My Kind of Feminism

The Oregon Girl asked this question:

Feminism, what does it mean to you? Do you consider yourself a feminist? If not, why not?

… this was my response:

Feminism to me is a philosophy and life approach that sees all people as having equal standing regardless of category or appearance. I want people of any gender to have an equal chance to pursue their dreams and loves and life goals. I have been a feminist as a female identified queer person and now as a trans identified masculine person. The idea of feminism is constant for me, but the way I embody, promote and support it has changed. It has changed because I am aware of my increasing male privilege and I know that the mechanisms I employed as a feminist who was seen as female will not be received the same way as they were then. For example, as a perceived female person, I learned to step up, speak up, create space for myself. As an
increasingly male perceived person, those same actions would look to be the typical man using his privilege to take space, speak over others, dominate conversations. So now my tactic is turning toward facilitation. I want to make space for others, I want to hold my tongue and allow time and space for others to step up and speak out. I want to encourage and support others in finding their voice and learning to take space in discussions. My feminism includes acknowledging my privilege and working to change the way I walk in the world so that my privilege does not negatively impact others. So my feminism includes working against classism, racism, sexism, misogyny, ablism and other systems of oppression.

Someone could argue that my way of defining feminism is broader than the definition others might use, but I can’t see the point in fighting sexism and misogyny if I’m not also going to fight other forms of oppression.

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