Why I love the F-word

Opinion

Each election season seems to bring in a plethora of insults from both presidential candidates. After the first presidential debate, I’m sure some individuals have a few choice words for their opposing party. And while I personally love to swear, I think it’s more important to talk about the other F-word that’s been buzzing around this election: Feminism.

The Webster dictionary defines feminism as the theory of political, economic and social equality of the sexes. Simply put, feminism means equality, not a preference towards women.

Our country has become incredibly polarized by our views on gun control, education, immigration and healthcare, but when it comes to issues directed at women, some issues seem to hit a little closer to home.

Despite all advancements women have made over the last century, there still seems to be a constant push back on women’s rights.

In 1920 women were granted the right to vote in a presidential election, after 33 elections without representation, but have had very difficult time with legislative advancements since.

Currently, one of the most debated topics in the United States is the morality of abortion. In 1973 women were granted the right to safe and legal abortions. However, in the state of Missouri, several abortion clinics have been stripped of their funding, causing the drastic reduction from 29 abortion clinics to a single abortion clinic in St. Louis, MO.

Equal pay is another hot button issue of the election; the 21 cent wage discrepancy has been causing waves in the election since early April, leaving room for an endless debate for a solution.

In addition to the financial inequality and debatable body autonomy, American women are faced with the growing threat of physical and sexual abuse.

Rape — it’s not an easily approachable subject, but it’s a national issue that seems to be growing rapidly. Sexual assault is a growing problem that can physically and emotionally damage both men and women. However, there is no national standard for disciplinary action in cases of rape. It is predominately left to the state’s jurisdiction.

On Sept. 23, Netflix released the documentary  ‘Audrie and Daisy,’ the story of two girls that were sexually assaulted and then aggressively harassed by their communities to the point of attempting suicide.

Personally, after watching the documentary, there was feeling beyond gender oppression; for the violation of women to go unopposed and the naivety some might have to deny that rape and violence against women isn’t a huge problem in the United States makes my stomach turn.

This election will not only determine the new leader of our nation, but it will also determine who will be named the next Supreme Court Justice, affecting the legal precedents for decades to come. Please make it a priority to vote on Nov. 8.