Sunday, May 29, 2022

Women’s Day Everyday

By The Editorial Team Updated: Mar 10, 2020 10:41 pm

The world observed Women’s Day just a few days ago. Women were praised to the heavens on that day; social media was flooded with wishes for them and communities across the globe organised events to mark the day. It was heartening to see fellow human beings acknowledging each other for the sacrifices and contributions made towards human civilisation and society. In the meantime, the proportion of those who put their words and thoughts on women’s cause to practice is negligible. There are even fewer people who want to change the existing system that undermines the rights of women. The fact is most people are still more comfortable with the present social set up and prefer to live with the dominant animal instinct rather than paving the way for a progressive society where every individual, irrespective of gender, gets equal opportunities to excel. Human capabilities are limitless but centuries of subjugation in several spheres — social, political, physical, mental and even religious – perpetuated over decades of systemic caricaturing and discrimination has caused the elephant-chain syndrome, thus stopping most people, especially women from fulfilling their dreams.

If physical strength, intelligence, mental ability etc. are the criteria to define equality, no two persons in this world are equal. The fight is about ensuring every human being equal opportunities to make the most of their lives and talents, which is why depriving one of the basic rights is inhumane. Women efficiently run families in societies where matriarchal family is practiced. It is a manifestation that, irrespective of gender difference, human beings have the capability to excel if given the freedom, space, support and opportunity. This is why activists have been fighting for women’s rights for centuries. Sadly, nothing much has changed. Many men still feel they have to be the major bread winner, and not the other way round, even in countries that boast of championing human rights and equality. It sends out a clear message that the world has not done enough towards achieving parity and gender-based stereotyping still exists.

There is gender equality deficit in Naga society too despite claims made by some that Naga women enjoy equal opportunities as their male counterparts. A deeper look into our society will tell the equality that most people talk about is an inflated one. What is equality without social, economic and political rights? Where is alimony, custody of children after divorce, etc. that are close to humankind’s hearts and needed for survival? With these few basic tenets of equality not set in place, insecurity pinches Naga women every day; they are insecure about their future, not knowing where they will land up if something goes wrong in their lives. This is why hundreds of women are forced to live with their partners. A one-day women’s day celebration that comes and goes every year makes no meaning unless all man-made norms that obstruct the growth of women and demeans their dignity are eliminated. Women’s Day should be an occasion to celebrate womanhood, their contributions to the society and their potentials, and not their endless plight that has been passed down to them just because of gender. All that women need is equal economic, social and political opportunities to lead a secure and dignified life. The world should allow women to stretch their wings and fly. Only then can we have a meaningful Women’s Day celebration and march towards true human progress.

By The Editorial Team Updated: Mar 10, 2020 10:41:36 pm