US President Barack Obama writes inspiring essay on feminism

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In his most extensive remarks about feminism, President Obama wrote an essay for Glamour magazine in which he reflected on American women’s long fight for equality and called on men to fight sexism and create equal relationships.

In the 1,500-word essay, which was published online Thursday and will appear in the September print magazine, the president argued that “when everybody is equal, we are all more free.” He praised the progress of American women over the past century while pledging to work on securing equal pay and reproductive rights. The president also warned against “dated assumptions about gender roles.”

The president said that it was important to his daughters that he be a feminist, “because now that’s what they expect of all men.”

“We need to keep changing the attitude that raises our girls to be demure and our boys to be assertive, that criticises our daughters for speaking out and our sons for shedding a tear,” he wrote. “We need to keep changing the attitude that punishes women for their sexuality and rewards men for theirs.

“We need to keep changing the attitude that permits the routine harassment of women, whether they’re walking down the street or daring to go online. We need to keep changing the attitude that teaches men to feel threatened by the presence and success of women.”

It is not the first time that the president has declared himself a feminist. In June, while speaking at a White House summit meeting on women, he declared: “This is what a feminist looks like.”

Courtesy: The New York Times

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