The Feminists Will Never Be Satisfied (part two)

Posted June 28, 2011 from United States

I wrote this piece a while back in response to the Stupak Amendment (restricting abortion rights and women's health options, especially for low-income women in the United States). When I read that the next topic for "My Story" will be standing up this piece immediately came to mind so I knew I had to share. I hope you enjoy :)

The Feminists Will Never Be Satisfied

I heard someone say “those feminists will never be satisfied”. And I thought …“you’re right”.

I know that the freedoms enjoyed today were taken- radically- by the foremothers before me that fought with their minds, words, and bodies for people's sovereignty.

They weren’t satisfied with the prescription of what it meant to be a woman. Black women on their back, in the house- not their own house- domesticated. Brown women invisible, killed off, bred out and assimilated. White women, quiet with no voice or opinion, their words negated.

No. They were not satisfied.

This country was built on the backs of women and born from between their thighs. Yet they had to wait for over 150 years before they even had basic citizen’s rights.

And they weren’t given it. They took it.

The un-satisfaction of women is why we are all free to sit in this room together, and it is out of respect for women and the sacrifices they made, the voices they projected, the bodies they exhausted, the tears they shed, the hands they held, the breathes they took and gave that I call myself a feminist.

See, it’s a respect thing.

Because I realize that it is not something god given that I walk down these streets freely.

I do not believe in grace or chance or luck or wishing. I believe in talking and shouting, in standing up by your sister, in voting, in being seen and heard, in not being a passive by-stander, in letting people have choices, in writing, and protesting, in projecting and in being… un-satisfied.

Because it is not complacency that will give my daughter freedom, and it is not apathy that will give me rule over my own body, and it is not melancholy that will make my mother proud.

And no, we will not be satisfied.

So complacent, apathetic and melancholy is not what I will be, because I am afraid of the continuity.

Women still make less than men for the same job, gender roles still exist, rape is still one of the hardest crimes to prosecute, girls are still getting their clitorises cut off, sexual harassment is still rampant and our government is at war with women’s bodies.

So for all of these reasons I stand beside the women of today that say “I will not be satisfied”.

Satisfaction did not get us here, and we remain… un-satisfied.

My Story: Standing Up

Comments 6

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Zoneziwoh Mbondgulo-Wondieh
Jun 30, 2011
Jun 30, 2011

True Dear Sister. It is not Melancholy, pity...that makes you what you are, or what you are to be. It is the strength in you to Stand-Tall and speak out.

Many thanks.

This is beautiful

Jun 30, 2011
Jun 30, 2011

Thanks darling sister for the piece, in 100 years to come someone will be smiling about our un-satisfaction....

Jun 30, 2011
Jun 30, 2011

I loved it... thank you for sharing. It's true, we will never be satisfied, for there will always be a woman or girl whose rights are not being protected and respected, and we will have to advocate for them (no matter where they're from). No satisfaction means keep on growing, keep on learning, keep on making visible the invisible...

Jan Askin
Jul 08, 2011
Jul 08, 2011

Dear Sharese,

These days, I feel that the developing generation of young women has no understanding of how hard fought were the freedoms that they enjoy today. I also feel that these freedoms are under assault in our country; one example of this assault is the stupid Stupak amendment. How can we wake the current generation to the threat.

Your "stand up" entry is a strong call to action.

Thank you Sharese,

Your American Sister, Jan

Jul 11, 2011
Jul 11, 2011

Thank you for reminding us of the women who came before us and who fought for things most of us now take for granted. Thank you also for reminding us how much still remains to be done.

Frances Faulkner
Jul 12, 2011
Jul 12, 2011

Sharese, your piece is a nice reminder of the "big picture," a reflective chant and call to action. I like your list of beliefs - you have great positive energy and conviction. Keep it up and you will find others alongside or watching and learning.

Thanks, Frances