Douchebag…a perfectly feminist insult

I have gotten a comment or two about my liberal use of the insult “douchebag.” I believe that Jill on Feministe defends the use of the word by feminists just fine –  douching is a terrible practice that does long term harm to women’s health, suggesting that women who do so aren’t exactly on their own side, either. To refer to someone as a “douchebag” is in common parlance gender neutral, and is in fact not connected with women’s genitalia except in reference to it being harmful/likely to spread yeast infections. People I apply this term to do make me itch, especially Joe Francis.

I will say that someone telling me specifically what words I am and am not allowed to use is a rather oppressive practice in itself, especially when under the guise of “thou art not feminist enough.” Yes, words do have significant power – and that’s why I choose my insults with consideration.

For reference, here are insults I consider perfectly acceptable for myself to use:

  • Douchebag
  • Asshat
  • Dumbass
  • Barbara Streisand
  • SUV Driver
  • Jackass
  • Evangelist

There are others, but I’ll stop there.

Clearly, if you dislike my vocabulary you don’t have to read. But you are not within rights to tell me what words I am and am not allowed to use – and you do not get to say whether or not I am a feminist. That’s my call.