A Woman’s Fight Gains More Adversaries…

01 Feb 17

“Kasturi,” the second place winner of Action Against Gender Based Violence Film Festival by U.S. Consulate General Mumbai explores equality and how it plays into society.  In the movie, it is not the outside world that is behaving violently towards women, it is their own families and loved ones.  It shows scenes that can be seen in a typical South Asian home – the male child sites comfortably and eats while the female children are asked to help with cooking and cleaning; the male children are not questioned about where they are going but the females are asked to think twice even if it is school based extra-curricular activities, and the discrimination goes on and on.

Many of us attend charity events and give countless sums of money to support organizations aimed at improving the lives of female children in India but I wouldn’t be surprised if due to our cultural bias, a large percentage of those individuals continue these discriminatory practices at home daily.  We fail to recognize that change starts at home.  It is not just parents.  Anyone can be the change based on how they treat their female friends, girlfriends, wives, sisters, daughters, and how they treat and judge women they encounter when they don’t know them personally.  The stories in Kasturi are a reality for many girls in South Asia but also a sad reality for some South Asian households abroad.

As proud as I am to see movies like this take momentum and attempt to move women forward in countries and cultures that are traditionally known to oppress women, my heart weeps today.  Many of us left these countries for better opportunities for ourselves and our daughters and came to the land of equal opportunity.  My heart weeps as I watch Trump’s administration attempt to move women backwards to the same oppression they left behind. 

As a South Asian female that is used to having to fight this Gender Based Violence, my fight just became harder.  An oppression a South Asian female fights every day in her community, her home, her relationships, her social circles is one she will now have to fight in her government.  But as they say when the going gets tough, the tough get going.  The fight may have become harder but we must continue to fight back so we leave the daughters of our coming generations the same opportunity to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness that we have enjoyed in this great nation.  We have been given the opportunity of our voice and we must make it heard!  If you are not already, please start watching what our government is doing and petition against the things that are in violation of our constitutional rights.  We may not agree or disagree on all topics but know what your beliefs are, stand by them, and fight against anything that goes against your own personal beliefs.