Guest Post by Caitlyn Hagin

I’m sorry to tell you, but you’re a feminist.

I was recently speaking to a friend about how I identified as a feminist and the definition of being a feminist. He replied by saying he hated feminists. Now as a feminist I was offended by this- a good friend of mine said he hates something I believe in. I then asked him why he hates feminists. He responded with ‘they are all man hating women who think women are superior.’

This is not the definition of feminism.

I then asked him if he believed that men and women should be paid for the same work, that we should be equal in terms of social, economic and political terms. He said yes. Sorry to tell you but if you believe in equality, then you’re a feminist.

What I want gone is the stigma around the word ‘feminist.’ It just means you believe in equality. Both men and women can be feminists and most are feminists, but do not identify as a feminist due to the stigma around the word. I hope I have cleared up what being a feminist means!

Don’t be afraid to stand up for what you believe in. We have come so far with women’s rights but we have further to go! Yes women can vote and yes women are becoming more economically independent and having choice of careers, but there are still issues. An example is the pay gap, and the ‘glass ceiling’ which is an invisible barrier stopping women achieve their potential, due to the fact that they are female. I haven’t even started mentioning the issues with girls around the world not being allowed to go to school but her brothers are, her potential not being seen because she is a girl. Now that’s not fair is it? Or female genital mutilation, forced marriages, honour killings, forced abortions.

It needs to stop.

Human rights are basic rights that every person on the planet should be entitled to, regardless or their age, race, nationality, gender or any other difference. But so many human rights are denied to women and girls.

Now you might be thinking, ‘What can I do to help solve these issues?’ The solution is to question things, raise issues around gender inequality and stand up for what you believe in. Don’t just accept something because ‘that’s how it’s always been’ or ‘that’s just how society works’. Question it. Question everything. If you have a job whether it be part or full time, are you getting paid the same as your male colleagues for the same work? You don’t know? Question it.

Women in the past have changed society so now it’s time for both males and females to work together for gender equality. Don’t be afraid to identify as a feminist. If someone doesn’t know the meaning of feminism then educate them, explain to them what it means. It’s the small things that make the big change.

Caitlyn Hagin.11118431_10205784327906293_844913358_n


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