First, let's get some things straight. A person might cringe and disapprove of feminism while simultaneously having no clue what feminism actually is. So, let's see what the definition is:
1: the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes
2: organized activity on behalf of women's rights and interests
Note how neither definition contains anything about hating men, lowering the status or the rights of men, practising witchcraft or destroying the foundations of society – although it would imply challenging some of those foundations, namely ones that women and girls should be quiet and obedient and similar nonsense of the patriarchy.
So, under definition one, I am definitely a feminist. To completely honest, I do not participate in any organized activity on behalf of women's rights and interests. Yes, this is a failing. I should try to at least get out to join a protest or a march when it's close. This is, in my opinion, the very least each of us should do in order to try and have a better world.
Historically, men have always had power over women. Feminism simply wants to change that. It's not that difficult. If one group currently has an advantage over the other, then improving the status of the other group will get us more balanced and fair world. And from this premise, it would follow that it's permissible for feminism to promote the rights of women to get them on the same level as the rights men currently have. So, it would follow that feminism can be concerned only with the rights and status of women and we should still support it because women taking what is rightfully theirs – an equal piece of the pie – the pie being everything, every resource and benefit our world has to offer can only improve equality. And equality benefits society.
But it's not only that. Believe it or not, feminism also helps men. How? Well, feminism demands equality and challenges the norms of society. One of the norms it challenges is the so-called „toxic masculinity“. You might have encountered this term before, possibly even used as an ad hominem attack. Yes, women are not perfect and they sometimes will resort to ad hominem. Nobody is perfect. The fact that somebody in anger might resort to ad hominem shouldn't have any impact on the opinion of the movement as a whole. But I digress.
Here's that definition again:
When people say 'toxic masculinity' they mean that in a huge amount of instances, parents who are trying to raise male children and even society itself is trying to equate manhood with aggression, the number of sexual partners, being an 'alpha male' etc. These norms of society can be very damaging to male children and even to grown men. Feminism challenges all that. That is in my opinion currently the main way it helps men. Of course, there are other benefits as well, such as the possibility of women having an abortion which absolves men as well of the consequences of children, women working more means that men can work less – more time for family, etc, etc.
I am not going to continue in this tone, because it would not be ethical to take over an article why is feminism needed in the world with explanations how it benefits men. That is a topic for another post, but I wanted to touch it at least a bit because ultimately men at one point have to be on board for the very simple fact that we all share this world so we should try to make it better for each and every one of us.
In conclusion, I am a feminist. I do not want a medal. What I want is that my fellow men (and even some women) take a good and honest look for themselves at what feminism is, what it really stands for, how it will help to improve the world and then decide if they want to be called feminist or not. If you fall for the tricks of the mysoginysts who try to paint feminism as kind of a supremacy movement, yes you would be a victim, but this would also mean they would use you to achieve their goals. Should you really allow that? If you care at all about not being used, you will take a look for yourself and ignore those that would like nothing better than to perpetually maintain the status quo because it benefits them. Again, don't be naive. Take a look for yourself.