The idea of feminism used to cause my blood to boil and a fierce protection of the men in my life and the men in the world to rise up in me. The word used to make me sick when I would think about women marching around in vagina hats with rainbow hair screaming about rights we already have spitting on the face of the women who actually made a difference by getting us to the point of being able to vote, own land, and hold jobs. 

I know women that identify as old-day feminists. They still want equality in areas that are lacking and stand up for themselves when discriminated against for their gender. Yet they don’t attend trashy women’s marches or scream in the face of men. These women are classy, conservative, and fierce women that respect men and see them as equals, not their lesser counterparts. 

Up until recently, I didn’t identify as even an original feminist because even though there are good ones, like above, the word alone made anger rise up in me. That was then, things have changed. I’m as conservative as they come. I own a gun, I stand up for the rights of the unborn, I believe in traditional marriage, you name it. Conservatism and me go together like an FFL member and an elephant skirt. 

I’ve recently had multiple incidents where my authority on certain matters is not respected or listened to because I’m a woman. At first breath I was shocked, certainly there must be another reason for the disrespect. Unfortunately, the verdict was clear. Because I wear a bra, not a jock strap, I am somehow less than these men. Because I have long hair and get manicures instead of a crew cut and a beard, I should not be respected. My authority should not only be questioned but ignored.  I should aspire to be a stay at home wife who is barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen homeschooling 12 children. My value is seen in my gender, not in my abilities. 

It is seriously pathetic that it is almost 2020 and there are still men in the world that hold to this way of thinking that believe my problems are just drama and my leadership responsibilities are just a title, not something that holds weight. I’ve been told to handle the situations all in love, that’s it, no fire, no passion, no standing up for myself. There comes a time when the love ends, and the war begins. If they think I’m going to respond to these incidents with bless your heart and all is well, sugar, they’re disillusioned. 

Clearly these men don’t know me as well as they think. If they believe for one second I’m going to “sit down” or shy away and submit they better tighten their seat-belts. I’m not sitting down, I’m standing up. I’m fighting back. Not with rudeness, I won’t stoop to that level. However, I won’t hold back in the face of oppression. My voice will be heard and my actions will not be stalled. 

Here’s the deal. I’m a Christian, I love the Lord and serve Him daily. But, who was the first one to see Jesus alive after he resurrected? A woman. Who saved a whole nation from a holocaust? That’s right, also a woman. And who speared an evil guy that was against the Lord through the eye with a tent peg? Ding ding ding, we have a winner, a woman. Though I had a professor that taught Esther as not a beautiful, strong, resilient, and brave servant of the Lord who saved her people, but as a slut seeking the favor of the King because she wanted to be a star. That one really riled me up. 

So here is a call to action to all the women like me who recently cringed at the word feminism. Keep on respecting men, keep showing them you aren’t a doormat, but a wall of strength, passion, and fire. Keep the fire in your soul and grace in your heart. Be gracious, be kind, but be tough. Things will never get to where they need to be if women like us continually allow men stuck in the old ways to treat us like pretty little things to sit and look pretty. Due to these recent incidents a little seed of feminism has been planted in me. And though you’ll never catch me screaming at a woman’s march, you can catch me fighting for my respect and value in the areas of my life it is withheld. I’m proud to become a conservative feminist and invite you to join me. 

I recently heard Nikki Haley speak and she told a story about being in a position of authority and having a man ask her to get coffee for a guest. She leaned over, pressed the intercom and asked her assistant to get it for him. 

Ladies, be a Nikki Haley. Be a powerhouse. And when a man tells you to sit down, stand up, look him in the eye and dare him to repeat himself. 

Brittany Slaughter is a journalism student at Liberty University dedicated to truth, honesty, and standing up for what is right.

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