Women's Equality Day marks the anniversary of women gaining the right to — thanks to decades of hard work and amazing resolve. It's also a day to remember that women still do not have true equality in many other aspects of life, and that the fight is far from other.
In honor of this day and the work that still needs to be done, here are 20 quotes from male feminist allies that make us want to stand up and shout "Hell yes!"
1. Matt Damon
"If I had a bucket list, I'd say raising my four girls to be strong, good women would be number one."
2. Will Smith
"[My wife Jada and I] let Willow cut her hair. When you have a little girl, it's like, how can you teach her that you're in control of her body? If I teach her that I'm in charge of whether or not she can touch her hair, she's going to replace me with some other man when she goes out in the world. She can't cut my hair, but that's her hair. She has got to have command of her body. So when she goes out into the world, she's going out with a command that is hers. She is used to making those decisions herself. We try to keep giving them those decisions until they can hold the full weight of their lives."
3. Patrick Stewart
On witnessing domestic violence against his mother as a child:
"Worse, there were those who condoned the abuse. I heard police or ambulancemen, standing in our house, say, 'She must have provoked him,' or, 'Mrs Stewart, it takes two to make a fight.' They had no idea. The truth is my mother did nothing to deserve the violence she endured. She did not provoke my father, and even if she had, violence is an unacceptable way of dealing with conflict. Violence is a choice a man makes and he alone is responsible for it."
4. John Legend
"All men should be feminists. If men care about women's rights the world will be a better place."
5. Jay Baruchel
"I was raised by my mom, I have a little sister, and I'm constantly annoyed [by] how terribly written most females are in most everything — and especially in comedy. Their anatomy seems to be the only defining aspect of their character, and I just find that untruthful and it straight-up offends me. A lot of the strongest people I know are chicks. And as a viewer, I get a kick out of watching real characters. So I take it upon myself to clean that shit up and write actual women. And I like writing strong women, because as a straight male, there's nothing more attractive to me than a strong girl."
6. Matt McGorry
"I'm embarrassed to admit that I only recently discovered the ACTUAL definition of "feminism". The fact that the term is sometimes clouded with anything other than pure support and positivity in our society is very tragic. I believe in gender equality. Being a feminist is for both women AND men. I AM A FEMINIST."
7. Ryan Gosling
"I'm attracted to films that have strong female characters because there are strong female characters in my life."
8. Iggy Pop
"I'm not ashamed to dress 'like a woman' because I don't think it's shameful to be a woman."
9. Prince Harry
"We know that when women are empowered, they immeasurably improve the lives of everyone around them – their families, their communities, and their countries. This is not just about women, we men need to recognize the part we play too. Real men treat women with dignity and give them the respect they deserve."
10. Seth Meyers
"When you work with the sort of really strong women that I work with, the idea that anyone would want to make decisions for them is hard to wrap your head around."
11. Kurt Cobain
"Rape is one of the most terrible crimes on earth and it happens every few minutes. The problem with groups who deal with rape is that they try to educate women about how to defend themselves. What really needs to be done is teaching men not to rape. Go to the source and start there."
12. Joseph Gordon-Levitt
On whether feminism is anti-motherhood:
"For me as a feminist, it should be up to the woman to decide if she wants to be a mom … if that's what she wants to do full time, that's awesome, that's what my mom did. But if she wants to go out and have a career apart from being a mom, then she should be able to do that as well, and that's to the benefit of everybody."
13. Andy Samberg
On the assertion that women aren't funny:
"It's crazy. Since there have been men and women, there have been funny women. [The only reason it keeps coming up is] because f*cking idiot-ass men keep saying that women aren't funny. It makes me crazy. I find it disgusting and offensive every time."
14. Eddie Vedder
"I'm usually good about my temper, but all these men trying to control women's bodies are really beginning to piss me off. They're talking from a bubble. They're not talking from the street, and they're not in touch with what's real."
15. Daniel Craig
"Women are responsible for two thirds of the work done worldwide, yet earn only 10% of the total income and own 1% of the property…So, are we equals? Until the answer is yes, we must never stop asking."
16. John Green
"There's only a few things in this world that turn me into a Giant Squid of Anger. And one of them begins, 'My boyfriend thinks I'm too smart for him.' I've said it before, and I'll say it again. The Venn Diagram of boys who don't like smart girls and boys you don't wanna date is a circle."
17. Ezra Miller
"I feel that all revolutionary causes should start with addressing misogyny."
18. Daniel Radcliffe
On former co-star Emma Watson's success as a prominent feminist:
"We're not in much contact, but I'm very pleased... I just got asked by another journalist 'Are you a feminist?' and I was just like... Is there a strange thing at the moment where you have to come out as a feminist? I've been asked if I'm a feminist so many times recently, and I'm just like 'Yes, yes, for god's sake yes! Is there something that I give off that says I'm not?'"
19. Benedict Cumberbatch
On not wanting his fans to refer to themselves as "Cumberbitches":
"It's not even politeness. I won't allow you to be my bitches. I think it sets feminism back so many notches. You are... Cumberpeople."
NOTE: His fans now refer to themselves as the CumberCollective.
20. Mark Ruffalo
"It becomes kind of a moral issue about who you are and how you view the women in your life. There's a common sense and a wisdom and a decency in women that needs to be upheld and doesn't warrant being pushed back 30 years into the whole nightmare that brought about the abortion rights movement, that we've fought for that we've created laws around... As a man, I see no wisdom in going backwards."
Ruffalo also expertly shut down idiotic sexist questions posed during a press junket.
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