#YesAllWomen trend raises feminist awareness

By Laura Stall, Opinion Writer

Using the hashtag #YesAllWomen, a movement has recently started on Twitter in an attempt to raise awareness about the struggles and the problems women face in this society. Here are some examples of tweets that were found under the hashtag:

“#YesAllWomen because I was trained to instinctually carry my keys between my fingers in case I need to punch an attacker.” -@CaraFnParrish

“The cops who asked me “Well, what were you wearing?” when I reported an attack and attempted rape. #YesAllWomen” -@aimeemann

“Because I have to use the “buddy system” when I go out to make sure all my girl friends are safe. #YesAllWomen” -@yesallwomen

Also under this hashtag, a girl from Columbia University tweeted that she carries her mattress around as protest of the university’s handling of her rape case, in which she was raped by someone in her own bed. Cee-Lo Green tweeted that it wasn’t rape if the girl was passed out.

This is why we need feminism.

It has become clear that despite the fact that they have been fighting for decades, women are still treated as second class citizens in society. Recently, Sam Pepper, a popular YouTuber, posted a prank video of himself walking around and squeezing women’s bottoms while they were not paying attention. Not only is it wrong because it’s sexual harassment, but it turns harassment into a game, and portrays the idea that it’s okay to objectify women as long as it’s for humorous purposes.

Jennifer Lawrence, Lea Michele, and other young celebrities were victims of hacking, where someone took nude and otherwise revealing photos from their private possession and posted them online. While the initial reaction was anger at the hacker, there was still a good amount of people who blamed the celebrities themselves by saying they should not have taken the photos to begin with. This defense has been used before when young women have come forward about being raped or sexually assaulted: they brought it on themselves because of what they were wearing or how they were acting.

Luckily, there are people in the world who want to see change. As seen above, the “#YesAllWomen” campaign will hopefully bring light to all the issues that women face in today’s society. Emma Watson recently spoke at the United Nations about the launch of the “HeForShe” campaign, which calls for both men and women alike to join forces and push for gender equality all over the world. She is trying to change everyone’s view on the word “feminist,” so it is not synonymous with hating men.

Movements like “YesAllWomen” and “HeForShe” will hopefully also bring to light other issues that women face that are not just about sexual harassment and victim blaming. It’s about the wage gap—women get paid 78 percent what men get paid, and this has been a problem for years. The movement is about the phrases “run like a girl” and “throw like a girl” that get thrown around in front of kids of all ages, showing that girls’ actions are inferior and deserve insults. It’s about teaching girls that their bodies are not created for anyone but themselves, and thus do not belong to anyone but themselves. It’s about teaching them from a young age that there is nothing about them that makes them inferior to men, and that they should never feel anything less than equal in their presence.

Obviously, not all men are dangerous, and not all men find women inferior. Most men do support women’s rights and do want equality. They understand that all women are at risk of being treated like objects, and all women will at one point be denied the same pay as men, whether they want to or not. That is why we need projects like “HeForShe” and “#YesAllWomen.”