Yet another incident of acid attack happened today, a youth from Madurai threw acid on a first year college girl. Another girl who came to protect the victim also got attacked. Both of them have sustained serious injuries in face and neck.
Last week an 8th standard student hired a hitman to stab a 10th standard boy for trying to usurp the girl he loved. These perpetrators consider themselves to be some sort of brave-hearts. In truth they are really weak-hearted. Displaying violence against women or the weak is not a symbol of machismo. It is just a display of how weak and dependent you are.
However these kids are not to be blamed, this society and especially the parents are to be blamed for this.
- 40% of Indians believe a woman who acts flirtatiously is partially or completely to blame for being raped, according to a new study.
- More than 30% also believe a woman is at least partly responsible for being raped if she wears sexy or revealing clothing.
- In each of these scenarios a only a slightly greater proportion of men than women held these views.
All the middle aged people keep repeating the cliched opinions: “Young girls are spoiling our culture, look at their revealing costumes, no wonder crime rates are high.”
“Look at the beaches, theaters and parks, everywhere, you see only couples spending time together without the knowledge of their parents, they are just spoiling our culture.”
What I don’t understand is “what is the culture they are referring to?” To my knowledge our culture is the most liberal of all the cultures that I have studied.
I) Our Culture and Costumes: Our weavers created the most revealing fabrics. Saris were woven of silk or cotton, and the finely woven, diaphanous silk saris that, according to Tamil poems, could be passed through a finger ring. Women wearing completely revealing tops are mentioned in several poems. We see exceptionally sensual statues at the temples. We celebrated beauty, there are thousands of ancient tamil verses which explains the beauty of the waist of women and how revealing her attire was. So there is literally no truth to these claims of ‘our culture is against revealing costumes’.
II) Romance Before Marriage: In Tamil literature love making is split in to two categories, களவு (love and love making before marriage without the knowledge of others) and கற்பு (love after marriage). In the world renowned Tirukural there are 70 kurals explaining களவு. Another compilation of tamil literature ‘Aganaanuru’ – அகநானுறு is full of verses about the love and love making of unmarried couples. When explaining the concept of ‘மடலேறுதல்’, tirukural and sangam literature explains how the society (the villagers) helped the lovers by convincing the parents of the lovers to get the couples married. So there is literally no truth to the claims ‘lovers spending time without the knowledge of their parents is the reason for these crimes’.
Our culture has always been liberal and open, it is only after the invasions that our culture changed. Women were given great amount of freedom, some women saints and poets like ‘Andal’ wrote poems that would be called as obscene today. Only later women were locked up, due to the fear of invaders. What people today address as ‘our culture’ is no way related to our culture. So media, movies, fashion or lifestyle changes are not the root causes of sex related crimes. The only reason for these crimes is poor upbringing of our children. Either spend sufficient time with your child and raise him to become a good human or don’t give birth to a child.
Let us cut this crap of ‘Women spoiling our culture’, it is time we stopped blaming the victims. Instead let us teach our kids (sons) the right thing. Let us teach our kids to see a woman as just as another human being.
P.S: Whenever I discuss this issue with my friends, they quickly retort “will you let your sisters or daughters to wear such skimpy clothes”. My answer is, ‘I wouldn’t. I want my daughters to be safe. You can move around freely in a civilized society wearing anything, but if you are living in a jungle full of tigers and vultures you have to adapt.’ ‘I want them to be fully covered, not because of our culture, but because a significant percentage of the society looks at women as a bundle of flesh rather than as a human being.’ ‘However I will raise my son, in such a way that he will see every other female as a respectable human being and not as an eye candy.’
This article is not about what a women should wear, it is about the root cause of the sex crimes against women and how to correct it. Beyond a shred of doubt the victims are not at fault.
Nothing related to this article:
One of My Favorite Poems about – களவு
எம் ஊர் வாயில் உண்துறைத் தடைஇய
கடவுள் முது மரத்து, உடன் உறை பழகிய,
தேயா வளை வாய், தெண் கண், கூர் உகிர்,
வாய்ப் பறை அசாஅம், வலி முந்து கூகை!
மை ஊன் தெரிந்த நெய் வெண் புழுக்கல்,
எலி வான் சூட்டொடு, மலியப் பேணுதும்;
எஞ்சாக் கொள்கை எம் காதலர் வரல் நசைஇத்
துஞ்சாது அலமரு பொழுதின்,
அஞ்சு வரக் கடுங் குரல் பயிற்றாதீமே. – (Nattrinai – 83)
Lady: At the border of our village, near the lake shore there is a huge tree in which our God resides. The owl which lives in the tree has sharp claws, excellent eyes and strong curved beak. The voice of this owl is louder than any war-cry known to men and can make people shiver.
Lady to the Owl: I know you love white mice. I will make a special dish for you, by carefully cooking rice along with mutton, roasted in fine ghee. I will also tenderly cook your favorite white mouse along with it. I will serve all this to you, not because I like you, but because I want you to stay silent. I will stay awake all night waiting to see my lover. When I meet him tonight, don’t make a sound and wake them (neighbors and relatives) up.