CAN WE TEACH OUR MEN TO BEHAVE?

by Allwin Bright

The Delhi gang rape has become a trending topic. It is hitting the headlines in media – printed, electronic and TVs. We are all raising our voice in unison. We are forwarding texts, observing candlelight vigils, participating protests…. Lets spare a few minutes and ask the following questions to ourselves. Lets be honest in answering these questions

Have I stopped a friend who has stared at a girl with a look that stripped her nude?

NO

Did I react when men touched, pinched and groped girls while traveling in a train or a bus?

NO

He made an obscene remark about the girl that passed by. Did I teach him a lesson?

NO

Have I argued with men who talk of treating women being as sex objects?

NO

I’ve been a mere spectator in all these cases. All of a sudden I find the Delhi gang rape case making news all over the media. I feel the need to make my presence felt. I join protests. I demand the government to act immediately. I take a pledge – I’ll stand up against injustice inflicted upon women and not just be a passerby. I am outraged and urge the lawmakers to punish them. I blame the govt. for not showing a sense of urgency. I shout at the top of my voice. The media gives her pseudonyms, Nirbhaya, Amanat, Damini, Jyoti, Jagruti…   Whooah… What a tribute?

One last question.

Will any of this bring her back to life?

Again the answer is NO

The same thing happened when a 17 year old girl was publicly molested in Guwahati. It hit the headlines for quiet a few days and what happened after that?…

With time the media would get another sensational news. They’ll feed you with that news.

Lets stop blaming the police, govt. and the lawmakers. We are also equally responsible. We should change at a personal level.

Respect women. Stop eve-teasing.  It all begins here.  Its happening everywhere – Schools, Colleges, Office, Cinema theaters, Local trains, Buses etc.  It could be anybody – he could be your friend, your relative, a colleague, a college student, a school student, a thug – STOP THEM. Girls tolerate them. They don’t fight back because they fear that the next day he may take his revenge on her. When a handful of people can strike so much fear why can’t we, the majority of us do the same to them?

I am not against protests. In fact I am glad that its happening. Just ask your conscience – Do I have the courage? Will I be able stop them in future? and if your answer is ‘YES’ then go ahead. Mind you it is not easy to say “YES’. It is very very difficult.

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