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Feminism is needed in America

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/23/2015 Category: Society
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 636 times Debate No: 74094
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (7)
Votes (1)




Feminism is no longer needed in the United States of America. We have equality among genders other then petty complaints.


I'll accept this debate. Fire away.
Debate Round No. 1


We have gender equality in the USA. The most common feminist arguments I hear are as follows.
1. Woman make less then men for the same work
2. 1 in 5 woman are raped (I don't know if this is 100% accurate but I do hear it often and it is based of certain facts)
3. Men having power in society

I will start with "Woman make less then men for the same work" or often said as "woman make 75 cents on a mans dollar".

This is simply not true.
This statistic includes anyone working 35 hours or more a week. So a man could work 40 hours a week and make more then a woman working 35 hours. The statistic doesn't compare people with exact position it compares people in the same field. Statistically speaking men are far more likely to take work in uncomfortable, isolated, and undesirable locations and take more demanding jobs that naturally pay more.
For example, within sales, men gravitate to relatively high-stress and high-paying areas of specialization, like car dealership with long hours, while women are more likely to pursue relatively lower-paid areas of specialization like being a cashier with shorter hours.

Also, unmarried women who've never had a child actually earn more than unmarried men. Which isn't wrong it just depends on what jobs they go into.

Second, 1 in 5 woman are raped.

Feminism can not help this and it is not sexist. Evil exists in the world and there is nothing we can do about it. Rapists know what they are doing is wrong. It isn't that they see woman as sex objects and non human, they just want to have sex and are willing to do a horrible act to have sex. It is not right, but it certainly is not something that society doesn't care about. It is universally condemned and considered awful.

Lastly I hear it argued that men are the only ones with power in the USA

Which is completely untrue. Woman are CEO's and hold many government positions. In Hillary Clinton case there could even be a female president in 2016.
21% of people in congress are female.
This number although not 50-50 is fine especially considering as stated above. Statistically speaking men tend to go for higher paying and higher power positions.


Con picked three very weak arguments to attack here.

1. Wage gap: No one is saying a woman and a man with the exact same job make a different amount of money. Its not sexist, just a fact about what jobs women have and what the average pay between the genders is. Women take years off work to have kids, and are less likely to advance at the same rate as a man because of it. No issue here.

2. Rape: How is this relevant in any way to feminism? Men get raped too. Rape happens. Women are very well legally protected from getting raped.

3. Power: I find it odd Con uses this argument, because it actually contradicts her point. It is very true that CEOs and top government officials are overwhelmingly male. Look at the statistics Con provides. Women still do not seek positions of power for whatever reason (discrimination, peer pressure, desire to have a family, etc) and this is a reason for feminism to exist. A government should represent its people, and a country half filled with women should be represented by a government roughly proportional. There should also be more people of colour in congress, but that's a different issue.

Now to my own arguments. I'll concede that so-called feminazis have given feminism a bad name recently. Any group will have radicals that make the whole look bad, we can't judge the idea of feminism by a few loud voices.

A) Feminism, by definition, pushes for equality. We can all agree that equality is a good thing in society, and while women are not legally discriminated against (anymore), there are many other forms of discrimination. Saying we do not need feminism is like saying we don't need to worry about the rights of black Americans because there's no legal discrimination. This view ignores things like racial profiling, voter suppression, harsh drug laws, a broken welfare system, low quality access to education and healthcare in poor neighbourhoods. This view is naive and narrow minded in both cases.

B) Women are horribly under represented in STEM fields. The amount of women choosing to study in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) fields are at an all time high, yet are still abysmally low. This is due largely to the fact that women are not encouraged to pursue these fields, even when they show promise at a young age. In elementary school, there are no real differences between female and male test scores in math and science. However in high school, the scores are very different, with boys outscoring girls 3 to 1. This is a stark contrast from scores in the 1980's, which were 13 to 1 in favour of boys. The reason for the change is not biological, but social. Girls haven't gotten smarter in the last 30 years, but it has become more normal for them to study math and science without judgement. This isn't to say that science and math teachers are actively discouraging girls from studying in their fields, but rather research shows that parents, guidance counsellors, and other instructors tend to push intelligent boys to persevere in tough subjects like physics and calculus, whereas girls are usually encouraged to switch to easier subjects at the first sign of trouble. The fact that this attitude still exists, and is robbing us of bright young scientific minds, is an excellent reason for feminism to exist.

C) The vestiges of the patriarchal society we are just recently emerging from still remain. While society is rapidly progressing towards equality, there are many holdovers who still think in terms of the past. Many, especially the older generation, still expect women to raise children and stay home, and frown on the childless, career motivated woman as "selfish" or "masculine". Many women also think like this too. Lots of women take their husband's surname when marrying, a tradition that hearkens back to the days of women being literal property. The media rarely showcases women for their intelligence, benevolence, or athletic ability, but often showcases them for their beauty. There's nothing wrong with being beautiful, or being proud of it. Men are also sometimes praised for their aesthetics, but much more often for athletic endeavors, business practices, charitable donations, innovations, and other features. This shows men as a varied, balanced group with a range of skills and attributes, and no one way to be useful. Take the Bechdel test for example. The test is for films, and to pass a film must have A) At least 2 named female characters B) Those two characters exchanging dialogue about something other than a man. Surprisingly, well over half of all Hollywood films fail to meet the requirements of the Bechdel test. In recent years this has been improving, with female driven film series doing well at the box office (Hunger Games, Divergent, etc). The Reverse Bechdel Test (2 male characters who talk to each other about something other than a woman) is almost never failed. So what does this tell us about feminism? Well, the Bechdel Test isn't meant to evaluate specific movies, but to observe trends across Hollywood. While the results point to more gender diversity in film, the results are still skewed in favour of male centric films.
Debate Round No. 2


Response to A) That is not really an argument, more of introduction to any argument. Woman are not discriminated against, that is why we do not need feminism.

Response to B) You argue that woman are horribly under represented in STEM fields. You say this is because of "the fact that women are not encouraged to pursue these fields"

Well, there are hundreds of groups and origination's dedicated to get woman into STEM jobs. I would say that is encouragement to pursue these fields. Woman are encouraged to take risks and do something they are passionate about especially if it is a STEM job.

"The fact that this attitude (referring to the attitude of girls usually encouraged to switch to easier subjects at the first sign of trouble) still exists, and is robbing us of bright young scientific minds, is an excellent reason for feminism to exist."

This "attitude" doesn't exist. Today, It is constantly enforced that woman are supposed to go into STEM fields. Woman get hired more easily in STEM fields because people are afraid of being labeled sexist for hiring a man.

Response to C)
-"Many, especially the older generation, still expect women to raise children and stay home, and frown on the childless, career motivated woman"
This proves some people are still sexist. But that does not justify a movement because of that. Some people are racist against white people or are sexist against men.

-"Lots of women take their husband's surname when marrying, a tradition that hearkens back to the days of women being literal property."
So? Woman deserve the choice to take there husbands surname if they want them to identify in the same family.

-" Well, the Bechdel Test isn't meant to evaluate specific movies, but to observe trends across Hollywood."
No it is just a random test to see if a movie has the right attributes to be "feminist approved". Which is stupid.

-"While the results point to more gender diversity in film, the results are still skewed in favor of male centric films."
This is because of movies wanting to make money and artistic freedom. People should be allowed to right whatever script they want and people want others to like there movie. If it is targeted towards men then it tends to have a male protagonist.


Canuckleball forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by amandaa 1 year ago
I understand that your comments were full of facts and such and good on you, but the problem is, is the word "most." If it is not 100% it is still VERY much needed.
I see unequality everyday and it disgusts me. It does not matter what happens to who more, the fact is, is that it still happens. Women are raped, men are raped, and if you say it has nothing to do with gender equality you're awfully wrong. I see men bash women for their gender and women bash men. It is disgusting and we VERY much need feminism.
Posted by Himans45 1 year ago
While I agree with the first part of your post, I disagree about people being atheists because it's "cool" more people are starting to become atheists because people have finally begun to see the flaws in the bible, and how logically impossible a god is. People are getting more intelligent, which is why people are becoming atheists.
Posted by Tommy.leadbetter 1 year ago
Himans45- Its cause people have been conditioned to not like feminism. They are just unwitting sheep, tricked into thinking feminism is about superiority of women. I think one or two women have been a little crazy, like in all movements, and they have been overrepresented and spotlighted. Most people disregard feminism, like they do animal rights and other things-its because, in my opinion, that message is subtly placed in our media. This is because its beneficial to elitism, and the media giants are clearly elites benefiting wonderfully from the status quo.

Anybody who gives this thought knows it to be true, but most people are just blindly led and are even made to feel like their view is cool and different. Like its the same with atheism, atheists tend feel like they are rebelling and being 'more intelligent' (when they are conforming) and all people who think eating sweets it 'cooler' than a salad are also being 'bought' and 'led'. Or thinking that animal cruelty is okay, that too is considered cool (its not cool to be a vegan for instance), when in fact the opposite it true in all cases. Its cooler to be a lover than a hater, its cooler to care for animals than to torment them, its cooler to believe in connectivity, spirituality and oneness than of cold, hard atheism. Feminism is same. Im not saying atheists are wrong in their belief, I just mean belief is God is now seen as uncool is it not? when I actually is the opposite. Bob Marley, 2 Pac Gandhi Martin Luther King, all spiritual, not Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens etc.. And yet most people consider belief in God uncool and atheism cool, do they not?
Posted by Himans45 1 year ago
Feminism is the belief that all people are entitled to the same civil rights and liberties and can be intellectual equals regardless of gender.

You don't think we need that?
Posted by Tommy.leadbetter 1 year ago
you've got to haha. But let it stand alone I always say to much and give me opponent the chance to ignore it. It shouldn't be ignored it must be addressed but none of them can lol
Posted by Canuckleball 1 year ago
Ah, the Bechdel Test. I was going to use that one.
Posted by Tommy.leadbetter 1 year ago
Im amazed how blind everybody is to prejudice in their own society. People are so quick to condemn practices of older societies and yet 99% of people would be in favour of them at that time! intelligent people as well, its amazing. I understand how slavery and other practices where experienced by the people living in them times when I debate such topics.

My friend, do you watch TV? Do you watch films? How can you say women are not discriminated?!

40% of mainstream films don't have more than two female characters with lines (unless insignificant).

I don't think I should say more because that point alone needs time to digest. Contemplate it Jessica, think about the fact that discrimination isn't always enshrined in law, and legislation is not always a necessity for discrimination. What does it tell you?

(Wikipedia, bechdeltest)
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Varrack 1 year ago
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