Happy women’s day to all the women! Kudos on the magnificent display of perseverance that I (and most men) clearly lack in every sense. Let me start off by realizing your struggle and acknowledging that the wounds of our unfair past can never be behind us. This is exactly what women expect (at least I think!) from men on this very occasion: The simple act of recognizing our flaws and participating in collective betterment! And what other better time to reflect on the plethora of such issues than the day meant for it, Today i.e., the International Women’s day 2020. #IWD2020 and this year’s theme is #EachForEqual.
To women reading this, I hope that my penned understanding resonates with their lives. I ask to be excused beforehand if I am unable to present the truest picture as I am limited by my biased lens. That is exactly why I rely on any possible feedback from you and feel free to do so. To men reading this, I hope to motivate you by the end of this read to recognize and appreciate the overarchingly beautiful purpose of this day. One of your most important takeaways is my answer to why this celebration of womanhood is a bigger deal than any man’s understanding. So, stick around with me till the end and let the roller coaster begin!
Fret not as the revelation is uncomfortable for any,
take pride in understanding the struggle of many!One of my improv couplets of wisdom!
Popular opinion: Women are less important members of our society
It is an unfortunate reality that at least half of our population are treated as the “lesser” members.
- Less valuable in terms of their service to the society as caregivers.
- Lesser talented than their male counterparts to accomplish a task.
- Less powerful in men’s eyes who mistake their femininity with lower physical prowess.
- Lesser heard by having their will of expression quelled by systematic conditioning of duress.
- Less cared as a woman’s role revolves around caring for her surroundings and having none to reciprocate.
- More prone to targeted and continual physical and emotional trauma.
- More tolerant of pain just because it is a “gift” bestowed upon them by the virtue of their biology.
Unpopular opinion: False propaganda of societal patriarchy still very much in vogue
There is no denial of the fact that our societies have the age-old patriarchy written all over its history. This has spelt doom to any woman who tried to have a go at free thinking. Women, being the source of life and sustenance, have been ironically denied the same by the male dominance since time immemorial. Just because they are restricted to the job of caregivers doesn’t validate their lesser contribution to us. The presumption that only physical and tangible results of your services are counted is a worrying proposition. As the cost of care work is unappreciated and women have to do it the most, they are not given their due dignity and respect.
This perceived inferiority of the females is the cornerstone of the pillar of patriarchy. This is just like the European colonialism being whitewashed as “the white man’s burden” to civilize the “barbaric” colonies. (A nugget of the world history for y’all!) Except here, it is the superiority complex in the guise of “all men’s burden” to preserve the “social order” that propagates female subjugation. This deeply flawed philosophy has resulted in deeming women less powerful and less worthy of the same social status that of men.
Who are the culprits? Society? Family? Biology?
The crime is profound and the resulting pain is chronic. The victim is almost all of the women. The bias of male dominance cuts through caste, creed, race, religion, wealth and social status as it has been ingrained into all men’s minds. This sense of universality in its presence has lent patriarchy the strength to stand the test of time. All of the terms mentioned – Society, Family and Biology – are intertwined in this blame game.
A woman’s natural body functioning has been used as a tool to keep her at bay. Menstruation, pregnancy, female hormones and such have been tabooed and are used for fueling the narrative of male superiority even to this day of modern rational thinking. Women are portrayed as “delicate” and “serene” wonders of nature to be under the guard of masculinity. It is this precise line of reasoning from misguided biology that is the primary fault.
Also, most women have almost zero chance of challenging the status quo owing to financial and emotional liabilities starting at home. Familial structures, at least traditional, centre around bestowing respect upon our elders. In such a scenario, the patriarchs, more often than not, indoctrinate their daughters about the former’s benevolence of “allowing” them to lead the life (but on a lease!). They either instil the fear of the “judgy and bad world” out there or hold the lifestyle privileges hostage to ensure the women in their life never “cross the line”.
Society is anything but a macroscopic combination of individual families. So, this results in a vicious feedback loop of society shaping the “ideal family” ideals and vice versa. The fundamental human need for “free will” then becomes the ultimate luxury a women can possess.
International Women’s Day: “Celebration of being alive” meets “Rallying cry”
Colloquially just called the “Women’s day”, it is the celebration of women achievement in their own emancipation. Rightly so, it is their annual march in the face of relentless adversity to strive for equality. This cultural phenomenon has strengthened various sections of women to not only pursue their dreams but also rise above the status quo. Historically, it started off as the cry for woman suffrage and enfranchisement and, to this day, serves the purpose of achieving those ideals. Globalization and rapid rise in the urban economy has provided women with a real shot at equal opportunity for their upliftment. For the first time, physical prowess and biology aren’t the sole factors influencing personal growth.
In this “warmth” of dawning spring, women everywhere have set their eyes finally on this “meadow”. The rarest and tiniest of meadows forbidden since forever. The “green pastures of equality”. Neither to be superior nor be inferior. Just be equal to their fellows. And what’s stopping them to reach there? Just about everything we discussed above. But empowered women are making sure to change the question of achieving it from “if” to “when”. So, make sure to ride the tide, or drown underneath it! Have a great day!