Countdown to the NeW Anniversary: Conversations with a Feminist

September 27, 2012 | Danelle

“This is all men’s fault!” the feminist huffed as she crossed her arms and looked up at stairs with scorn on her face.

“What is men’s fault?” the NeW lady replied.

“Don’t you see it?! That thing right in front of you – it’s preventing us from going up!”

“I’m sorry, but I do not see it.”

The NeW lady coolly reached in her purse and changed from her high heels into ballet flats – a more appropriate choice for climbing, of course. She then proceeded up the stairs to get where she intended to go.

This is the scene I picture whenever I hear about the “glass-ceiling,” the “war on women,” and modern feminism in America, and it relates to why I am a NeW woman. Giving credit where credit is due, the original feminist movement had a distinct mission, which was necessary for our progress as a gender. For clarity purposes, this is not the feminism to which I refer.

The feminism I speak of is the one present in America today and which, oddly enough, still clings to the idea of original feminism – that women are not equal here. I would support the cause if I saw that there was actual inequality between men and women in America, but there is not.

(Did you hear that noise? Ignore it. That was just a group of feminists screeching.)

With female CEOs, female Senators, female diplomats, actors, producers, doctors, lawyers, military officials, there is no such thing as a glass ceiling, or a limit of where women can go in life. Surely, none of these successful women let the “glass-ceiling” stop them nor did they put their lives on hold to protest how “tough” it is for a woman to get to the top.

I am a NeW woman because I do not play victim. Yes, occasionally, I complain to close friends about the difficulty of climbing the “ladder of life,” but never did I resort to blaming men or my surroundings. If I fall, the only person I blame is myself. Then I promptly get back up, adjust my pearl necklace and try again.

That independent spirit and taking personal responsibility, undoubtedly conservative traits, is another reason why I am a NeW woman. Look around a group of modern feminists. Sure, you see a group of women who appear strong and are fighting for principles, but once you listen, all you hear is complaint after complaint – it is the Governor’s fault, the President’s fault, Mitt Romney’s fault, men’s fault, etc. What does a NeW woman do? She works hard and overcomes obstacles – a real testament of strength. A feminist simply whines.

There are many more reasons why I am a NeW woman and the other ladies have put them nicely. However, one important reason for why I am a NeW woman is because I believe that all women need to start thinking in a NeW way. As Lady Thatcher said,

The battle for women’s rights has been largely won.

In the aftermath of the battle, which original feminists won, modern feminists ought to give up the victim mentality. Modern feminists need to move forward and charge upward as so many other successful women have done, and there is no shattering of a glass-ceiling required. Just pure hard work and a NeW attitude.

When the NeW lady reached the top of the stairs, she looked back at the feminist, who at this point, had gotten a hold of a megaphone and was shouting about the supposed barrier in front of her. The NeW lady turned around so she was visible and said “Think in a NeW way and anything will be possible for you.”


Danelle Gagliardi is a former NeW chapter leader and founder at The Ohio State University. She graduated last spring with a B.A. in history and is now attending Washington University in St. Louis School of Law. 

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