I usually refrain from posting about social issues on this blog as this is more of a personal space. But, this problem here has become a thorn in my side for so long that it has become personal enough to be noted down.
Every day as I browse the news networks of the internet… of all the violence, crimes and corruption that is rampant in this country, one category of news hits harder home… being a woman, the reports of crimes against women are each like a splash of scalding water on my face. Even worse than that are some of the comments that these articles elicit from the common people who read them. The news about these acts seems to bring out the absolute best in our politicians with their thoughtless remarks and senseless attitude.
Add to that certain factions of society the very existence of which seem to be to keep the women of this country suppressed and hidden within the four walls of a prison.
So we have actors-turned-politicians like Chiranjit who can’t even try and ‘act’ sensible and politicians like Mamata Banerjee (there is no point in expecting any kind of rational argument from her) and the Khaps who never fail to spout stupidity every time they open their mouths and that is something they do too often.
These are just a few examples of people who make these nonsensical remarks.
According to these ‘brilliant’ people, the causes for rape are…
Women interacting with men.
Use of mobile phones by women.
Fast-food consumption (no kidding… check the screen shot below.)
Girls being married off at a decent age.
Women going to restaurants and pubs.
Women walking in the street (especially if you are in Delhi.)
The western culture (because apparently every wannabe rapist does a course in it.)
If you notice, the most prominent cause in most of the reasons above are women. And these are only a few of the inane reasons given.
So according to these super ‘intelligent’ people…
We women seem to invite every man in our vicinity to strip us of our ‘westernised’ sarees / salwar-suits and sexually assault us while brandishing our cell-phones and eating fast-food… all this while we so horribly choose to marry at an age when marriage makes sense.
If you are an infant girl being sexually assaulted… well, you deserved it with your skimpy diapers and bibs!
Married women being attacked… why aren’t you at home hiding behind your husband and preferably wearing a veil covering you from head to toe?
If you are a victim of incest… well, I am waiting for the ‘learned’ people who made all the above brilliant remarks to come up with reasoning for this one.
What pains me so much is that not a single politician or lawmaker or person with influence has suggested that the menfolk and boys be educated and taught to respect women from their formative years. No one has suggested that these victims of sexual assault be sheltered strictly from being stripped of their dignity again and again by the people around them.
People do suggest and hope that laws against sexual assault be made stricter… and when these suggestions are made, the government just sits on them with no evident results.
Of course, when it comes to politicians treating the issue of crimes against women in the most blatantly idiotic manner, we Indians aren’t the only culprits… there are people like Todd Akin in the most ‘liberal’ country of the world… who make statements that reinforce your disbelief in MAN-kind!
© Surya Murali