The problem with feminism isn't with the idea itself, but everything that surrounds it. From the misunderstanding of what the term actually means, to the idea that it is only for women. In fact, feminism is a threat to the way things have been for centuries, one which affects the demographic I belong to particularly: the white, straight, middle-class male.
The effect of living in a world where people of one sex are treated - in myriad tiny, indistinguishable, invisible ways - completely and utterly differently from people of another sex is enormous. You don't need to directly experience each individual component for this level of combined violence and oppression and prejudice to have a huge impact on you - on your life and your lifestyle, your ideas and ideals, and your fundamental perception of yourself and of the world around you. We think of men and women as living and working in the same world, and experiencing it similarly. But in many ways the manifestation of an identical event or activity by one might be entirely unrecognizable to the other.
Journalists tend to spend their days scrutinising other people's business. Science writers are no exception, asking questions like whether scientists are conducting themselves and their research ethically or wondering how science should adapt to an increasingly digital world. Tomorrow, we turn this spotlight on ourselves and our professional community.
Putting on a fake smile doesn't benefit me, and therefore the benefit is purely for the seemingly well-meaning smile requester. They are telling you to smile so that they have something prettier to look at whilst they go about their day. It's not about making the woman feel happier at all. So, if putting on a fake smile is purely to make me look more attractive, why should I?
It appears to be a somewhat common belief that political or ideological movements have an endpoint. As if they factor onto a chronological timeline wherein the goals of said movement will eventually be achieved and we can all pat ourselves on the back, wipe our hands of it and look for something else to invest in.
I want to celebrate the amazing feminists who continue to fight in incredibly creative manners for women's specialist services with dwindling budgets due to the government's slashing of funding. The fact that we still have rape crisis centres, refuges and a recognition that women deserve equal treatment under the law (even if this doesn't occur in practise) is a testament to feminist activism.
Dear Mr. Dinsmore, Am I being naïve to suppose that you will read this letter or that it will matter at all to you? Probably. Considering that 135,708 people have signed a petition asking you to do away with the daily degradation in your newspaper that is Page 3 and still you have not responded, I very much doubt that this one letter will make you change your mind. But I'm going to try.
Having an interest in women and the issues that affect them has nothing to do with being against anyone, let alone men. Feminism is not unlike civil rights. When black people got the vote, white people did not lose the vote. It simply meant EVERYONE could vote. Same with feminism. Equality is not a finite resource.
Before entering Parliament I spent two decades working as a professional electrical engineer across three continents. Regardless of the geographic location or the size of the company it was always a predominately or all male environment. But it is only when I walk into a toy store that I feel I am really experiencing gender segregation. At some point over the last three decades the toy industry decided that parents and children could not be trusted to choose to what to buy without colour coded gender labelling.