Hello my name is Ria and I am a flawed feminist.
I have slut shamed Miley Cyrus more times than I can count. I sometimes forget the plight of women of colour isn’t just about Black or South East Asian women. Taylor Swift is still my home-girl despite her problematic white-girl feminist attitude. I don’t often speak up when I see idiots on public transport leer at schoolgirls. I sometimes end up speaking over trans-voices rather than letting them do the talking. I am guilty of jumping on feminist bandwagons because there is safety in numbers rather than calling out behaviour on my own. Sometimes I’m too scared to post about feminism on social media in case I get attacked or questioned by others.
There’s no question about it anymore. We in 2016 are living right in the thick smog of Third Wave Feminism. It’s an exciting time, but understandably frustrating. Whilst previous Western feminist movements focused around very particular goals (women’s suffrage, legal rights for women in the workplace, sexual liberation etc.) mainly for white Western women, this round of feminism is typified by intersectional thinking, fueled by global mass media, with message relayed across social networks instead of the placards and banners and megaphones.
And with that comes a huge barrage of opinions, thought pieces and essays written by the widest range of women, men and non-binary folk across the entire World. With this many people involved and aware (arguably) for the first time in human history, it’s bound to cause tension when differing viewpoints clash.
The wonderful thing about this era of feminism is that it’s challenging everything we think we know about gender equality. It’s challenging my own stance on issues. It’s opening my eyes to the mistakes I’ve made in the past and the mistakes I’m making right now.
I’m proud to be a flawed feminist.
It means I’m still learning, and it means there is still work to be done. It keeps me on my toes and reminds me not to get complacent about the fight for intersectional gender equality and it means I won’t get it right 50% of the time.
“I embrace the label of bad feminist because I am human. I am messy. I’m not trying to be an example. I am not trying to be perfect. I am not trying to say I have all the answers. I am not trying to say I’m right. I am just trying—trying to support what I believe in, trying to do some good in this world, trying to make some noise with my writing while also being myself.”
– Roxanne Grey, Bad Feminist
Fancy joining me in my semi-revolution?
Let me know why your a flawed feminist in the comments (I won’t judge, I promise!), let’s work through our flaws together.