In a recent interview with HuffPost and MAKERS, Gloria Steinem recently said, “There is no such thing as white feminism. Because if it’s white, it’s not feminism. It’s either talking about all women, or it’s not.” While I understand where Steinem (a woman I tend to admire and quote often) is coming from, I strongly disagree with how she phrased that. There is a difference between white feminism and feminism, yes. But we can’t say there’s no such thing as white feminism when that is been predominately the main focus on gender equality since, well, for a very long time. It would be the same as saying there’s no such thing as racism, because if it’s racism, it’s not equality. We need to stop ignoring the problems at hand by saying that these issues aren’t real just because we don’t believe in them.
Feminism has been a predominately white movement since the 1960’s, and the mainstream media hasn’t done a lot to help promote the concept of it being intersectional. When you search for feminist celebrities online, the first thing that comes up is this list from a 2014 MTV article:
These things are also reiterating to me how fucking privileged I am and how naïve I’ve been over the years. I’m truly trying to keep educating myself and becoming more aware of what’s going on. I want to learn how we can bridge the gap between people throughout our country and have peaceful conversations with someone with opposing ideologies. Which again, might be naïve of me to think that is possible, but looking at the state we are in today, we definitely need to learn how to come together and stop ignoring what is happening. As Sam says in Dear White People, "None of this is a threat to you because you already have the power. Kurt. Can’t you see that?" White feminism and racism are very real issues we need to face, and we can’t think they have nothing to do with us simply based off our gender or skin color. They affect all of us even if we don't want to see it. I know ignorance is bliss sometimes, but closing our eyes isn't going to make it all magically go away. We don't have any ruby slippers to transform us into another world that feels more like home. Not this time. This is the world we live in and it's time we woke up.