By Geeta Sundar

The world went through something out of the ordinary. Out of the usual. Something that was always known, always understood, always hidden, beneath the lining, but nobody ever wanted to voice out.
And then it took one, maybe a few and then its whole existence came flooding out.
It’s been talked about, gossiped, reported and discussed on talk shows.
And everyone suddenly chimed in and it created a movement; a revolution in its wake. A movement that let the oppressors know that even a small wave could create a tsunami.

I appreciate what the movement, the rally, and the social media posts stood for. The movement was endorsed by the rich, fancy and had clientele. It showed the horror in glamour and the sacrifices that one woman would have to face to enhance a career she knew she was worthy of. I wouldn’t even be able to understand what it takes for a woman to have gone through that torture and yet brave herself to expose the gory and horrid details to the world. And for each of those women who came forward in a power of unison, and who decided time was up and that it was their right to let the planet know of their sufferings, the journey is a bitter sweet one. Bitter, because opening about one’s pain is never easy. Sweet, because baring it all, disclosed the ugly behind the screens. Bitter, because the culprits will get away either by slashing the claims, or by hiring expensive suits to fight for them. Sweet, because the victims know that they are not alone in this battle and have the support of millions more.
What really bound me to this campaign was the torrent of wonderful, famous, successful women who came forward to support this wholeheartedly. Some of those women I look up to, and I wish I could imbibe their fierce strength, honest sincerity, work ethic and hard work and someday fulfil my own lofty dreams.
However, detest for the ways of the world, followed that sense of connection. Detest at the way suppression worked. At how one would use another’s weakness to exploit them. And at how many people underwent this harassment for months, days and years, all the while withstanding and holding it in. Detest, that despite science and advancements in technology, bright headlines about equality, claims about so-called tolerance, the world still had to learn to respect people and their lives.
The whole campaign reminds me of the cardiac enzymes in MI. Like Trop T, it started to peak, gathering and amassing multiple similar cases, reached a height when everyone wore black, pinned up posts and endorsed it like an ad campaign and now slowly has started its descent to baseline. And on its way to normal, it still rolls, clustering a few odd cases…but the clock is ticking on its termination. Because, despite the hype, the chatter, the conversations, what has been done, exactly? Where is the justice? Where is the compensation? Where is the change? Nowhere close. And so this event will forever remain in the realms of old social media posts, collecting dust, till another suck attack on the powerless awakens unity.
I reckon, the root cause, if you dissect it and go deep within; is the greed for control and power. Man (in no way am I implying the male gender here) likes to have power over things, over people and loves to enhance that power. It is what created the discrimination in the first place. Discrimination to race, language, food, religion and social status. It doesn’t matter who you are – all that matters is that you have a weakness that another can use to stomp all over you. And there is only one way to beat that power – nip it in the bud. Teach it like charity begins at home. Preach it, wear it, recommend it and don it and inculcate the value that power does nothing but brandish the equally deserving to a meaningless life.

On this International Women’s Day, to all the women reading this –

Remember, across the world there are people who don’t and won’t make an effort to understand you.
Those sects of people who won’t understand your color, your religion, your accent, your dress sense or your traditions. They won’t understand your struggle, your endurance and your dedication. They won’t care for you or your accomplishments.
For them you will be another plaything to squash or tackle.
For them you will be just another trophy to own. Or shackle.
For them you will be another available body to take advantage of. Or hurt.
But the only way to beat them to stand up to them.
Be strong, fight for your principles and work harder than them. Go out and beyond to claim your dreams. Don’t let them deter you or brand you. You are beautiful inside and out. You are a force to be reckoned with. You are your own person and your own achievements. You are you and you are enough.

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