Getting something off my chest

Mia Stolpe, Staff writer

I would like to start this article with the fact that this is a difficult topic for me to open up about. But before I leave high school and a convenient journalism class that gives me a voice, I thought I should speak out about something that I have felt has been a dark shadow over myself and my female peers. This dark shadow is sexism, and I know many out there believe there is no longer sexism, or that it simply never existed. They are wrong, and no I am not finished speaking.


The beginning of patriarchal societies came from the shift to farming societies, where the man’s strength put him at power. This power shift only grew through time, and as did the social split between sexes. So for thousands of years women have had to live quietly in societies dominated and dictated by men’s brute force and testosterone driven decisions. Which feels like a sexist thing to say about guys, but I’ve grown up my entire life hearing about how my period makes me act crazy. Well let me tell you I think I am going crazy, and it’s not because of some blood stained panties and a strong desire to eat ice cream once a month.

So where are we today? Well, after the first wave of feminism in the late 1800’s women gained suffrage in 1920. And other than some social progress, that’s as far as we’ve made it. The Equal rights amendment that would legally make women equal, and paid equally, was sent to the senate to be ratified in 1972 but was unable to pass in 38 states. This is because the majority of society still believed women were meant to be housewives, and we’re unable to be skilled workers. The truth is women were a threat to the power structure in place.


If an amendment to make women equal never passed, don’t pretend women are equal yet. This topic has been something I’ve been extremely passionate about since I was old enough to experience the injustices of living as a women in this society. The thing is, I’ve suppressed the anger and sadness connected with this because as I’ve grown up I’ve realized that it is just the way the world works. That who I am as a person would be judged by my male peers if I showed that I genuinely cared about this, or if I ever tried to speak my mind about the issue.


Another problem is that the word feminist has been belittled and made into a term used as an offence. The definition of feminism is “the advocacy of women’s rights on the basis of the equality of the sexes.” So why does every high school boy seem to think of it as a joke?  Personally I think it’s because they are intimidated, and they want to take away the respect we deserve.


Being a ‘crazy feminist’ never really made me the coolest girl in class, so I genuinely worked on giving up caring and figuring out how to deal with the reality I lived in. And honestly that is the epitome of the problem. I was strong fierce and passionate if I do say so myself, and instead of following that drive I had, I let society make me make myself soft, and nice, and carefree. Which everyone seems to love and support, when these qualities are in a girl.


These qualities however are supported and empowered when my male peers have the same passion and drive that I did. Not to force you on a trip down memory lane with you, but I do feel like I lost a part of myself, a strong part of myself, growing up in these conditions. The problem I’ve learned is that girls don’t want to acknowledge the imposition sexism brings in our lives. Those that do acknowledge either suppress it deep down, or speak up on it- only to receive negativity and backlash.


All I ask is that these problems that not only I, but all of the women in our modern society, are acknowledged. If you’ve made it to the end of this thank you for joining my list of grievances. And if you support me, an even bigger thanks, because most don’t.