It was a couple days after Christmas when I was glancing through my Facebook feed as a means of procrastination and I noticed that someone from high school had “liked” a rather disturbing picture of Marilyn Monroe. As usual, Monroe looked glorious, but the text that was written on the picture did not: “Stop quoting me, girls. I was a whore, not a philosopher.” Although the particular person who liked the image doesn’t seem to be the most forward-thinking individual, I was still surprised that he found this worthy of a “like.”
It came from a page called White Women Against Feminism and I clicked, thinking it must be some sort of satire that failed horribly in its attempt to be funny. I actually assumed that the page itself must have been a joke, because, come on, White Women Against Feminism? How could one not think it’s a joke?
It was not.
When I first came upon the Facebook page it had 274 members and now, less than three weeks later, it has over 3,000 members, all them apparently hateful and angry. Selfishly, it makes me scream out, “I share the world with these people?” Unselfishly, I scream out even louder, “What the fuck is wrong with humanity?” I nearly flipped my desk and blamed a man for it, because, according to this site, that’s pretty much what a feminist would do: blame the male gender for everything.
Launched in June of 2013, White Women Against Feminism’s mission statement, if you can call it that, says: “This page is meant to unite white women against the evil, sexist, and bigoted doctrine of Feminism. We do welcome men as well.”
After my blood stopped boiling, I debated whether or not I wanted to write about such nonsense. The page, which is riddled with hate speech, sexism, fat-shaming, slut-shaming, racism, homophobia, and archaic views of both genders, is so mind-boggling that I wasn’t sure if it even deserved my attention, or the attention of any thinking and feeling human being. But after visiting the page more than a few times, being pushed to the brink of breaking things, then blaming a man for it (of course), I realized I had to write something. I just wasn’t exactly sure, at first, what that something would be.
For starters, White Women Against Feminism is racist. As its title suggests, it has no use for, nor does it respect, the input of those who are not white. It has drawn a line in the sand and declared, “You stay over there with your kind, and we’ll stay over here with our kind, and ne’er the twain shall meet.” While, as a feminist, I’m shocked that any woman wouldn’t want to be a feminist, I sure as hell believe that if the anti-feminist women of the world want to get together and have a weekly meeting about their beliefs over donuts and spiked hot chocolate, the color of their skin shouldn’t be an issue. There doesn’t appear to be a page for Black Women Against Feminism yet.
Then there’s the abhorrent slut-shaming. In addition to the Marilyn Monroe post, over and over again, the page, or rather the ignorant people behind the running of the page, assume that feminism equals promiscuity. Obviously, if a woman believes in equality, she is a total slut bag who not only deserves to be labeled a slut, but deserves to be ridiculed for the fact that she wants to get laid. I mean, obviously.
Here’s a lovely example:
Oh, and let’s not forget this beauty that started it all:
The page, for lack of a better and more creative word, is a mess. Its attempt at whatever the hell it’s trying to accomplish fails, and blaming all the aforementioned “issues” of the world on feminism just proves that its creators and members have zero understanding of what feminism truly means. They’re fighting a war against an imagined version of feminism that doesn’t even exist.
Let’s break it down for them, shall we? Feminism, in the simplest of terms, is the belief that men and women are equal and should be treated as such. The feminist movement strives to make this fact heard, understood, and implemented. Being a feminist doesn’t mean you hate men or think men are useless or want to go on a bloody rampage against the male gender. If one wants to hate men, they don’t have to identify themselves as a feminist. Feminists love men; maybe they are just less likely to feel that they need men to make them whole.
Feminism, contrary to what White Women Against Feminism thinks, is steeped in love; love for ourselves not just as women, but as members of the human race. Feminism isn’t meant to put men down in any way; there is no war of the genders because of feminism, and it’s not the cause of the world's ills. Feminism, if anything, has made and continues to make the world better. The most basic of feminists’ hopes — that women are treated, educated, and paid equally to men — are good things! There’s no conspiracy within the “sisterhood,” there’s no underlying evil plan to rid the world of men. It’s just a hope for equality.
I’m not really sure exactly who’s behind White Women Against Feminism, but that person needs to take a Women’s Studies class or, at the very least, Google the word “feminism.” Any woman who says she doesn’t need feminism has no clue what the word means because — and trust me on this one, ladies — you need feminism; we all do.