Benefits of Feminism to Men and the World

by Uche Onegeria 22 Aug , 2016  

First of all, this is the true definition of Feminism;

“the belief that women should be allowed the same rights, power, and opportunities as men and be treated in the same way, or the set of activities intended to achieve this state” ~ Cambridge dictionary

Now, let me tell you a short, fictional story
Mr. Jegede has 2 children, a boy & a girl called Ada & Obi respectively. They are twins. He brought them up to be great children who respect their elders and know their right from their wrong. Mr. Jegede is an honourable man but he is not financially stable. His family depends on Mr. Jegede’s income to make ends meet because Mrs. Jegede is a housewife.
Mr. Jegede, a proud father of twins; Obi and Ada (Image Source: www.daddytypes.com)

Now, there is something you do not know; his daughter, Ada was the best graduating student in her school. She won so many educational awards that everyone in their village knew her story. His son, Obi was also a good boy, however, he barely passed his exams. There were many instances where he almost dropped a class below his twin sister but somehow, he always miraculously escaped that.

Obi and Ada
Image Source: Wikipedia and www.naijastories.com
The twins both graduated from secondary school together and their father faced the challenge of sending them both to the university. However, he only has just enough money to send one child to the University. After many sleepless nights and consultations with his friends and family, he decided to invest his meager savings in his son, Obi.

Did you ask me, “Why did he send his son to school instead of his daughter?”
These are Mr. Jegede’s reasons;

1. Obi is the one who will bear my name as customs dictates.
2. He will run my business, “Jegede & Sons”.
3. He is my son and will lead my family.
4. My daughter will be another man’s property in a few years, why will I spend money I do not have on her?My valid observations
1. This man knows school is important in a child’s life.
2. However, he does not think it is as important in his daughter’s life as it is in his son’s.


Image Source: www.creativecynchronicity.com

My verdict based on facts

– It is in our minds that our female children get sold to their husbands and are gone forever (After my big sister got married, she visited my parents so many times that her children knew every corner of my house. Compare that to when the male children get married).
– It is also in our minds that our female children cannot carry our names forward to the next generation or successfully run family businesses (There are women today who bear their father’s names and successfully run a business. They can also help lead your family. Married or not, they will always be your “property”. You brought them into this world, that link remains unbroken. In fact, they are the ones who will care for you at your old age).
– If you ask me who should have been sent to school, I cannot give you an answer. It is not a decision anyone should take lightly. What I do know is that it should not be based on gender.

Want to know what happened to Ada?

– She did not get a university degree. She got married afterward to a loving man called Emeka. Emeka did his best to take care of all Ada’s needs. They loved each other but secretly Ada missed the life she had dreamt for herself.
– She had a dream of becoming a medical doctor, a brain surgeon even. This dream makes her smile, but with time, her dream faded and then died.
Source: www.indiegogo.com

The law of Karma

– When Mr. Jegede died, he left everything to his son.
– It is true that Ada inherited nothing from her father but because it is in her nature to care and nurture her loved ones, she took care of both her parents in their old age.

wpowopposw
Ada with her aging mother

I mean, who’ll care for them? Obi does not think about things like this. He is busy with his business and trusts his wife to do right by his parents but…..

 Obi’s wife and her life (the life most husbands do not know)

Naturally, Obi’s wife thinks of her own children and parents 1st, sends them money from her husband’s business, shops for them etc. Bathing her husband’s sick, old parents is quite disgusting to her. In fact, whenever Obi’s parents visit, she counts down to the day when they leave.

Here is how she thinks, “I’m married to their son and did not sign up for this”

Meanwhile, her own parents visit whenever they want, stay as long as they wish and receive the best care ever. She also regularly takes her children to visit them.

Obi and his beautiful wife (Source: www.generationonemovie.com)

You see, naturally, women care for their own families who they know. Caring for your extended family is something very few people grow into. 

How would this story have turned out if Ada went to the university?
Maybe she would have continued climbing the educational success ladder, become a medical doctor. Medical doctors are needed overseas so when Ada fell in love with one of her colleagues, they both decided to migrate overseas. Shortly after, they both started practicing their professions.

From time to time, Ada’s parents would visit to rest, receive medical treatment, and spend time with Ada and her family.

Smiling Family Posing in Field ca. 2002

What does this story have to do with feminism?

 

– Feminism is about the equal opportunity of both genders. Let us say both Ada and Obi were incredible students, who do you think their father would have sent to school?

– Let us also say that Ada was a total failure in school and Obi was an A student, can you imagine how easy it would have been for their father to decide in one second who he will send to school?

– Let us assume that Mr. Jegede had a set of twin boys, which of the boys do you think he would have sent to school? He would send the smarter one of course and left Obi to manage his business.

– I guess my summary is that we should not let gender determine the value of our children just like you will not like an Hausa person to regard you as a 2nd class citizen or a white person to judge you based on your colour. Let us come together, not divide ourselves.

The reason I advocate for women to be included in our society (and not just in the kitchen) is that when we deny them of these opportunities, we deny ourselves the gift of maybe having someone who will find the cure for cancer, HIV/AIDS, or maybe invent a new, affordable and readily available energy source.

When I think of so many prominent ladies who have given a lot to the world today, I wonder what would have been their (our) fate if their society stifled them because of their gender. The world would have lost these angels.

 Here are some women who made groundbreaking contributions to science

Stephanie Louise Kwolek (1923 – 2014), Invented the Kevlar popularly used to make Bulletproof vests
Mary Anderson (1866 –1953), Invented the windshield wiper.


Hedy Lamarr
  (1913 – 2000), Invented improved traffic stoplight and Radio-controlled torpedoes. Her 2nd invention’s design is one of the important elements behind today’s spread-spectrum communication technology, such as GPS, CDMA, Wi-Fi networks and Bluetooth Technology.

Ruth Marianna Handler (1916 – 2002), Invented the Barbie doll.

Madam C. J. Walker (1867 – 1919), Invented the 1st beauty and hair products for black women. She is credited as the first female self-made millionaire in America, she became one of the wealthiest African American women in the country.

Gertrude Belle Elion (1918 – 1999), Invented a multitude of new drugs, using innovative research methods that would later lead to the development of the AIDS drug AZT.

Rachel Fuller Brown (1898 – 1980), Inventor of antifungal antibiotic called Nystatin

If you are interested in seeing more female inventors, visit Wikipedia

When you hear me discuss feminism, I am not advocating for gender roles reversal but equal opportunity for everyone. The same opportunity that most groups; Blacks (Racism), Igbos (Tribalism), Gays (Homophobia) etc. advocate for. In fact, I do not really like that name because most people misinterpret it to be something that it is not.

www.nationalgeographic.com

Many claim to hate Feminism because some women now demand more than they need. Do you hate your all countries, mothers, or human beings just because of the faults of a few? If you hate the name feminism, at least try to understand its meaning.

In a world that is getting harder, it is wiser that we equip everyone with the proper tools to help us make the world easier, don’t you think?

This is what Feminism is to me! Imagine if Brittany was born in some African country? Brittany still continues fighting to help with the cure for cancer, which has also killed many Africans. Source: www.tumblr.com

Header image: Barack Obama and his daughters: Sasha and Malia

2 Comments

  1. The perspective of Multiracial Feminism attempts to go beyond a mere recognition of diversity and difference among women, to examine structures of domination, specifically the importance of race in understanding the social construction of gender.

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About the author

Uche Onegeria

I'm Uche, a lazy writer whose passion for a developed Nigeria is second to none. I do not see tribe, religion, sexual orientation, social status, gender, age... I only see Humans because I have seen the deadly disadvantages of such labels.

I believe Nigeria has never fully harnessed the collective potentials of all her tribes & will only work when we fix this! Let's not fail ourselves by losing sight of what matters most; our HUMANITY!