Sometimes a small gesture can make a big difference.
Avenger for feminism. (via Getty)
Opposition to feminism is weird enough when it's coming from men. But at least then, you can kind of understand it. Kind of. It's still highly idiotic, but you can at least imagine why a pathetic dude might want an easy way to believe he's automatically superior to half the people on the planet, based solely on his genre of genitalia.
What's really weird, though, is the phenomenon of women being opposed to feminism. As you may or may not be aware there's this infuriatingly silly meme that started a year or so ago, in which women post photos of themselves holding signs explaining why they don't need feminism. Like so:
Ugh, right? (via Women Against Feminism)
Anyway, I could spend all day diatribe-ing about why the arguments on the Women Against Feminism website are absurd and retrograde. Fortunately, I don't have to. A blogger named Libby Anne Bruce has already written the perfect response, cutting every half-baked argument into pieces of shreds of shards of bits. And the only reason why I know about her response is that Mark Ruffalo—who plays Bruce Banner/The Hulk in the Avengers movies—shared it with the world on his personal blog. Here's a particularly good excerpt:
"You're spitting on the legacy of every woman who fought for women to be allowed to own property (1848). For the abolition of slavery and the rise of the labor union. For the right to divorce. For women to be allowed to have access to birth control...
"In short, you know not what you speak of. You reap the rewards of these women's sacrifices every day of your life. When you grin with your cutsey sign about how you're not a feminist, you ignorantly spit on the sacred struggle of the past 200 years. You bite the hand that has fed you freedom, safety, and a voice.
"In short, kiss my ass, you ignorant little jerks."
The fact that some actor dude reposted somebody's blog post about a feminist issue may not seem like a big deal, and maybe it's not. But it's at least a medium-sized deal. For one thing, putting a well-known face on an important issue does get the message out. Case in point, this blog post that discusses it at length.
For another thing, it does a little bit to counteract the stupid slut-shaming comments that Ruffalo's co-stars Jeremy Renner and Chris Evans made on the Avengers: Age of Ultron publicity tour.
For what it's worth, Ruffalo also gave a really good response to sexist accusations against Age of Ultron writer/director Joss Whedon during a Reddit AMA a few weeks back. It's worth reading, and it shows how thoughtful he is on the matter.