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A very strange event was reported recently about men in Varanasi ‘fighting feminism’. Why do men feel they are the silent sufferers, being harassed and victimized in the name of feminism?
As per a recent news item, a gathering of men performed the last rites of their marital relations to protest against ‘feminism’. This ceremony took place on the sacred ghats of the Ganga in Varanasi and was attended by over 150 men from various parts of the country.
According to the participants, this ceremony was not against women’s progress in the society, but against the wrong being done to them. They believe that ‘feminism’ is breaking up families and cases of false dowry and harassment by women are rising. According to them, men are being victimized and are the silent sufferers in this scenario.
Not only is this entire ceremony absurd but the very premise of it is warped. First and foremost, the very word ‘feminism’ is misinterpreted and portrayed incorrectly. Feminism has never been about male bashing or demeaning them; instead it’s women’s fight to gain the same rights and opportunities that men get, simply for being born with an XY chromosome. Hence, their protest is not against ‘feminism’ but against women refusing to stay in the background or suffer any atrocities quietly anymore.
Till such time that women refused to raise their voice against ill-treatments done to them, the equilibrium of the society remained secure. But now that they are protesting against injustice, it is destroying families? And of course, maintaining a family and ensuring its smooth functioning is solely a woman’s job.
Today, men are feeling threatened as women are climbing the ladder of success in every field that they choose. They are present in corporate, entertainment, defense, government and many other prominent posts. They are questioning outdated laws and ideas that pull them down and are hindrance to their way forward. They refuse to take any discrimination against them, instead they fight to safeguard their interests. They are raising their voice against crime and drag criminals to court for justice instead of weeping quietly in shame.
Our society’s patriarchal thinking and misogynistic attitude has termed any struggle by women to gain equal footing as wrong and against the norms. This is just another example of the same.
It’s true that there may have been some wrong cases of dowry and harassment filed, just as there are false cases filed under any law. But that does not mean the laws created for protecting women who are caught up in such situations are wrong. False cases can be proved in the court of law and receive justice.
Laws that exist to help women fight against harassment at work, domestic violence, sexual assault are essential to ensure that women can go out fearlessly. Still, many cases go unreported and innocent lives are lost. Women are encouraged to not to be victimized and instead to use these laws for their protection.
Hence, dear men, please go ahead and perform as many ceremonies as you want, but ‘feminism’ is here to stay.
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