“The difference between gender equality and equity is acknowledging that we're not starting at a zero-sum game… gender equity is knowing that the woman was and is often put in second place.”
JEREMY AND BRIE ON RAISING THEIR UNBORN DAUGHTER
Update since interview: Baby arrived :)
PORTLAND, OR | USA
Equality vs equity
Knowing that we're having a girl, we're both really excited to empower a little girl in equity, which for us, or at least for me, means allowing her opportunities that normally society does not promote for women and girls. Also, helping her to understand that not only does she have those opportunities accessible to her but that they're her right as a human.
The difference between gender equality and equity is acknowledging that we're not starting at a zero-sum game. For example, for the church bulletins, whenever I list a couple who has volunteered, I always put the woman's name first and the man's name second. If I was trying to make it equal, I would switch it every other time. Equity is knowing that the woman was and is often put in second place. I know that for most of history when a couple gets listed, the man goes first. So every time I put the woman first because that's acknowledging equity.
Being an ally
I actually had the awesome opportunity to listen to Tarana Burke speak tonight. She's the founder of the #MeToo movement and she's incredible. One thing that she said that resonated with me was about allyship. She said being an ally is recognizing when your voice is taking up too much space and backing off and not only just backing off, but also asking someone else whose voice may be being silenced to speak into the situation and share their thoughts.
I think this also plays into raising a little girl. On one hand, we want to be empowering her and also teaching her that she has a lot of privilege because of her race and economic status. So yes, we want to empower her, but I also want her to recognize that she needs to empower other people and be aware of the ways that she could also have benefitted from others in her life.
Jesus as a feminist
Our Christian faith is very integral in all of this. I think that certain narratives about Jesus don't center on how he was a feminist. He was actually for the marginalized. Not just for women but it certainly includes women, like the story of the woman at the well. As Jesus speaks to her, she says, how is it that you're talking to me, a Samaritan? When his disciples come back, they're shocked because he's speaking to a woman. There's the intersection of more than one kind of marginalization or oppression. Jesus has a long conversation with her and legitimizes her as a person, someone worthy of his message. Contextually, women in the Bible days did not have any place in society. You did not reach any type of status until you were married. So for him to approach and talk to and empower women in that way is really outstanding for the time that he lived in.
And then there's the story of Mary and Martha when he goes to their house. Martha is trying to serve him and Mary is sitting at his feet, which is what disciples do. Martha complains that Mary's not helping. He stops Martha and says that's not where you need to be. Mary's chosen the better things which is not exactly serving him but listening. That’s very nontraditional and progressive.