The role of sociopolitical structure in causing gender based violence.

by Keshav Padmanabhan and Anjani Balu.

Gender based discrimination was once condoned in many societies and has been passed on in due time to our generation. In this day and age where human society is supposedly advancing at a much faster rate certain things still haven’t changed as fast it should, gender based discrimination. The belief that man is superior on the basis of his Y-chromosome still exists and women in many societies are still looked down upon.
People are hesitant to change, there seems to be more reasons not to change in their minds and that is because of the social structure that is present today. A social structure has been built up where an individual is powerless in the face of mass negativity. There are cultures where women if assaulted are blamed for provocation and punished for it. The fact that religion still propagates a gender difference in many ways and will not change and being the tool of control for the masses, gender discrimination will never go. The masses need to see change from every social organization, from the government to their religious order before they can change for themselves. The fear that being different would make them outcasts in social order still lingers and since there is no system in place to change that this inherent difference still exists.
Governments may promote equality but until they change the attitude of the masses nothing will change ever. One of the saddest things today is the belief that a boy is better because they can earn while a girl is an expense and therefore female infanticide still prevails. Statistics show that females are still paid less in offices then males, in the sporting arena in a game like tennis until recently females were paid far less as tournament winnings then the male. There maybe various reasons but that still is definitely that gender based discrimination. The lack of effective policies to spread awareness by many governments shows the large indifference that causes this difference which is saddening to see, after all its only a glass ceiling that can be broken but failure by all social organizations on a large scale to break it has led to gender based discrimination still prevailing. Strict measures need to be taken in these cases, because we happen to be dealing with the world’s least malleable substance: the human mind. It takes generations to change this kind of thought and there are two ways in which the detriment of our social fiber can be avoided. First, inflexible and stringent measures need to be introduced. The rights of a particular gender cannot be violated, and this should be stressed upon unconditionally. Penal and preventive measures are the only thing that can prevent a person committing acts of gender based violence from feeling that he is justified. In Darfur, the government used to order attacks on its’ citizens, and this, although motivated by racial cleansing, led to the occurrence of many incidences of rape and murder of women. No government should, even indirectly, send out a message that the ill treatment of women is okay.
Secondly, women should be directly appealed to. They should not be trained to accept the cruelties they are subjected to, but to fight against. There should be authorities to whom these women can report these instances to, facilities for these women to come out of the physical and mental breakdown that this causes. It’s time as the new generation to not repeat the mistakes of the past and break that ceiling which people often are afraid too, its time we forget the old norms and change it, after all we are individuals and its time we use our freedom to do good rather than complain about everything that is wrong in this world. It’s definitely time for people to use logic instead of listening to archaic rules from organizations that believe systems of the past still play an important role today creating pandemonium of epic proportions. One can only hope that our generation moves past this and in the arrogance of the free world do some justice to the fairer sex as they are humans too and a pillar of society we cannot live without.
Keshav and Anjani are two students from Chennai, India. They possess egos that dwarf the sun, and are coming soon as dictators of a country near you.
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