Even writing this brings me a slight tinge of anxiety: fear of isolation, hatred, anger.
Is this the kind of reality that we fought for?
A post-modern, feminist society where even I, as a women, feel absolutely terrified of sharing my beliefs with you. It seems that we are living in a political atmosphere whereby we all scream for the rights of diversity but aren’t allowed a diversity of thought.
So today, I break my silence. Today I am going to express what I think and feel about the world because, as an individual who promotes liberal values, that is the society I fight for and the society women before me fought for.
I am not a feminist.
That is not because I don’t believe in equality. I dream of a world in which everyone is equal.
A world where people are judged for their soul, their being, their character.
A world where everyone is treated as a human being.
But I am not a feminist.
And do you want to know why?
Today I met Hannah Lewis, a survivor from the Holocaust. She came into Sky News, where I work, and spoke to Stephen Dixon and Kimberley Leonard, our presenters. She told of the horrors she faced. The death of her father at the hands of the Nazi’s. He had been taken from their room and filed into a row where every Jewish man was shot down for being Jewish.
Then, a few days before the war, her mother was ripped from her side. She pleaded on her hands and knees to spare her, yet she was cruelly forced out of the room, leaving Hannah on her own. She stated that she looked at the frost on the window and realised, with every ticking moment, with every pattern of ice that formed on the glass, her mother would not return.
And she never did.
The entire newsroom was in absolute tears today at hearing her story. A story of oppression, of suffering, of cruelty, of human beings at their very worse.
The following news story centred around sexism, trans-phobia and racism in the James Bond Films and the sitcom Friends.
I could not believe my ears.
How could we be living in a world where the deplorable sufferings of a Holocaust survivor are followed by the deconstruction and assimilation of old films and shows that display ‘offensive content.’ ‘Offensive content’ being that James Bond is a ‘rapist’ and that the women do not display a diversity of women in respect to race and trans-women. Then, Friends. Friends is ‘offensive’ because Joey slaps Rachel’s bottom, because Ross disapproved of his son playing with a doll.
Oh, and did I mention that we have now changed the lyrics to the Christmas song ‘Santa Baby’ because it promoted harassment of women!?
I don’t know about you but is this an actual joke or have I been drugged with some sort of manic psychedllic?!
I implore your rational minds to see that this is complete and utter madness!
This narrative of offence, this narrative of victim hood, this narrative of absolute white-middle-class privilege needs to stop.
I have seen far too much of it now, and I’m reaching the breaking point.
From women at Oxford who ambled around saying that they were ‘poor’ when they had a manor house in the countryside. From ‘feminists’ at Universities all over who despise men for talking to them at clubs or flirting with them. All of this screams elitist! Only people so utterly privileged even have the time of day to analyse society with a fine tooth comb, and a faulty one at that. Only privileged women can even go to Oxford, or University, or clubs where it is a tenner for entry and £13 for a double vodka and coke.
I am not a feminist because the word feminist is no longer what it used to be. The word, which used to shout freedom and equality has merely become a word stolen for bored, dull people trying to find something to cry about, and I’m not having it anymore.
The poisonous, perpetual voice of victimization that I have to read and hear everyday has, quite frankly, become revolting.
To dare claim that you are oppressed in the 21st Century First-World West is absolutely vile. When we start to make claims that ‘as a woman I don’t receive X’ we are ridiculing those who truly receive nothing.
The truth is there are human beings out there who have no chance for education, no drinking water, no rights to health care and no freedom, forced into marriages, their genitals cut off and you are angry about a f**king film!?
The fact you can even watch the film shows how privileged you damn well are.
When we compile a narrative that does not progress equality but damages the voices who need it we are ridiculing those who truly suffer: we are going backwards.
When I see news debates at my workplace like: ‘Why calling me ‘darling’ is harassment?’ it sends shivers down my spine.
Is this really what feminists are fighting for? Whether or not to be called darling and if it offends them?! WHAT?!
This is not the equality we wanted. It is not the feminism that the other waves wanted to cleanse from our shores.
The Fawcett Society (a feminist charity) found that only 9% of women labelled themselves as a feminist in the UK. The numbers are low because the word ‘feminism’ is now plagued with fighting for irrelevant, puerile causes.
The word ‘feminism’ has become a muddied, elitist narrative that ignores the actual oppression of humans in real life.
The word ‘feminist’ now refers to a group of hipsters wearing tracksuits, baseball caps and drinking Old Rosie in a pub, moaning about how crap their lives are because they’ve never seen the REAL world – beyond mummy and daddy’s holidays to the Alps, that is.
Camille Paglia, an incredibly inflammatory academic, said such:
‘When I arrived as a freshman we rebelled against the strict surveillance of the University Campus. Women, at that time, were under ‘in loco parentis,’ meaning ‘in place of the parent.’ The college administration felt they had the obligation to supervise and monitor and protect the women students as they did not the male students. So, we had all girl dormitories and all-male dormitories. The men could go whenever they pleased, day and night. The women had to sign in at 11 by night so the authorities knew where we were, and we said ‘we want an end to this.’ The University said the world is dangerous, and we have an obligation to protect you against rape. We said: ‘give us the freedom to risk rape.’ That is true freedom. That was what the sexual revolution gave to women – freedom. What will women do with the freedom? Feminism should have taken my view and said now you are the equal of a man and you must protect yourself as a man would, you must see the world as dangerous like a man would. You must defend yourself like a man would, because men are also the victims of crime.’
Paglia could not have put it better. The movements of feminism have brought us to a point of freedom. A freedom that we do experience in the West (and by God if you don’t think we do then go and watch actual oppression happening now in places like Eritrea or North Korea).
With freedom comes the reality that shit happens.
Women’s rights and the feminism I love is still necessary in many places on Earth. But when you try to make yourself a victim when the only victim-hood you’ve experienced is someone looking at your cleavage or calling you ‘darling’ you are absolutely, completely, and utterly trying to stand on the backs of those who have been victims, and it is damn disgusting.
Paglia’s statement also resonates within me a truth that freedom is the fact women can now experience life alongside men.
Do you know how many women outside of this Western privileged discourse would dream to be able to live your life?
There are people out there, many close to me, who have suffered as being the victim of men in the most horrific ways one could imagine. And I’m not talking childish shit like ‘darling’ or watching a James Bond film or a stroke on the arm.
I’m talking rape. Real rape.
Yet there I am, at University or talking to peers, who tell me that sexual harassment includes being called ‘sweetheart’ or someone holding a door open for them.
And I am not being hyperbolic for the sake of this article, it is the truth, that feminists at my University were angry people held a door open for them.
And do you know what, the more I think about that the more angry I get at this stupid f**king narrative of current feminists screaming into a void of nothingness because they are so centred around their privilege they forgot to look at the true depravities happening in our world.
So, I am not a feminist.
At least, not the type of feminist that we know of today.
I am a humanist because I will not take away the fact that there is true horror, pain, poverty, suffering and chaos beyond my own privilege and YOURS.
I will not get upset that a man has looked at my ass because I had the freedom to wear what I wanted and I chose to wear those sexy leggings.
I will not rage at old songs and films because they ‘perpetuate sexism’ when the notion it has done so goes against how well situated women are now in society.
I will not tear down posters of Lara Croft and Elsa because they aren’t images of ‘real women’ because, urr…have you seen Superman, The Hulk, Batman – they’re fantasy characters!
I will not rally and cry at being cat-called, or being approached at a bar, or having a male colleague put his arm on my shoulder.
The narrative of boredom and political madness is what ‘feminism’ means today.
I called my article First Oil because oil is the only way to stop waves, and this Fourth Wave has to stop before it drowns us all.
If you want to ask me questions or engage feel free. I am open to have my mind changed, this is merely how I see ‘feminism’ today.