Who are you?
A hairy-legged, “man-hating”, bra-burning, fire-breathing, gender-abolishing Women’s Libber.
What does veganism have to do with feminism (and vice versa)?
Everything. Neither women nor animals should be treated like pieces of meat.
What is “patriarchy”?
Male-supremacy, or male-dominance.
Patriarchy can take on different characteristics in different times and cultures. In more traditional cultures, women are usually the property of their fathers and husbands. In “modern”, Westernized societies, women are valued as sex objects.
Despite the variations, all patriarchal societies have certain things in common:
- Men as a group have political, economic, and social privilege and power over women;
- Women’s bodies are turned into objects for men – either as baby-making machines or as sex objects (or some combination of the two);
- Violence against women is socially normalized and even sanctioned (see rape culture 101);
- Men and male interests are given greater weight and importance than women and female interests. Women are culturally marginalized.
Can men be victims of sexism?
Sexism isn’t about random people being mean to each because of their genitals – it’s about a system of institutionalized values and practices that devalue women and girls. That means that male power is protected in various ways throughout society (socially, legally, politically, and economically). Not all individual men benefit from all of the privileges enjoyed by men as a group (poor men do not necessarily benefit from economic privilege), but all men benefit in at least a few ways.
Men can be victimized in other ways (racism, poverty, personal misfortune), but they cannot be persecuted for being male in a male-supremacist society.
I’m a feminist and I care about animals, but I don’t have the time/gynergy to be an animal rights activist. We need to liberate human women and girls first.
One does not necessarily preclude the other.
If you spend your available time and energy doing feminist work – great! But you can still make an important contribution to the animal rights movement by going vegan. Since we don’t need to eat or use animal products to be healthy, our main reasons for doing it are taste, convenience, tradition, habit – not very good reasons for harming and killing other animals. If you cannot contribute to the animal rights movement in any other way, going vegan is the absolute minimum that you can do. It is an important way of rejecting the unnecessary killing and suffering that humans impose on other animals.
For more information, please see: www.vegankit.com/