I love it when one of these controversial things come out and take the internet by storm. With an opinion being a like and share button away things go viral in an instant. People have reactions, strong, mild to medium often mixed but none the less valid because the reaction is of course in direct proportion to their personal experiences.
Now coming to the current trending topic being torn apart. Deepika Padukone and Vogue put out a video that went viral. What does ” Vogue” fashion brand know about women. Maybe nothing. But Deepika is one. Yet I’m sure even she may not have actually personally faced or will face many of the problems women actually face but at least she’s helping say something that needs to be said. Many are starting to come out saying Deepika is ( insert snarky voice here ) ” trying ” to become a spokesperson for different causes. First with her rant against TOI , then talking about her battle against depression and now talking about the topic that’s totally in FASHION in India these days ” Women Empowerment. ” I’m not a fan but I’m admiring her willingness to stand up because for EVERY person who says ” That’s cool ” for the things she’s been doing, I’m aware there are many more who thinks ” Oh ! she’s doing this for publicity. ” And she knows this too. How do I know? Because she seems to be relatively intelligent and is not living in a cave. The internet is a useful but ugly place. But notice the FACT that people are TALKING about issues because she’s being brave. And in the end THAT”S What really matters . No ? In the process her name gets flying high and dragged low but how many people would be wiling to talk about women’s rights in a male dominated society or personal issues with mental problems ? Most people I know don’t even update their status on Facebook or Twitter in the fear saying anything controversial.
Sure, in India, well why just India, all over the world women face discrimination or face a different world than men. The poor face a different set of problems than the middle class or the elite. But in India these differences are even more marked because women aren’t even aware of whether the choices they are making are by themselves, their parents, husband, children or in laws. They spend the first half of their life finding themselves, maybe rebelling a little and the rest half of their life making a life for their children. I personally know of only a handful ( and am so proud of that ) who live as much as themselves as well as their family. From the moment they wake up to the moment a woman sleeps all she thinks about is what her husband, children, parents, in laws, friends, family needs. They plan, work, play, cook, clean and organize putting themselves ALWAYS constantly second because sub consciously they know that’s what is expected of them. Well educated, high position holding career women face similar house hold problems as any other class. Well, maybe that’s too simplistic of me to say but it is a fact. Actors, politicians, teachers, doctors in every walk of life give equal if not more important to family as much as career. The poor struggle from day to day for food, clothing, not knowing when to stop having kids so that they can avoid passing over the hand to mouth life to the next generation. They do NOT know that they CAN say no. A section of men even lech, ogle, grope girls and women incessantly as if it’s their birthright. The list of double standards is endless. Life inside the house is super protected, hypo critic even and outside there is a jungle where the fittest survive. Which is why creating awareness in every which way is ONE of the needs of the day, so that people stop thinking of women as second class citizens (yes someone said that to me once) with only ” one ” right way to behave.
Now coming to the actual video. Art interprets as per the viewer but many seem to be taking it too literally. As I see it, they are not trying to say These are only my choices or that they are the only choices I can think about every day. All they are trying to say is women have a SAY, a VIEW POINT and THAT needs to be respected. By I here, I mean any the average of every woman in the world. Not just a certain, type, class, role or status. If you took all the women in the world, put them today, did a cross section poll, you would find that they don’t have a say. Maybe due to society, maybe due to peer pressure. Hell, once you become a mother you judge your self ten times as much as any other person would. But the fact remains that the problem in today’s world, not just regarding woman empowerment but EVERYTHING is that people just can’t live and let live. Accept another choices as their own for whatever reasons they may be made. Sure EVERYONE is entitled to an OPINION on another, but that OPINION needs to be expressed and not used to SUPPRESS.
Now, as I see it the video is brilliant !! Though they have mentioned the women are from different walks of life, I am glad they went with a black and white outlook. I couldn’t care less whose voice was used in the voice over or who was in the video. My credit would bow down to the writer/s because for me when they say –
- ” To wear the clothes I like while my spirit roams naked. ” – they mean one cannot judge me, rape me, taunt me, snicker when I wear something that they do not agree to. My spirit stands high and tall and my clothes are an expression of who I am at that time.
- ” They don’t have a size for my spirit ” – they mean one shall look at my inner beauty and appreciate who I am rather than what I look like.
- ” Your mind is caged let it be, your body is not ” – they mean you need to come out of your comfort zone and think out of the box, and use your body to express
Now the controversy creating ones =
- ” To marry or not to marry, to have sex before marriage, outside of marriage, not have sex ” – they mean a person doesn’t necessarily have to put out as per expected. They are allowed to be expressive of her love in their way and not judged for it. Sex doesn’t have to be made the big deal that it is. Sex, love, marriage are all inclusive or exclusive as the case may be. Happiness of self is above the decision to spend the rest of one’s life with another. Having sex is one’s right as and when they deem to choose. ” Outside of marriage ” is a tricky one but then for many that may be a more a matter of the grey complicated areas than right or wrong.
- “ To love temporarily or lust forever ” = this one is harder to describe. I guess my take is that love has many facets and each HONEST one must be respected. A relationship may start one way and end another. That doesn’t mean that there is a fault in the people involved. In India the double standards are too much regarding this taboo topic. IF every guy out there truly wanted to marry someone who is inexperienced then they shouldn’t be hitting on every single woman there is in existence and then denying marrying them once the time comes. To marry or not to marry is not only the guy’s prerogative but a girl’s right to choose as well. This again applies to both male and female. This of course does NOT excuse the hurtful people who use love as an emotion to be manipulated for a means to an end. The behavior though unacceptable and totally selfish has to be eventually accepted as being their true nature. Also, in my eyes a necessary evil to teach a person the true value of an honest person.
- ” To love a man, woman or both ” – Again, to each his own. No one can or should judge another.
- “ Remember, you are My choice, I’m not your privilege . ” – they mean appreciate the fact that that I chose YOU to be with. Appreciate the love we have together, do NOT take me for granted.
- ” they are ornaments. They can be replaced. My love cannot. So treasure that . ” they mean again appreciate me, my love, what all I do for you. Don’t have hang ups about the frivolities but understand that if not treated right a person has a right to walk !! Marriage is a partnership. Period! Unless you know the importance of compromise AND appreciation, you cannot move forward.
- ” Don’t be fooled if I come home at 6 pm. ” – Haha!! I loved this one. I have seen it often enough. Good in people is measured using certain parameters. Fact of the matter is once a person is out of your eye sight they can do ANYTHING. The trust you have in them is what holds them honest. Not the fact that they keep doing what you expect of them. Expectations and their execution can be deceiving. So a person returning home at 6 pm is certainly NO better than one who comes home late. Nor is a person who gets the highest marks better than one who is street smart. Each has their own place and own niche.
- ” To have your baby or not . ” – Ah! This has everyone in a tizzy. Yes, having a baby is a couple’s choice. But do You know how many people even in today’s educated world take contraception so lightly ? It’s appalling that women and men, do NOT understand that having a baby is possibly easy or difficult or that once you get pregnant or decide to do so, raising a child is a choice that one should make understanding the weight that having a baby carries, not just for the woman who of course carries the most load, pun intended, but also the couple. It can make or break the bond any couple holds.
- “ I am the snowflake, not the snowfall, you are the snow flake ” – they mean to say that EVERY decision a person makes doesn’t necessarily have to be a life of death situation. Life is about a LOT more than just one person’s actions. A LOT more than just one person’s opinion. Get over yourself !
- ” I am the universe, infinite in every direction. ” – my choices, my actions matter to me. The possibilities are endless.
It’s funny as I wrote the above interpretation of the video, I realized it’s NOT about just women. And it certainly no where mentions that all men are to be demeaned. It can be translated for Men as Well as Women. It’s about every single person out there. So see the video again or forget it after the next headline but remember, let each persons’ choices be there own !! Respecting them does NOT mean you condone them, it just means that you don’t jump down their throat when you don’t agree with them. You accept that everyone is entitled to their way of thinking.
And NO, contrary to anyone who thinks this is a problem created and perpetuated by men, it is more a society problem further encouraged by women. For it is only the mothers that can teach their children that they are allowed to and supposed to think for themselves, empower themselves, act for themselves. Empowerment comes from within, not from without.