Yes, I am angry
Someone messaged me the other day and asked me why I’m so angry. I’m here to explain why and argue that being angry is often necessary. (They were being homophobic, but that’s a story for another time.)
The term “angry feminist” is used to turn the conversation, to distract from any valued point by setting the feminist commentator as someone not even worth listening to. It doesn’t matter how rude, or emotional the accuser is, his point is always the valid, reasonable one.
Let me start with a story. In my old branch, there was a woman I often found difficult. She even made me cry once. However, I soon learnt to stop judging the package and listen to the gift. She had many good points, but no one gave her a chance. She was written off and pigeon-holed. People told me that they just “didn’t bother with her anymore.” One day in class she made an excellent, thought-provoking point, dripping in emotion. One man (on the district presidency) told her not to bring her personal life into the meeting. Another man told her that her problems (the home teachers not visiting their home) were a direct result of her being too difficult. “They don’t WANT to visit your home,” he said. She left the meeting in tears, and I had to chastise someone on my way out after her for telling me not to follow her. I hugged her for twenty minutes and felt Gods love for her. It was one of the most spiritual experiences of my life. I’m long gone from that branch, but I still remember that hug. I still remember the feeling of her tears mingling with mine.
I am angry about being written off for being a woman, especially when I express emotion.
I am angry at the patriarchy for having a history of silencing and dominating not only women but minorities.
I am angry that Christians act like they are being persecuted in free, predominantly white cultures that serve their interests, while they systematically deny rights to others.
I am angry that when members of the church do express homophobic, sexist, racist (etc) ideology, they act like they are innocent, and even get offended.
I am angry that people refuse to see their privilege.
I am angry that only some questioning is deemed as “acceptable.”
I am angry that members of the church want people to “fit in” to the church rather than create a culture where all people can belong without changing who they are. (Thank you for this thought, Richard Ostler.)
I am angry that people of colour have the police called on them for no good reason. It’s racism, pure and simple.
I am angry that fairy tales set up a world where “good” women are white, virtuous and economically privileged.
I am angry that so many languages and cultures have been lost through white colonisation.
I am angry that I can’t talk about feminism and the toxicity of the patriarchy without men making it about them.
I am angry that feminism routinely excludes women of colour and female identifying or gender fluid individuals.
I am angry that hate is okay if it doesn’t hurt white, cis men (and women who cling to the power of patriarchy…)
I am angry at wealth inequality, and the pure privilege it takes to tell people to pay their tithing if they want to get out of poverty.
I am angry that the world isn’t catering to disabled individuals enough.
I am angry that there aren’t enough windows and mirrors in literature and other forms of media.
I am angry about a lot more, but I don’t want to keep you here all day. It’s sufficient for me to say that if I didn’t get angry, I would be giving into my privilege. It doesn’t feel like an option anymore to remain silent or react politely.