26 March, 2018


The Prime Minister’s Office of India captions a Social Campaign, “Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao” (which in Hindi means, “Save a Girl Child, Educate a Girl Child”).

Flipside: You can see minor boys in the road-side restaurants engaged in child labor, but well counselled not to reveal their under-age to any of its customers.

A painter reveals his masterpiece, in which a girl is running for safety close enough to the shape of an Indian Geographical map and titles it as “India’s Daughter”.

Flipside: Young boys victimized with the acid-attacks initiated by their girlfriends.

Young Indian female movie stars smile ear-to-ear displaying sanitary napkins endorsing “Happy to Bleed” which go viral on social media. Everybody praising these brave ladies accepting the fact, “What is natural is never vulgar.”

Flipside: Fathers asking their sons to shave, as stub or grown facial hair convey a wrong message to the middle-class society.

The commercial of a gearless two-wheeler designed for girls, chooses the question, “Why should boys have all the fun?”

Flipside: Boys are just not having fun. With media exaggerating the increasing crime on girls, criminalizing boys, and paying no attention to the any crimes on boys, boys now are thinking.

Welcome to India, where a boy becomes eligible to vote only at the age of 18, but can be treated as an adult at the age of 16, if he has to be punished for a crime. Welcome to India, a country which has over-rated girl childhood, ignoring boys as children which is very soon going to lead to a perfectly imbalanced society. Welcome to India, where any celebrity/government/law gains popularity by supporting a girl child, but there is nobody to speak on behalf of boys.

No wonder, if in the future, being a boy is felt as a crime and the boy-race is supposed to be eradicated.

If the sibling is a girl, it is the boy child who has to always sacrifice. The convincing he gets from his parents is, “She is a girl, and her tears bring misfortune to the family.” Every year, the sister ties a wristband to her brother on the day Rakshabandhan (meaning the bond of protection) and the brother takes a vow that he will safeguard and protect her all the lifetime. The seeds of sacrifice and safeguarding the girl child are sown at a tender age of boyhood deep in the heart of the boy child, probably conveying the message that he should remember his sister and give her super-rich gifts when she gets married, has children, when her children achieve something, when he gets promoted, acquires a house or buys a new car and the chain never ends. However, legally, the girl child has equal rights with the boys, on the property inherited.

The scene in the schools is no different. If a girl child is crying in presence of a boy child, it is always assumed that the boy has done something wrong and the girl is hurt. Boy hitting a girl is considered more violent than boy hitting a boy. The punishment a boy gets, is severe than that a girl gets for the same mischief.

Other General Stereotypes On Boys

Boys do not cry: Because crying is for girls. Boys are prevented to vent out their feelings by shedding a few tears leading to emotional suppression.

Boys staring at girls are flirts: If a boy is staring at the girl, it is misunderstood that boy has some really bad intentions, though his intention is completely platonic.

Boys should not be jobless: “Udyogam purusha lakshanam”, goes the proverb. Which means a Job is a characteristic of a Man. While girls are allowed to sit back and relax after their studies, boys are under continuous pressure to secure a job. With more and more girls taking up jobs, it is becoming tougher for boys to kick-off their careers.

Boys are strong: Although, the wild nature is all with its exceptions. There are girls stronger than average girls, which is appreciated, but the boys weaker than an average boy is mocked at.

The Need Of The Hour

The need of the hour is stop to discrimination. Just like they are all humans; be it men or women or the undefined; at the end; they are all children, be it boys or girls. Though exceptions proved it wrong every time; stereotypes, misconceptions and myths continue to mislead the adult society and keep the fuel ignited for the gender wars. It is everybody’s responsibility to see that these stereotypes do not creep into childhood. Flowers are known for their fragrance. So should childhood be known for its innocence.

Safeguarding the girl child is not wrong, but the boy child should be not be ignored either. There’s nothing wrong if all girls are good. And there’s nothing wrong even if a few girls are bad. But for sure it is wrong to opine biasedly, that all boys are bad. Albert Einstein, Mahatma Gandhi, Alfred Nobel, Alexander Fleming were all boys, grown up boys. Whether to raise them, or to kill them is within our own hands.
Mr. Jangam Veera Sasidhar is  a Contributing Editor to IN SEARCH OF FATHERHOOD(R) and the India's National Coordinator for "World Day Of The Boy Child" which will be observed on 16 May 2018 and is inaugurated by Jerome Teelucksingh, Ph.D., the Founder of International Men's Day.

No comments:


What really matters in Life? When you were a child, did anyone tell you? If that did not happen, it should have. Knowing what really...