Sunday, April 21, 2013

A-SHAMED YET?


Be it the December 16th Gangrape case of a 23-yr old woman or the recent kidnapping and rape of a 5-yr old by her neighbour... Nowadays it is the latest trendy thing to say "..Oh, I know how terrible it must feel."


Well, this may sound aggressive and emotional to a few or many, but trust me when I say, No, You Don't.

You do not know how it feels when the auto driver looks at the rear view mirror and his gaze revolves from the cars to your breasts. 







You do not know how it feels when you feel trampled upon by people, being touched by them and  not being actually done so. Their stares do that to you. When you walk past a busy market, people rush past you intentionally so as to brush their hands against your boobs or some even grope them in a crowd. 


You do not how it feels to be a teenager going out shopping in a street market and while trying out a top, the shopkeeper grabs your boobs to "help" you wear the top. And all this while, four other men stand there, looking at the way the man gropes the left boob under the top, and then puts his other hand on the right boob to pull the shirt down. I see innocence evaporate out of the child, right there.





You do not have any freaking idea how it feels to be brushed against at all the time, in the bus. It is so common and so disturbing that I have stopped travelling in the buses at all. If you are sitting a man will come and sit beside you, even if it is a Ladies seat. And the next thing you know is he will attach his thigh to yours, and if you are unlucky, then his bag comes up on to his lap and his hand behind the bag that slowly touches the side of your breast. If you look at the person, he'd look like he has folded his hands, but behind that veil, the man attempts to grope your breast.




If you happen to be standing, you witness a mini-porn right there, too bad if it happens to star you in it though. You just got into a crowded bus and before you realise, men have "strategically" positioned themselves around you, almost in a silent understanding between them. Thus, you find the main culprits, standing one ahead, one behind you, stacking themselves against you while two three men stand right at the sides so that you don't find an escape. Blocked from all sides, one brushes his penis from behind at your buttocks while the other brushes his butt on to you from the front. Do Not mistake it to be Unintentional because believe me,a gentleman knows how to maintain the 'necessary distance'. 






Yes, of course we move away, and no body stops us. But, the smirk on their faces reveal that they have achieved what they wanted to- simply make the woman conscious of her physical vulnerability. So, you may begin to harp the noises and bring out the flags, but when it actually happens, so shamelessly in front of you and when you look into their eyes to make them realise their mistake, you face this beastly stare back, the one that promises to ravish you down, a sexual hunger that is so scary that you do nothing but turn away, silently. Because even if you make a hue and cry about it, you know that the man with a hurt ego will hunt you down and make sure you are 'severely punished' for 'humiliating' him.

You do not know how terrible it feels, when people make passes at you, how while men at a passing motorbike whistle at you, telling you what they want to do with you. How he will fuck you till you cry for his mercy or perhaps till you die. How he will finger your vagina out or fill your oesophagus with his semen.



Image-  www.nsvrc.org



Shaming the woman of her sexuality is the new Agenda, or so it seems. A man in the auto or bus next to you looks at you in a traffic jam. You happen to look that ways too, to see him lick his lips to suggest that he wants to do the same to you, and the traffic signal goes green and he is off in the other direction.

You do not know how it feels when a dear friend comes to you sobbing about how two bikers came and harassed her, and then followed her to her house and kept stalking her, calling out names. Or how someone she did not like, proposed to her and when she declined, he posted maligning information about her on the net, created her fake profiles or posted her as a prostitute on some adult site, revealing all her personal information including her landline number and address.





You do not know how it feels to feel bad for her, and at the same time imagine these things happening to you too. Just because you dared to slap the fellow to tried to grope you or ask someone why he was staring at your cleavage. Just because you shouted back at the men who whistled at you or you filed a complaint against a person for sexual harassment who might send his friends to trouble you even further.

And what if the police never took your case seriously and the man, with his hurt ego comes after you, because you reported about him!





You do not know how it feels when you need to cancel a meet or a girls day out, only because the world out there isn't 'safe' enough, and parents do not allow us to go out because they cannot change the system, or the men but can protect us, thereby not letting us go to far away places or going out after 7pm. You do not know how unsafe you feel when you are in a cab, returning from a far flung place and the cab driver steals glances at your breasts and how they shake every time he intentionally hurdles the car into the potholes and speed breakers.
You do not know how it feels to be bullied around by a sibling or a boyfriend, simply because he is a man. How you are told to take off pictures, not talk to certain people on the social networking sites and how you have to ask for permission a hundred times, and give assurances of every kind, to simply go out for a friend's birthday party.
You do not know how it feels to be told what to do or what not to, what to wear and what not to, what to say and what not to. You do not know how scary it gets to hear news of rapes, molestations and harassments all around. You do not know how it feels to be mocked at, at every step of your life for being a woman who is aware of her sexuality and who protests at every sexist comment that comes her way, on some joke on PMS or her being fat and thus unattractive, her being a feminist and so on.
You clearly do not know how it feels to be a woman in the 21st Century where at one hand she is said to be independent strong-willed and fierce, but on the other hand, she is shamed about her sexuality, and somehow masculinity takes pride in subjugating femininity.




The power relations throughout our histories have shown gender relations as power relations wherein how strong a power is, is depicted in how weak the other power is made to be. But it isn't so. The power-relations in case of gender are complementary. We benefit each other and by each other. A home, companionship is incomplete without the feminine and without the masculine; the house cannot become a home.