For the past week, my Facebook timeline is flooded with the “Me Too” posts from women.
AND IT’S DEVASTATING TO SEE THE NUMBER OF TIMES THE #METOO HASHTAG HAS BEEN SHARED.
Every single story that I’ve read this past week makes me uncomfortable and squirm in my seat, and I cannot even comprehend the amount of helpnessness or humiliation these women have faced.
It is important to understand and acknowledge that so-called “harmless” sexist jokes/behavior and degrading comments do contribute to this. And NO, women are NOT asking for it by being the way they are.
We’re living in a culture in which sexual harassment is so prevalent that almost no one is spared. Years of social conditioning through personal views, the type of media we consume, etc. has led to a situation where people have no idea of what consent is supposed to be. Glorified, over-the-top Bollywood movies where the hero stalks the fuck out of the heroine until she is smitten by him and falls heads over heels and decides to start a family with this creep. Fuck you, but this is not how it pans out in real life.
Sexual assault is another grave topic. Our supposedly great “Indian” culture suggests that the wife always needs to be together with her husband and not leave his side despite any hardships she might be facing. A black eye and a broken jaw is tolerable. But log kya kahenge when she sees a woman come back to her maika. Surely that brings more shame to the family no? And as always, it’s the woman who has brought this shame to her family. Who else but her?
It’s time to stop blaming the victim, or asking why they didn’t report something. Instead, start fixing the situation.
How do we fix this?
Call out the men/your friends who catcall women, who tell sexist and degrading jokes, and objectify women
Discuss about consent and take it more seriously
Show solidarity with people who have been assaulted or harassed.
Start teaching the young ones that females are in no way inferior to them and that nothing will ever warrant degrading or belittling behavior.
Stand up for the women. It’s high time we do.