Consider how you might describe yourself in relation to the term "feminist." Do you consider yourself one?
I think how I can relate to feminism in the sense that I support the social movement that seeks equality of all sexes without prioritizing only one gender which tends to be men point of view although as Dr Roxane Gay said in the book, Bad Feminist, that there is no one way to be feminist. I grew up with my siblings and raised by single mom. Therefore, at an early age, I was taught how to be independent and care for myself and siblings since my mom worked all day. I learned to do chores and cook for myself at that young age. I often thought, "Why is my mom making me do this?." Although, we moved around frequently, and we would stay at a family houses so my mom can work more. I understand why she self-sacrificed so much to raise us in a loving home. As I grew up,I saw the value of what she taught me since I didn’t have father figure I learnt to appreciate women in general, and what they can do for their family survival. Therefore, in my adulthood, I work my tail off in both school and so I can have a better future for my mom and family. In addition, when I always think how women are trying to make their voices heard and I can empathize with them, and I would ask what if my mother went through this?what would I do? Of course am going to stand up and advocate for them. In the words of Dr. Roxane Gay, “Feminism is about uniting around the goal to lift up voices of those who may be silenced and amplify voices of all that wish to dismantle system that perpetuate misogyny ,inequality and discrimination.”
How is one's gender identity as self-defined, a health and human rights issue?
Gender identity" refers to a person's deeply felt, internal sense of belonging to a gender. Since in many occasion people on the same sex are not allowed to be open about their status or how they choose to identify .I saw in the news one day how teenagers attacked lesbian couple on a bus that caused an outrage because it was a hate crime and from verbal abuse to physically cause harm to the couples can be seen in many situation whereby some people feel the need to get violate because of just gender identity. In the reading it mentioned how in some countries same sex is legally prohibited or the way they dress up or behavior is not in the social norm. This has made it difficult for those who identify out of the social norm to feel welcomed and safe by community or family members.
In connection with human rights, too many countries around the world can legally prohibit some people from living freely with their identified sexual orientation and gender identity. These laws and societal norms can perpetuate increased violence and continual violation of human rights based on sexual orientation and identity. The United nations resolution and obligation is to investigate ... all killings committed for any discriminatory reason, including sexual orientation. “by doing so “criminalizing matters of sexual orientation increases the social stigmatization of members of sexual minorities, which in turn makes them more vulnerable to violence and human rights abuses, including violations of the right to life."
I think educating those who don’t understand that gender is a socially constructed is important and can help to improve the human rights and safety of those who identify as such. We should discuss and consider the conflicts that arises in relation to this topic and how religion and culture also play a role.
Human Rights Watch (March 10, 2005). Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity: Human Rights Concerns for the 61st Session of the U.N. Commission on Human Rights. Retrieved at https://www.hrw.org/news/2005/03/10/sexual-orientation-and-gender-identity-human-rights-concerns-61st-session-un#
Mezzofiore, G. (2019, June 8). Lesbian couple viciously beaten in homophobic attack on London bus. Retrieved January 26, 2020, from https://www.cnn.com/2019/06/07/europe/homophobic-attack-london-intl-scli-gbr/index.html
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Written by Azu Ali