This I Believe

Zhi Hui - Austin, Texas
Entered on January 12, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: equality

Women had been suppressed in the past and the present. Even though we see more equality and opportunities for women today, many still face prejudices. No matter how society develops, these prejudices will always be there.

I began to firmly believe in women rights when I myself faced stereotype from my relatives. Not long ago, my aunt came over to my house and we were talking about my father. We discussed how weird it is of him to like to clean the house. I told my aunt, “My brother is the complete opposite. He hardly helps doing the chores unless I complained about equal share of responsibility.” My aunt gave me a reply that inflamed me. She said, “Well, you are a girl. You should do all the household work.” I thought it was unfair and told her so and she said, “There is no fair or unfair. Girls are supposed to do these things. In fact your brother and dad shouldn’t be doing them at all. You are too lucky. Back in China, girls have to do everything in the house.” I can’t believe my aunt who has been in the United States for some time still believes in those old ideas.

My aunt’s attack made me aware that even though women now have the same equality as men, prejudices against women still exist. I always thought women are treated the same as men are now. I was wrong. In fact, in some “third world” countries, women are treated with no respect and had no rights. They are often abused, illiterate, and had no voice in their community. It is understandable that prejudices of women are still seen in those poor countries. What I don’t understand is how the “advanced, progressive” countries today still hold the old ideas.

Maybe it is because I am really stubborn, but I really can’t stand the idea that girls are obligated to do what girls are “supposed” to do. People needed to open minded instead of holding to the wrong traditional beliefs because women are as capable of anything men can do. Maybe even better. I believe that women is just as great as men, so women should be treated the same as men.