Feminism: It's All About A Woman's Rights

1266 words - 6 pages

There is a philosophy in which women are valued -- a movement that dreams of a world in which women and men are equal in social, political, and economic agendas. This movement is known as feminism. Feminism first started during the nineteenth and early twentieth century, when the U.S and UK experienced what is known as first-wave feminism, a legendary movement because it gave women suffrage and property rights. Second-wave feminism took place during the 1960’s and lasted through the 1990’s, crucial because it brought up issues such as family, the workplace, and reproductive rights. The second wave is why women now serve in the military and work for the media, it also established rape crisis centers and women’s shelters (Rampton). Third-wave feminism began mid-1990’s and is still going on to this day. However, society has its doubts on why we need the changes that the third wave is bringing, but the truth is that feminism is still relevant in this day and age because despite popular belief, men and women are not treated equally.
When we hear the word feminism, the most recurring issue is the gender wage gap. Farrell and Glynn state that women are paid 77 cents to every dollar their male counterparts earn. People who believe that this is not an issue will argue that women should be paid less because women take more time out of the workforce to start a family and indeed, recent research shows that the “median pay for a single, childless woman under the age of thirty is nine percent higher than their male counterparts”, this being because more women are going to college than men (Noguchi). Nonetheless, nobody should have to choose between being paid what they deserve to be paid based on job qualifications or starting a family -- those are two rights everyone should have.
Furthermore, a recent study conducted by Ban Bossy - a campaign that aims to help little girls become leaders - shows that “by middle school, girls are 25% less likely than boys to say they like taking the lead, and girls are twice as likely as boys to worry that leadership roles will make them seem bossy” (Conner). Similarly, “[there were] harsh initial attacks that sought to portray [Hillary] Clinton as an aggressive feminist; these were followed by accusations of inauthenticity when she deliberately softened her image” (Perry-Giles). It seems to be that women are constantly surrounded by absolutes, they cannot be too nice without being pushovers, but cannot be too assertive without being bossy. When women change who they are, they are stuck in a no-win situation. Senator Clinton changed her image so that society wouldn't see her as an aggressive feminist, however society now sees her as a fraud. Although, the same cannot be said about most empowered men. When men are aggressive, they are often viewed as productive individuals, and when they soften up their image, they are seen as peacemakers. The most important thing we must consider is what kind of messages young girls take away...

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