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Violence against women is on an all time high. Here we suggest 9 steps towards elimination of violence against women.
Violence against women has been rampant across the nation. The latest statistics released by National Crime Records Bureau shows that reported incidents of crime against women increased 6.4% during 2012, and a crime against a woman is committed every three minutes.
With such gruesome statistics and in an all-time high in violence against women, we still believe that all is not lost. Here we talk about a few ways by which we can eliminate violence against women in a much responsible way.
This is virtually the first step towards eliminating any form of discrimination. Stand up at the first instance. If someone hurts or abuses you because of your gender, say no. Do not take it silently because that is when the abuser knows that he/she can go scot-free after doing anything. Your silence promotes his/her bad behavior. Let everyone around you know, you won’t tolerate sexist behavior.
If you are the victim or a witness to any violence against women, report it to the police. Know that legally any form of violence against women is a criminal offense. Bring the abuser to the book. Know your rights. And use them. Here ignorance is not bliss. Remember that.
When was the last time you heard or said someone, “Stop crying like a girl,” “Wear a frock, that suits you,” “You are so sissy,” and so on. We should understand the first rule of gender equality. There is nothing superior or inferior being a woman. Women are human beings like men. They are just different. That should be the bottom line of treating anyone. Defy any sexist remark or comment. Refuse to join it. And most importantly, don’t do it yourself.
We live in a society where we shame the victim. Whenever a rape is reported in the media, we make sure we know who was raped, what was she wearing or what was she doing. Around these entire questions. we as a society have created a taboo of validating violence by slamming the victim. When anyone is violated, ask who did it. If a man raped, say a man did it. Shame the abuser. It will change a lot of equation. Remember when we shame the victim; we protect the abuser in a subtle way.
No one learns to accept violence in the womb. Like any other behavior, it is also learnt. If you are an abusive father, somewhere your son will learn subconsciously that it is okay to violate a woman and your daughter will learn that it is okay for a man to be violent. We should understand that children accept everything without filtering. Society, media, friends and teachers come later in life. Family always comes first. Each action of yours is observed and learnt by your child. Next time you do or say something sexist, know that you are leaving lessons.
Refuse to watch, read, listen or promote anything that depicts women in a poor light or where they are treated as a sex object. Just say no to movies that glorify rape or any form of violence against women.
We live in a society where every second street has an educational institute, however, most of the times we groom our daughters to be married and sons to be the bread earners of the family. Nurture both of them equally. We must understand that like a man a woman too has a right to her livelihood and choice. She can choose her means of earning and her partner too. When she does, respect it. That is equality. A woman chooses because she wants to and no one should tell her why.
There are many NGOs and organizations that work for women who have suffered violence or on ways to prevent women from any form of discrimination. You can donate, work or volunteer for such organizations. Your small step might end up being a huge shift to the society. No matter what, never stop contributing in whichever way you can.
No matter what state a man might be or whatever a woman has done, know that violence is never okay. For any form of violence to prevail, it needs social acceptance. When we blame the victim, when we stay silent when a woman is abused or when we do not report, we have contributed to the growing roots of violence. No matter what someone is saying, violence is never okay against a woman. This is something we as a society should imbibe in our hearts and souls. And most importantly practice it in our daily life.
If we make a few changes in our daily life, we can not only eliminate violence against women but also elevate our own lives and society. No society is free when one section of the society is oppressed. Women consist of half of the population and we cannot imagine a flourished society if half of our population is chained in the dark. Today is the best day to do away with the chains because each one of us deserves a better and fulfilling society. Go for that equal society, dream for it, stand for it and fight for it. You know what! It’s completely worth it.
Cover image via Shutterstock
Proud Indian. Senior Writer at Women's Web. Columnist. Book Reviewer. Street Theatre - Aatish. Dreamer.
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