amine_eyes: (Default)
No, we're not treated equally.

Things have progressed a great deal - in many countries we have the same legal rights, there are a lot of opportunities that we have now that we could only dream of even fifty years ago, and there is a greater awareness of the need for equality.

But that doesn't solve everything.

Across the world, many women's options are limited to marry and have children. In many countries women don't get the chance to be educated. In many countries women do not get the chance to make their own decisions about their lives. Even in Britain, there is still a difference in what women earn compared to men, it's still newspaper worthy when a women takes charge of a company, there's still the view that women can only be angels or whores, there's still the backlash of the sixties where women think that they HAVE to do everything and be successful at everything and reject choices that don't fit with that view, and the usage of the word feminist is equated with either being a strident man-hater or being undesirable.

What I want, is a world where women and men can make their own choices about their lives, without being harassed or put down or treated differently because of it. I want a world where a woman can decide, "Yes, I want to run a country or a company or a business, I want to not have children, I don't want to get married, and I want to break every glass ceiling and fight for my rights" and not get treated differently for it. I want a world where a woman can also decide, "I want to marry and have children, be a stay at home wife and only get a job if I have to" and not get put down or treated differently for it.

I want a world where women get to choose what they want to do, and get the chance to follow through with their choice, no matter what background they're from. I want a world where a woman be shown as comfortable in her own image without people tearing her down.

I want a world where strong female characters - no matter what role they play in a story - are treated as strong characters, not singled out because they're female. I want people to see a strong female character and not find it out of place or in need of special recognition.

I want a world where people - no matter what gender they are - get to choose, and no one give a shit about their choice unless it directly affects them. I want a world where a woman can say "Yeh, I slept with three people last night" without people putting her down for being a slut, and a woman can say "I didn't sleep with anyone last night" without people putting her down for being frigid.

And we can solve this.

We can promote education for everyone so that everyone gets to be informed, we can promote sex education so that people learn that everyone is different and it's okay, we can promote businesses that give equal opportunities so that people rise up the ranks because of their talent, not because they're male or female. We can write petitions to governments saying that we want more advances in how women and men across the world are treated, and we can support the women and men who fight for those options. We can stop harassing people because of their choices because it doesn't matter whether you marry or not, have children or not, go for a job or not, all that matters is that you feel comfortable in making the choice that is right for you.

We can continue to write strong characters, real characters that don't airbrush flaws, and that are able to draw you into a story regardless of their gender. We can write characters having sex with whoever they wish and people not giving a shit unless it directly affects the story. We can shout from the rooftops and show people when we do find those stories so that they get the recognition they deserve and so that little by little, we can change how women are treated and perceived.

On a personal note, I want to be treated as though I am not a second-class citizen because of my gender, or superior because of it. I want to say to people that I want to join the RAF without people giving me the side-eye because of it. I want to fuck up without people drawing special attention to it, and I want to succeed without people raising me on a pedestal because I'm a woman. I want to change my dream and not get yelled at for doing so, and I want to do what I want without eyebrows being raised. I want people to not give a shit when I tell them I haven't had sex, and if or when I do, I don't want it treated as though I'm finally a woman. I want to be able to call myself a feminist without being degraded for it, and I want to be able to call myself a feminist and not be singled out for believing and wanting something that should be happening.

So I'm going to keep writing strong characters. I'm going to keep shutting down anyone who thinks that because I'm a woman, I can/can't do or say or like or hate or believe or don't believe in something. I'm going to keep educating myself, I'm going to keep making sure that when people think of me they think of a person unafraid to say what they think, unafraid to do what they want to do, and I'm not going to stop.

So yes, there are great positives - women are finally being treated as people and not an inferior part of mankind.

But there's a long way to go.


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December 2011

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