It is not even lunch time when I’m shooting this video and feminism has already treated me like a queen.
Thanks to feminism, I woke up without a kid, I went jogging for a very long distance (ha, not to brag) and no one slammed me up against the wall and said, “What are you doing?! Your uterus is just going to explode if you keep moving like that!” I was able to buy my morning coffee with my very own credit card, in my very own name, which I wasn’t legally allowed to do until 1964.
This week’s Ask Cristen question is coming from frequent Stuff Mom Never Told You commenter Satanist Sin, “Can you make a list of feminism’s accomplishments? I can’t think of anything other than stuff my grandmother did. Please help.”
This is a question that’s so often asked in a trollish kind of way. As if Feminism, capital F, is like “Feminist Corporation” that should be issuing an annual report every year just to prove that it is still relevant.
(Haha) I feel like if I say Satanist Sin seven times, you will appear, and I’m way over my limit.
I am going to entertain your request for list of feminism’s accomplishments. All I had to do really to find enough material to talk about for this one video is go back and offer a snapshot of some of the high points, just some of the high points, of what feminism has accomplished only since 2012.
First and most obviously, feminism continuous to open professional doors for women that have previously been closed what our due to cultural, institutional, or even legal factors.
In 2012, a record number of women were elected to Congress, and the same thing happened in Canadian parliament a few weeks ago. Then in 2013, the US military opened up combat roles to women for the first time. Talk about breaking down some pretty historic reservations about places where women should and should not go.
Even though on average women earned less money than men do. In 2014, 37% of women were the breadwinners in their households which is up from just 4% in 1970.
In terms of men, that whole women being allowed to be breadwinners thing opens up a lot more opportunities for you to define and choose what kind of career path and family role works best for you and your family.
Second big thing, feminism has also pave the way for mandating a new protection for some of the most vulnerable members of our society.
In 2013, 39 states passed laws to combat sex and labor trafficking, as well as assist survivors, 94% of whom are female.
Feminism accomplishment number three: raising awareness and accountability and also passing new laws regarding sexual access to each other’s bodies.
In 2014, the White House established its task force to protect students from sexual assault, and California became the very first state to pass a law codifying what affirmative sexual consent means.
In 2014, the US Justice Department launched a pilot program to allow Native American reservations to try non-Native Americans for crimes of domestic violence and assault for the very first time.
And feminism’s recent accomplishments aren’t just about improving the lives of women. It’s also about redefining what’s acceptable for men as well.
In 2014, a former CNN reporter named Josh Levs won an EEOC case brought against Time Warner regarding his paltry paternity leave. That media giant change its parental leave policy granting six weeks paid leave to all new parents, not just new moms.
Fifth huge feminist accomplishment: swiftly creating new laws regarding crimes that weren’t even possible when suffrages and second waivers were protesting.
Case in point: revenge porn. In the past year, a slew of states have outlaw the distribution of so-called “revenge or non-consensual pornography,” and a federal bill is in the works.
In the meantime, Internet heavy hitters including Reddit, Facebook, Twitter, and Google have all established anti-revenge porn policies.
And even though the gender wage gap hasn’t closed across the board, feminism is saving women money, honey.
In Canada for instance, in July 2015, the so-called “Tampon Tax,” or federal tax on menstrual hygiene products was removed, thrown out like an old tampon. And a similar initiative is underway in the United States because seriously, paying more for tampons?
More symbolically feminism has also increasingly allied with out human and civil rights movement seeking equality for all people regardless of ethnicity, gender identity, or sexual orientation. Yes, I’m talking about Black Lives Matter, which was started by three queer black women, Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors, and Opal Tometi.
Also, about a really big thing that happened in the United States on June 26, 2015 which was gay marriage being legalized. While no, those were not the initiatives of feminists, being allies is important feminist work.
So, Satanist Sin, feminism has been pretty busy.
But now, dear viewers, that I’ve given you like this much of what feminism has accomplished and really curious, cautiously because this is YouTube, to know what that means to you. Let me know in the comments.