I can see why so many men are against feminism. When you have the big piece of pie, and someone else is complaining about having less pie than you, the natural instinct is to protect what’s yours.
The thing is, human rights aren’t pie. Women are not asking men to give up anything.
We want to see a crowd of people and recognize each living being as the whole, Spirit-breathed human they are.
When you’re protecting what you have, human rights is a pretty hard concept to get on board with. Yeah, there are billions of people living on the streets, and I have a car, a house, food, clothing, and cash to spare, but why should I have to give anything up? I worked hard for it!
Why would men give up some of their privileges so that women can be equals?
Here is the key to human rights:
The key to human rights is recognizing that no matter where someone was born, no matter how much education they have, what they look like, how they act, what they’ve done, or what their beliefs are, that person is fully human.
That person has love, fears, anxieties, good memories, painful memories, hopes, needs, preferences, a sense of humor, obstacles to overcome, and a deep desire for love.
Those people living on the street are no less rational than you and me. Their hunger shouldn’t be ignored just because they’ve never experienced a full stomach. The richest one percent in the world have sick days too, and they can operate out of fear sometimes, just like the rest of us.
We’re not being asked to give up our security and full stomachs. Men, you’re not being asked to give up the respect and value that society has given you.
Because we want these things for EVERYONE! When we can begin to grasp the concept that, no matter their place in society, each person in the world is as much of a person as YOU ARE, how can we not want everyone to live with all of the benefits that we enjoy? How can we not work towards making sure that every person on the planet is safe, loved, and valued?
There is not a single person alive who isn’t as important as you, and who does not deserve your respect. That can be hard to deal with, because a lot of people like to believe they’re better than either specific people, or others in general. If this is you, either consciously or unconsciously, that’s ok! You’re still a valuable, respectable person. Even people who bring nothing but hate to the table are still fully human, deserve respect, and hold value as a person. We’re not blaming people for things that society has taught them, because everybody has things to work on. Everybody. But that’s the key point- as long as you’re willing to work on it, and make an effort to treat everyone you meet with kindness and respect, that’s what matters.
But just tolerating hate is not what’s gonna make the world safe, loving, and beautiful. Everybody working to value, love, and respect each other is what is going to make this place into the cool table.
Feminism is the important, necessary movement of women saying, ‘Hey, I’m a person too, can you stop leaving me out of things all the time?’
This is a crucial step towards living in a better society. But we can’t stop there. There are people living with injustice, danger, and poverty all over the world. Not just far away, and not just at home. Let’s scootch our chairs over and get everyone a seat at the cool table, ok?
The thing is,
Respect, Love, and Value are not finite resources.
Everybody deserves all of them, and everybody CAN have all of them. Respecting others more won’t leave less pie for you; the cool thing is, that giving others respect usually results in them giving You more respect in return! How fun is that?
If we’re looking at it in terms of pie, because it’s yummy, here’s the deal: You should be getting the whole pie. I should be getting the whole pie. My roommate should be getting a whole pie, all of the people on the train should be getting the whole pie. Everyone should be getting a whole pie. And everyone will be getting their own, whole pie, when we stop thinking that other people deserve less pie than we do. Then we won’t have to be afraid that our pie will get taken away from us! Because everybody will already have all the pie they can handle!
And then everybody will have pie.
If you prefer cake or a case of beer, the metaphor stands.