Are you a Feminist or Just a Fauxminist?
"the curious phenomenon where people think that featuring, talking about, or even just being a woman is an inherently feminist act and thus renders the person and/or act(s) in question irreproachably progressive with regards to matters of gender... the dogged insistence that anything they do must be feminist because they are a woman or have involved a woman without taking into account how those actions affect the lives of other women." (C/o Skepchick)
Tina Fey's Sheet Cake Skit is a classic example of fauxminism.
Yes, she's a woman. A really funny one! And yet. Her contribution to The Resistance is....sitting on her booty and eating cake? OK, Tina. Thanks a ton.
Amy Shumer is another classic example. She makes jokes about her genitals being inherently disgusting and gross, steals jokes from other women, and makes racist jokes on the regular.... what about that is inspiring, exactly?
Don't even get me started on Lena Dunham.
Fauxminism is saying all the right things. Tweeting all the right quotes. Proclaiming loud and proud that You Are A Feminist while doing jack shit to actually improve the lives of other women around the globe.
I appreciate that they're trying. They're ALMOST THERE. I am not trying to pit women against each other, but I do think it's important to clarify this distinction.
Here are 4 easy changes YOU can make to go from fauxminist to feminist:
1. Contribute your time and/or money to a worthy cause
Like Black Lives Matter, Planned Parenthood, RAINN, etc. If it's a seal holder on guidestar.org that is the biggest indication that you're contributing to a reputable nonprofit that is transparent behind the use of its donations.
2. Get global.
Realize your privilege. Women in the developing world and women of color have it much harder than first world women, period. It's no to say that all women's suffering doesn't matter, but it's important to work on what is MOST URGENT and IMPORTANT, not what's physically closest to you. UN Women is an excellent resource to beginning to understand the plight of woman abroad and how you can help them.
3. Stay informed (with real news.)
4. Stop with the gossip. (I'm looking at you, T-Swift)
Self explanatory. Stop talking shit about other women. If you have a problem with them, say it to their face. Otherwise, remove the word "bitch" from your vocabulary... unless you're using it as a compliment, of course.
5. Only give your time, money and attention to people who actually deserve it.
Like Oprah, Kathy Griffin, Kevin Barnes, Erykah Badu, RuPaul, Angela Merkel, Cynthia Nixon, your cool colleague, your yoga instructor... Ask yourself, what would they do? and model yourself accordingly. Stop spending your hard earned money and limited free time absorbing the media's BS agenda that just because there's a woman on the show, they must be "woke."