The F-Word


Photo by Taylor Norris

Senior Brooke Stafford poses like Rosie the Riveter.

Lydia Sebany, Staff Writer & Featured Columnist

Don’t be afraid, she doesn’t bite unless you do not want gender equality. She is not the aunt that doesn’t shave or wear a bra, nor is she the band of protestors that don’t take showers, and carry posters declaring their hate of the male gender. She is feminism, and is only interested in promoting women’s equality in today’s society.

A woman may not realize how their everyday lives are severely affected by gender inequality because of how normal their routine may seem. From picking out what music is “supposed” to be listened to – the top 10 “girly” pop hits – to choosing what outfit to wear, these decisions all come along with the mindset of a female who has always tried to fit in to a society created by those around her. This is the time to shatter the idea of having to follow the rules written by someone else because they thought it was right.

Many high schoolers who mildly paid attention in their history classes could tell you about the women’s suffrage movement. Yet when challenged with the current state of feminism, they couldn’t explain to a soul any of the problems modern feminists face. This could create a problem in the future when later generations have only a few sources to teach them about the importance of these topics.

The first, second, and third wave of feminists were strongly encouraged by the “We Can Do It!” poster and figures like Gloria Steinem and Betty Friedan in the twentieth century. A veering of influence has turned to celebrities like Beyoncé and Lena Dunham to spread the message of feminism through social media and interviews. This window of opportunity has the potential to guide coming generations into a new era – one in which feminism has become the norm, where single moms can support their children as well as their father would and evolve in an environment that can assure their daughters will be respected.

To make the fourth wave, the digital one, have a bigger impact on the global scale, more males will be required to step up to the plate and hold on to half of that responsibility. If only females are involved in this shift of social norms, feminism will get nowhere. It is a fact that men are not the only ones who may be anti-feminist, so faced with the opportunity to achieve equality, females have to take it and run.

There is so much to discuss with feminism that it may be time for a feminist club here at Plano. A group of boys and girls fighting for the principles of feminism, equality and human rights would be beneficial to both genders. We must begin tackling ideas that prevent young women from moving forward.

The belief that rocking the “lazy look” is the only excuse to not wear makeup shows the need for an immediate change of mindset for our age group. The societal expectation to make yourself “pretty” for someone else draws the line. We can see it on the eyes of naive sixth graders, wearing too thick eyeliner and discovering the latest and greatest mascara. This is an issue that will eventually cause someone to get lost in the hairspray.

The need for feminism is far beyond an option any more. It has become a necessity.