Dear Athena,

On May 12 you posted a comment on a post entitled “PSA to The Odyssey: Feminism isn’t about hating men,” attached below.  I am writing you this email in response to your comment.  I fully respect your thoughts and opinions— I found your words equally as entertaining to read as I did the original blog post.  However I wanted to share with you some of the research I have recently done on the topic of feminism. 

Since you have specifically based your argument on the third wave of feminism, I think it is important that we agree on what exactly that means.  Bell Hooks puts it best in my opinion, arguing that although early feminists were originally anti-male because they were responding to oppression with lots of anger, that perspective has died out with time.  The National Women’s History Project defines the third wave through a list of issues including reproductive rights, pornography, and sexual harassment that women today have dedicated themselves to solving.

The first thing I would like to address is your argument that “men earn more and get more because penis.”  Trust me, I used to think this was an over-the-top movement too, but statistics and laws do not lie, and the video entitled “What Has Feminism Accomplished” by Cristen Conger provides evidence of a lot of the steps women have taken in terms of financials, careers, and home-life during the third wave of feminism.  She addresses a court case taken up by Josh Levs against Time Warner that concluded with a 6 week parental leave to replace their maternal leave.  This is only one example of how the feminist movement does not believe that “men earn more and get more,” but how it actually takes action to get men more. 

You also pointed out that men “see [women] as an object, not as a person.”  In response to this, I assure you that feminists simply do not believe that all men see them as objects.  I would like to guide you to a passage in a book called “Women: Images and Realities.”  Although the book is authored by three women— Suzanne Kelly, Gowri Parameswaran, and Nancy Schniedewind— the passage I am referring you to is by a man named Evan Weissman.  He discusses an incident where he stood up to a friend who made a crude comment about women needing sexual intercourse at a party— I’ll allow you to peruse the passage at your own discretion.  To reiterate, this is a passage about a man standing up to another man who is demonstrating rape culture, published in a feminist’s book.  This is not only an example of how women respect that most men see them as people (rather than as objects), but also a confirmation that men support feminism just as much as women do. 

Thank you for taking the time to read this, and I hope to further discuss it with you soon. 

Sincerely,

Alison

Athena Post

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Resources:

Hooks, Bell. (2000). Feminism is for Everybody. Cambridge: South End Press.

“History of the Women’s Rights Movement.” National Womens History Project. Web. 26 May 2016.

Conger, Cristen. “What Has Feminism Accomplished?” 2016. Web. 27 May 2016.

Kelly, Suzanne M., Gowri Parameswaran, and Nancy Schniedewind. Women: Images and Realities: A Multicultural Anthology. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill, 2012. Web.

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