The F-word

In the aftermath of International Women’s Day I feel a bit tired, because I know that we’ll have to rally all of our strength and organize once again next year – and the year after that, and the year after that. According to research, we have to keep going for 85 more years until the fight for equal salaries is over. I’ll try to retain my positivity, however, even I have my weak moments. This time I am tired and puzzled and therefore in a bitter mood. How can it be that feminism is still misunderstood?(!) And why is the F-word still provocative?(!)

Yesterday’s Radio Utblick episode about feminism was good, but not perfect. Although I do have to say: listening to three guys talk about feminism, dedicating an entire episode to those issues is a wet dream for many like me, but I still have to correct some facts. I’ll try to do this in the most humble and modest way I can, but I’m afraid that my inside feminist may sound ”radical”. I want to say that I’m not trying to scare anyone with a penis off from talking about these issues – but if you do, make sure you know what you are talking about. There are excellent penis-persons who can pull it of (Soran Ismail and Magnus Betnér among others), so I know it’s possible. Maybe you just need practice.

I guess my frustration reached its peak when I listened to a Dutch man’s opinion on Swedish feminism. After several minutes of ill informed blabbering, he summed up with the question ”What do feminists battle for in Sweden, exactly?”.

… ?

I do not even know where to start, and this is what is so tiresome about being a feminist – having to state the obvious over and over and over again (and probably for another 85 years).

”What do feminists battle for in Sweden, exactly?” – I don’t know where you got your facts from but Sweden does NOT provide equal benefits for men and women. Anyone who isn’t a cis-man is worse off on the job market, us women do NOT earn as much as our male colleagues, there IS a remarkable inequality in the distribution of jobs between men and women in many professions. In other words, there are quite a bit to fight for, and to claim the opposite, you either have to be in denial or completely isolated from society.

Swedish feminist’s reason for being ”aggressive” is that we have never ever in history been closer to equality, even though we’re still quite far off. But still the patriarchy fights back (YES – the patriarchy does exist).
Knowing that this will be another needle in the eye for all of you who can’t wrap your head around feminism, here’s a tip for you: If we are such a pain in the ass – Take us seriously, the sooner you do, the sooner we’ll go away.