What is feminism?
Ask this question and chances are that you’d be lumped with dictionary definitions until you are more or less befuddled and can’t give a darn. If you do believe dictionary meanings dictate how things turn out, though, you might want to change your world view.
If one erases the literal, utilising that word lightly, meaning of feminism in the dictionary and you were left in a room full of feminists, unless your angst has consumed your being to the extent that rationality doesn’t make sense to you then you are very likely to feel disillusioned, almost stupid for instead not choosing to be in a room full of nihilists because at least what they say sounds quite romantic, oddly poetic and does make a bit sense since it talks about death, the only other constant reality besides life. Sadly, ideologies are seldom dictated by their dictionary meanings cause dictionary meanings don’t dictate actions.
Today, it’s politically incorrect to say anything against feminists or even something that strays astray from the narrative that they weave which elucidates us on how the patriarchy, a probable offshoot of the fabled Illuminati, works to suppress womankind and how men live perfectly happy lives, being given opportunities and prosperity on a platter and afforded the most independent (a word that is very close to becoming as criminal as propaganda) existence that one can imagine. Rape, sexual violence and fat acceptance, all labeled “Crimes against women” nowadays, being the pendentives on which feminism has erected its pawn shop of rhetoric, very little of what they do has anything to do with the aforementioned atrocities. State this and links to sites like “Guerilla feminism” and a furious influx of ad-hominems start pouring in, your skepticism bludgeoned not with sticks and stones but with words and phrases like “misogynist”, “sexist”, “male chauvanist” etc. People are scared of being labelled all of these things, as ridiculous as it sounds since they’re just words, because they are forced to start believing that they are going against an ideology that is infallible, undoubtable in its being and people who are supposedly heroes that don’t wear capes and are trying to fight social injustices, towards women. An average generic feminist response to any sort of skepticism is “We stand for the equality of sexes..blah…blah”, the usual edification of factual ignorance.
Ironically, even first wave feminists wouldn’t have themselves owned up to and endorsed the ideological trash that feminism is today. This is made clear by their stand on topics like abortion, something that feminism touches upon as “every woman’s prerogative and solely theirs cause it’s their body”.
In the Indian context, feminism was always going to infect us someday and strongholds seem to have been already established. An example of this is the lynching by a mob of a man in Nagaland, who was accused of rape by a girl, an allegation that was proven false afterward and it was discovered that they had consensual sex after all. This news wasn’t reported by most mainstream media houses and hence it is no surprise that most don’t know about this. Feminism has had a huge role in influencing decisions taken in divorce cases and custody issues, as it is said that majority of such cases end up with the wife getting alimony or child support and the custody of the children as well, even in cases where the wife commits something like adultery.
Conclusively, it seems that more than helping women in attaining equal rights and being taken seriously, feminism has worked towards undermining women’s causes through “Slut Walk” and the recent “My choice” garbage. It is time that we moved beyond petty gender politics and act like equals rather than demanding equal rights with the view of evading any duties to justify having those rights,instead of being part of a faux righteous cult and continuously play the victim card to keep ourselves from going asunder.