Politics- Bollywood-Porn- Metoo

Updated: May 10


Politics

"Even a prostitute fulfills her commitment to a man after she is paid. But Mayawati..."

"ladke ladke hain, galti ho jati hai (boys will be boys, mistakes can be made)."- Former UP chief minister on rape.

"I congratulate the Bangladesh Prime Minister for boldly saying that she has zero tolerance toward terrorism," "despite being a woman."

"Two men raping a woman cannot be termed as gang rape."

Such absurd, ignorant and sexist remarks made casually and publicly by our countries leaders is commonplace. With about 50 current MP/MLA's having charges of rape and sexual Harassment against them, is anyone really surprised when Metoo stories are coming out against a sitting cabinet minister?


Bollywood

My friends and I stood near Ritu's house, waiting for her to come out. Ritu was this girl from my college, who had already refused to talk to me several times, but I knew my persistence will finally pay off, she will eventually see how much I love her and then obviously, fall in love with me too. My friends had confirmed this theory 'Do you really love her? Well then do whatever it takes dude. Sooner or later 'Hassina maan jayegi'. So, I did, the more she resisted, the more I upped my stalking game.



Replace me with 'Sharukh Khan', 'Salman Bhai’, 'Akshey the King Kumar' or any of the other top Bollywood actors and this scene from my life could easily be in a movie. Art at its best they say questions norms and propels us into the future, but when did Bollywood claim to be art at its best right? The Indian movie industry has religiously pandered to the Indian male ego. Stocking women was always okay, even necessary. Touching grabbing forcing is part of the wooing process. The only way to express true love is to show true stalking skills.

A defense lawyer in Australia recently successfully claimed that his Indian male client’s aggressive pursuit of women was ‘quite normal behaviour’ for Bollywood fans.

Not all of Bollywood is misogynistic, but most of it is.


So when a well-known film producer is accused of sexually harassing many actresses and the most popular author in the country, who happens to be married, texts “I have decided to woo you” to a journalist, are we surprised?


Porn

"Arrey she was resisting at first, you know how girls are, they have to say no first. But then she eventually had to give in. It was, freakin amazing" A statement I heard one too many times while growing up.


Men are the dominating force in a sexual interaction. I must dominate, be in control, and guide the poor, shy, docile girl into having great sex. Girls want to have sex with me, they are just shy and are hoping that I force myself upon them so that they can then enjoy the sex. This is what mainstream pornography primarily depicts. This is what established misogyny in India would have us believe.



No sex education whatsoever in our schools or at home has lead Indians to seek information about sexuality from any source that they can find. It has made us more susceptible to being influenced by Bollywood, to being inspired by men in power, and ensured that we play our parts in reinforcing the misogynistic norms that exist in our society. Add to this the new obsession with internet porn, where 80% of all pornography is violent towards women, and we now not only have a generation that is not educated about sexuality, they are also growing up learning about it by watching abusive sexual acts on women.

So, when hundreds of women from all across the country start coming out with their Metoo stories about sexual harassment and rape, are we surprised?


Metoo


"Ya ya, of course women should get justice if they have been wronged, but, but tell me this, what about all the men who are being falsely accused? Tell me, why is she talking about it ten years later man, does not make any sense..." A statement I hear one too many times these days.


If you are a human being living in India, then you know women are sexually harassed here. It is their daily reality. If you do not realize this, then you are almost certainly a man. Men in India live in a country that is entirely different to the India a woman lives in. Take this small example, every time a woman in India is stepping out of the house; she considers if what she is wearing will make her more susceptible to sexual harassment or not. Can any heterosexual Indian man ever relate this? No, we cannot.


An Indian man’s understanding of sexual harassment and consent is coming from a culture which has not paid any attention to consent or harassment. It is coming from the point of view of a misogynistic culture that normalizes sexual harassment. So, when the women of this country finally start a movement to call out men on their harassment and make them accountable, are we surprised that the men are not liking it, even attacking the movement?