Pussy hats unite women, but ignore intersectionality

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Pussy hats unite women, but ignore intersectionality

SOPHIE SPENCER

SOPHIE SPENCER

SOPHIE SPENCER

Gabby Lescadre

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Power to the pussy is a great mantra — just not for the entire feminist movement.

For a sex that is predisposed to oppression at birth and whose sexual anatomy is a synonym for weakness, turning the word pussy into a symbol of strength and resistance is a no-brainer for feminists.

Especially in the wake of President Donald Trump’s “grab her by the …,” a bold comeback is something people can easily get behind.

If you’ve ever attended one of the annual Women’s Marches, you’ll know that a large majority of the protestors top off their look with a bright pink Pussyhat. The crowds turn into a roaring wave of pink for as far as the eye can see.

This powerful symbol of reclaiming the once derogatory word has become a sort of unofficial feminist logo, promoting sisterhood and agency for women.

However, the symbol is also criticized to be “white-focused and Eurocentric” by the Pensacola Women’s March Facebook page.

There is not one kind of woman who faces oppression, but a combination of many identities that a woman possesses that makes each woman’s fight unique.

With this fact in mind, the Pussyhat and its declaration can be an exclusionary and harmful distraction that causes an unnecessary divide in the feminist movement.

Simply, women are not defined by the color or form of their anatomy, and a symbol that is exclusionary is a terrible way to lead a united movement.

Given our history, women should prioritize inclusion and not drown out those communities who are trying to speak for themselves.

The Pussyhat makes an assumption that feminists fight for the rights of those with the coordinating anatomy, but neglects the trans and non-binary communities who can’t afford to be drowned out.

Haley Morrissette, lead organizer of the Pensacola Women’s March, told Moneyish in a 2017 interview that although Pussyhats were a great “knee jerk reaction” to Trump, they aren’t a great overall symbol.

“Now that we’ve gotten through a year of having him in office, now we have to move on to other things by raising awareness of … what intersectionality is, which is the belief that all identities within womanhood should be welcomed and fought for,” Morissette said.

The creators of the Pussyhat defend their creative choice in their website’s FAQ:“In this day and age if we have pussies we are assigned the gender of woman … In order to get fair treatment, the answer is not to deny our femaleness and femininity, the answer is to demand fair treatment.” This is why the Pussyhat is distracting from the real movement.

Just because a person wears a hat and marches down doesn’t mean they’re demanding fair treatment for everyone.

While women knit their bright pink accessories for the march, it’s easy to preach feminism without thinking about what supporting women really means.

Support all your sisters, not just your cis-ters.