FEMINISM

 

Egalitarianism is for equality among all people regardless of gender or race or ethnicity and so forth. Equal does not mean identical, however; this crucial distinction is discussed (without mentioning gender) here. Equality means having the same status in a society based on the principle of "from each according to reasonable ability, to each according to reasonable need and desire." People who are equal in this sense may very well be expected to reasonably contribute differently (for all sorts of reasons such as age and health and so forth) in order to have the right to take according to reasonable need and desire; and people who are equal may very well have different reasonable needs and desires, for reasons such as age and health and size of family and so forth.

 

Equality in the sense discussed above does not rest on the idea that people are the same. People are different, and that's generally a good thing. One of the many ways people are different is gender, to which an egalitarian says, "So what?"

 

Mutual aid, in addition to equality, is another egalitarian value. In an egalitarian society, egalitarian men and women (ditto egalitarian young and old, weak and strong, healthy and sick, one ethnic group and a different one, people in one region and people who live elsewhere, etc.) help each other. They do not view each other as a hostile force against whom they are in competition.

 

In light of the above, what is the egalitarian take on feminism. As editor of this website, I (John Spritzler), will offer my thoughts and provide a link to a related article I wrote. I believe that different people mean very different things by the word "feminism." Some people say they are a feminist and mean, by that word, that they agree with the above paragraphs about egalitarian equality and use the word "feminist" to emphasize that this kind of equality should apply to relations between men and women. Clearly I have no objection to feminism in this sense.

 

Other people, however, use the word "feminism" to mean that the problem with our society today is that men--all men, just because they are males--are the oppressor of women. This theory goes by the name "patriarchy." Advocates of this theory engage in what is called "misandry," which means portraying men--all men, just because they are males--as the chief problem in society. This misandry, in my opinion, is factually false and very destructive of solidarity (mutual aid) between men and women. My article on this is called, "Misandry, an Obstacle to Solidarity Between Men and Women" online here.

 

If anybody wishes to write their opinion about feminism, from an egalitarian point of view, please send me the text of your opinion and I will post it on this website.

 

 

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