I recently bought a t-shirt from Primark, I saw it as I was walking through the store to get to another store, actually, and it caught my eye. I liked it, it was Primark so it was at a reasonable price and I bought it… later on that day I was browsing on a website that I won’t name and came across a similar t-shirt with the same slogan…
The review – thats actually turned into the comments – section was firing up like crazy, many people were arguing about whether it was reasonable to sell or even wear the T-shirt.
Obviously this sparked an interest for me, being all ‘feministy’ and what not… Having bought the t-shirt I obviously thought it was a cool idea and would happily wear it… I didn’t however think of what anyone else’s opinion might be of me if I wore said t-shirt.
I was planning on doing an outfit post with the t-shirt anyway (because I was happy with the outfit I’d put together) but thought I might touch on what “Girl Power” and essentially what ‘Feminism’ means to me.
Now, I know that there is a lot of love/hate out there for this movement, I have personally always been a feminist before I even knew what the word meant… Not because I’d been brought up a certain way – although kind of – or because my Mum (because obviously she’d be the only one to tell me – pls note: sarcasm) had brought me up with strong views.
I have always been a feminist because from a young age my mum worked… my dad did too he was a contract engineer so in between when he was looking for the next person to be blessed with his knowledge, he’d look after me… or at least he would do his best… He wasn’t very good at hair brushing… or pony tails… or dressing me but thats for another blog post.
But essentially, I grew up with my mum working long hours and my dad helping me fight zombies (trees) with our guns (sticks) while we walked along the biggest baddest scariest city ever (the woods).
I was never really a ‘ omBoy’ although I had my moments but I definitely was not a ‘girly girl’ … I liked to wear clothes that looked ‘cool’ but were comfortable and enabled me to climb high and fight said zombies but I also liked wearing pink eyeshadow to match my pink shoe laces (duh).
As I looked into the feminist movement for the first time when I was significantly older and had come out of the hip-hop, tomboy, girly girl and many other fazes I was very upset.
Bra burning, men hating, women shaming, bitter and quite vile comments is what I found.
See, for me, feminism is not only about celebrating each other as women and making sure we get equal recognition for our achievements as our male mates, but its also about ensuring that there are equal rights… not making men a second class citizen, none of this ‘revenge’ bullcrap, no! I just wanted a united front of men and women working together to make sure neither gender is put down.
The truth is, is that this is the case but these people aren’t quite as loud as the others, they don’t make headlines and they don’t catch peoples eye, they’re too boring…
Having told a good friend of mine that I am a feminist he rolled his eyes, however what he did then do was listen to me explain what it means to me, he replied with something quite smart (considering he’s male ;D) he said, “The thing is Jess, is the English language is subjective, just because the word ‘feminist’ meant something or came from somewhere doesn’t mean it will stay true to that meaning” That stumped me for a hot second.
Perhaps he was right, perhaps I should just say I am an “equalitist” or whatever they call it…
But the more I thought about it the more I realised that it doesn’t have to be that way at all…
Take Christians, I am one of those too, when I say I am a christian, you don’t assume that means that I blow up abortion clinics do you? Or I hope you don’t anyway.
Take Germans, when you find out someone is German you don’t immediately think “NAZI! RUN” do you? Again… I really hope you don’t.
Just because I say I am a feminist, doesn’t mean I am the extreme version of what that word might mean and I don’t think that should be the assumption either.
Abortion clinic bombing Christians made the headlines but we don’t assume every christian is a nutter, Nazi’s made history and were pretty much all German but we don’t think Germans are Nazi’s!
Just because the loudest POV is being yelled out by every news site that wants a reblog or every tweeter who wants to be digitally attacked doesn’t mean that little old me, or anyone else for that matter should have assumptions made about them straight away… if they do turn out to be a crazy feminist, however, you are welcome to do what you will… I can’t say I care much for them.
So… getting back to the T-shirt… when I see ‘Girl Power” to me its about women coming together and celebrating each other (as oppose to thinking they’re the better gender/species/whatever nonsense someone is spouting online) so when I wear it, that’s what I am thinking… not that its any of your damn business anyways! :p