When Standing Up For Self Is Hard For Men, So It Is For Women As Well

The movement #metoo is more than just a social media campaign. It is enlightening people about the gravity of the issue, the concept of concent and much more.

The movement #metoo is more than just a social media campaign. It is enlightening people about the gravity of the issue, the concept of concent and much more.

The minute I start scrolling through my social media account, I start seeing #metoo. And as if seeing stories of women who went through all the horrible things was not enough, people are creating jokes regarding the hashtag, sharing posts against the campaign, it is full of lewd comments from equally insensitive people with sick mentality.

Isn’t it all, in the end, justifying women’s decision to stay silent? They knew they wouldn’t be believed, that they would be seen as gold-diggers and characterless!

The first thing that all people are asking is, “Why did they stay silent for so long?”

I ask, how do YOU know that they stayed silent?

Maybe they spoke but no one wanted to support them and they alone didn’t have courage and resources to go against their predators.

Maybe they spoke but their families hushed them.

Maybe they spoke but they had no platform to make their voice audible.

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Maybe they spoke but they were threatened.

Maybe… Just maybe they had their reasons and we are justifying all these reasons with the kind of response these women are getting with fingers pointing at their character.

When men don’t, why expect it from women?

Secondly, even if they didn’t speak then, why should they not speak now? What kind of logic is that?

Many times, men listen to all the nonsense their bosses say to them, are ridiculed publicly, the credit for their work would be taken by others; they ignore it and suffer in silence. They don’t raise voice, share stories or protest. Maybe just because they have a family to provide.

Now think, when men can’t stand against such trivial issues, how can one expect women to do differently? That too when chances of being believed are almost nill, when working and earning is the only way to have a voice, and when our entire life we are conditioned to adjust and compromise.

Some alien people are asking, “Why did these women not take any legal action?”

Sir, tell me just one thing. Do you go to the police station once you lose a wallet or your phone?

Probably no because you know that this would be fruitless. And if you are one of those who would actually go and report, how would you feel if you are blamed for your own misery?

When a woman reports any such instances of harassment, she will be harassed more because that is how the ‘system’ works. And if by some miracle the case reaches the premise of a court, getting justice would then need – means, money, reach to influential people and a lifetime!

The question of consent

Some other ‘sanskari’ people are saying that women encouraged these men. One gentleman was wondering how can a pornstar be raped? she is already selling her body!

Manyavar, I pity your innocence but rape means going against one’s consent. A pornstar, a prostitute can also be raped when a man forcefully imposes himself against the wishes of the women. Every single woman and man has the right to say no. And no person’s ego should be too fragile to honor someone’s consent.

Then there are people saying that these actresses have no career or family to take care of. Now they are obese and ugly so this is their way to get some limelight again. Only if you knew, they still have nothing to gain and everything to lose. Because they are the ones being mocked, humiliated and made fun of. The irony of ironies is that people now feel the ‘need’ to protect their sons because any woman can come from left, right, center and blame the innocent men!

Men make mistakes

People who never felt the need to protect their daughters, who never encouraged them to learn self-defense, who always asked women to dress properly, sit properly and walk properly lest any man be seduced; who had a timetable to go-out and come-back for women, who justified men’s horrendous acts saying “लड़कों से गलती हो जाती है।”… These very same people have no advice for their sons. Now they will protect every man by making lewd comments against victims and with an even more attacking attitude towards women in general.

According to a report more than a crore women have ‘reported’ sexual abuse since 1998… Only since 1998. And if those are the reported cases, just imagine the number of ones that never found a voice to say their #metoo stories.

If this doesn’t make you sick in the stomach, if this doesn’t make you sad and angry… then maybe the human part of you have died long back. I am not even saying that every woman’s story is true but even if half of these are true, even if half of these women have finally summoned the courage to stand against all the odds, shouldn’t they be heard? Isn’t right to speak freely equal for all woman an man?

Can’t we even hear without judging? Maybe this is the time to think and do some introspection.

Published earlier here.

Image Source – Unsplash

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About the Author

Monali Johari

A mother who tries to address every social issue that is a hurdle in my daughter's way to a better future... Be it as trivial as body shaming or as important as sexual harassment. read more...

5 Posts | 11,311 Views

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