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Help! I'm fairly new on the feminist scene, and I need help bringing to life the things that I have learned. I want to exude the "feminist mentality". I want to be empowered and assertive and not the least bit afraid of showing it. However, I don't want to lose some of the other qualities that I possess that are very valuable to me, such as kindness. I have this ridiculous notion that if I appear strong, empowered and simply walk around with the "feminist attitude", that I will no longer appear kind. I need some role models and some examples of how to begin implementing my newly found philosphy.

Thanks for your note to FEMINIST.COM--and welcome to feminism. I want to assure you that the only thing that goes along with a "feminist mentality" is a belief in yourself and a belief in the fact that women should have the same social, political, and economic choices available to them as men. This can be done in just as kind a manner--and this time it will be genuine kindness, not because you are living up to a "female" expectation. It's the intent that changes, not the emotions. A good case in point is Gloria Steinem. I know that many people perceive her as an "angry; unsympathetic person...." Whenever people meet her they say "you're so much nicer than I thought." Well their "thinking" didn't come from personal interaction, but from the media's misinterpretation of her. So for a role model, I would take a look at her and how she handles herself. I hope this helps -- and good luck.

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