Sunday, January 31, 2010

How Men's Movements are better than Feminist Movements?

When I wrote my previous post, I thought who ever read it were going to disagree with me than agree. However, I found both men and woman in agreement with the rhetoric of 'real gender equality' to a great extend than I expected. Men who read it were in total agreement. Women who read it at least said they understood how I felt. And one of my students [He Blogs Here!] found it amusing that I am talking about 'Real Gender Equality' and left me a scrap on my Orkut Profile. Nevertheless, he could understand the seriousness of the issue that formed the basis of my post and pointed me to a Movement taking shape across the world.

Men, do not think that you are alone if you are feeling 'Gender Equality Laws' discriminate against the male of the species. AIMRAW [Association for International Men's Rights Activism and Welfare] is a conglomerate of men's right activists that works hard to eliminate misandry. AIMRAW recently organized a get together in Bangalore and wrote an Open Letter to Indian MPs to show their concerns about the political reflection of discrimination against men - Reservation for Women in Elections!

Let us get that straight first. We are talking about 33% reservation for women when it comes to elections. What does it mean? 33% of the constituencies are going to be reserved for women, if a Bill to that effect is passed in the Indian Parliament. And that simply means that men of those reserved constituencies are going to be denied an opportunity to contest in elections. If that Bill is passed, it is going to be a gross violation of the democratic rights of an Indian Citizen based on Gender. And it is going to be an appalling Human Rights Violation as it is based on gender. AIMRAW is not against women contesting in elections. It says, Political Parties must field more female candidates if they want to empower women. Going ahead to mutilate and subvert the concept of equality as provided by the Constitution of India to empower women is like 'doing an open heart surgery for a piles patient.'

And guess what, there are men across the world who feel that 'Gender Equality Laws' are highly unfavourable to men. Dowry Laws and Divorce Laws, across the world, provide more protection to women than men. There are men who face constant legal and social harassment because of these laws. Domestic Violence against men are rampant, though they go unnoticed. In the whole Tiger Woods Episode people were more eager to talk about his extra-marital affair than the Domestic Violence that led to the accident. Both men and women face Domestic Violence and Harassment, but law provides protection only to women. Taking the one-sided Gender Equality Laws and the Men's Movements across the world into consideration, I thought it is going to be interesting to try and see how Men's Movements and Feminist Movements differ!

Wikipedia defines feminism as "a political, cultural or economic movement aimed at establishing equal rights and legal protection for women." But that is far from the truth. A right understanding about the History of Feminism across the world will tell us that Feminism always focused on Female Domination than Equality. They methodically worked towards planting pro-women and anti-men laws in the legal system, which are sexist to a great extend. They filled the world with literature that aims at subverting any notion of 'real gender equality' And right from the time of Plato [Hope you know his story], good men have always suffered at their hands.

Look at the feminist slogans. 'Boys are boys! Girls are fun!' 'Boys don't cry!' Feminist have worked it out in such a way that people look at men as these unfeeling, uncultured, barbaric beasts who are out there to destroy the female species. Feminists always talk about domination and not co-existence, guised as the idea equality.

Look at the feminist idea about extra-marital affairs. When men cheat or are emotionally unfaithful, they raise such a hue and cry, saying men do that because they are beasts. What do they say when women are emotionally or physically unfaithful?  They downplay it. They downplay it saying, 'Oh you know! Her husband was uncaring! She has emotional needs! Blah, Blah Blah!' I have come across at least ten popular Indian Feminist Writers, Kamala Das for example, trying to justify extra-marital affairs by women and vociferous about the sin of male extra-marital affairs.

Now, look at the Men's Movements across the world. We do not find them talking about domination over women. We find them talking about co-existence. AIMRAW, for example, is not against women contesting in elections. They are only against subverting the idea of equality in the name of Reservation for Women. Most of the Men's Movements that I have come across promote 'co-existence'. They promote men who are responsible, men who are caring and men who can be role-models to their children. Unlike Feminism, Men's Movements are not about unreasonable female bashing.

Let me conclude giving you one more example of the discrimination that men face. All of us know that International Women's Day is on March 8. We celebrate it. Let me ask you, how many of you know that there is also an International Men's Day? How many of you know that it is on November 19?


  1. Nice post Sojo. My 2cents (borrowed from my comments elsewhere :-) ).

    In India we deify women, we demonize them too. We discriminate and deride women, we place her on a pedestal too. A woman is often mis-understood but hardly understood.

    Personally I would be happier if we could relegate feminism to the annals of encyclopedias. It should be more basic than that. Two people in the same land should be held to the same set of rules irrespective of their gender, race, caste or sexual orientation.

    If a woman is denied a freedom that is accorded unquestioned to men it is just plain wrong. Same if it were because of caste or if it is to a man.

    Sadly feminism of today is just reduced to opportunism many a times..

    I want to disagree on Tiger Woods though. That moron brought it upon himself and there are few that will support him or John Edwards. Tiger had a model for a wife, a billion dollars in earnings a spotless reputation and he was doing every other waitress in every other town ? Hard to sympathize with such a loser ..

    David Letterman is almost unscathed -- people have let him sort out his transgressions in private.

  2. Thanks for reading Madhu.

    I do not for one bit sympathize with what Tiger Woods did. In fact, I don't care what he does in his personal life and 'Golf' is not my favourite pastime yet. However, I wanted to draw every ones attention to the domestic violence that preceded the accident. What if it was the other way around? What if it were Tiger Woods who tried to teach a lesson to his wife for being unfaithful with a Golf Bat? The whole world would have focused more on 'Domestic Violence' than 'Extra-martial Affair' and Tiger Woods would be behind the bars for attacking a 'helpless' woman. :) That's all I was saying :)

  3. now now, the point where you say

    "If that Bill is passed, it is going to be a gross violation of the democratic rights of an Indian Citizen based on Gender."

    whom are you going to complain? do you know, the Articles 14 and 15 cannot be amended? and they say that women must get the benefit of being treated equally; thus the reservation..

    AIMRAW name is quite amusing na :)

  4. Thanks for reading Neha.

    As I understand Article 368, even Article 14 and 15 can be amended if there is a clear majority [2/3 of of the members present] in both the houses, with President's assent. I also know that according to these Article 14 and 15, the Government can go ahead with any pro-female measures. That makes it not anti-constitutional to go ahead with reservation for women. having said that, it is still a violation of democratic rights to go ahead with reservation for women in parliament.

    Even I found AIMRAW pretty amusing:)

  5. you could have been a good lawyer :)

  6. I know :P But now it is too late. :(

  7. very good post!..I believe that we can get equality by being good in everything, not by exploiting men..or going to the other extreme..if women start doing the same what men were doing for years, then how are they different? it will show only this that its a question of opportunity, whosoevr gets it behave the same way, none is just.

    my all time principle is..if you want to do better than someone, then work hard,but never by exploiting or degrading that so good that people themselves make you feel higher, better.

  8. Yesterday only i read about an organisation founded by divorced fathers and felt very sad that today they are suffering so much all because of the balance always tilted in the favour of moms:.