Sunday, 11 June 2017

How feminism made me loathe Wonder Woman

I never really was into super heroes as a child. Mostly because most of them were so unrealistic that I could not imagine how they would appeal to an audience. Regardless, over the years I have caught up on this craze through watching various films and cartoons featuring these characters.

Of all of these super heroes, I like the anti-heroes the most, to be honest. Especially characters such as Dead Pool and Wolverine. They feel like real people, with a real background and personality with whom you can relate. The X-Men series in general appealed to me because it features characters who were just thrown into that role through genetic fate, causing lots of struggles as they came to terms with their condition. Many of these characters are quite relatable as a reason.

I have seen a few Super Man films as well, but as with characters such as Captain America and kin, it never felt real. With an unrealistic premise, ridiculous forced character development and a cardboard cut-out for a personality, such films never connected with me. I definitely liked the Bat Man films more there, as Bruce's character was relatable in its imperfections.

One of the few characters whom I had not seen in a cartoon or film before in any significant fashion so far is Wonder Woman. She just seemed like yet another one of those 'me too' ridiculous over the top American super heroes with truly one of the most ridiculous outfits (easily beating some of the more extreme Cat Woman outfits). Fighting in such an outfit? I'd have trouble merely catching a bus wearing it.

So then there was this Wonder Woman film this year, and people got all excited about it, because it was supposed to be really good. And presumably it was. Yet I doubt that I'll try seeing it, because I can't get this grimy taste of smug, third-wave feminism out of my mouth whenever I think of Wonder Woman now.

What mostly repulses me about Wonder Woman in general now is that she has been made into this feminist symbol which will inspire young boys to always be nice to girls and women, and young girls to... grow up to wear costumes which show off lots of cleavage and
come to prefer hot pants. Or something. Or to not take cr*p from anyone while wearing such a ridiculous costume. I guess.

I have always been quite frank about my dislike for feminism, just like my mother. This mostly due to the inherent discrimination in third-wave feminism. My mother saw it all take shape over the past decades while growing up as a young woman. My generation now has to live with its consequences.

As some may have gathered by now, I wasn't raised in a traditional female role. Courtesy of having been mistaken for a boy due to my intersex condition, I initially got brainwashed into the stereotypical (for the Netherlands) male role. Thanks to having been raised by my parents in a gender-neutral fashion, I was able to transition fairly easily into a female role instead after I discovered that my body is primarily female (just with male genitals as bonus).

What irks me the most about feminism as a result of my experiences so far is just how self-centred and self-serving it is. Albeit supposedly feminism is supposed to be about 'equality', in reality it is anything but. Although I'm also a woman, I'm in the first place a human being. Secondly I'm a hermaphrodite. And I do not feel that I am included in feminism.

Feminism is about enforcing the gender binary. About segregating people into 'men' and 'women'. About assigning stereotypes and allocating victimisation quotas. About telling young girls that they should be 'proper women' and being different from 'those men'.

Feminists do not give a fig about us intersex 'women', or the troubles (and genital mutilations) we suffer. Few Western feminists even care about the troubles suffered by women in non-Western countries. Instead we just get Western feminists cheering over a fictional character in a fictional universe somehow going to pull 'those men' into line and somehow inspiring 'girls' to become whatever. Not like a character such as Ripley in the film Alien from the 1980s being a far more realistic role model. I thought she was pretty rad, at least.

But really, if it's about equality, then it should not matter which genitals, gender, sexual preference or such a role model has. If it does, one merely discriminates. All that should matter is the person themselves. How they treat others, expect to be treated by others and their goals and path in life. An idol has to be stripped of such mundane attributes which ultimately do not define them as a person. Things like genitals.

I could have watched the Wonder Woman film the way I watched the Super Man films: as a way to stay updated on popular Western culture, and maybe enjoy a film, similarly to how I watched Dr. Strange recently and found it to be an interesting film. Yet it has become impossible for me to watch this new film now. It has become too tainted due to these connections with feminism, ruining any chance of me enjoying the film.

This rant sums up the basics of my feelings on this subject. I have long thought about whether I should write this at all, because I have seen the flak caught by those who dared to object to Western third-wave feminism. As an egalitarian and humanist, I do feel that people like us should speak up more often, to stem the populism of feminism and its damaging effects on society. For the sake of equality and egalitarianism.

I do not think that feminists are terrible people, just misguided. I think that they truly believe that they are doing good, but they haven't gone through the same life experiences as others. Sometimes they really need to step back and reassess their interpretation of reality. Maybe realise that their version of reality does not include a large group of people, and likely butchers biological facts into an overly simplistic interpretation.

Maybe then I could finally just be able to watch films without all of these unneeded connotations.


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