Jess McCabe // 3 March 2008
[Edited for correct spelling]]
When I saw the headline of this opinion piece in the Independent, I thought: ‘Oh, lord, I am too jet-lagged to tackle this one.’
Luckily, Jean Edelstein’s piece “Equal gender rights shouldn’t be defined as a feminist issue” is so light-weight and ill thought out, I can tell you why she’s wrong even in my zoned-out state.
Or rather, I don’t have to, because she doesn’t actually make an argument.
What Edelstein does is compile a list of some of the many gender inequalities that remain in our society and beyond. That’s it, her fabulous argument against feminism.
Will women achieve equality in the next 100 years? I’d like to think so, although the deep entrenchment of sexism across many aspects of society seems to make it unlikely. I like to think we – and by “we” I mean everyone who values a progressive and free society, no matter what the composition of our chromosomes – will keep trying. Equal gender rights should not be defined as a feminist issue and they shouldn’t be defined by cultural contexts. Women’s rights are human rights and human rights are something we should never stop striving for.
Which is precisely the point. Feminism is already about human rights. I’m left wondering -what was the point of this column, except to bash feminism? None as far as I can see. Shame on the Independent for printing something that is at best ridiculously misinformed.