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#ThisIsNotConsent is the brand new hashtag in town and another reason to feel ashamed and angered at the world and the way it perceives a woman and her choices.
I read this news a day prior to actually writing about it. My first reaction was of anger and that continues to be the strongest emotion I feel about the whole thing.
In the southern city of Cork, Ireland, during the hearing of a rape trial a female defence lawyer showed the courtroom a pair of women’s thongs that a 17 year old rape victim was wearing and had the audacity to label the choice of wearing fancy lingerie as “asking for it” and “consent”.
The actual words spoken by Ms O’Connell were: “Does the evidence out-rule the possibility that she was attracted to the defendant and was open to meeting someone and being with someone? You have to look at the way she was dressed. She was wearing a thong with a lace front,”
It’s difficult for any sane person to even wrap their heads around such flawed, sexist and misogynistic logic.
Why cant a woman dress up in sexy lingeries for herself? Why does the choices a woman makes make her responsible for the way the world and especially men are going to react to it? How on earth does consent come from wearing fancy lacy lingerie?
As a female, I have always loved wearing fancy lingerie. A lot of us love doing that! We dont do it for anyone. I do it for me. For my happiness. Its a choice we make for us.
The notion that women’s lingerie and her choices of it are for a man alone is the most sexist line of thought i have ever come across.
Somehow, people miss out on a very important factor in any woman’s life and that being, being herself and being the owner of her body and choices and being damn proud of it all.
I remember while shopping for my hospital bag in the last stage of my pregnancy, I went to a lingerie shop to buy some feeding bras. The salesgirl showed me brassieres in whites and skin colour. I asked her to show some good colours and she told me what would those be needed for. Now the thing that I was trying to do during my pregnancy was to control my anger. It took me 10 not-so-slow-breaths to gain stability and tell the girl to just show me what I had asked for. Long story short, i didn’t find any good post delivery lingerie there so I ordered them online. But, the salesgirl’s statement and the shop’s ignorance and mentality about lingerie is something i’ll always remember.
The way female bodies and the body choices are perceived are sickening. Is the female body only for a man? Does a female dress up only for men? Does wearing good lingerie mean trying hard to impress a man?
How on earth all the things that a woman does are supposed to lead to either finding a good man or keeping a man happy or trying to attract a man? What gave the world the false notion that men are more important that a woman’s individuality?
Where the hell is the notion of a woman enjoying herself? Being herself? Exercising her choices? WITHOUT BEING JUDGED?
When would the victim shaming stop? In how many cases has a man’s underwear colour been brought up as an “evidence” in a court of law? In how many cases a man is blamed for venturing out “too late” in the night? In how many cases has a man’s open shirt buttons pointed out as giving signals and depicting he’s open for sexual advances?
When would this filth clear from people’s minds?
A woman says yes when she wants sex. A woman says no when she doesn’t. Is the world that deaf that it doesn’t hear a NO, and that insane that it “hears” a panty more than it cares to hear out an actual living, breathing woman?
A version of this was first published here.
Image source: Maxpixel
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Story - Beauty: Shreya wondered, ‘Are they talking about me?’ ‘But what is the use of inner beauty if the exterior is unattractive?’ Ravi asked. Her heart skipped a beat, and now she listened with the utmost alacrity.
‘Beauty is skin deep, Ravi. In the long run, it’s the inner beauty that matters. I know Shreya is smart and I find her attractive.’ It was Chetan’s voice.
Shreya had paused for a moment on the open door of Ravi’s flat when she overheard him. It was the morning of 27th March, and she had come to give Ravi his surprise birthday present. She didn’t want to eavesdrop, but the conversation had caught her curiosity.
She wondered, ‘Are they talking about me?’
There was a dainty figure sitting on a bench. A girl bundled in a black shawl. And then a shadow emerged from the darkness. He stopped, as he spotted the girl. He approached her, hovered around her.
It was a cold, foggy night, and a stunned silence stretched across the deserted railway station. The only working yellow light seemed like a blotch in the air. There was no hint of life except a black dog that just lumbered past as though it sniffed some danger.
No, wait! There was a dainty figure sitting on a bench. A girl bundled in a black shawl. And then a shadow emerged from the darkness. He stopped, as he spotted the girl. He approached her, hovered around her.
‘Hey!’ The man said and settled beside her.