Don’t get me wrong. I am all for women empowerment. If I had my way, I will make every woman a gender-altered avatar of Hanuman. But given the context in which the above statement is being made in Delhi during last few weeks, I can’t but oppose the idea in all its forms. I would rather my wife join me for morning tea in this lovely winter than run off to some neighbourhood training camp and perfect her karate chops.
I don’t want my wife to go through it. I don’t want the auntyjees in Lajpat Nagar to go through it. Imagine what a physically weak, fearful and defenseless man like me will feel like surrounded by women injected with Bruce Lee serum. It’s a feeling reserved for women when they travel in buses, ride in the Metro or every time they step out of the house.
But, once you teach them all this Chinese arts, they will feel like they own the place. If you are a man, please try to imagine you are innocuously rubbing against a woman, trying to keep her warm in the Delhi winter. Now, rather than saying thank you or quietly getting off at the next stop, she turns around to do an enter-the-dragon on you. To have your dragon stomped and heeled, to feel threatened and bullied…God, suddenly we will be the women of our own city!
Don’t get me wrong. I just want my woman to be there for the morning tea.
Another reason why I am against martial arts and pepper sprays for women is it turns the idea of the society redundant. Because, you see, thousands of years back men chased women for sex and women chased them off with sharp edged stones, sometime digging it into their groin areas. I don’t know what the first man did to make the woman live with her, but that was a defining moment anyway.
When men and women started living together, it put an end to the theory of each one for oneself. It seems that after thousands of years, the domestic agreement is falling apart. Now, we are telling women to brace themselves with sharp edged stones again. No matter how many words of empowerment you put into it, the message is the same – let women fend for themselves.
And that argument is unacceptable in all its versions.