The male feminist is here.
Well, technically he’s always been here, but I thought it was time to make sure people know: it is not an oxymoron.
Many people consider the term “male feminist” a paradox, because “male” and “feminist” are both typically affiliated with separate genders. This is a simple misconception, or, more accurately, a misinterpretation.
Obviously people are not misinterpreting the meaning of “male,” so they must be misinterpreting the definition of what feminism is – an important problem which I inculcate in this blog.
Although the word “feminist” almost sounds like “female”, an individual’s sex is not a requisite of being a feminist. Yes, admittedly, the majority of feminists are women, but this is because it is the female right that is most often in jeopardy. It is understandable that “male feminist” can sound strange to the ears, even contradicting or emasculating, but this is only due to the misleading connotations of feminism today. Feminism is not solely about the disadvantages that face women in society; it is about the all-encompassing concept of gender inequality itself.
The generally misunderstood definition of feminism is what most confuses the concept of a male feminist. Instead of focusing the definition on gender equality, some people see feminism as an attempt to procure a female dominant society, in comparison to the male dominant one that we live in today.
This is why anti-feminists can come off as even more ridiculous than they even intend. Those who stand against feminism are not standing against a female world takeover, but rather a woman’s opportunity to simply have an equal standing in society as men. No less, no more.That woman cannot even ask for that – that they are told, “No, you stay in your place,” – is true absurdity.
This is why we need more male feminists. In fact, I believe more exist than we even know. I actually doubt that they are even aware of it, and even if they were, they would not likely admit to it.
Female feminists are often advocates for themselves. The male feminist is typically an advocate for gender equality. If one believes in equal rights for both genders, then they must inadvertently support the rights of women.
Male feminism does not make a man not masculine. It does not mean that they think women should dominate the world. It simply means that they don’t think of women as secondary citizens who are less deserving of society’s promises. A male feminist can simply believe in equality of the workforce, respect power woman, or hold less double standards of sexuality power or the roles of woman in the home.
Male feminists see the absurdity of the inequality in society; truly they are the most sane of us all. Both men and women avoid being labeled as feminists due to the derogatory, militant connotations that are associated with the ideology. However, as this blog relentlessly states, that is a misrepresentative view.
Actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt of (500) Days of Summer and Inception is a self-proclaimed feminist. His mother was a civil rights activist in the 70s, so his upbringing led him to become aware of the sexism in society today.
Muhtar Kent, CEO of the Coca-Cola Company, is another famous male feminist. A CNN article has quotes him saying that the “real drivers of the “Post-American World” won’t be China … or India … or Brazil — or any nation. The real drivers will be women.”
Celebrities such as Seth Meyers, Jon Hamm, Louis C.K., Ryan Gosling, and Matt Damon all admit to holding strong feminist views in the article “John Legend and 9 Other Famous Men Who Support Women.” These men understand the importance of gender equality and are secure enough in their own sexuality and masculinity to admit it openly.
Being a male feminist does not make a man effeminate, or gay, or a walking-talking contradiction. Male feminists are needed in this world; they are needed for change. We must not allow society to perpetuate the idea that it is wrong to believe in the equality of humanity, because it isn’t. It is the right thing. It is our goal; it is our mission.