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The F-word that’s been begging to be heard

I say the F-word too much, but not in the way that you would think.

The F-word I drop on a daily basis lacks vulgarity, but is still completely misunderstood.

The word is “feminist,” and, seriously, everybody needs to start categorizing themselves as one.

Contrary to popular belief, feminism did not rise from the election of Donald Trump.

It did not rise from his inauguration.

It did not rise from his infamous grab-‘em-by-the-pussy remark.

In fact, the controversial Women’s March that sparked an angry and passionate flame inside of thousands of feminists — also was not really about Trump.

It was a demand for equality.

It was a protest against sexism, disrespect and the objectification that women face every single day.

It was an objection to unequal pay and unfair treatment in the work environment. It was an opposition to oppression from patriarchy.

For those who do not recognize this as a problem: open your eyes.

Yes, discrimination has declined, but it has not been eliminated.  This is exactly why everyone — men and women alike — should identify as feminists.

Feminism is a lot of things, but here is exactly what it is not: it is not demanding that men should be disrespected — at any level — as payback to women.

It is not the Free the Nipple Movement.

It is not a man-hating movement driven by spite and abhorrence.

It is not advocating for women to be less feminine.

It is not a defiant act toward Trump.

In fact, it is not even truly about men.

Feminism, by definition, is simply an ideology with one common goal: to establish and attain equal rights. That’s it.   

With all the controversy in the world, it is easy to lose sight of what the feminist movement is actually about.  But, simply put, it is just advocating for the rights of women and minorities.

Frankly, American women know we are lucky to be in a country with as much opportunity. However, since the beginning of society, we have always had to fight for our rights.

Why, after all these years, is our pay still less than that of a man’s work?

Why do we still have to pay taxes for essential female products while male Viagra and Rogaine remains tax free?

And why — in a country that absolutely banks on equality — do women still feel unequal?

In Trump’s America, we, as women, do not know what is to come.  But we, as feminists, do know that we have a lot to fight for, regardless of Trump.

It is our job to push ourselves and prove that we, too, can take on male-dominated careers and environments.

It is our job to stand together instead of putting each other down.

It is our job to be proud and peaceful feminists and never lose sight of the real goal: equality.

If you still do not identify as a feminist, do it for your mother. Do it for your sister, your girlfriend, any important woman in your life.

I’m talking to you, boys.  There have been many times that you have needed us — but now, we really need you.

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