Equality increases self esteem.Right now my son loves wearing pink, and says today, "I'm wearing a dress." Next week it will be a different color. He is completely innocent. Theses issues seem trivial to us today in the socially enlightening 21st century. In fact we view it as a victory over the absurd and old-fashioned dogma about distinct gender roles.
So lets examine that dogma. What was its motivation? I propose that it was a defensive coping mechanism. To cope with what? What could possible happen if a boy did wear a dress? Or a woman was a combatant? Or a same sex marriage occurred? Did that mean that I might start wearing dresses, because secretly I wanted to but my society told me it was wrong so I felt insecure and bad about myself? If I was secure about my individuality, why would I care what another person did? Merely being irked or irritated is not a reason for outrage is it? No there has to be a deeper reason. Our prejudices are manifestations of our inward fears. We are racist because we seek to dehumanize and theretofore justify the luxuries we take for granted at the expense of others' suffering. We are sexist and homophobic for the same reasons.
But what happens when we remove these barriers? The we don't have to be defensive. There is nothing to cope with. We can feel good about ourselves whoever we are. Equality increases our self esteem.