Anti-feminism Within Middle Schoolers

Every Monday after school I babysit for a family just down the block from my house. Henry and Hannah. This past Monday I was sitting at their kitchen table, trying to write a blog post. So I asked Hannah (who was sitting diagonally from me) what should I write about. She thinks for a second and then says, “I would write about how anti-feminism is still a thing.” I was kinda taken aback for a second. When I was in 7th grade I hadn’t even heard of the word feminism. How is equality something an 11 year old needs to be worrying about? What she went on to tell me really surprised me.  Recently  her class read a speech, or some sort of document written in the past. Her class then had a discussion about it and one kid brought up how women are not mentioned at all in the document. A few boys then tried to be funny and started saying how women should’t be mentioned and other stupid stuff like men are better then women because they do more. I know if someone said sexist things like that at lab he would  be mauled. Hannah was the only one to respond in her class.  I think saying,  “Well you’ve never been oppressed so how would you know”. The boys went quiet after that and when her teacher finally spoke up, she told Hannah she shouldn’t of yelled and then said to the boys, “Those aren’t nice things to say.”
Hannah then told me how the boys in her class are constantly saying these sexiest things like women shouldn’t have real jobs. The mother of these boys probably do have jobs, jobs paying for the roofs over their heads. I just wonder why these little boys feel the need to say these things.What makes putting down girls funny? Where did that even come from?  I’m not saying all boys are like this but these are the kinds of boys that surround Hannah in school. She has stood up for her sex more than I ever have. She even once got suspended for pushing a boy who was repeatedly saying  sexist thing to her.(Which I was kind of impressed by) I feel like the excuse “oh it’s a phase” and “boys will be boys” are no longer valid. If Hannah knows that what these boys are saying is wrong, then the boys should know too.

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