“I am a female but I am not a feminist”

By Paras Abbasi: 

Yes that’s true. And I realized it when I came to understand what people have developed as the concept of “feminism.” It’s more than talking about rights of women. It has become more of a fashion statement, with every other person calling himself/herself an enthusiast for the women’s cause without even knowing of what they are talking about.

It comes very natural to me to describe what Feminism actually means before going into details of what it has come out to be. It is basically a doctrine that advocates equal rights of women. But wait! It does not say “same” rights anywhere. I must be thought of by many of you as being very conservative when I say they do not have the rights to everything as a man, but that is, unfortunately true. And this is also because men also do not have the same rights as women have been given.

I am an advocate of “adequate” rights for women, a supporter of campaigns against the women trafficking and molestation and would have been a proud feminist, had the image of “feminism” remained the same in people’s minds. But the current feminists, (or I’d rather call this feminism: neo-feminism and thus neo-feminists) talk more than that. According to some of my feminist friends, women who are educated “must” work, rather than they “should” work. My question  is: what favor are you doing to the woman (specifically) and a human in general by brain washing her to work rather than letting her take care of her house and bring up her children?

This does not end here. Many neo-feminists call it very demeaning, if a woman covers her head or does “Pardah”. My question to them is: What is troubling you if she decides to cover herself on her own will? It might be called oppression if she is forced to cover, but not when she decides this fate on her own.  A few days ago I read a blog where the author (Bina Shah) very openly backed the idea of the Egyptian blogger (and feminist) who thought it pertinent to express her anger of female molestation in Egypt by posting her naked picture on her blog and calling it a symbol of resistance to the patriarchal forces in Egypt. Now I don’t understand how this act can improve the current situation in Egypt rather than worsening it. I agree that the aftermath of such a stunt was very undesirable but so was the stunt itself. How does a wrong make another wrong right? It might not be a matter of virtue for the blogger to pose like that but this might be a matter of life and death for many other women. I repeat, one wrong does not make another wrong right! And anyways, this publicity stunt is not going to improve the situation at all.

Coming back to those who think women need the very same rights as men. How about giving men equal quotas in nursing too? And they may also be given equal seats as family health workers, right? And how about dragging all the daughters to the borders to fight for the country if any war breaks out, just like we do to the sons of our nation?

The reality is we cannot afford it. Because the truth is not what many of us dream, rather the beauty of life is to respect what importance both of us have been given naturally.  

Contributed by:

Paras Abbasi

About the author: Paras Abbasi is a junior year student at Institute of Business Administration, Karachi. She tweets at @parasabbasi

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