Unfair feminism?


June 4 will mark 100 years since the 19th Amendment was passed by Congress, which allowed American women to vote. 

In today’s America, we see the women’s rights movement shifting in different directions. “Modern feminists” are not always a middle-aged white woman picketing the White House fence. A feminist is whoever believes in the equality between women and men regardless of race, gender, religion or political beliefs.

 It is about advocating for women’s rights, so that all women can be awarded the same privileges and opportunities that men have automatically.   

 The division between women of color and white women especially the exclusion and demonization of women of color because of white feminism. White feminism disregards marginalized groups of women and disregards the injustices that take place in a prejudiced system.

According to an article entitled “When Feminism is White Supremacy in Heels” by Rachel Carnegie for Harper’s Bazaar magazine: “{That}going against liberal progressive white feminists who refuse to let down their guard of ‘ultimate liberation’ to actually learn from women of color” lack the awareness to visibly identify the struggles marginalized women face. 

The lack of presence is due to the gap in understanding, and without it, there is no way to provide recognition and solidarity. This is where intersectional feminism is of importance, “First used by scholar and civil rights advocate Kimberlé Crenshaw. She saw that gender and race were looked at as completely separate issues. To Crenshaw, studying them in isolation to each other made no sense. She saw that women of color, for example, are doubly discriminated against.” (International Women’s Development Agency.)  

Intersectional feminism is basically listening to other feminists and not interpreting differences into guilt, but as acceptance. The notion that women should not be pitted against each other in order fulfill the role of savior and victim that most frequently plays out. 

 It’s crucial for white women to understand that it’s not an attack on them. Women of color are not trying to divide women, they are advocating for the acknowledgment of the injustices faced by women of color in America. Brush aside egos, there’s a lot more that can be done for women’s rights.

Taking the time to try and understand other women’s hardships and experiences in relation to our own. 

Not every woman is going to understand what it’s like to be a young Mexican-American woman, but everyone should have the opportunity to be able to share that freely without the fear of discrimination looming overhead.