Lately I’ve noticed numerous anecdotal signs of an anti-feminist groundswell: friends announcing on Facebook that they’re ‘over’ feminism (post-feminists, some would say), and a proliferation of signs on Hamilton telephone poles decrying the supposedly feminist-led assault on men’s rights. (I’m working up the energy to eventually tackle a post on the men’s rights movement, but today is not that day.)
Today is not the day for a long post in general, but it is worth reminding those who think feminism is dead/overrated/offensive/bitchy/etc. that violence against women is alive and well no matter what gains have been made by feminist movements (gains not equally shared by all women). Feminism is necessary for many reasons, but especially so long as we teach women to defend themselves against rape and violence rather than teaching men not to rape or abuse women.
Today is the National Day of Action and Remembrance on Violence Against Women and the 23rd anniversary of the Montreal Massacre, when 14 women were murdered by a young man at Montreal’s Ecole Polytechnique. The event is important to remember not simply because it was an atrocious act of violence, but because abuse, rape, and murder are still commonplace, especially against Aboriginal women and trans women, to name only a couple communities who are disproportionately targeted. Beyond feminism? Really? Shame on you.
Photo courtesy of seamesse via Flickr.com