Connect with us

Why We Still Need Feminism: From the Lens of a High School Girl

Written by Jaiden Arada, Converge multimedia journalism intern and Senior at Cherokee Bluff High School

As a person in society, I am treated a certain way. Whether it is the way I carry myself or the way I act, I should be treated with that respect and not the respect that society has given women throughout history.

I am writing this on the day that the US Women’s Soccer Team finally achieved equal pay as the US Men’s Soccer Team. It is 2022 and there are very few sports that have achieved this. There are still wage gaps within the workforce for women and men that have the same job. Why is this still an issue today?

I did not always consider myself feminist. When I was younger, I did not know or understand the term. All I knew is that boys and girls were treated differently. In our classrooms, we were mostly treated the same, but sometimes on the playground, things were different. The boys hung out with the other boys playing sports or rough-housing games and the girls played house or swung on the swings.

I recall a time where I said I liked the color blue and I was told that blue was a boys’ color. How did a gender trademark the color blue? Why was I told I could not like the things that boys liked?

In middle school, I saw more differences between boys and girls. On my third day of sixth grade, I was dress coded for my t-shirt not touching the back of my knees when I was wearing leggings. First of all, if my t-shirt touched my knees, I would have been wearing a dress. Nothing about my outfit was considered “scandalous” but I was taken out of my class and had to wait for my mother to come pick me up because I was a “distraction to the class.”

Months later, I saw a boy with a similar problem with the length of his shorts and he was wearing a tank top. He was not dress coded and actually complimented by the other guys. I was appalled.

In high school, our differences only got worse. I constantly hear jokes to this day about how women belong in the kitchen or how girls do not have it as tough as guys do. That’s when I was really given the chance to explore my femininity and understand why it still needs to be a huge factor in my life.

We need someone who will tell girls that they can like blue. We need someone to tell girls that they can dress with the freedom of expression and that they are not a distraction to the class. We need someone to stand up for women when other people make sexist jokes. If I can be that person for someone else, I will be. This is why feminism is still important today.