“Such mannequins will excite men and pose a danger to women.”

Do they really not see what can help control sexual crimes against women and children is not a ban on mannequins or sexuality, but a ban on challenging misconceptions about sexual crimes and misogyny, specially amongst those who are expected to help control such crimes?

What would help is ensuring that the Police, and and the people they serve are aware that it’s not against Indian culture to report sexual crimes.

Letting men and women know that everybody, including wives, prostitutes and provocatively dressed own their bodies and have a right to say No and Yes.

Educating men and women that Only Yes means Yes.  And that a lack of No is not Yes.

They should also know that not-following (any definition of) ‘Indian culture’ is perfectly legal and is not an invitation to be raped. That no matter what kind of social or personal lives women lead – no rapists should be told directly or indirectly that it’s okay to rape them.

Sounds obvious? Not to everybody 😦

Link shared by Mr GVjee

To fight sex crimes, BMC clears proposal to ban lingerie on mannequins

In a move to prevent “wrong acts” by men and to provide for women safety, the  Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation has cleared a proposal banning the display of lingerie on mannequins in Mumbai, reported CNN-IBN.

This is the extension of the same mindset that believes that watching porn, or watching attractive looking women makes men commit sexual crimes. That rapes are committed by helpless men who lost control when they were provoked.


79 thoughts on ““Such mannequins will excite men and pose a danger to women.”

  1. The same old belief that men get “provoked” and that is the reason for rape. How sad that we have come to this stage where lingerie wearing mannequins should be banned. 😦


  2. Not only does it not help, it actually harms.

    It’s pretty hard to develop a normal healthy relationship to women, if you’re told that even glancing at them is dangerous or sinful or likely to lead you to do the most horrible things. And having healthy and normal friendships with a variety of people, is the best way to avoid misogynism and sexism. If you’ve got several friends who are women, you are unlikely to think that women are somehow lesser human beings.

    The same message is sent to women: that men are dangerous, and that most men would go berserk and sexually assault you if they catched even the smallest glimpse of some body-part or other. This is completely ridicolous, and harmful, because this too, undermines a normal relationship between people of different gender.

    Besides, it’s also insulting. I’m not going to be a danger to you, unless you attack me first. I don’t care if you’re wearing a Burqa or if you are completely nude. I don’t care if you’ve never tasted a drop of alcohol in your life, or if you’re so drunk you are unable to stand up. I don’t care if you’re in a church or in a bar. I don’t care if you’ve flirted with me all night. No matter what you do, I’m not a danger to you. This, I feel confident, is true for the huge majority of men.

    But you don’t get to discover that, if you’ve been scared into avoiding contact with men.

    It’s not a purely Indian problem either; I had a girlfriend once who was convinced that once a certain point is passed, men become animals and unable to control themselves. It took months of patience and slow building of trust to slowly show her that at *every* point along the road, I’m safe. No, kissing me won’t turn me into an animal. No, kissing me passionately will also not make me somehow unable to control myself. No doing other increasingly intimate things with me will *also* not at any point make me into anyone else than the person I am.


      • Loved this comment. When men are not taught how to be around a woman and how to deal with the sexual energy a woman arouses in them and taught instead the the sexual energy is evil and bad, we get misogyny


        • I don’t even believe that. This is part of the myth: that all men generally have an overabundance of sexual energy, or horniness or whatever you want to call it, that they need to learn to control and “deal with”, while the same isn’t true for women.

          I think it’s more that women are shamed and called “sluts” and worse things if they dare to -express- sexual desire, therefore they don’t express it, which leads some to believe that they don’t experience it at all. But anyone who’s been in a relationship with enough trust that both feel free to express their desires, knows that women sometimes desire sex, just like men sometimes do.

          The converse, that men *always* desire sex, is also not true. And also harmful. It even leads some to think that sexually assaulting a male is not possible, since presumably a male would always welcome any sexual contact. That’s not true at all.


      • Agrajag, I never stated that men are sexual and women are not. I was talking about how misogyny is perpetuated in societies. You fear and hate what you don’t understand – evil spirits, people were scared of lightning once upon a time.

        To make it more gender neutral – when nobody tells you how to deal with your sexual energy in a healthy fashion, and instead they demonize it and teach you to hate the cause of sexual arousal instead of accepting sexual energy as a natural beautiful force, sexuality and certain people are treated badly – in this context women


        • I know, and I apologize if I gave a different impression. I just wanted to publicly state it, since you used men as an example, and many people apparently believe that lust is something that only (or atleast mostly) men experience. I don’t think -you- believe that, infact you’ve made it perfectly clear that you don’t.


    • //”that men are dangerous, and that most men would go berserk and sexually assault you”//
      This was how I was brought up. You cannot imagine the superhuman effort it needed to undo this conditioning.


      • I can imagine it. I lived together with a woman who was brought up the same way for more than 2 years. Yes it is difficult. But the good news is that it’s doable. It takes more time to develop trust when you come from such a background, but it’s always going to be possible.


    • Exactly, it IS harmful. It is unhealthy for regular men and women and breaks their understanding of the opposite sex. It also actively provides excuses for criminals such as rapists and shifts away the responsibility of their act from them. It is extremely harmful. In fact it is exactly the kind of thinking and ‘culture’ that got us into this mess!


    • I have to agree entirely on your comment. This attitude isn’t restricted to grown-up men, there are even schools in India that teach men/women the very same things.

      I had this weirdo school that ‘produces excellent results’ in my neighborhood when I worked in Chennai – it prided itself on the way it ‘protected girls’ (that’s their marketing term). ALL girls are taught during the initiation day how to wear the Dupatta right so that boys wouldn’t ‘be tempted’ and they’d be safe, or how to bend over (apparently in labs) in an ‘appropriate’ way. Worse even, there was a minimum width on the dupatta – teachers could choose to measure it to make sure girls were being ‘safe’. And the boys were taught that talking to women would result in your ‘discipline marks’ getting cut, with no further explanations made whatsoever. Why ever have a co-ed school with so many restrictions? More money perhaps?

      The kids in that school grew up stunted, in a very weird and unexplainable way. I had this boy in my flat who would shirk any contact with girls vehemently – he would suddenly run away if a girl came over to where he was (beach, cricket ground, what not), and wouldn’t talk to girls even out of need. Other guys had to broker conversations on his behalf. I tried talking to him and understanding why – he’d lost his school topper position because he talked to a girl and lost ‘discipline marks’.

      I can’t believe we have schools preaching utter nonsense to thousands of kids in the formative years of life. This has to be about the worst thing I’ve heard of in India.


      • That is so true! As a child, even I used to be in a co-ed school. And when I told my mom about the friends I made, If they were girls, my mom would ask me to call them home, if they were guys, she would ignore my talks with a scorn and advise me to make friends only with girls. Guys were bad news for her. From where she comes, she believes that a girl and a guy can never be friends!
        So every time I hung out with guys outside of school I would be nervous and guilty. “What if someone sees and tells mom!” were always on my mind.
        Fortunately, my mind told me that making friends with guys was not a bad thing as mom said, and I still went around school making as many friends I wanted, both girls and guys. The only thing that changed, my mom, to this date, does not know 90% of my friends as they are guys.
        I wish, she knew. But, I know If she comes to know she will freak out!


        • I have a penpal in Iran, I’ve known her for a long time, and we’re close so by now she’s more than a penpal, she is a friend. This confused her parents a lot.

          At first they thought, my intention must be to start a romance, and to perhaps marry her. Or else, I was just interested in sex. But there was never any romance between us, and even the parents had to admit after a while that if a Norwegian guy wants to find someone for the purpose of having sex with them, there are easier ways than sending letters to Iran.

          The idea that a woman and a man could simply be *friends* and have fun talking to eachother, while learning a lot about each others cultures, never occured to them.


        • My point was more about institutionalizing stupidity into the minds of children, as opposed to having families be backward-thinking. I studied in one such retarded place, and took 2 years of growing up at my workplace to learn that I was being incredibly stupid. I visited my school and suggested to my principal that such ideas are unhealthy, and I learnt it the hard way. She denied that the school ever had such rules and it was my mistake that I didn’t interact with girls. Now that I realize it, everything was set up for plausible deniability; you would receive bad treatment from teachers when you spoke to girls, you would notice that you get lesser leeway in other smaller mistakes (not polishing shoes, not ironing clothes), but nobody would ever ask you not to speak to a girl. My principal deserves to be sacked for raising a bunch of stunted kids. She’s the woman who’s a real danger to society, not the average woman who is wearing jeans/shorts.

          Btw, coming to family, opposite gender friends is a grey area in families. I had to hide my girl friends from dad. Dad was, and is still not okay with it. He visited me in my current city of residence (when I’m in my late 20s) and that’s the FIRST time I brought a few girl friends home, to show him that employed/career women aren’t a threat to society (well… depends on their occupation, but the average employed woman isn’t :P)

          Good conversation with you, thanks!


        • Oh I totally know that attitude. My dad once made the ‘Hay and Fire’ comment about boy-girl relationships.

          Hay and fire are nearby means it will catch fire it seems. /facepalm


      • OMG, such schools exist? Why keep a co- ed school at all if you want to keep weird rules? you know that’s why i believe education – mere degrees does nothing to a person’s mentality ! Obviously, people who run these schools are highly educated – you need to be atleast a graduate with Mphil or M’ed to become a principal !


        • Unfortunately do.. the kids at that school are a little awkward in behavior with people of the opposite gender. I attended an annual day performance at that school, and one boy (something like late teens) was visibly uncomfortable sitting next to a girl singer. I guess he was worried if he was being judged; after all, it was the boys who lost marks, not the girls.

          Poor kids 😦


    • //This, I feel confident, is true for the huge majority of men.//

      I am not so sure, Agrajag. Not in India in any case. I have heard too many men spouting misogyny, heaping scorn on ‘modern’ women, equating feminism with foolishness and believing that women who frequent bars ask for it, to believe that views such as yours constitute the views of the majority 😦


      • Neither argument can be quantified or compared 🙂 ‘too many’ and ‘huge majority’ are not quantities that can be compared 🙂


        • Yes, not comparable in absolute terms, but in relative terms, maybe? A majority denotes anything above 50% so I would peg a huge majority to be somewhere above 75%, no?

          Only meant to say that in my (no doubt limited) experience, men with an outlook as liberal and accommodating as Agrajag’s are few and far between and certainly nowhere near a majority. I am, of course, talking about men in India.

          On the other hand, I may have missed the point– he may have meant to say that a vast majority of men are physically as capable of exercising restraint as he is, if only they wish to do so. In that case, I fully agree 🙂


      • @scribblehappy I was just poking a little fun at you 🙂
        Seriously though, liberal thinking is far and few in India, for both men and women.

        Even with women, the number of women who aren’t liberal is surprisingly large. Many girls (and parents) that I met during arranged marriage matches have really pathetic attitudes like ‘what good is a boy who doesn’t make good money?’. I rejected so many matches based off this one criteria. My friend’s wife keeps worrying if his friends are making more money than him; she pushes him to earn more and more – switch jobs, work more, questions why does he own a sedan while we own a hatchback? She’s educated, but she won’t step into the workforce. Yet another friend’s wife makes unreasonable demands, asking for the same level of comfort that her parents provided her; she won’t move an inch to get that done. Yet another won’t let her husband play cricket after marriage because it is ‘inappropriate’.

        All said and done, life’s hard for us guys too. Of course, not as hard as it is for you women 🙂


        • Yeah, life’s hard for Indian guys too 🙂 I never saw it that way till I met my current boyfriend. He has lovely parents , but his extended family-who interact nearly daily with his folks- have been hard on him for choosing higher studies over joining the workforce, for deciding to marry me despite his older brother marrying a woman everyone heartily disapproved of, and for his desire to live abroad and never go back.
          The ‘good’ men in his family are those that never left home and had arranged marriages. These men broke up with their long term girlfriends at the behest of their parents, gave up on dreams to study and live outside India and are held up as examples to the younger lot.


        • Yep desidaaru, my own girlfriend said the same thing 🙂 she thought we guys had it easy all the time 🙂


        • I agree Niketan that women support these attitudes too. A lot of women (along with men) help keep patriarchy in place – which penalizes both men and women. People who try to get away from regressive attitudes are always fewer – both in men and women – and they have a harder time, because they’re going against the grain. People like to cling to whatever’s familiar, even if it’s unpleasant. In India, we have so much fear drilled into us – fear of questioning, fear of change.


    • Once, MIL and I were in the kitchen.She said the balconies of the building nextdoor are smaller than ours.I said ‘Really?’ and stepped into the kitchen balcony to check.At the same time,a couple of men stepped into the balcony of the neighbouring building and MIL reacted like this – ‘Don’t go.Men.Come back in’. She was breathless havinguttered that broken sentence in a hurry.

      Can you imagine her childhood? How she was brought up, what she was told about the opposite sex,if her conditioning is so deep?
      Surprisingly,she is a retired Matron.Her daughter studied medicine. I wonder often how she managed at her workplace,and in what way she brought up her daughter.
      Sad indeed, when little girls are taught that Men are Taboo!


  3. I’m actually beginning to feel sorry for my husband and sons who seem so easily able to control their lust even when amongst skimpy swimwear clad women.. they an aberration among indian men .
    atleast that’s what all these BMC folks must be thinking right??


    • You joke, but you are completely correct, and this is a point worth mentioning. As a man you do sometimes experience accusations that you’re not “manly” enough if, for example, you sometimes do not desire sex. The assumption being that since men always want sex, if you decline it, then you can’t be a “real man”


        • And yet the society goes to great lengths to control or contain women’s sexuality. How ironic!


      • or for that matter, if you try to please your girlfriend/wife in presence of others. That is still seen as undesirable by people. I had to get rid of some friends who would see me as being too nice to my girlfriend, and too ‘unmanly’ for their liking; they behave like they own their women – expecting them to toe behind, gesturing at them to sit down (what a shame)

        But then, glorious arranged marriage sets up women that way too – if the woman is 4-7 years younger than the man, do you expect the average couple to see it as an equal relationship? After all, we are the society that expects us to call 2-year elder folks ‘bhaiya’ or ‘didi’. I’ve seen guys/guys who go red because I didn’t refer to them as ‘bhaiya’/’didi’. THAT is our very idea of affection – to show that you are superior to another person, and the other person bows down to you.

        I’m only talking about what our society expects, not saying that I endorse any of it.


        • Now that I think about it, NONE of my friendships with elder kids were equal (past high school). They were all ‘bhaiya’ and ‘didi’, to be respected and revered, not to be just similar-minded humans you argued with, played games with and had fun. What a weird and unhealthy sense of affection we have in our society!


        • “THAT is our very idea of affection – to show that you are superior to another person, and the other person bows down to you.”

          This is very true! Actually, there are some nuances. I moved to Mumbai aged 8 and proceeded to call all my new friends who were older than me as bhaiya and didi, only to receive extremely strange looks. I quickly learnt that it wasn’t the done thing in Mumbai! Had to undo all my north indian ‘manners’. I really dislike this forced ‘respect’ and all that now. I could never work in a place where I had to call all me superiors ‘sir’ and ‘madam’, except if I was going to join the army (which I won’t). How can that be good for creativity and productivity?!


        • Yeah Carvaka.. I think this is terribly unproductive. I routinely used to get judged at college for being disrespectful because I just didn’t make a note of it, not that I wanted to be disrespectful. That was the only thing on some seniors’ minds.

          Recently (4 years into career), I met a senior, who was a couple years elder. He’d moved into my city, and I walked over to his house, spent a couple hours chatting, and in the end I asked HIM to keep in touch with me. You wouldn’t believe it – that phrase undid my entire act of walking down and spending couple hours.

          This guy was smart, professionally competent and all. That’s when I realized some people no matter how smart/intelligent, never outgrow their upbringing.


  4. So, let men get excited. What’s the problem with arousal? Arousal is normal and legal. Are these people under the impression that an erection somehow MAKES men rape and kill? Seriously?! I recently read about the myth of the self-guiding penis and this is the perfect example (http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/the-lay-scientist/2013/may/28/nick-ross-platell-rape-men). You would think that once a man has an erection, he becomes a helpless mass of cells attached to this raving mad penis that independently decides to rape/ kill people. Nevermind that we lots of evidence that 95% of rapists are known to their victims are plan their attacks. Who needs proof and logic, right?

    These people keep saying that men cannot help themselves from committing serious and violent crimes.. even against 4-5 year olds apparently who look nothing like the mannequins. If these people really believe men to be so ‘wild’, why don’t they advocate that all men should just be locked up? Who knows what will set them off or ‘excite’ them, right? If they don’t really believe this nonsense, then why don’t they stop their idiotic hypocrisy already! I think lots of regressive idiots are knowingly trying to push their misogyny under the guise of ‘women’s protection’. This attitude is why we have rapes, it’s not because of plastic mannequins!

    Thus we continue to let rapists define how women should live in our society. Now our underwear must become some mysterious clandestine thing. What a great honour for rapists, we continue to reward them in many ways!


  5. Also, why doesn’t anyone talk of banning shivalingas? We worship the shiva-linga and yoni around it and pour liquids on it to keep it wet. Lots of provocation, right?


  6. Part of the great fallacy in Indian thinking that confuses healthy expressions of sexuality with criminal expressions of sexuality.

    You are right about the need for a shift in culture to emphasize individual choice, and the right to say ‘yes’ or ‘no’. The reason, in my opinion, that this is ignored completely by the authorities is that it threatens a culture which by and large prefers not to legitimize individual choice. After all, if every person has the right to say ‘no’ (or even worse, ‘yes’), it brings a level of freedom to society that feels dangerous to them. The whole traditional mindset that society, or a sub-unit such as a family, has the right to impose rules & restrictions for the greater good, will collapse.

    The great fallacy of traditionalists who grew up in such a system is the belief that this collapse will result in an uncoordinated, anarchic society without ethics or morals. Yet all the tolerant and multicultural societies of the world which emphasize individual freedom show this is not the case. Without a coordinated centrally imposed framework of morality, humans do not run around like headless chickens, bereft of morals, but instead develop their own ethical and moral codes which are organic responses to their circumstances and reflections of their own individual feelings. That seems to have worked out just fine. Why? Because as humans, with or without central religions and philosophies held in common, we’re far more similar than we are different. Humans everywhere feel strongly against murder, rape and theft. Humans everywhere seem to prize stable, committed loving relationships, healthy nurturing of children and productive contribution to society in the form of a job or business. These are what the traditionalists consider to be foundational ethics of society, but we don’t need traditional frameworks to uphold them. At least, not anymore, though historically perhaps there was great utility in a shared code of culture that was immensely restrictive of individualism.


    • Loved your comment. What we have in India is a protective, paternalistic attitude to solving problems. The underlying assumption is that people are incapable of good judgement, therefore we must protect them from their own stupidity. What we need to do instead is to treat people like adults and expect them to behave like adults. We need a huge shift in perspective where we expect people to be capable and responsible, and demand that they demonstrate good judgement in a NATURAL environment, one that is not tweaked, modified, restricted, or otherwise distorted.


    • Penn Jillette, the famous American atheist said something similar when confronted by a religious person who said that if we drop religion, then there would be nothing to stop people from raping, murdering and stealing all they want.

      “I *do* rape all I want, and muder all I want”, he said, “The amount of rapes that I want in my life are zero. The amount of murders that I want to committ is zero.”


      • @wordssetmefree Glad you liked the comment 🙂

        @agrajag That’s a great quote.

        I think religion & tradition have a lot in common in terms of inflexibility. They do a good job providing a lot of people peace, comfort and a stable framework. But the flipside is that the same religious / traditional people tend to assume the worst of any change or alternative. I guess it’s the way life goes. Societies change these rigid beliefs when they see clear evidence of people living healthy, happy lives without such a framework, right in front of them. And until that happens it is a process of traumatic change and disagreement for everybody.


        • I think the problem with India is that the desire for a framework or code to life is hammered into every person, and the fear of anarchy comes from the inability to comprehend a society with no ‘moral’ rules. However, as anyone with a brain can conclude, anarchy IS the dominant flavour of India, and the ‘religious’ code has been legally replaced by the Constitution in 1950. Still, everyone and their cousin wants to impose their own set of values- which varies tremendously with the existing one-and engage with the futility of trying to create order from chaos 🙂


      • Ah Penn Jilette 🙂 One of my favorite people in the world and as usual an awesome quote from him. I think you should be fair to him and probably mention that Penn is not just an atheist, but also a libertarian. I really hope you check out how Penn feels about feminism, though.


  7. These people will never understand anything because they live in closed cubicles created by themselves. They just want to believe what they want to and whatever is convenient for them. Otherwise I don’t think any sane person would ban a lifeless mannequin. I also pity those who get ‘provoked’ seeing a lifeless body in lingerie or any other provocative dresses.

    Why don’t they get it that it’s not any ban that is required, but a fast track process of severe punishment which will create a fear in dumb asses and also creating awareness about human rights. Here again, I am using ‘human rights’ and not ‘woman rights’ because I feel this place is no longer safe for men, women and more so for innocent children.

    It’s a pity that nothing much can be done and I am also part of that species which is only barking standing on the pavement and not doing anything to stop such atrocities.


    • No AC so men don’t know they are at home.. what?! Don’t men anyway know that they are at home, considering that they are not allowed to be anywhere else? It’s like these people do not want women to exist at all, they just wish women could apparate into being just to cook and clean and have sex with them and then again disappear. It’s where this indian morality road leads as well.

      Also that other Saudi report.. that guy wants people to molest women to push them back into their homes to avoid any consensual mingling. What kind of a person thinks that molesting someone is moral but consensual mingling is not? How can people be so screwed up? Such blatant oppression!


        • First, they say they don’t want women to work & ask them to stay home. Then, once home, they want them to ensure that their mere presence also is not known, so no AC turned on. And this is a seriously hot country! over 50 deg CELSIUS in the summer! What next? No lights?

          Is there anything in this world that these weirdos will not find provocative?

          And they are such hypocrites! These men go to Bahrain to get all the booze and the women they want. Bahrain is thriving as a country ONLY because of the Causeway that connects them to KSA, cos come weekend, you’ll find all the KSA men are actually outside the booze shops, walking around half-drunk and looking at women like hungry dogs would (I speak from experience. I was in Bahrain for work on a Wednesday, and Thurs was off for KSA at the time).

          I’m sorry I’ve veered off-topic. The mannequin thing is as crazy, and I’m appalled that these are the kind of people who make up laws in our country! They’re no better than these KSA-jerks!


  8. i recently visited mumbai and was impressed with the sense of fashion women had there. the day i returned to chennai, i see this news on TV! what the heck?!


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  10. IHM, I hope you are aware that feminists have been fighting a war on porn for a while. Just wondering what are your thoughts on that.

    Unlike mannequins, internet porn is not displayed on the public street (where you cannot avoid seeing it), internet porn is something a person has to choose to deliberately obtain from the internet. Then, how come feminists are trying to ban a personal choice you make in the privacy of your own home?

    In fact, on International Women’s Day this year, feminists tried to pass legislation in the European Parliament to ban porn across the continent in an apparent bid to “eliminate gender stereotypes”.


    It seems that the assault on freedom is also coming from those who claim to be fighting patriarchy and furthering social justice, no?


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