Being a woman takes many different forms. There are women who like pink, to dance and listen to Britney Spears in their car. There are women who like black, playing video games and listen to Aerosmith. And then there are also the women who enjoy listening to Britney Spears and Aerosmith, and also enjoy dancing while playing video games and who enjoy wearing both pink and black.

Each woman is attracted to different interests and enjoy things simply because it’s who they are. Guess what? There is nothing wrong with that, except for having a problem with others doing the same exact thing.

It’s 2015, people. It’s about time we stop being counterproductive and oppressing our own gender. I cannot believe posts like “I’m not a victim,” “I like men,” and “I like being feminine” are thrown around on a Tumblr page dedicated to the campaign “Women Against Feminism.”

Maybe it’s because I was raised differently than others or maybe it’s just who I am, but I just cannot fathom women thinking feminism is a rotten, demeaning and insulting concept. To me, it’s second nature and something we should continually be fighting for.

Emma Watson, a renowned actress and UN Women’s Global Goodwill Ambassador, said it best in her campaign for gender equality, “He For She.” She said, “The more I’ve spoken about feminism, the more I have realized that fighting for women’s rights has too often become synonymous with man-hating. If there is one thing I know for certain, it is that this has to stop.”

I took time to peruse the Women Against Feminism page. Most, if not all, comments on handmade signs by women were directed at how they can’t be feminists because they like guys, wear makeup or are too prideful to admit that there are overt social, economic and political struggles faced by women every single day.

As Watson stated, this does have to stop. Preventing your own gender from having equal opportunity and shaming women among you is a blatant disrespect to the very person you are. Some will continue to believe otherwise, but being submissive to the real issues women face will eventually come back to bite you.

In addition, illegitimate excuses against any movement can only get you so far. Makeup is a product you apply to your face and in no way prevents you from being an awesome feminist. Loving men and treating them with respect is a relationship, which you need to be a good feminist. By bringing men up from scrutiny they face, we can also lift up women.

Lastly, the most common excuse for anti-feminists is denying the war on women exists altogether. There is just no logic to support that no woman anywhere in the world is being denied a basic human right. It may not be as prevalent in the U.S., but other countries such as South Africa and Uganda face extreme gender discrimination and inhumane treatment of women.

Because many are confused as to the ideology feminism supports, many have rallied against equal treatment and rights for women. It’s devastating that in a first-world nation like the U.S., so many are continuing to distort what should be a clear worldwide fight for justice. Feminism is not about one person or even an entire gender but extends to everyone and the belief that everyone is equal.

Email Anne McLean at anne.mclean@cardinalpointsonline.com

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