In the 21st Century, I'd like to think women have the right to live lives free of both sexual violence and daily harassment, as well as any other form of inequality.— Laura Bates
The most fulfilling Laura Bates quotes that are little-known but priceless
The argument goes that the pay gap only exists because of women's 'choices' of work type, hours, and child related career breaks, effectively making it a myth. But research shows that while those are factors, they don't account for the whole gap, suggesting that discrimination certainly plays a role as well.
The idea that men 'lose control' around a woman in a short skirt is insulting to men, completely relieves perpetrators of responsibility, and erases and ignores male victims.
The idea that feminism is a 'battle of the sexes' about blaming all men and setting up a 'gender war' is a handy, controversial media hook. But it doesn't reflect reality.
Nobody thinks quotas are a great win for women - the win would be removing the discrimination and inequality that creates under-representation in the first place. But in the short term, alongside other measures, they can be an effective way to make progress happen faster.
A compliment makes someone feel good about themselves. A catcall is harassment.
While gender stereotypes can have negative impacts on men as well, the vast majority of structural gender inequality: socially, politically, professionally and economically, as well as the overwhelming burden of sexual violence is disproportionately borne by women.
Women of all ages in countries around the world are raped at all different times of day, in different circumstances, wearing all different kinds of clothing (including in countries where the majority of women wear completely covering clothing). The one thing they all have in common? They came into contact with a rapist.
Protesting against sexism doesn't mean saying that all men are actively sexist.
If your compliments are making women feel uncomfortable, scared, anxious, annoyed or harassed, you're probably not doing them right.
Feminism doesn't mean hating pink, make-up and high heels!
Feminism means believing that everybody should be treated equally regardless of their sex. Which happens to include the right to wear whatever you want, for your own reasons, without being forced or pressured into wearing what's considered societally required because of your sex.
As girls are given dollies and pushchairs while little boys are frowned upon for picking them up; while men are 'congratulated' for occasionally 'babysitting' their own children and women are castigated for daring to combine motherhood and career; while baby changing facilities are provided in women's toilets but rarely in the men's, is it any wonder we tend to take on the roles society stereotypically pushes on us when it comes to caregiving?
Turns out, this 'whatabboutery' is a classic way of silencing women when you don't like what they're fighting for. Don't panic, feminists are quite capable of fighting multiple battles at once!
We have to name a problem to solve a problem.
The fact that traditionally 'female' jobs are paid less, that women end up working part-time because they're societally pressured into caring roles, and that having children has a negative impact on women's wages but a positive impact on men's, are all problems that should deeply concern us, not 'explanations' that can be happily accepted.
In order to achieve that end goal of equality it is a very gendered oppression primarily affecting women that needs to be tackled.
We can't create a shift in normalised attitudes and behaviours without everybody on board, so not being sexist isn't enough - get stuck in and start tackling sexism too.
While not all men are sexist, all women face the impact of sexism in some way, so the point is there's a massive problem to be solved, and you can be a big part of the solution.
It's true that the gender pay gap is complicated.
It's true that it is very slowly getting smaller. But that doesn't mean it doesn't exist. It would have to be a pretty HUGE conspiracy for every reputable major news outlet to report on it annually if it was a massive feminist lie.
If you think quotas mean the best person not getting the job, you have to believe that the best person always gets the job at the moment. Do you really believe there are more than three times more men named John qualified to lead FTSE 100 companies in the UK than all the women put together? All the 32 MILLION women combined? Just statistically, that doesn't make sense.