Feminism: Just another word for “Equality”

By Mahhima Bhayyana in Fashion & Lifestyle 09/11/2015

A feminist is anyone who recognizes the equality and full humanity of women and men

Gloria Steinem

 

Being a feminist is looked down upon in India. One finds people giving weird stares and most of the men avoid any sort of conversations with women who are feminists.

 

Here’s the diary of a feminist:

 

As an artist painting on women oriented issues, my folks often ask me are you a feminist or you support gender equality , well my answer to that it is :

 

Yes I am a feminist, but my definition of feminism is that a man, woman and transgender should be empowered so that he or she is able to look after herself and lead a life full of dignity irrespective of gender.

 

If any one is degrading the other gender, then they are endorsing sexism not feminism.

 

By male bashing one doesn’t enhance a woman’s dignity. After the Delhi 2012 Nirbhaya incident, there was a revolutionary wave of feminism which awakened the entire nation and brought people together to bring justice to Nirbhaya.This landmark judgement though gave a loud and clear message to the entire nation that there will be zero tolerance against any sort of assault towards women.


 

Gradually, this movement against women abuse, started being abused as well. I strongly condemn any kind of molestation, rape, verbal or sexual harassment but few people take advantage of the law.

 

The comments on feminism endorsed by celebrities are nothing but a sham

 

One knows that videos are scripted and  celebs should be responsible for the message they are conveying to the audience, the famous example is the infamous “Deepika Padukone Video” where she advocated infidelity in marriages by a woman “ Soon after she was strongly condemned by fellow contemporaries, for such a morally wrong message, she  publicly admitted that  the views which were shown in the video were not her own and she didn’t support such statements either.

 

Feminism advocates empowerment of all sexes, unfortunately in our country the society is  patriarchal in nature and women  do need to be empowered at times.

 

For example, Feminism could also mean educating all genders from rural areas to use proper toilets and make their homes defecation free, especially for women. It is to be emotionally and financially able to walk away from your marriage which is breaking your spirits.

 

Feminism is to be able to adopt a transgender child and be proud of him/her. It is to be of the opinion that a child, (whether a boy, a girl or a transgender) is a child, and could be abused physically, emotionally or sexually, and must be protected, irrespective of gender.  Feminism is to be able to be able to accept your husband if he has opted be a “stay-at- home husband” and not labelling him as “ incapable “ amongst your friends.

 

Feminism is to pay your own bills when you go out on a date and not abuse feminism in the name of chivalry.

 

Feminism is to get up and give your seat to an old man, a pregnant woman or a person who needs it more than you. Feminism is to accept the vulnerability of a man and the independence of a woman.

 

If girls want the same equality like men , then they should not drink and drive by using the privilege that a woman is given impunity to not be stopped post 6.00 pm by the traffic police .

 

Responsibly promulgate feminism by following the rules and law in your work place as well as in daily life. Feminism is to aspire to be like  a Indra Nooyi, a Martha Stewart, a  Manobi Bandopadhyay ( India’s first trans gender principal ) , and a Farhan Akthar. At the same time feminism is to not look down upon stay home moms and housewives, it’s a personal choice and is tougher than any other job in the world!

 

Media Against Feminism

 

The Indian Media is also largely to be blamed for giving out the wrong notion about feminism. Last year around the same time the Rothak sisters were declared as heroes one day when, a video went viral about them hitting 3 men trying to molest them. The next day, two fresh witnesses came forward  with accounts that could scuttle sexual harassment charges lodged by them along with a second video going viral about them harassing another man in Mumbai. This stopped their award and the money given to them by the Haryana state.

 

Another example is of the Ex AAP worker Jasleen kaur posting an online photograph with a  complaint of sarabhjeet kaur for passing lewd remarks to her at a red light in Delhi. The media made her an overnight sensation and two days later, a witness stated that it was a publicity stunt by her.

 

The media did not check the CCTV camera footage nor the facts, which made the audience go in a dilemma. This raises a big question did the  media report both  allegations  fairly and impartially ? Or is feminism being misused ?

 

A recent incident, where a 29 year old researcher was allegedly sexually harassed by RK Pachauri, Director general of climate policy think tank TERI, quit the organisation. Inspite of Mr Pachauri, being held guilty by the inquiry company of the  organisation , he was protected. So if we point one finger at another gender accusing them of misuse, we have three fingers pointing right back at us!!

 

Media confuses the viewers and consequentially innocent and genuine cases suffer. It is a fact, that “ feminism” is used at convenience  in our country, due to which the innocent suffer.

 


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