I have been a feminist since before I had a word for it. Plenty of people throughout the years have shamed me and tried to stop me from holding feminist views or saying I was a feminist: religionists, conservatives, rednecks, women who wanted to distance themselves from feminism so they could continue to be thought of as attractive and sexy and fun, regular people of all stripes, and most of all, men. Society’s message is that feminists are angry, ugly, and wrong, and I’ve heard that message loud and clear.

It took me many years to gain the courage to say that I’m a feminist.

As a woman, I have the right and duty to be a feminist, and no one will stop me from it again. Least of all men (however they “identify”). Feminism is not a dirty word.

I always had the right to be a feminist and I always will have the right to be a feminist. That is true even if I had the misfortune of marrying a person who would come out as transgender and develop an ax to grind with feminists and blame his unhappiness on feminism and on me.

If your everyday vernacular has come to include a term that vilifies women/feminists specifically, I suggest revisiting your priorities. See: terf, feminazi, bitch, harpy, nag, battle axe, whore.

Men will not lead the discussion on whether or not it’s ok to be a feminist. Men will not lead the discussion on what feminists are allowed to talk about or think. No, no men, not even men who identify as something else.


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