Immoral policing: A guest post by Carvaka.
I think the terms ‘moral policing’ are very confusing for everyone. In order to police our morals, don’t people first need a consistent code to police them against? If the code changes according to the whims and fancies of people, then one might mistake the ‘policing’ for harassment and bullying!
I am stepping in to help the moral brigade avoid such allegations. I shall outline their sensible and consistent views. In honor of my delicious glass of wine, today’s topic is alcohol.
1) It is perfectly moral for men to drink alcohol. They are victims themselves if they commit crimes while drunk!
Have you come across rural women’s groups trying to curb alcoholism in their men? Local activists say they largely fail due to lack of support from the police1. These silly women!
You say some men died due to adulterated alcohol2? Should we ban men from bars ‘for their own good’? How absurd. This is not like Andhra Pradesh banning women from pubs after 10 for their own good. Totally different.
You complain about Mumbai with the dance bar ban and the Dhoble club raids? Why, we never disturbed the countless seedy little ‘permit rooms’ for men! Dance bars and high-end clubs have women, now THAT’s crossing a line.
When we report rapes and murders by men, we specify if the man had been drinking3. How is this relevant, you ask? It’s a mitigating circumstance! What could the poor guy do?
2) It is immoral for women to drink alcohol. Any random man may hit/ molest/ assault women to teach them a lesson.
You complain about the hitting/ molesting? Oh, come on. Random men molesting your daughter is EXACTLY like you disciplining her. Just ask the National Commission of Women!
NCW on the Mangalore morning mist case (a group of goons assaulted teenagers at a PRIVATE party)4:
“If you see a woman trying to jump into the well, you will not have time to think whether she was clad or not. This was a similar case. Won’t you beat a child when she does a mistake? Necessity knows no law”
Delhi Commission of Women on policemen assaulting a woman who was drinking with a friend in a private car last week5:
“We scold and hit our children when they do wrong. If the girl was drunk and the police had to take some steps, then I don’t think that it is wrong”
You don’t mind your daughter being in a pub? But we fabricate such quality stories of drunken girls being a nuisance!
Remember the drunk girl in Guwahati creating a nuisance and rightly beaten by locals6? Actually, that didn’t turn out as planned.
How about those drunken underage girls DRINKING and PARTYING7? They told you they were not underage? Damn it, why won’t they keep silent out of shame?
In fact, when we report a sexual crime on a woman, we always specify if she had been drinking8. Yes, you guessed it – mitigating circumstance. What could the poor rapist do?
3) Women should not dance in clubs and bars. Dancing is immoral. Except at our own events.
We banned all sorts of dancing in Bangalore. One can’t be too careful these days9.
Dance bars? No, no, this is against ‘Indian culture’. Here are the moral things we said in parliament when banning them10:
“These women who are opposing the ban, we will make their mothers dance… These women who dance naked (nanga nach), they don’t deserve any sympathy… it was more dignified to commit suicide than dance in bars”
We do enjoy a bit of tease in form of ‘tamasha’ dancing though11. Also we organize ‘item number’ at our own parties12. Totally different!
4) Use the words ‘prostitutes’ and ‘rave party’ repeatedly in the media. The target audience is well trained to react to these.
Raiding a pub? Arrest all the women (say prostitutes) there13. Talk about drugs too14.
The Mangalore morning mist party was a ‘rave’ party and the girls were going to be trafficked4. The police found no sign of either? Maybe people are right about the police not doing their job well!
Even people who have never been to a club know that “80% of women there are prostitutes and these are rave parties”15.
Some of us are sure that “House wives, moms and sisters in India are now severely addicted to pub life and now gone one step further towards drugs and prostitution“16. Didn’t you know?
Never mind that the morality cops were caught for corruption and custodial death17. They are SO moral.
One would think that the authorities’ job is to be unbiased and maintain law and order, not to sponsor one group in attacking another. If they were acting unconstitutionally against a religious group, would it be accepted as ‘religious policing’? Why are we so confused when it comes to ‘moral policing’?
15. Translated quote from: http://www.channel4.com/programmes/unreported-world/episode-guide/series-2012/episode-13