So, yesterday the internet exploded with news of Emma Watson – recently named UN Women’s Goodwill Ambassador – and news of her “groundbreaking” speech on equality, for the launch of the global He For She campaign. Suddenly, it seemed like women were being given permission to label themselves as feminist. Suddenly it seemed as if men were being given permission, an invitation, to take ownership over issues relating to gender equality.
Emma Watson deserves to be congratulated on her speech – it is poignant and compelling and has drawn attention to an issue that needs the most attention it can get. It has given young starlets further permission to speak out, to label themselves as feminists and to identify with the gender equality movement. But to be honest – we deserve better. We deserve more than giving men permission to fight for gender equality. It is 2014, and as women we shouldn’t need men to fight for equality, the equality should already be here.
I guess what I am saying, is that its really not enough to speak up. We need real action, not just another social media campaign, but real change – for women, globally, who face injustice every day. Its not about inviting men to help, its about getting together and making a difference. But how? There lies the issue – how do we make people understand that this isn’t just a women’s issue, its a global issue.