TRACY CLIFFORD

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Life - - GIRL POWER -

Ra­dio pre­sen­ter, RTE 2fm Yes, I 100pc call my­self a fem­i­nist. Why wouldn’t I be? It doesn’t feel one bit weird to say that, and I’m al­ways amused when peo­ple think that brand­ing some­one a fem­i­nist is an in­sult. I’m a woman who ques­tions in­equal­ity, is not afraid of go­ing head-to-head with misog­y­nists, and is in­de­pen­dent in my think­ing. Some peo­ple think that fem­i­nists don’t want to iden­tify with their fem­i­nine side. I don’t think this is true at all. I can ques­tion in­equal­ity while wear­ing make-up, skirts, and lov­ing the com­pany of my male mates.

I know gen­der quo­tas can seem un­fair and con­tra­dic­tory to equal­ity. How­ever, in the Ir­ish work­place, there are huge dis­par­i­ties in males ver­sus fe­males hold­ing the top jobs, and in the pay scales. We need gen­der quo­tas to get the ball rolling.

I also think lan­guage can help with so­ci­ety’s view of feminism. Too many times I have seen women be­ing classed as the ex­cep­tion in the me­dia be­cause they have got­ten a top job, with head­lines sprin­kled with ad­jec­tives such as ‘first fe­male CEO’ ap­pointed. Can we not just say her name ? Be­cause gen­der shouldn’t mat­ter in who gets ap­pointed.

Of course, there are ways that fem­i­nist think­ing goes to far. In ev­ery move­ment, there are ex­trem­ists. There are some pretty hard­ened ac­tivists out there who think that be­ing fem­i­nine or at­trac­tive to the op­po­site sex is do­ing their fel­low women a dis­ser­vice.

Do­ing the dishes isn’t go­ing to have the Suf­fragettes turn­ing in their grave, ei­ther. It’s just a do­mes­tic chore. Man-hat­ing isn’t my style. I’m just all about op­por­tu­ni­ties for all, and its su­per re­fresh­ing to chat to men who be­lieve in feminism too.

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