A response to: Why we think women activists should change their attitude of “wear what you like”

The post linked below explains that rapes are caused by men turning into rapists after being sexually aroused by women they find attractive, after which they go and hunt for victims and rape children. And that’s a valid reason for asking women to wear clothes that don’t make them look attractive to men.

Let me make a quick attempt to explain why I disagree. (Will edit and delete the repetitions)

Link shared by Manasa and Janaki D.

Quotes from the original post is in blockquotes.

Why we think women activists should change their attitude of “wear what you like”

Here’s why we think women activists should change their attitude of “wear what you like,” and should ask the young people and media moghuls to tone down.

IHM- Objectifying women means seeing women as legs, lips, skin, womb, uterus, goddesses, witches, honor, shame and ankles, and not as people with feelings and rights.
Feminists/activists have been asking media (and society) not to objectify women for a long time.
Go slow, relax, you aren’t proving anything by dressing provocatively. Okay?
IHM: Actually, women’s clothing not being controlled by random people does prove that the society has started understanding sexual crimes against women and seeing women as people.
But what is Provocative Dressing?
Women have been asked to stop wearing sarees [Link] [Link], salwar kurta [Link], jeans [Link], nightie/maxi , half sleeves blouses [Link] and school uniforms [Link]. In other parts of the world men are said to be at risk of being helplessly provoked into committing sexual assaults at the sight of women’s eye lashes through veils.
What kind of clothing is not provocative?
In Kerala around a 150 years ago women did not wear an upper garment and in the Nagaland, even today women do not wear blouses and men are used to seeing women as people not body parts, this is the only thing that would prevent men from being provoked into committing sexual assaults.
Also consider, are men in regressive societies where women are not respected or valued more prone to ‘losing control’?
Think about it. How much covering up is possible?
Take a look at women in Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan [Rapist said that coming from Afghanistan meant he didn’t understand what ‘consent’ was.]. A Saudi Arabian father raped and tortured his five year old (very disturbing, reader discretion advised), and this is not a rare case.
Which provocatively dressed women did this and other such fathers and cousins see in Saudi Arabia?
What if the man finds his own wife attractive? It’s okay to rape her if she doesn’t consent, or attack some other woman or child? 
Finding a woman attractive does not naturally lead to rapes. Most men are not rapists – this despite the way society encourages men to see sex as an entitlement, and to view rapes as sex.
Men (and women) need to be taught about consent and consequences.
You find these girls so scantily clad on the streets and think whether it’s fashion or a deliberate attempt to provoke.
IHM: What is scantily dressed? Most women are constantly worrying about what they are wearing and trying their best to stay safe but there is little effort to teach men not to rape. The rapists often don’t see their actions as crimes, the police said, and don’t expect the victims to report them.
Most sexual assaults are preplanned and the rapists are known to believe they would not face any consequences, and the victim would be silenced with blaming and shaming.
It has been seen that provocation thresholds come down when women’s arms, necks, knees, faces etc become invisible, then even their feet become provocative. If all women decided to cover up completely, then men would not start being provoked by their voices or foot steps? (payal ki chanchan, and kangan ki khan khan etc)  And what about porn? What about babies?
The more women and men interact as equals, the less women are seen as objects, or as ‘v*ginas’, or as ‘different species’ created for men’s use, the less they will be seen as provocations.
Look at it as a fashion moghul’s attempt to degrade the female of the species. No, it’s not just the streets, look anywhere: movies, television, print ads, hoardings, we don’t realise how much raw sexual pull is being exerted by all these mediums on young minds, especially those of underprivileged males living alone in cities.
IHM: It’s a myth that all rapists come from underprivileged background.  In fact power and the knowledge that the crime would be blamed on the victim’s clothing (etc) encourages rapists.
When we ask women to cover up, we are telling young men that they are potential rapists and it’s natural for them to sexually assault someone they find attractive. How do these men treat their wives?
What ‘young minds’ need to be taught is that no matter how much they want to have sex with a woman, they need her consent. The society needs to accept that – No consent, no sex. Sex without consent equals rape. And only Yes means Yes.
Certainty of consequences (imprisonment after a quick trial) would put the idea of being provoked by a woman’s clothing out of most rapists’ minds.

Here’s a rough list of all the titillation

Movies: item numbers: sheila ki jawani, choli ke peeche, whatever
Television ads: Deo ad in which man goes into a room and emerges with kiss marks all over, ad where a girl drags a boy into an inflated house and the house starts wobbling, whatever
Print: Open the supplement (glamour pages) and you find these celebrities all exposing their thighs, lingerie ads are another thing altogether
Hoardings: Well, too many, we lost count
Public functions: too many, we don’t attend public functions, award nights, but do see pictures
So on and so forth…
And, we hold our heads and say “My God” all these? How and when did these happen? It’s as if sex sex sex is everywhere and they are the only ones being deprived.
IHM: They need to be told, and repeatedly via every channel, that sex or ‘women’ is not their right. They are not entitled to ‘v*ginas’ (Link).  Not even from their wives. If they want sex then they need to get Consent. 
A man’s sexuality is such that he is easily aroused.
No, don’t misunderstand. A woman wants a man’s sexuality to be more like her own. But, that’s where you go wrong, honey. A man can’t – deliberately and consciously – control his sexual urge, it’s a natural thing. Even if he controls, it will slip up at times.
IHM: This does not apply to all men, most men say they cannot be provoked into committing sexual crimes. Many men find it offensive  that they are being accused of being potential child abusers and rapists.
Those men (or women) who do find it difficult to control their urges give enough indication of their condition. Like in most other crimes, they start with less dangerous crimes and that is why no sexual crimes or molestations should be excused as ‘eve teasing’ or moral policing.
We can’t expect sexual criminals to get themselves registered as potential rapists to protect women and children (even those in their own family and neighborhood). The government (or NGOs?) should maintain a registry, I think the women these men marry should also have the legal right to know that these men tend to lose control and might rape them or their children or other family members or neighbours.
And slip-ups are where assault and rape happen.
IHM: The solution is not covering up women. Only the certainty of consequences can control ‘slip ups’.
Most (90%+) sexual assaults are preplanned, and in most other cases the rapists are known to rape victims.{will link}
For example, in the 16th December Delhi bus gang rape, the rapists were looking for someone to rape, they were confident that the victim would be silenced with blaming, shaming and naming.
An illiterate man may see naked pictures but then may entice a 4-year old with offer of candy because he doesn’t know the law and never reads the papers. All he knows is he wants to do it, with whoever it is in his power to entice as victim. That’s how child rape happens.
IHM: Mr Balvinder Singh’s experience in Nagaland shows making rules about covering up a woman’s body, is the beginning of objectification of women, to ensure ‘excitement’ does not ‘turn into monotony’. [Please read]
Admit this. We are today a sex-oriented society. Sex used as a tool to bring in money for: products, services, favours, politics, even sex itself, and, now, sports, .
IHM: So long as it is consensual sex between two uncommitted, adult partners, it is their business. Maybe they need to know about contraception and sexually transmitted diseases.
But we are also a society that denies young people to mix and derive whatever pleasures can be received from companionship. So where does the desperate man go?
IHM: It might help to encourage interactions between men and women.
It would also help if the society acknowledges women’s sexuality.
Many men learn about sex from porn and from rape scenes in movies. “There is so little conversation about a woman’s desire for sex that a lot of people simply assume it doesn’t exist.” [Link1 “There is so little conversation about a woman’s desire for sex that a lot of people simply assume it doesn’t exist."] [Link2 Romanticizing innocence, chastity and related taboos for women.]
To a brothel that’s fifty kilometres away? He is too lazy to do that. He hunts for his victims in the backyard.
 IHM: This is why smaller sexual assaults should never be excused, they are an indication that the man is likely to commit more heinous assault once he realizes that his crimes are being blamed on women’s clothing and lifestyle. 
And even if he goes to the brothel, he must have consent. Sex workers have the right not to be sexually assaulted.
Many of the rapes that happened recently in Bombay were involved minor girls and their neighbours. Read this story of a 13-year old girl raped by neighbours. And this about a 5-year old girl raped by her neighbour.
We rest our case.
IHM: Men who rape, and men who rape children need to be put behind bars, they are dangerous to the society.  These criminals are the ones who eventually are emboldened to commit crimes like the father in the link above.  The only way to control such crimes is to ensure that the potential victims are not silenced with stigma, shame, or blame. And the rapists should be aware of this.

“Sometimes it seems like every single thing I do has the potential to be something ‘provocative’.”

Why do Indian women like to wear western clothes?

“So why do we wear clothes again??”

Weird, funny facts about Misogynists.

Do you think men in regressive societies where women are not respected or valued are more prone to ‘losing control’?

Why do some women see western clothes and being able to flaunt their bodies, without fearing being called sluts, as empowerment?

‘Maayka Chavi Ka’… sequel to ‘Sasural Simar Ka’ ;)

Nita’s post – ‘Sari an immodest garment?’

All teachers except Indian women can do their job well enough in Western clothes?

The way a woman dresses.

No Jeans for an Indian daughter in law.

Not just a pair of jeans.
Many of us view watching porn as a harmless activity…

A tag: But when a woman sees a hot man, nothing happens in her brain?

52 thoughts on “A response to: Why we think women activists should change their attitude of “wear what you like”

  1. I’m so bored of reading this line of argument that puts the blame on male sexuality and how it’s oh-so-uncontrollable. The clitoris is the only part of the human anatomy that exists for no other purpose than giving the person sexual pleasure. And that part is in the female of the species. That should ‘logically’ mean that women go around sexually abusing men so they can satisfy themselves. Historically, patriarchal cultures have sought to curtail aggressive female sexuality – practices like clitoridectomy, the horror surrounding the exposure of nipples (you can show as much breast as you want but no nipples – nipples react to sexual pleasure and erotic thoughts and are aggressive), shaving of body hair (which indicates adulthood) are all examples of this.
    What galls me is how so many men think they can speak so authoritatively about female sexuality without knowing zilch. I wish there was a mechanism for these men to get into my head one day and find out what goes on inside. I’m betting they’d be very surprised.

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  2. Wearing scantily clad clothing is not provocation in a sexual way. To men, it’s a direct undermining of their “power” and “authority” in society. When a woman dresses the way she wants to, she is exerting her own right of choice, which is a dangerous thing in an oppressive society that does all it can to tell people that they are not allowed to do what they want.

    So what does a man do when a girl “disobeys” the convention as it were? He “teaches her a lesson”, and then proceed to defend themselves using the tired excuse of “She was asking for it.” It’s NOT about sex, period. It’s about a women taking the reins over their own life, which flies in the face of the power that patriarchy holds in this society. Rape, when masked with this excuse, often seems to me like an attempt to re-establish the power in male dominant society.

    What people often forget when talking about rape is that women who are NOT scantily clad also get raped. What is your excuse there? What about women who are wearing sweats and a hoodie? What about women who are wearing sarees, or shalwar kameez, or even a burqa? All of the women who wear such clothing get raped also. Is it about sex then as well, or what? Male chauvinists will then argue that in such cases, the female was “withholding” sex, which is again just another way to establish power. Basically, the bottom line with patriarchy is, “Do what we tell you, even if our order is for you to walk ten miles without moving from your spot.” Such institutions are, at their base, completely hypocritical.

    My solution for people who balk at scantily clad women is to carry a blindfold at all times. That way, if you are ever subjected to such horrors, put your blindfold on so that you don’t have to see it. Or better yet, if men can’t trust themselves not to rape, they shouldn’t leave the house.

    And if that last bit sounds like lunacy to you, then that is exactly how women feel when you tell us to stay at home and cover ourselves up. Treating us like criminals isn’t going to solve anything if nobody wants to look at the root cause.

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    • Ironically, the author offers one bit of (I think) sound advice when they mention this: “But we are also a society that denies young people to mix and derive whatever pleasures can be received from companionship.”

      I think a lot of problems could be solved if young men and women could just be allowed to talk to each other and be friends without having aspersions cast upon anyone’s character. It would allow for men to realize that women are nothing but human beings with their own thoughts and desires, and that no, you do not have an uncontrollable sex drive that causes you to rape. It would also allow women to understand that same fact, and that it’s okay for them to also assert themselves in the face of men without fear.

      At the end of the day, we’re all just human beings. It’s not hard to treat everyone like that.

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      • Agree!

        I was watching an old bollywood movie yesterday and was again struck by the fact that consensual kissing had to be glossed over (showing two flowers, heroine ducking and running away etc).. but rape scenes and mock-rape item numbers were shown at great length. A society that freaks out if people in love hold hands but watches rape without qualms. No wonder we have problems!

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      • The gender segregation along with the sexualization of women is a problem. Men begin to see them as objects. If they werent seperated thy would see the as human beings.

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      • I am reminded of our cab driver who ferried us from office to home when I worked in India 10 yrs ago. He had told me in Hindi , translated here “I do not want my 6 yr old daughter to study and work. If she works she has to shake hands with men and I do not like that. When she is 12-13 I will get her married, and she will handle her home and husband.” I told him that it was against law to get her married at that age and added that he should educate his daughters so that they are financially independent. He said ‘who cares, madam? Girls should not be allowed to study too much and mingle with men. They will get spoilt. Girls should not move so closely with boys. They should get married and be with husband”. No amount of talking by me and my colleagues about being liberal convinced him. Things do not seem to have changed even after a decade…

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    • //Wearing scantily clad clothing is not provocation in a sexual way. To men, it’s a direct undermining of their “power” and “authority” in society//

      This.

      Clothes are a symbol of how much a woman is in control, not how attractive she is looking, which is why a sari that shows more skin than salwar kurta or jeans worn with a loose kurta or Tshirt is seen as protection against rapes.

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      • Historically, clothing that restricts the movement of a woman, i.e. a Saree or any form or traditional skirt, like ghagra, lehnga etc., have been given patriarchal approval since it obviously in some way enforces a stronger position on men, judging by the fact that men’s clothing has always been easier to walk and stand and sit it and doesn’t confine them in any way that women’s clothes do. So in no way is ‘skin show’ actually of any concern to men, it’s actually the empowerment women receive by wearing clothes that make movement easier and more comfortable that threatens misogynists. This also explains this whole antagonism against jeans and the ‘denim generation’ that traditionalists have.
        A recent college public poll (DU) that involved men and women, stated that skirts still received some sort of ‘social approval’ on campus over shorts. Sort of explains the above in a modern context.
        Ages ago, in Maharashtra, a movement of sorts against this was the Marathi Saree or the ‘Kasta’ saree, the same 9 yards of silk but draped in such a way that it separates the legs and thus makes movement easier for women.
        The Salwar Kurta is more recent than the Kasta saree, and in some parts of this country even wearing this versus a saree is seen as ‘rebellion’.
        So it definitely is not how attractive a woman looks in a certain kind of clothing that umm.. (in want of a better word) ‘incites’ rapes but actually the ‘power’ she is subtly enforcing through her choice of clothes.

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  3. “these men tend to lose control and might rape them or their children”

    This person makes rape sound inevitable. I manage to hear damaging non-sense like this and still not kill anyone, so clearly provocation does not inevitably lead to a crime! They use a very active tone for women’s clothing ‘you aren’t proving anything by dressing provocatively’.. and yet they use an extremely passive tone for rapists ‘tend to lose control’. Is it that hard to accept that a criminal is responsible for the crime he commits? Men are fully capable of ‘controlling’ themselves. Rapists don’t control themselves because they don’t have to. They don’t expect serious repercussions and society tells them they are ‘entitled’ to rape and even finds excuses for them (like this letter). So why bother with control?

    This is rape culture. This is victim blaming.

    The authors have failed to establish that clothes can even be ‘provoking’. What systematic study have they cited to prove that clothes can provoke? Did they do any comparisons between rape in countries where women wear head to toe burkhas and countries like the UK where they dress as they like? Rape is lower in countries where the power gap between men and women is lower and their rights are taken seriously.. NOT where they wear more clothes.

    Over 95% rapes are planned and done by people known to the victim. How did the authors jump from this to ‘the rapist saw an item number!’? Are they seriously saying that once a man has an erection, he turns into some crazy lunatic for days or months until he can rape someone, even a child? I call this the myth of the self-guiding penis. Do the authors realise that men also have brains?

    I will await their next letter about murders and how we should all shave our armpits to avoid being murdered. Irrelevant? Yes, exactly.

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    • “Over 95% rapes are planned and done by people known to the victim.” <- This statement is so key. People ALWAYS fail to realize that the strange man raping a strange woman crime, while horrible, is not really the norm. The lesser known rapes that fail to make the news are often those done by people who are known to the victim, and often times the victim is NOT scantily dressed by society's standards when it happens.

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  4. First off, I’m still pretty shocked at how people continue to write articles like the one you’ve dissected here. I have to pinch myself to accept the reality that this is true and common and it’s 2013! I think your 2 questions / answers pretty much hit the nail on the whole issue.

    The one on “what is provocative dressing” and the one where minors were involved and what their crime was!

    I love how 2 simple questions pretty much close the argument on this issue. How is it that we rarely find writers responding to these?!

    And how is it that this particular question that the writer in your article as raised – is one that fundamentalist right wing nuts in every country ask?! This is probably one of the few things I’d say I’ve heard not just in a society as gender regressive as ours but in the US, UK and many other places as well. I think you should consider asking people to literally copy paste those 2 questions and answers you have above and start reblogging them around … as almost a mantra, a campaign and a readymade answer to anyone that poses this misogynistic question of “how do we make women stop dressing provocatively to prevent rape”.

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  5. IHM – I wanted to compose a comment on his blog myself. But realized I will never be able to do justice to my disagreement. Only when it appears on this blog, your voice along with your readers’ comments will make the blogger realize what kind of a chauvinist / misogynist post that is. Thanks for posting this IHM!

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      • i compiled the below comment for his blog and then realized he was a writer and has published books! (even more shocked!!) ans so edited a little..(scared a bit that he might take revenge!). i’m new to this blog reading and hence all this precautions!

        //Why we think women activists should change their attitude of “wear what you like” \\

        ‘we’ who? who is giving anybody a right to decide how someone’s attitude should be?

        //A man can’t – deliberately and consciously – control his sexual urge, it’s a natural thing. Even if he controls, it will slip up at times. \\

        This is the kind of lame excuse PERVERTS will use!

        //And slip-ups are where assault and rape happen.\\

        so rape is just a slip up! so when someone is raped, you would say, ‘chill, it is just a slip-up dear.’ – i bet you won’t.

        //An illiterate man may see naked pictures but then may entice a 4-year old with offer of candy because he doesn’t know the law and never reads the papers.\\

        i guess only because he(illiterate) was very much aware that the kid wouldnt dare to inform others, he chose her. otherwise he would have chose anybody!

        //with whoever it is in his power to entice as victim. That’s how child rape happens.\\

        this is how ANY rape happens!

        we should realize rape is about POWER. Any forced sex is RAPE. Even if it is between husband and wife or a prostitute.

        //So where does the desperate man go? To a brothel that’s fifty kilometres away? He is too lazy to do that.\\

        too lazy?!? so the name we give to the rapist who rapes a child is – LAZY MAN!! My God, please take me away from this PERVERTED society!

        anybody has a RIGHT to wear what he/she likes. If a girl is raped, it is because of the PERVERT MINDSET of the rapist or not anything else! and if the same girl reports but does not get justice instead gets blamed(like.. see this is why you dress PROPERLY, this is why you should NOT go to pub etc), it is because of the PERVERTED SOCIETY which consists of MAJORITY OF PEOPLE LIKE who makes excuses for rapists!!!

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        • I scrolled down his blog. He seems to use the royal we, at least when he is not talking about himself in the third person.

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  6. The only thing that will work with people who think like this “A man can’t – deliberately and consciously – control his sexual urge, it’s a natural thing. Even if he controls, it will slip up at times” is social stigmatization. Clearly, this person is capable of being a rapist and should be treated as such.

    There’s no point in arguing with these people–ignore them and elect people into office who think differently so new laws can be put up.

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  7. I stopped right here to comment.
    “A man’s sexuality is such that he is easily aroused.
    No, don’t misunderstand. A woman wants a man’s sexuality to be more like her own. But, that’s where you go wrong, honey. A man can’t – deliberately and consciously – control his sexual urge, it’s a natural thing. Even if he controls, it will slip up at times.”
    This is utter BULLSHIT that men like the writer WANT to believe. And this is used to control women. That’s all.
    Will go back and read the rest now.

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    • Besides if men are beings who cannot control their sexual urge, THEY are the ones who should be locked up so that the rest can live in peace. I think I have already said this a zillion times.
      And I am literally shivering with anger after reading this:
      //”An illiterate man may see naked pictures but then may entice a 4-year old with offer of candy because he doesn’t know the law and never reads the papers. All he knows is he wants to do it, with whoever it is in his power to entice as victim. That’s how child rape happens.”//
      Have we just connected illiteracy and lack of knowledge of law to rape of children. WHO in this world does not know that you should not have sex with children or rape them? They need education for that?!! They need to know the law for that?!!!! Stop any uneducated, illiterate man on the road and ask him this question whether it is okay to molest a child because he has uncontrollable sexual urges and see what he answers. Talk about thinking up excuses for reprehensible crimes! Shame on such excuses. So those who read the paper and know their law don’t rape?! Oh wow!

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      • Yes, apparently men need to read the law to know that raping a 4 year old is wrong.

        I think the author himself sounds like a dangerous person. I also agree that people who genuinely believe that men are unable to control their ‘urges’ should lobby to have men locked up.. and if this man feels he cannot control his own urges, he should go lock himself up before he becomes ‘aroused’!

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    • You are entirely correct. This is nonsense.

      Women and men both experience desire and lust. How often, under which circumstances, and with what strength varies widely from individual to individual, some experience little and seldom, others experience these feelings as strong and frequent. This is true for both women and men.

      But nobody is a slave to his, or her, desires. We all have the ability to choose what we *do* — even though we don’t get to choose what we *feel*. We cannot simply decide not to feel anger, but we can decide not to punch people. We cannot simply decide -not- to feel attracted to a person, or not to be aroused by something, but we can decide what we *do* about it.

      In reality, women are generally best treated and most seldom assaulted in those countries where they enjoy the most freedom, including the freedom to choose what to wear. In Scandinavia you can wear a bikini, and are very unlikely to suffer any harm from this, meanwhile in Egypt you can wear very conservative clothing but nevertheless suffer harassment, catcalls and unwanted hands touching you every month.

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      • I totally agree Agrajag. This distorted view that people have about sexuality of men and women, uncontrollable in the former and lacking in the latter, is really disturbing.

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  8. I was shocked to read how child rape is being justified, of all things! He actually said that illiterate men could lure a child with candy and be induced to rape him/her because of all the ‘sex’ around us!!! Really, do we need education to know that raping a child or any one for that matter is wrong?

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  9. Ok, I’m offended all over again. I can’t control my sexual urges?? Wtf!

    Let me state for the record that even if the most beautiful woman in the world is naked in front of me and she says she doesn’t want me to touch her I will keep my hands firmly in my pockets. If she tells me she doesn’t like me looking at her, I won’t do that either.

    Tell you what, let’s see how many men get “uncontrollable urges” around well protected women with body guards.

    Oh, nothing happens?

    Yeah, I thought so.

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    • That’s an EXCELLENT point !

      Somhow, “urges” are always controllable if following the desire would have immediate negative consequences for the assaulter. This pretty strongly suggest that they darn well -can- control themselves, when they actually want to.

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  10. OMG! This is all that i can say. This person or whatever it is having a blog? Also wrote books? Which types? Books that justify rape and pedofily? I think such men should live in jungle but even there the animals will not accept them. Even an animal is having soul and compassion. Even the most uneducated man if is having soul and believe in good things will never think to rape a woman, and definitely not a child. Everywhere in the world sex is selling and is used in movies, media, advertisements but this don’t mean that men will rape to every corner just because they are sexualy frustrated. If you are so weak that you can’t control your sexuality then kill yourself but don’t use the poor children. Are rapes all over the world but all over the world with few exceptions rape is a crime. Rapists are punished inside the jail too if they raped a child. I can say to this “nobody” that wrote such things and also to all men that think worst then animals : Control your needs and if you can’t then kill yourself and do a favour to the humanity. As for all rest poor men that are sexualy frustrated but not having criminal genes i remember you one thing: YOUR LEFT ( RIGHT) HAND IS YOUR BEST FRIEND! And always a short one is more good then a woman! This is said by western men usually!

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  11. “A man can’t – deliberately and consciously – control his sexual urge, it’s a natural thing. Even if he controls, it will slip up at times.” Do I sense empathy in his words for those who rape? Is he actually defending their actions? :shock: Oh boy, then this ‘writer’ is just as dangerous as them! People with such thoughts need t be ostracized!

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  12. This thinking is too similar to what a school in Chennai taught students (was working there for a short while, didn’t study there thankfully). This school is well-renowned, produces excellent results (the only criteria parents look for in an apparently an overly-academic South India). These words of wisdom were packaged and marketed as the ‘come, come, go, go culture’.

    Girls who follow this culture ask a boy to ‘come, come’ closer until they find it thrilling and fun, and once they feel uncomfortable, they want the boy to ‘go, go’. But then, why would the boy go? He’s already come so close, and he’d feel sore going back, especially when he realizes that the girl was asking him to ‘come, come’ only for fun.
    I also want to point out that the Principal would demonize the Bangalore “pub culture” – girls from Bangalore who did “things” and “got into trouble”.. “those” types, you know. There is no way a Principal should be speaking so low-down; completely unfit of a leader.

    If you see a school teaching this en-masse to thousands of kids, what kind of adults do you expect in the country? This gentleman is probably a product of a prestigious school like the one I mentioned.

    Btw, I’m looking for a couple opinions, does anyone else think that Chennai is too conservative for its own good? I seemed to find more conservative (read backward) men and women out there than any other big city I’ve lived in. In my professional experience, I found it difficult to work with women there, they have inhibitions even in professional interaction with men, it appeared to be culturally ingrained.

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    • I grew up feeling like my body wasnt my own that it belonged to others. I grew up with immigrant parents who told me my body belonged to my future husband and that I should save myself for marriage. I also was taught that he was the only one that was allowed to see my body. I felt like I had no control that my body belonged to my parents and then my future husband. I longed to wear the cute clothes my friends wore; skirts, shorts, skimpy dresses.

      Now when i wear skimpy clothing i feel like im in control that i own my body.

      For me clothes have always been political.

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      • I agree with you. All in fact is political. Keep people in the “dark”, don’t let them have acces much to education, don’t let them to develop, don’t let them to be in control, to have a personal thinking, don’t give them the chance to see what bad things are happening behind their back. Be the protector of an old and patriarchal culture ( no matter if is good or bad) just to be sure that you will have a seat in government and the oportunity to steal money and have advantages. Do you really believe that somebody care so much of culture? And what culture? If we think to the begining the hindu culture was never restrictive when was about sexuality and way to dress. When all changed? I think you all know answer! And then what culture is protected there? As much as people will not have a voice will be easy for them to do whatever they want with money that belongs to people and the country. And all in the name of culture. People starving, electricity is going every day in almost all parts of India, water supply is not existing in many parts, infrastructure is bad, garbage is everywhere, buildings are old and not maintained, social surety is inexistent, people die because the lack of medical care, minimum education is not available for all the people, and they have lavish lifes, money in their accounts outside India, holidays in foreign countries and many others facilities for them and their families. And they come and talk about how a woman should dress, how weak is the man, culture of arranged marriages and other stupid things that anyway don’t matter for them but matter for the oldies that don’t understand what is happening and coming to vote them. Only young generation can change all. They have the power to go to the vote and to vote young and educated persons that maybe will change the rules. A nation is changed by the people, by her leaders. India is powerfull and beautiful country. If all people will try to forget about minor things like religion, caste,culture problems, hate and will fight together for their rights they will have a better India, a better life.

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    • I’m from Chennai, but I haven’t lived there in years so I wouldn’t know the culture there at present. Perhaps my parents are ruined by all the Western influences from living out here too long, but they are quite forward-thinking in many ways (and backwards in others of course). I was never ever exposed to the kind of things taught in that school, and everyone I know has always told me that I need to be forward and assertive, even with men, because only when you ask for things are you given them.

      That being said, all those lessons on being assertive was always followed up with a “Always be perfectly clear that you are assertive only on academic/career related subjects. Don’t ever get too friendly with men.” So in my personal experience, it’s been a double edged sword.

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  13. “A man can’t – deliberately and consciously – control his sexual urge, it’s a natural thing. Even if he controls, it will slip up at times.”
    I have 2 things to say to you – (1) stop insulting men and (2) those who say this for themselves need to be locked up.

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  14. I think this argument sounds like a threat – “Don’t try to be independent, don’t assert yourself, don’t question, and in doing so, don’t test my patience, coz I might just rape you.”
    I’ve seen this is numerous films, growing up. The woman is assertive, mouthing off people, does what she wants, wears Western clothes. She is taught a lesson by being raped by a man. Then she comes to her senses and almost kills herself, only to be rescued by the same man. She then marries him and becomes docile and wears sarees for the rest of her life.
    Even our films are better now, I haven’t seen such ‘rape as a lesson’ story lines in recent years, so why is a ‘writer’ being so regressive?

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  15. Regressive thinking. I’m thinking it is his age and the era and situation he was brought up in. I can compare it to my own parents who thought wearing jeans, sleeveless or even leggings in our small town would invite unwanted trouble. But on the other hand the person is educated and is a writer himself. Why would he write such utter bullshit? And what would be the lives of his own children like? I shudder to think of it.
    I don’t want to respond to such non-sense. As someone else said in above comments. We should carefully elect open minded people to power who can make proper laws about harassment/molestation/rape/eve-teasing etc.
    It is time we grew up as a nation. Repressing women and their rights doesn’t figure as a step there.
    To all the men who think like Mr. John P. Matthew, grow up and stop defending crimes and criminals. Everybody has a right to do what they want with their body. You are nobody to question that right.

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