A common theme in these user-submitted signs is that the women don’t need feminism because they believe in living traditionally. Some specifically state that they are stay-at-home moms. One woman does not need feminism because she likes to cook for her family. On its surface, it’s pretty easy to understand where they’re coming from—you don’t hear a lot about feminists fighting for a woman’s right to cook for her family. But that’s because the option to cook for your family was always on the table (so to speak). Our feminist predecessors had that option, and they wanted more options—like to have job opportunities and to vote. You don’t give up one right when you gain another. The option to be a stay-at-home mom has always been there (if you can afford to live on one income and so forth). You’ve heard about suffragettes fighting for the right to vote because it was a big deal. You haven’t heard about suffragettes fighting for the right to be stay-at-home mothers, not because it’s frowned upon but because there wasn’t a need to vocalize support for the status quo. If someone tells you “your only meal option is beans,” you don’t need to stand up and demand beans. The beans are right there, beaning around in front of you.

However, if you want to talk about a group that has historically voiced support for families, and specifically mothers, of all types—including, yes, stay-at-home moms—we must, I’m sorry to say, talk about feminists. Here’s an incomplete list of mother or family-related issues that feminists have fought for: maternity leave, incarcerated women’s right to give birth without being in shackles, and basic rights for domestic workers. Women Against Feminism would point out that feminists don’t work toward the same rights for men, so what gives? Feminists do actually work toward things like paid paternity leave, for one thing. But similar to the point made by my incredibly insightful bean metaphor, men already, uh, have a lot of rights. That’s why you don’t hear about feminists pursuing them. Maybe if feminists do eventually start fighting harder for the rights of men, there could be a highly paid male executive, or hell, even a male president!

Women Against Feminism Have a Strange Fixation on Opening Jars | VICE United States (via brutereason)

Why this fascination with the woman who doesn’t know she’s beautiful, the idealization of low self-esteem? It orients the singer as a savior — the sensitive soul whom this girl, who has been slaving away day in and day out in front of a mirror that just won’t reveal the beauty she longs to see, desperately requires. These aren’t songs for young men, who, theoretically, could listen and reconsider their standards of female beauty. These are songs for girls who get the message that insecurity has romantic value, if only because it’s the necessary setup to the grand moment in which they find the boys who — god bless them! — finally pull them out of it.

By all means, write songs about how beautiful women are. Write songs about how beautiful men are too! (Incidentally, if you’re unsure how specifically gendered this trope is: Try to imagine a song in which a female singer says just how much she wants to make a guy “feel beautiful.”) But don’t assume we’re uncomfortable in our skin just because we dress it up when we present it to the world. Don’t tell us we don’t know we’re beautiful, and certainly don’t tell us that our ignorance to this fact is our best quality. We’re good.

Let’s Stop Singing Songs About Women Who Don’t Know They’re Beautiful (via brutereason)