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Sunday, December 30, 2012

What women want.

Everything.

We want everything. And because these things sometimes contradict, many say we do not know what we want at all.

We want to be given equal opportunities and to be treated equally as our male counterparts. We want to prove that anything a man can do, women can do as well, and sometimes we can do it better. We want the world to know that we are a force to be reckoned with; that we should not be looked down upon or cast aside.

But yet, every single woman still wants to be treated like a precious, helpless damsel by a man. We want men to protect us, open doors for us, carry bags for us, and pay for us. We want to be treated as if we're the most delicate, fragile and precious treasure in existence.

We want to be Wonder Woman. But at the same time, we want to be Superman's Lois Lane. (But never Mary Jane; because noone in their right mind thinks an icky spider is sexy.)


We champion for the glass ceiling to be demolished, and cite pioneers from Amelia Earhart to Aung San Suu Kyi as our inspiration. We lament how women are portrayed as (sexy) secretaries and nurses, instead of company directors and doctors.

We hate the phrase "get back in the kitchen and make me a sandwich" more than anything.

We claim that all males are chauvinist pigs, that believe women should be less smart and successful than their partners, and are only good for keeping house and making babies. We say that they feel threatened (emasculated) by powerful women that they cannot control or predict.

We say "I don't need a man". But then again, we don't see a great amount of women taking it upon themselves to unclog pipes, clean air-conditioner filters, tune car engines, or fix broken appliances and devices. If anything breaks or breaks down, we say that it's a man's duty to fix it.


So what exactly do women want then?

I have no clue. And I dare to say that no woman knows exactly what she wants either, in the neverending battle for gender equality.

But every single woman in the world wants to be respected, and to be treated as an individual with rights and dignity. We want to be treated as contributing members of society, and not viewed as belonging to a lower social class.


We do not want to be raped.

Recently, in the South African country of Swaziland, women have been banned from wearing revealing clothing, which includes (but is not limited to) miniskirts, midriff-baring tops, and low-rise jeans. Offenders can be arrested, and may face a maximum 6 month jail term.

This is in line with the repressive, archaic school of thought, that believe that women that dress sexily and/or act flirtatiously are responsible for any sexual assault, or even rape that happens to them. Some may even go further, to say that such women deserve to be raped, for deliberately tantalising men.

Most of us girls, have been endlessly lectured by our parents for our "overly revealing" choices of clothing. We are given a lecture every time we step out of our rooms wearing anything they consider too short, too tight, or too sheer. And while this is annoying and frustrating, I understand their worries, because they subscribe to this school of thought too.


But I wholeheartedly disagree. And so do many women all over the world, that regularly organise "slut-walks" in protest of this antiquated assumption.

Because no woman "is asking for it", or "deserves it", or "should have known better" when it comes to rape. Not a single woman alive wants to have a dick thrust inside her against her will.

Not the girl wearing short and tight clothing. Not the girl wearing a bikini. Not even a completely naked girl running in the streets. None of these girls should ever be held responsible if they are raped.

They didn't ask for non-consensual sex. They didn't ask to be kidnapped and forced upon and to be sexually abused. They didn't ask for all their self-worth to be taken away, the psychological trauma that will never fully heal, and all the other physical and mental scars that come with it. If they did ask, then it wouldn't even be reported as a rape case. (Assuming this doesn't involve minors below the age of consent.)


So why then, you argue, do women dress sexily? Isn't it to gain sexual attention from men?

To this I must concur. Women dress sexily for many reasons: to feel confident, to show off their assets, to rebel against clothing restrictions, etc. But yes, above all, we dress sexy to make an impression, to turn heads, and to attract attention from men. (Unless you swing in the other direction.)

I agree that dressing sexily may be inappropriate, and I accept that the way you dress will be how others form their opinions on you. Women that dress sexily may be labelled as sluts, may be considered to have loose morales, and may be frowned upon for the way they dress.

But I think this is fair. Society is perfectly entitled to have its own opinion on the personality and moral code of a woman based on how she dresses, and we are all guilty of putting labels on everyone else based on some superficial characteristic. Remember teasing the "nerd", the "crybaby", or the "teacher's pet" back when we were kids?

The labels of "bimbo"/"slut"/"whore" etc, are so commonplace nowadays anyway, that sometimes they don't even sting. And either way, such perceptions can be proven wrong, or failing that, can even be ignored. As long as we have people that love us for who we are instead of how we dress, what others say don't matter, right?


But rape is a crime, not something that can be ignored.

In dressing sexily, women accept that they will be judged for it. But it is not in any way justifiable or acceptable that women should be raped for how they dress.

So what if it causes sexual attention from men? Does it mean that men are incapable of rational thought or self-control? Is it not still the decision of the man whether or not to forcibly stick his dick in a woman?

"But wait! Sex is a primitive urge that man has no control over!" you cry.

To this I say, BULLSHIT. The majority of men in the civilised world have not committed rape towards a woman they are sexually attracted to. They either ignore it, start pursuing her, or in desperate cases, engage the services of a prostitute. To think that raping to satisfy sexual interest is justifiable in any way, I say that there is something very wrong with you.

Based on your logic, if someone drove around in a Porsche or wears a Rolex, they are flaunting their wealth and deserve to be robbed. Both presumptions are equally ridiculous, and hold no ground in any possible manner.


I reiterate, women want to be respected. No woman deserves to be ambushed on a public bus, gang-raped, beaten up, stripped naked, and then thrown off the bus, left with multiple serious physical injuries and inconceivable emotional trauma. The victim has since passed away after many hours of fighting for her life, bless her soul.

The case happened in India, where it is sad to say that rape, slavery, and "honour killings" are everyday occurrence in the country that has abhorable protection for the rights of women. The sheer brutality of this case has struck a cord with many Indian nationals, and countless people around the globe. Regardless of how this woman may have been dressing or acting, the crimes acted upon her were unconscionable and unjustifiable.


The only way rape cases will be reduced is by making men respect women and their right to their bodies. If there is no such respect, even if all the women in the world wore burkas and full-face veils, rape would still be rampant everywhere.

No sane woman ever stepped out of her house wanting to be raped. And it is time for the whole world to catch up with this.


Women want many things. Diamonds, Dior, and Dolce&Gabbana; Gold, Gucci, and GiorgioArmani; a dashing badboy with a heart of gold, perhaps may be demands a tad too extravagant.

But the right to dress how we see fit and not to be sexually forced upon, is not too much to ask for.

3 comments:

  1. So good to hear the first half of the blog coming from a woman.

    I think true gender equality is something we shouldn't strive for. Man and woman are essentially different, and there are task naturally suited for man and other task naturally suited for woman.

    So I think gender equality is not about treating one gender exactly the same as the another, I feel like it is about treating both genders with equal amount of respect.

    In my humble view, like how men are expected to do the things women are not expected to do (clean filters, and other brawny jobs), women should be expected to do things that men are not naturally suited to do. (maybe tasks that requires more finesse, or tasks that would challenge our ego. because we need our ego!)

    But there should be no reason for society to look at woman as a lower social class. Even if the contribution woman make to society may not as obvious as the men's, they are both equally important, and hence both genders should be treated with equal respect. And THAT, I guess is really what we're trying to tackle.

    I just think we're all going at it the wrong way.

    Women shouldn't be looking to prove how they can be as good, or better than men, they should be looking at how they can make contributions to society that are as important, if not more important, than men's contribution.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow dude that's a LONG comment. Good to hear from you!

      I completely agree with you! Men and women have different strengths, so their contributions will generally differ, but it doesn't mean either are less important.

      And yes, respect is key. So I hope you never tell your wife to get back in the kitchen and make you a sandwich!

      Delete
  2. If I do it'd be a request, not an order. :)

    ReplyDelete

 

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