in a world that at times seems completely against us?

Men: How do you fight for your ladies and pursue alongside equal rights. Human rights?

What does it really mean to be a feminist?

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Hey no problem.

I am not entirely sure how the culture has changed, but I believe once females started to get more and more equal in society, they still saw limitations to their equality, which still exists today. So I believe there was naturally a need for more of an aggressive approach to battling sexism. In those circumstances gave rise to a much more extremist front of the feminist party which we see now a lot of. 

I speak from my own experience in dealing with feminists. The ones I come up across have always seem very dissatisfied with just equality. It's like they want more even if it means sexism against men, which undoubtedly goes against the very philosophy, the feminist movement once started with. From what it sounded like to me, they seemed to be quite brainwashed into thinking, that the problems they face regarding inequality, are only the fault of men and until they get rid of this barrier (men), they will not achieve full equality. 

It's not accurate to describe feminists as a whole as being interested in making men suffer. These are not mainstream feminist values and I know of no feminist organization that promotes them. Critical analysis of gender theory reveals that men are also harmed by limited gender roles and an understanding of patriarchy is incomplete without considering how men are also subject to its heirarchy-men of color, religious minorities, effeminate men, and gbt men, for example. Many feminists are also concerned with the well-being of other oppressed groups, including men. Revenge fantasies of turning the tables of subjugation are undoubtedly expressed by some 'feminists' who do hate the system so much, who may hate men even. But most versions of feminism (various waves of feminism, womanism, etc.) are interested in gender equality, not anti-male sexism. The idea that women can or should benefit from men's loss is a concern by those who believe we live in a zero-sum world. Instead, I believe that women's gains will be men's gains too.

Still this.

You got to do your part too.

I tr to help by treating women exactly like I'd treat another guy, and it usually pisses them off because most women honestly do expect special treatment.

On rare occasions I also engage girls/women in talks and try to teach them about their potential, if I think there's still hope. The other day I was talking to the younger sister of someone, 14-ish who told me she wants to study law but doesn't want to get married too late. Apparently people told her that law is too hard and she'd have to wait to marry. Needles to say I had to fix that grotesque bullshit and tell her she doesn't have to marry at all and whoever told her that was a cocksucker.

I also argue with stupid girls where ever I find them. Like one of my old friends told me if her boyfriend asked her to, she'd probably even veil herself. Idiot.

Hey kOrsan, Do you think they really are stupid? Or maybe they just don't know any different. I don't know...But if no one has ever TOLD them they don't have to marry maybe it never crossed their mind. Just food for thought. I like the fact that you used the word "potential..." THAT's what I'm interested in exploring. What is a woman's potential when she embraced feminism, not as a "man hater..." But....what does that look like? that's my question.

I just mean being an autonomous being, embracing individualism. Realizing that you don't have to go along with whatever bullshit storyline society wrote out for you. Studying, engaging, creating, teaching, inventing, discovering. Half the world's intellectual power is being wasted on having them breed kids, bake cake and do their nails or play dress-up. We wouldn't flush half our money down the toilet would we? Why don't we have any female atheist four horsemen? What's our excuse? Can you imagine Richard Dawkins declaring he's gonna stop writing books and biological studies, and instead focus on reading fashion magazines and making his husband happy? If Sam Harris told us that he wants to focus on knitting and decided to wear a veil? That would be hilariously ridiculous. So why do we let this shit slide with our potential female intellectuals?

And yes I agree that in most of the cases women just don't know better, that's how they were raised. That's awful. But sadly there are tons of women who even DO know better, who otherwise claim to be modern, free, self-respecting women - but then some braincells overheat and they tell still me shit like they'd give up school for a husband, or something along those lines. The same kind of people who can't read a fucking book or do their assigned homework without bitching, sighing and making sure to remind me about how much they'd rather be partying or god knows what every 10 seconds.

Those particular kind do seem quite stupid to me.

And I understand feminists' frustration with men, just as I'm bitching about women (not meaning all women). Yes sadly men are condescending to women, but the reason is that there almost is no other fucking way. Men aren't that smart themselves to begin with. But there are some girls out there who are basically semi-conscious cattle. So men assume the shepherd role. That wouldn't work if women wouldn't play along. Those extremist feminist think it's only men who have to change, wrong. Both have to do their part. Change has to start at home. No matter how macho a man wants to be, he could never dick around a confident smart woman. And I'm not talking about the BS hollywood version of a confident woman, which is basically some hot chick with big tits in spandex and a "yeah I'M a gurl and I just beat U UHP!" attitude, or the lame-ass comedian type who just try to emulate men and have that "yeah I'm a chick who just talked about sex and farting" attitude. I'm talking about confidence in things that matter, like knowledge and intelligence. For the lack of a better example coming to mind; do you think someone like Ayn Rand would take shit from a man? I doubt it.

I hope arch doesn't catch me writing this much again.

As an Afrikaans woman I find men my age still think that we have to be taken care of, this I don't like. Afrikaner men still cling to the traditional idea of what a mans role is.  I don't want to be treated differently. I can do most of the things men can do. I do accept my strenght limits me. I just want the freedom to be me

Jorita: I run into this as well with my in-laws. It's never bothered me but just noticing...for example when we have family gatherings it's expected that the women serve the man their food. In other words bring him his food as he's sitting at the table.

If I look at what I do on a daily basis, as a working woman, I study, I have two children with medical problems take care of the home. Most of my life I have bean the sole bread winner. I refuse to be inferiour or treated in such a manner. And I have this theory that in a lot of religions men need to supres woman not only out of ignorance but out of fear, as we are capable of doing anything. I think it is also the fear of not fealing needed and the male ego. Through centurys they have been made to belief, that you are only truly a real man if you are the provider for your family. You are the head of the houshold. My partner once made a yoke he told his friens. "She might be the head, but I am the neck that turns the head" I laughed. and replied " I am the heart beath without me the neck can not turn" As in our home I am the heartbeat. I think it is complicated and not easy for people to let go of the old, the beliefs that has been laid down through the ages but progress is made.

I hear you about being the breadwinner. There are more and more women in our shoes picking up the slack. Especially now when a lot of the "male" jobs are laying off, etc. at least here in the US. I know many women who have or are the sole or primary breadwinners of their families. I personally don't care who makes the money as long as money is made, but I do wish at times that I was able to step back and be a traditional mom. I would LOVE to be that, but we have to do what we have to do...

If reincarnation was true I would prefer to come back as a man in my next life. I would love to clock out of work and be done for the day. When I clock out I clock in at home, not even out of the car then whats for supper. Have to sit up with the sick kids, sort out their arguements, get laundry done, Help with homework, deal with their emotional promlems, know where that peace of paper is that they wrote a phone number on, know where they put the screwdriver down. AS a woman I have to give of myself 24 hours a day. And in my home I am the one that's always calm and I don't have moods, so lets not be tierd or have the flue as the house comes to a standstill. And lets not spent 5 minutes more of your time on one person then you have three others telling you that they feel unloved or rejected. And what does dad do get of work , sit infront of tv or computer, and if the children ask him something "I don't know, ask your mother" So I have decided that in my next life if I am born and look down and notice I dont have the right equipment, I will through the umbilical cord around my neck and roll of the theater table. NOTE I don't belief in reincarnation I just sometimes need humor to deal with my day

I think that equality - in the sense of being feminist - has more to do with the attitude you approach life with. It doesn't need to be strong armed. Only lived. I think equality begins with your own heart as a woman, and ridding it of any lasting filth that society and/or religion has made you feel unequal. I know we'll never be the same as men. Science has proven how VASTLY different we are. It's not even about equal pay or equal rights, I think it's about our ability to breath the same air and experience the same peace in our lives as men do in theirs. WITH that will come the societal structures that are in place to protect us so that we cannot be abused, but those structures don't always cross over into the most delicate and intimate moments of our lives. When it comes to the moments when we are most vulnerable, be it with our own husbands, or in front of our children, or at family gatherings, it is how we carry ourselves in these moments that reflect true femininity. If we allow people to walk all over us they will. If we stay silent in the face of injustice it will continue to happen. So we have an obligation to stand up and speak our minds, clearly and firmly. This takes courage. It takes heart, but it is what we MUST do if we want to overcome.

"I believe that women's gains will be men's gains too."  From my perspective the biggest problem is violence and abuse of women by men, and again from my perspective, this is caused by cowardly, emotionally illiterate men.  To hang onto power like a spoiled little boy does not do you any good.  How do you actually fight violence and bullying?  In the context of gender politics, it's a complex issue that affects everybody.  All the strong women I know have a real problem finding strong men.  The usual story is that the men get resentful of having to share the power, so they make problems instead of stepping up.  It takes a strong man to step up to true equality.  This basically implies that the decision is in the hands of men - but the solution is everybody's. 

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