much of the animosity towards radical feminism is explained by examining the fact that feminism is popularly misunderstood to simply be about “equal rights.” when radical feminists are accused of not including trans women in “our feminism,” the underlying implication is that we maliciously exclude them because we think they don’t deserve equal rights.

however, equal rights are only the goal of feminism insofar as they will be the result of liberation from oppression. but to pursue liberation, it’s necessary to first ask, why do women not have equal rights? why are women oppressed?

women are oppressed on the basis of our sex because we are exploited by men for our reproductive potential. women have been denied equal legal, social, and economic rights in furtherance of this specific form of exploitation. trans women cannot be exploited in the same manner, even though they are otherwise marginalized.

all human beings deserve to live free from exploitation and oppression. but only people who experience sex-based oppression can be liberated from it, and it’s neither hateful nor exclusionary to acknowledge that the oppression of women is different from the oppression of trans women.”

Laurier Rose

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3 comments

A voice of reason. Very well stated.

Like

It’s like they’re arguing that everybody is getting oppressed for performing femininity, when women are actually pressured to do so (and get oppressed anyway) and it is only men who get oppressed for doing it unforced. The complete failure to recognize what feminine performances are about has a lot to do with this false conflation.

Liked by 1 person

@Miep

“The complete failure to recognize what feminine performances are about”

I hypothesize that much of the conflation comes from men’s imagining what being a woman is like without actually having the lived experience of being raised as female in society.

It’s hard to romanticize a process that grinds your self-esteem into twisted raw nub, prioritizes making others happy and comfortable before yourself, makes you question your thoughts and second guess yourself at every turn and conditions you to be afraid and small, yet empowerful, all at the same time.

Plus all the stuff I missed that makes growing up female in our society so super-awesome. :/

Liked by 1 person


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