Over the last few years, I have asked myself about my relationship with feminism.
Do I support women? Do I support ONLY women? What about trans women? What about trans men? Non-binary and Trans-gender folks? What does it even MEAN to be a feminist?
I can no longer bring myself to tolerate the pervasive mainstream narratives. I must strive to simultaneously accept and confront my status as a white cis heterosexual woman to grow my understanding of how I continue to benefit from “mainstream feminism”.
Here is a question we should each ask ourselves…
What can I do to elevate the voices of those silenced to create equity for all?
We exist at a magnificently complicated and exciting time. Though individuals are coming out and living authentically at much greater rates, we must also recognize that there is much work to be done. We still live in a society where 21% of transgender college students have spoken out about being sexually assaulted (RAINN).
I have to admit, I never thought about these issues when I was growing up, and I look at youth today and see hope. Young people have immense power to change the way society looks, thinks, and acts, and together, we have an amazing opportunity to grow, learn, and love.
-Caitlin Bradley, Program Coordinator & Teen Council Advisor, HiTOPS