Emma Watson makes strides towards an equal society

The Charger Bulletin

By Nicole Sansone
Contributing Writer
[email protected]

Two weeks ago, Emma Watson made a very important speech. She stood up in front of the UN Secretary General, Executive Director of UN Women and many other important people as she addressed the gender issue of inequality all throughout the world.

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This speech was not only an incredible milestone for women everywhere, but for men as well. As Watson explained in her speech, when people hear the word “feminist,” they immediately associate it with “man-hating.” But what many people do not take into consideration is the actual definition of what a feminist is. A feminist is “a person who believes in the social, political and economic equality of the sexes.”

Over the years, if a woman has claimed herself as a feminist, a man has immediately assumed that she is “out to get him.” In the defense of men, it has sometimes been that way. Personally, when I used to think of the word “feminist,” I thought of an extremely bitter woman who resents men and ultimately gets nowhere with her efforts because she is promoting hate rather than peace. A part of me believes that to be true, because I have felt like that in the past.

But today I consider myself a feminist only because I strive every day to have the same rights as men. It doesn’t matter if it’s social or economical; I do everything in my power to make myself equal to men, not superior or inferior.

But the point of Watson’s speech is that it should not be this hard of a fight and we NEED to make a change if we want to see results. Men are still paid more than women in many different areas of work, they don’t have to worry about sexual harassment or rape nearly as much as women do, and they don’t have to be scared of potentially losing their job or not even getting a job due to the fact that they could become pregnant one day. There are so many different areas where it seems that men have it far easier then women, ultimately leading the women to resent men.

But we have to take the men into consideration. Watson stated, “I have seen young men fighting mental illness, but too scared to ask for help in fear that they will look like less of a man.” This statement is exactly what makes Emma Watson’s speech so important for our day and age. She is a woman promoting peace; she recognizes that men and women both have it hard.

We need to work together, as not only women, but also a global society to make things better and to make things right. It is time that girls can express themselves freely. It is time that they can go to school and get an education without fearing that they could potentially be sexually assaulted as a result of how they dress. It is time that women no longer have to hide their sexuality in fear of what a man might label them. It is time that men do not seem “weak” if they ask for help. This starts with us; this starts now. As Emma Watson said, “Both men and women should feel free to feel sensitive. Both men and women should feel free to feel strong.”