There are two types of men – those who harass women, and those who silently witness the act of the former. This statement may appear too feminist but it makes a lot of sense in the kind of society we live in. In fact we have got so accustomed to this male dominating society, that it doesn’t appear unnatural to treat women unequally. From the kitchens of the households to the meeting rooms of huge office buildings, women face discrimination. This is not new in our society but the discrimination has changed the way it is practiced. The issue needs immediate attention from everyone if it is to be eradicated.
Who are the harassers?
On first thought we consider rapists, molesters, men indulged in domestic violence or eve teasing as harassers, because we restrict harassment to only a physical and sexual activity. But it exists even beyond that. The mental harassment which is often ignored, remains the most prevalent form of harassment. It is worse than any other form since it cannot be quantified and therefore most people consider it as a non punishable offence, or not even an offence. As a woman, you will have to be extremely careful about it. Such men will always be around. Those who will tell you to – not compete with men, take care of chores, dress appropriately as per men’s wish, and anything and everything that is more comfortable to men. The definition of harasser may not be the same in law books, but I precisely see it as a threat to women equality.
A simple piece of advice – never make compromises to please men and feel proud in suffering. If you do it once, you will be expected to do that again. And that is what women have been doing since ages.
Who are the silent observers?
Everyone else – as I said earlier. Most of us fall in this category and in fact most women are also not very different. They may not seem responsible for the discrimination that women face, but they are. Equally if not more. People who have tolerated the inequality without any disagreement– have been contributing to the sustainability of male dominance in our society. They never protested against the wrong but silently accepted it. Due to which women from their generation and the generations after them, suffered. The next generations have laughed at them but it hardly bothered them at that point of time. People from Sati era thought it to be as normal as people from today’s world consider above mentioned discriminations. I am pretty sure that future generations will laugh at us too.
Yes, change is required. But who will bring it – that remains a question. We keep expecting someone else to initiate and this change keeps on postponing. It is high time that we realize the ugly side of our own personalities and this society, and fight against it. Women will have to fight for themselves. In a male dominant society where men have obvious advantages, they will always be reluctant to that change, no matter how good their intentions are. Let’s accept this fact.
Also, gender discrimination is a disease and it is found not only in uneducated people but also in those who are highly educated. Therefore, even when the education may appear a solution to the problem but it won’t work without a revolution. Yes, women will have to fight. Probably for a long time, if they want that change. They will have to change. They cannot appeal for equality and women reservations at the same time. They cannot get admiration from men if they continue to accept compliments for their looks and not for their work. Respect comes naturally. You cannot ask for it and you should not. Women – who have struggled and have not given up, have earned it. More number of women will have to prove their worth to shut the mouths of morons who doubt their abilities. They need to work equally with men to be treated equally. Merely requesting men to do that, is not going to work. And men will have to respond well. If a reasonable number of men and women, if not everyone, start to challenge the dumbfounded rules of society, change will happen.
Let the change happen and be a part of it. Because a society where women are treated equally will definitely be better than ours.