It’s nice to have a good news day! Actress and UN Women’s Goodwill Ambassador Emma Watson delivers a speech at the UN Headquarters in New York. Emma spoke about the gender disparity, the confusion around the term “feminism”, and that the role of men in the advancement of women’s causes is crucial; all of which is the crux of the United Kingdom’s new HeForShe campaign. Read on to start your day off right.
Yesterday, UN Women’s Goodwill Ambassador and professional Hermione Granger Emma Watson appeared at the UN Headquarters in New York to deliver a speech regarding the advancement of women in society and the role of men in this advancement.
The HeForShe campaign is the UN’s new initiative to get men involved in fighting for gender equality, and yesterday, Emma Watson gave one helluva talk. She spoke of the debate and confusion surrounding the term “feminism” itself, stating:
I was appointed six months ago and the more I have spoken about feminism the more I have realized that fighting for women’s rights has too often become synonymous with man-hating. If there is one thing I know for certain, it is that this has to stop.
For the record, feminism by definition is: “The belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities. It is the theory of the political, economic and social equality of the sexes.”
I am from Britain and think it is right that as a woman I am paid the same as my male counterparts. I think it is right that I should be able to make decisions about my own body. I think it is right that women be involved on my behalf in the policies and decision-making of my country. I think it is right that socially I am afforded the same respect as men. But sadly I can say that there is no one country in the world where all women can expect to receive these rights.
She then reached out to men to remind them of their role in gender equality, highlighting the issues men face as a result of this inequality:
Men—I would like to take this opportunity to extend your formal invitation. Gender equality is your issue too.
We don’t often talk about men being imprisoned by gender stereotypes but I can see that that they are and that when they are free, things will change for women as a natural consequence.
I want men to take up this mantle. So their daughters, sisters and mothers can be free from prejudice but also so that their sons have permission to be vulnerable and human too—reclaim those parts of themselves they abandoned and in doing so be a more true and complete version of themselves.
Emma Watson for President, y’all.