Reinstated by stereotypes of course, the "popular" notion of feminists equals manhaters. Members of the Boys Club laugh at their sick in-jokes and that's fine, apparently and it really would be fine if everyone were joking about it and some people didn't actually believe it.
Some members of the Freemasons Hall in Calcutta recently told me that they are a very inclusive club. I'm not exactly sure about where they learnt their English, but last time I checked inclusive meant including everything. Now I think, clubs by their very nature are elitist (DUH!), but the Freemasons Hall proudly struts their stuff and when asked to come up with a defence say, "but this is a tradition". WTF? Last Time I checked, burning women was also considered a tradition. Next time someone asks me to shut up because I'm too angry and I'm raving and ranting, I will say:
1. Stop Stereotyping. NOW. I'm sorry people I will say some really OBVIOUS things right now but I'm tired and irritated with all the lame comments that have been coming my way, so bear with me.
First, some people believe that they are feminists. Stop pandering to stereotypes and assigning characteristics to people randomly based on whether the person is a feminist or not a feminist. If you want to be respected, respect another person's opinion as well. Secondly, there are many women who don't consider themselves feminists and are fighting away for women's rights. If you're an ostrich and think that nothing's wrong, think again. I had written a post about women's bodies earlier this year and this guy who didn't have the guts to actually use his own name retorted by saying that I was trying to deny men the pleasure of fetishism by ranting about how women are objectified. Now I had said nothing of the sort, just stated that you cannot simply perceive a woman to be merely an object. I don't even know why I was wasting my time arguing with this guy, but turns out he was a complete jackass and I don't even feel angry. I just feel sorry about how ignorant he is.
2. Stop Stigmatising
Just Read this:
Here is an excerpt from the article above:
"Though the trial court had convicted the accused Munshi and another person for the rape of a 17-year old woman, the high court acquitted the accused persons on the ground that victim was promiscuous in her sexual behaviour and had already lost her virginity."
The Trial Court actually let those jerks go because the girl was not a virgin. How is that even relevant? Also, what's the big deal about the virginity anyway? This just disgusts me- somehow, if you're not a virgin, you're loose and you've lost your virginity anyway, so what do you care? Of course, it is of no consequence whatsoever that it is your body and you can do whatever the hell you want with it. Another brilliant myth is the "deflowering myth". As anyone who is informed enough knows, a girl doesn't necessarily bleed when she has sex for the first time. A domestic help I once interviewed told me that her husband left her for another woman because she didn't bleed on their first night. Now the hymen can be ruptured for many reasons :
a. many women are born without the hymen
b. some tear it if they're heavily into sports
c. what the fuck does all of this matter anyway?
With reference to C, this is where I am wrong. Because you see, it matters. Recent studies have shown that women are opting for hymen restructuring or inserting the blood of a goat's pouch just to evade the stigma. Simple solution? stop stigmatising.
3. Get your facts straight
Do some research and speak to reliable sources. Sometimes, the media can be horrifically misleading. Look up what women's organisations are saying and do some finding out for yourself. And next time you make a snap judgement, think twice.
As you may have already noticed, I have focussed on a bunch of negatives. But lots of people out there are really doing good work. I recently interviewed a woman who was working for rights for artisans. Google is your friend. Read about what people are doing and try and think about what you can do to help. And please don't ask women to shut up. Please.