If you stand for equality for women, then you are a feminist.
If you just want revenge, then you’re not.
This simple phrase fell out of my mouth when explaining to someone my views on feminism and what’s giving them a bad name. “To hear her talk, she doesn’t really want equality for women, she just wants revenge.” The word “revenge” really sums up the problem with feminism.
Women turn to feminism because they have suffered from gender inequality. They experience a variety of emotions because of this suffering: hurt, low self-esteem, confusion, doubt, bitterness, and occasionally anger. Intentionally or not, feminists encourage each other to channel all of this into anger. Theoretically, this anger can be used constructively, motivation to work for change rather than accept the status quo.
Of course, feminists are just people. It is easy to be angry. It is not so easy to be constructive. There is no internal policing among feminists to ensure that their message remains positive. As a result, there is much negativity coming out of the mouths of feminists. Most of it, even.
Hence, there are a lot of women who call themselves feminists, and who think they are fighting for equality, but whose words and actions are actually not. Instead, they are expressing anger at men. Demonizing men. Even making threats of what they will do to men, which often includes violence. None of this is about equality. It is about revenge. Technically, it is hate speech.