Thursday, 27 June 2013

Black Cherry Chutney and Why We Still Need Feminism

Last week on Twitter a tweet caught my eye. It was a question from a member of the public as to whether Julia Gillard was wearing black nail polish. I mean really? Why would anyone care what nail polish she was wearing? Can a PM wear black nail polish? I mean really, should she be wearing any? I mean she is a politician surely not a woman, one must defeminise to be a politicial leader surely?

What concerned me even more was the tweet back from the Prime Minister's account. No it wasn't black it was this.....

Image used is from the beautiful blog The Opinionated Finger
Yesterday Julia Gillard was ousted as PM in a caucus challenge. We are now back to status quo. Men in charge. Phew! Who wants a nail polish wearing PM anyway? And....And she knits! Oh for goodness sake how can you be taken seriously as a political leader if you spend your time knitting kangaroos for royal babies, I mean really? You should be out playing golf, or shooting kangaroos for goodness sake. You cannot expect to be taken seriously whilst knitting.

Feminism is still relevant. Because women are still oppressed, because they wear nail polish, and knit. Yes, men knit too Daily Mail, they really do. In many quarters women are still valued for what they look like, what they wear, not who they are.  Julia Gillard was always up against it, right from the start. Because she is a woman.

I am a feminist. No it doesn't mean I burn bras, bras are useful. My boobs would appear from under my shirt without one. It doesn't mean I hate men. I love men. It doesn't mean I think stay at home mums are irrelevant, motherhood is intensely personal and one must mother the way one's instincts tells one to do. The way you bring up your child working mum, stay at home mum whatever does not make you a feminist, or not. Feminism is about valuing women for who we are, what we do, what we bring to society, it's about addressing imbalance of power.

I don't shun pink. Whilst I don't wear nail polish I do wear make up and dresses. In fact I have them on now, make up and a dress. My failure to wear nail polish has nothing to do with being a feminist.

I am a feminist because even now, in the 21st century, women's choices are restricted. Women still have to fight for basic rights. There are still inequalities that exist purely because I am a woman. I am judged differently because I am a woman and not a man. And I will never believe that this is right.

A lot of what drives me is because I am a feminist. I strongly believe if men had babies we wouldn't see the imbalances in maternity service provision that we currently encounter. I believe if men had babies there would be more impetus on finding solutions to birth complications, prematurity, etc. I might be wrong, but I don't think I am.

Mum was the first feminist I ever met. I grew up with the Female Eunuch, with a nana who believed I would be the first female Prime Minister of Australia.

I am sorry I failed you nana, but Australia is just not ready yet. Perhaps my time is still to come.

I am a feminist, and I will never believe that women are second best purely because they are women. Judge me on my personality, on my worth, on my achievements. But do not judge me because I am a woman.


  1. *stands and applauds* Brilliant x

  2. Excellent!! Excellent post!! Hear hear!!

  3. Ahh now I get the nail polish reference!

  4. Great post. I'm pretty sure your nana would have been impressed :)