Despite so much being said, written and shown about why it is important to treat women with respect, why do you think there is still a rise in the number of rape cases in this country?
Why do we pick up our newspapers every day to find out that yet another rape in the capital ‘shook’ the nation? Is the nation truly shaken by these stories anymore? Or have we become accustomed to such stories?
Sharing such stories with ‘shocked’ captions on Twitter and hitting the angry/sad emoji on Facebook – have these become the maximum benchmarks of reacting to something so grave?
These questions intrigue me and make me think. As a woman living in the (rape) capital of our country, I am forced to think twice before I decide my wardrobe.
An unseen fear is imposed upon me, every time I step outside my house. Why? Where does the real problem lie?
Is it in the kinds of clothes we wear (then explain cases involving toddlers and old women) or in our lifestyle choices (ok, you say going to a bar is a rape-invite; what about kids raped in schools and maids in houses?)
NO. The problem is that our kids are taught to be Too Shy Too Soon.
Even before a kid in this country hits puberty, he/she is taught to not ask questions, to not watch movies and that a girl touching a boy or a boy touching a girl is a taboo!
Now, before you jump to wild conclusions, let me clarify something. I very well understand that kids should not be exposed to adult content (books, cinema, tv shows, whatever) and there is a certain age to have the talk.
But, my dear friends, tell me one thing, do we ever have the talk in this country?
How many fathers explain puberty (WHYs, HOWs and WHATs) to their sons? How many girls are even comfortable enough with their parents to ask questions about adolescence and the changes it brings along?
We teach our kids that sex is a bad thing and no phenomenon like talking about it exists!
We do not talk about it. We do not let our kids ask questions about it. We do not like the very mention of it in our household.
This taboo fuels the curiosity. It encourages kids to depend on porn and other such sources to understand this natural, very normal process.
They are so deprived of counselling that they end up getting confused. This increases the problem at multiple levels and eventually leads to a crime.
Another major factor, which I am sure self-proclaimed traditionalists might get offended by, is the sad fact that girls are taught to cover themselves up from top to bottom.
A girl’s body is the most prized possession of our sanskaari samaj (cultured society), so much so that even a slight hint of her cleavage justifies that she be molested/eve-teased/raped!
Men in our country cannot handle a school girl’s exposed leg. They cannot digest the fact that every single woman on mother Earth has a bosom just like they have a chest.
A slight hint of a girl’s skin and ‘pervert-ism’ takes over sanity. Girls are taught to feel shy about their body and boys are taught to feel shy at the sight of a girl’s body! Why?
I think it is important for us to understand that sex is as natural as birth, death, farting and pooping. We need to teach our sons and daughters the right thing.
Safe sex education and post puberty talks are important. #Letstalksex and make this country a safer place for all.