Feminist: a person who supports feminism.
Feminism: The advocacy of women's rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men.
How can this be any clearer?!
What's my description of feminism when some idiot asks me "what it means" to me? My understanding is that if you're a feminist, you want the same stuff for men and women. That's it. Pretty simple.
Some people I've come across (colleagues, acquaintances, lovers, strangers) usually think one of two things if the topic of being a feminist comes up. (Sidenote: I am never the one to bring this topic up. Why? Because most people are morons who don't know how to act like a normal human being when that word is uttered in their presence, so I tend to steer clear of it.)
Thought #1: A feminist hates men.
Or the brilliant Thought #2: A feminist thinks women are above men and should be seen as such.
Both these thoughts obviously get me going because I just want to scream about all the things that are wrong with those words. And honestly, I'm usually so enraged at the ignorance of ideas like that to want to continue and tell someone why they're not very smart. If only I had this article printed and always with me in my purse.
I really can't stand it when I get into an argument with someone and the question of, "Well, do you have a man pay for your dinner? Do you like it when a man holds a door open for you?" happens with the guise of telling me that if I do these things, then I can't be a feminist. First of all, these questions hurt my soul. I should not have to prove my feminist beliefs to anyone, ever. No one should. That's ridiculous. But if we're being real here, I love it when someone pays for my dinner. Not because I'm a woman, but because I have no money! Would I ever expect someone to pay for me because I'm a woman? Well, since I'm not a sub-level human being, no! I'm not crazy! Any people who expect someone else to pay for them are just not good people! Or married. (And also, whoever is in front should hold the door open, that's just common sense/kindness!)
On another note, I also can't stand it when I read article titles that start with, "Can a beauty editor be a feminist?" or "Can so-and-so be a feminist?" Look up the fucking definition of the word! EVERYONE can be a feminist, assholes. Even murderers! (As long as they're murdering men and women, I mean.) Almost anyone can be one! (Probably not rapists... yeah, they'd be pissed to find out that I was getting paid as much as them.) And likely, if I know you, you are a feminist. My mom and dad are, both my brothers, my boyfriend, all my friends - whether they know it or not. I wouldn't surround myself with people who didn't want me to get just as much stuff as them. Doesn't make any sense.
And I know this topic has been covered again and again on a million sites, but it's on my mind a lot, so I needed to say something about it all. The negative connotation of the word feminist will probably never change, I get that. But I can still scream about it from time to time.
(Sidenote: the "colleagues" I mentioned above consist of my dry cleaner, the electrician who lives across the street and local CVS employees.)