This is why I need feminism.
I need feminism because people cannot accept my body like that of a man’s. I need feminism because two extra glands and a bit more fat on my chest suddenly sexualizes my areola to the point where I am expected to cover up. I need feminism because my natural body hair is something to be ashamed of; where as on a male body, it would be ‘sexy,’ ‘hot,’ or perhaps even ‘mature’.
I need feminism because the act of simply taking my shirt off may ‘tempt a rapist’ or ‘make myself a target’. While as when a man would do take his shirt off or strip down a layer, no one would think twice. I need feminism because the men and women who say this things have daughters; they have sisters and mothers and aunts and grandmothers. Tell me, if they were to be raped, would they have ‘made a target out of themselves’?
I need feminism because I am ‘asking for it’ if I expose myself in any way. I am ‘tempting the rapist’. He is not crossing boundaries in their eyes, no; I am at fault. I am asking for it, I am asking for attention, I am asking for my body to be sexualized.
I am NOT asking for it.
I need feminism for my younger sisters. I need it for my best friend and my girlfriend and me. I need equality, security. I need to be able to feel safe in a world as woman; but the world I live in right now is not that world.
My voice is silenced as a woman, as a female, as a girl.
But not anymore.
Boys will not be boys. I am not asking for it. Do not shame my body, do not shame the way in which I chose to present my body, do not hold double standards for me.
I am tired and sick of this world I am living in. And now I’m done. I am making the change. I am stepping forward to stop the rape culture I live in. No longer will I stand by.
Because you are not just talking about the woman above in the picture. You are talking about your daughters, sisters, mothers, girlfriends, wives. And she is brave enough to stand up for them while you sit back behind a computer screen, shaming and oppressing the destruction of rape culture. Shame on you.
I’ll stand up for us even if you won’t.