I’ve heard many people (mainly men) saying that “sexism doesn’t exist anymore.” Um…WHAT?! Hopefully, I’m going to explain coherently that sexism does still exist but why some particular people don’t see it. If I don't achieve that then I'm sure you can find someone on the Internet who can talk about this better than I can.
Let’s first clarify that sexism still exists in every single culture in the world currently. I’m pretty sure that all of my friends have been catcalled at least once in their life – most of them many times. I’m 17. Most of my friends are either 16 or 17. I know that to some of them it seems to happen weekly, sometimes daily.
We are constantly being bombarded by news headlines that focus more on a woman’s sexuality or body rather than the actual news story she has been involved in; you just need to take a look at some of the recent articles relating to Kim Kardashian to see that in action.
There is still a gender pay gap in many countries all over the world.
In many countries, children are still being married to men much older than them and are becoming mothers at an age that their body can’t handle.
Basic sanitary products aren’t supplied to those who need it most and can’t afford to pay for the amount they need.
FGM is still a thing.
Women are told by society to hide their bodies but not be a ‘prude’, whilst also showing some skin but not being a ‘slut.’ We are told to shave our legs and that we wear makeup to appeal to men. I just love eyeliner okay!
Do you know why men don’t notice any of this? Because it doesn’t happen to them. They don’t experience it first hand and it doesn’t affect them in the same sort of way so they don’t take any particular notice of it. They don’t see it. It’s the same sort of thing with racism. As a white person, I won’t be aware of some of the racism that goes on around me as it doesn’t affect me. Whereas someone who is near me and a POC may be very aware of something racist that has happened to them. In no way am I excusing ignorance of any kind – I want to become more aware of the racism around me so that I can become a more helpful ally and help put a stop to it, the same way men should want to become more aware of the inherent sexism that goes on around them.
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