By Beyond Feminist
Why I am no longer a feminist.
The recent shrieking in the gallery of the Senate during the Kavanaugh hearings got me thinking, “There I was, and here I am.” For decades now I referred to myself as an ex-feminist. Hearing the shrieks I am reminded that I am also an anti-feminist.
Coming out of college, I considered myself a feminist, although not ardently so. I had just adopted the moniker thanks to a good friend in college who was thoroughly feminist and proud of the fact. As my father and brother both lamented, “it was my friend’s fault.” Their objections threw a little cold water on my ideology and were duly noted, but I persisted.
With no clear career direction, I answered an ad in the paper for a canvassing operation which was campaigning for an Equal Rights Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It sounded exciting and I eagerly embraced the cause. I bought a campaign button that read, Women Need Men like Fish Need a Bicycle. Filled with idealism, I knocked on doors nightly raising money for the political campaign.
Before I knew it I was growing my leg and armpit hair in rebellion to contemporary beauty standards, and stomping around neighborhoods in blue jeans and construction boots to peddle the cause. It was a heady experience sitting in one meeting with Gloria Steinem. Canvassing is a fairly low level job for a college graduate, especially one with a business degree. But most of my fellow canvassers were college educated and quite militant about their politics. Some of them seemed so much more worldly and ‘with it’ than me. Up until that canvassing job, I rarely gave politics a thought and now I was debating politics on doorsteps nightly. I definitely felt I was ‘on the right side of history’ although that slogan wasn’t known back then. At least I was trying to make history happen.
But I noticed something when I was dating men. It was assumed that I would be willing to immediately have sex with them since I was a feminist. I found this very discouraging, as I had no interest in pre-marital sex. Instead of earning a man’s respect for being a ‘strong, independent woman’, I found I had actually lost it in this area. It seemed wrong somehow, that men somehow expected my sexual standards to be weak or non-existent because I called myself a feminist. Clearly, this label that I was sporting was attracting the wrong kind of man.
The canvas operation sent me to a school for radicals out in Chicago. This may have been the beginning of the end of my feminism. I asked a question (don’t remember exactly what it was) in class and was called out for being “sexist” in front of my fellow activists. The stinging rebuke was quite embarrassing, and it made me start to question if I was really in the right place.
One of the male instructors, a former 1960s radical, seemed quite interested in being my friend, and he walked me home one night. I didn’t think much of it until I learned that he had a reputation for targeting and bedding one student each session. He was more than twice my age and cohabiting with a woman back in New York and I thought it rather sleazy when I learned of his penchant for seducing the young students in his courses. At least he went home disappointed this one time.
One day, as the canvassers were arriving for work, an older gentleman held the elevator for us. One of my more militant co-workers got right in his face started screaming at him that “she can get her own door.” Just like the screeches inside and outside the Judge Kavanaugh hearings. I was appalled by her angry and attacking behavior. He was simply trying to be polite.
I guess these few rude awakenings got my attention. Within a relatively short period of time after leaving the activist lifestyle for a “real job” in the business world, I began to gradually disassociate from liberalism and feminism. Treating others the way you want to be treated, the Golden Rule seemed to hold more appeal.
Yet it took another decade or so to fully get free of feminism. I now totally abhor feminism and its ugly ways. It is a man-hating philosophy and degrading of both men and women. It also gets in the way of positive and rewarding relations between the sexes. For that reason alone it is worthy of scorn.
I highly recommend breaking free of the feminist mindset. Freedom is fantastic!
This opinion is submitted anonymously by a female blogger, under the pen name Beyond Feminist. She is a regular contributor to Feminist Fallacy blog.
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