Feminism is equality
I got an internship at Femina two weeks back. Though I mainly write about cosmetics, beauty, hairdos, celebrities, international and national fashion brands, cooking and travelling; I also started wondering about the way women are perceived and what they feel about themselves generally. The word feminism is difficult to understand as I think it is misunderstood and thereby misused by many. People associate it with hatred for men. However, it is about equality. Like Hollywood star Emma Watson who has been appointed as the UN Women Goodwill Ambassador said, “Men- I would like to take this opportunity to extend your formal invitation. Gender equality is your issue too...”
I saw Homi Adajania’s 2.35 min internet film “My Choice”. While I really admire the fact it deals with women empowerment, I couldn't agree with a few things which were said. There was a line where a woman having an extra marital affair was justified; which I really couldn't digest. It will have serious implications on the people who are just starting to understand feminism.
However, as this is a video, people can interpret it the way they want. But there are major issues regarding this subject. For instance, women are imprisoned for lesser number of years than men for the same crime. A murder is a murder; doesn't matter who committed it.
Today morning on my way to work, I was waiting at the traffic signal for the light to turn green. As I waited, I heard a man calling out, “Oh madam... tame pan ubharo.” (Oh madam, you also need to wait) I turned in the direction he called out from and saw that he was calling out to me. He was on a bike and the policeman had stopped him for checking. Strangely, policemen don’t stop women at traffic signals for checking their licenses. I don’t know if this happens elsewhere as well, but I have seen this happening in Ahmedabad. Now this man was annoyed at the policeman as he had stopped him even though he was wearing a helmet and I guess he had his documents as well, hence he was calling out to me as I was also wearing a helmet and was on a two wheeler (Activa) like him. We both looked like we were following the traffic rules. The only reason why they stopped him was- him being a man. I would have surely liked to stop and ask the policeman, “Don’t you want to see my license as well?”, as I understood that man’s anger. And honestly, it is justified. I didn't stop by as I was very late for work. He was getting late for work and so was I. He was wearing a helmet and so was I. If they wanted to see his license, they should have seen mine as well. I don’t want this special right or whatever it is only because I am a female.
Yesterday I had to go to a building for some work. Besides this building there was another one, called “The Millennium Plaza”. I parked my vehicle in the no parking area of the Millennium Plaza as there was no “No parking” sign. There were no gates. The building which I had to go to had gates, hence I thought I was parking outside it as mostly they don’t allow you to park inside the buildings which is only reserved for the people working or staying there. The watchman of the Millennium Plaza spoke to me very rudely and started shouting at me for parking there even though I had stopped immediately and was waiting patiently for his instructions as I saw him approaching me. I had a fight with him; not because I had a problem with moving my vehicle, but because he spoke like a complete urchin. I really can’t take it. His name was “Deepak” and I really hope people like him are shown their way out and sent back to the remote village they have come from or given some lessons on social behavior, especially with a woman. This is where I want a special right.
This is what I mean by the word feminism. Women are now a part of politics, businesses, arts and even scientific advancement. Still, why do people speak to them like that? Thinking that she won’t mind it? She will keep quiet? I certainly do believe that men and women are equal, but I really think women should be treated with more respect in such situations. Men should be more careful while speaking with women around. Maintain a social etiquette.
Women are more sensitive than men are, I won’t deny that. As you don’t see women getting into fistfights on roads do you? What would you do if you encountered a situation like I did... as a man? Many would have gotten into a fistfight, right? I didn't. I am very disappointed with what happened. I am sad, I am tired and I am weary. I want this to stop.
A man should be more sensitive towards a woman’s feelings. It is scientifically proven that a woman is more sensitive. Now think about this, she feels more but expresses less. The special rights given to us are meaningless if we don’t get the respect we deserve.