The election of 2016 was an incredibly trying time for people of all political parties, friendships, and families. Although difficult for me as well, I was very vocal about my opinions especially through social media. Social media is one of the most prominent and available platforms to share information, current events, and even political discourse. During that time though many people avoided social media. The stress of the election was a great one to bear for sure. I did feel, however, that it was important for me to explain why this election was so important and why I feared the possible outcomes for the next four years.
Meanwhile, I had many people tell me that they unfollowed me or stayed off social media or refused to discuss opinions between people. Of course, I understand that some conversations will lead nowhere, but no conversation at all will also lead nowhere. There is a balance there that naturally comes with judgement. Even after the election is long past many people continue to stay silent on issues that are held very close to my heart as well as many others. While I understand wholly the seemingly unnecessary stress talking about politics may have on a relationship of any kind, I still find my heart dropping when people tell me they don’t talk about politics. This is because politics is a lot more than just that. “Politics” entail the livelihood and safety of ourselves and those around us, politics are healthcare and reproductive rights and environmental concerns and politics concern so many different life’s and families. If politics don’t affect you, they will affect someone you know and may care about.
I am a kind feminist. Yeah, this means I think of myself as a kind person who cares. It also means I think we should all practice kindness in all aspects of our lives.
We don’t have to be mean or attack others to achieve our own goals. The word fight is often used when we are talking about equal rights and feminist issues but we can still fight with kindness. To me, feminism is not bringing others down who disagree with you but being inclusive and accepting everyone for who they are. It is about equal rights for everyone and this will not be accomplished if we keep bringing each other down and attacking those who disagree with us.
The advocacy of women’s rights is nothing to be ashamed of, yet some are weary to use the word feminism because of criticism. Feminism is not about demanding that women be given things they don’t have but about advocating for the rights that women deserve. It is wanting to be treated like an equal intellectual person instead of an inferior object.
Men and women are different. They have different bodies, different chemicals, and different needs. This does not mean they cannot be treated like equals, different means different not inferior.
This is an argument I have seen often: The argument that women do have equal rights but everything can’t be the same because women and men are physically different. So, women need to stop trying to do everything men can do because they are going to lose their own special “uniqueness”.
A few days after the election, I overheard a few male students talking about the effect Donald Trump’s victory seemed to be having on the country. One said that it seemed a little ridiculous for schools to be canceling tests just so people could sit around and talk. I’ve thought a lot about this comment in the last few weeks. As a white man in a small Idaho town, the reactions of many liberals around the country may seem overly dramatic and unreasonable. But as a Latinx facing their own or their family’s potential deportation? As Black citizens whose president-elect’s company was sued for racial discrimination? As a woman who has been groped, grabbed, and sexually assaulted by men like Trump? Making an effort to understand how people are feeling right now is essential to the distant dream we have of a unified country. This is called empathy.Continue reading “Post-Election Empathy”→
I was a little shaken after doing my last blog post, My Week With Makeup. It was really hard to see two pictures of me, side by side, where I looked completely different. When I looked at myself wearing makeup, I felt like I finally measured up to the other girls I see walking around campus, the girls who look flawless. I looked older wearing makeup, and certainly more put together. I have a younger sister who is seventeen, and whenever we meet new people, they assume that she is older. Why? She wears makeup, she actually curls or straightens her hair in the morning, she’s polished and flawless and put together and so people assume she is older.
On August 18th in 1920, the 19th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States was ratified. The 19th Amendment granted women the constitutional right to vote. While the Women’s Suffrage movement in the United States can be dated back to different specific moments, the most prominent and well-known event that started the Women’s Suffrage movement was the first women’s rights convention in Seneca Falls, New York in July of 1848. The convention was organized by abolitionists Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott. After this convention, Stanton and Mott were joined by many other women, including Susan B. Anthony and Alice Paul, in a national effort to grant women’s suffrage. In rallies and marches, the suffragettes wore ribbons that were white, purple and gold and the predominant color of their attire was white. Purple was to represent loyalty, and steadfastness to a cause while white was symbolic of purity and the quality of the cause.
This tradition started by the suffragettes is now carried on in their honor by women who have made ground-breaking accomplishments and who have paved the road for many other women who seek to be leaders in the United States government.