A letter to the educated, liberal, men

i want to apologize to all the women
i have called pretty.
before I’ve called them intelligent or brave.
i am sorry i made it sound as though
something as simple as what you’re born with
is the most you have to be proud of
when your spirit has crushed mountains
from now on i will say things like, you are resilient
or, you are extraordinary.
not because i don’t think you’re pretty.
but because you are so much more than that
-rupi kaur

When we think too much and feel too little, we become the demons we’ve been running away from, our whole life. When the following quote was being written in the scriptures, “यत्र नार्यस्तु पूज्यन्ते रमन्ते तत्र देवता:” ( where women are worshiped, there is the abode of god) I don’t remember reading any riders. I don’t remember any asterisk at the end of the sentence mentioning that only those women are to be worshiped which conform to your (quite patriarchal and misogynist, if I may add) definition. Do the god(s) actively avoid the women wearing skirts or going out late at night? And if they do, how can someone so misogynist be a god? Similarly, I can’t give respect to anyone who doesn’t respect women, whatever his age or authority.

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How can someone claim that they’re not responsible for what happens to the other half of the population? I believe it is my fault. When you choose a misogynist to be your leader, when you vote him to power, when you look the other way when someone else molests a woman, when you don’t call out the guy leering at a woman’s breast in metro, when you don’t stop the degenerates whistling at women, when you call your ex a bitch, when you complain that women are getting more privileges than you, when you complain of empty women-only metro coaches, when you don’t fight for women; you, my friend are at fault and so am I. You and I are the educated, liberal, men who can make a difference. We’ve got the inherent privilege to speak and be the things which, sadly, a woman will have to fight very hard for.

If you don’t get what I’m saying, this guy does a brilliant job of explaining it. Do watch.

If you’ve asked a friend to call you freely whenever they need help, just like me, then today’s the time to help. Today is the day we need to be the voice of our friends. The same friends who are too scared to walk alone in broad daylight, who prefer to stand in a women’s only coach rather than sit in one filled with men, who are mandated to reach hostels before 9, who are scared of cabs, autos, buses, who are tired, who are scared of ALL MEN. Because the ones they’ve trusted have broken that trust, too many times.

Yes, it is difficult to be a man as well, especially if you live in India. Yes, sometimes it is the fairer sex who is wrong. Yes, you face the same restrictions as your sister. Yes, there will be women who will wrongly accuse you, even call you pervert. If someone is starved for millennia, I believe they can have as many cheat days as they want.(If you don’t understand, there’s a comment box at the end)
There are times when it’s not just our fault. When men aren’t taught about periods, when they are grossed by sanitary pads, when there is virtually no sex-education (apart from Xvideos), there is no mention of consent, and when patriarchy is promoted by women themselves (typical mother-in-law is a classic example), men can’t be the ones solely at fault. But do you become corrupt just because the system has loopholes or you try to fix those gaps? So, take the blame. After all, we’re part of the problem.

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It’s unusual to watch, a man being grabbed by the pussy; and not the other way around (courtesy Stephen Colbert)

So, stand for them. Stand if you want to prove that not all men are worse than animals. Stand in front of the one who is too buffed up and scares you as well. Stand in front of that dozen who whistled, even when you’re alone. Stand when another makes a rape joke. Stand when your elders are sexist. Because the problem isn’t that all men; the problem is, enough men exist to make life hell for women.(And you asked why that feminist-type is angry, huh) The system and the people in authority aren’t going to stand up for women, we’ll have to. Not because they need us. Women are stronger than we ever will be (Do I even need to explain?). We need to stand up, because it is the decent thing to do, and it is the right thing to do. That should be reason enough. Also because as it turns out women aren’t raping themselves (Surprising, right? Mind blown)

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Author: mayankpotter

A writer has no name, no aim, no rhyme.

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