How to get rid of the concept of “angry feminists”

Maram Faragallah

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Anti-feminists usually describe feminists as ugly, angry women who are unable to attract men. They oversee the basic values that feminism represents and see feminism as a hostile movement created to attack men, and, in their words, “Blame men for things they don’t have a hand in.” I’ve always wondered why feminism is being attacked. What’s so provoking in a woman demanding to be equal to a man? And what part of feminism makes it seem like “man-hating?”

I have scrolled through enough Instagram posts and tweets to see men attacking feminist ideas. The response by feminists has always been the same, angry and attacking. I was one of those feminists before who always answered to sexist people with sass, and attacked their ideas. Recently, I have stopped to think about the effectiveness of this.

Not only does answering back with anger and mockery make feminists seem angry and obsessed, but it also diminishes any chances of the other side taking us seriously or taking what we’re saying into consideration. I watched a debate between “men’s rights” activists and feminists, and although they disagreed on many issues, the conversation was at least moving somewhere because both sides were calmly and respectfully explaining their side to the other. It opened an opportunity for both sides to take what’s being said into consideration and hopefully understand the other side’s perspective.

For feminists to be able to spread their ideas, they need to stop acting angry. Trust me, I know it feels so weird to be explaining to a grown man why you aren’t inferior to him, but if we want any chance at being heard, we need to state our opinions calmly. We should explain our opinions the same way you explain to a 5-year-old how the Earth is spinning on its axis. We do it calmly and no matter how many stupid questions they ask or how many times they disagree, we can’t raise our voice and we can’t show annoyance.

As a feminist, I’m angry at so many things that happen everyday. Should feminists be angry? Yes. Should feminists act angry? Not if we want to be heard.