Feminism in Three Parts: Part 2–The Idealism

*Disclaimer: These are my personal views not a philosophical argument or theory. This part is mostly snark.*

Let’s just get this out the way right now. Am I a feminist? You’re damn fucking right I’m a feminist.

Source: mtv.com

Probably the only thing Beyonce and I have in common. Source: mtv.com

I absolutely without a doubt in my mind believe that within our particular social-historical-political-economic context that persons should not be denied social, legal, political, and economic rights because they happen to have two x chromosomes (or an extra y, or an extra x and a y, etc.) instead of an x and a y (and all the other factors that determine biological sex).

But why?

Sure there are biological differences between male-bodied people and female-bodied people and intersex-bodied people. But this is a spectrum, and none of these differences give one a “natural” advantage over another even in, say, a survival situation. We somehow have been convinced that the narrative “brute strength = better survival = designed to protect = better leader = superior person” (and that pregnancy is somehow a weakness), when survival actually depends entirely on what you are up against.

The advantages men have socially speaking are also just narratives that have been arbitrarily determined. We could live in a world where we value the stereotypical feminine traits more than we value the stereotypical masculine ones. We could revere kind, generous people instead of aggressive, greedy people.[1] But, well, we don’t. And my point in Part 1 is that we can’t flip a switch and make it so.

So why be a feminist?

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I went to Edinburgh and also went crazy

Me and Robert Ferguson out for a stroll.

Me and Robert Ferguson out for a stroll.

I visited Edinburgh, Scotland last weekend. (Yes, just for the long weekend. Stop giving me that look. I don’t get much time off from work.)

I might also be going a little crazy.

I lived in Oxford, England for a spell. I’ve visited a few places in Europe—mostly old cities rich in history. I’ve stood in front of Titian paintings and been overwhelmed. I’ve walked through Mozart’s house and swore I could feel his energy lingering in the walls. I’ve seen ancient relics in museums. I’ve been inches away from The Rosetta Stone.

I have all this proof that humanity has existed for thousands of years. I know people are a blip on the radar of time, but when I try to think about all the individuals who have existed, all the things they’ve created, all the skirmishes that have been fought, it’s still too much to fathom.

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