Monday, March 8, 2010

My Two Bits on Women's Day

Happy Woman's Day, to each and every woman out there. Hope you celebrate this day, for being a woman and a special one at that.

Smitha, Soul Of Alec Smart and MRC tagged me to write about some issue related to women for this day. They tagged me to be a part of a contest, but I guess it was a bit too late, and so I decided to do the post, later, without entering it for the contest. Of all the topics listed, the one that I do feel would stop only with a real drastic revamp of attitude world wide, is 'Trafficking & Sexual Crimes', and though completely off mainstream to the usual line of thought, I am presenting my views here today.

The oldest profession in the world, is the oldest profession in the world for a reason. The sex drive of people is not bound by rules, and cannot be controlled by law. It is what they want or need. Human nature is not transient, things like greed, lust, gluttony, sloth and others have existed from the day man came into existence. And trying to push it under the carpet is like treating the symptom and letting the root cause remain. India is bound by its moral police, or the fake pretense of it and things are just getting worse with each passing day. Making prostitution illegal, or certain consensual sexual acts out of bounds, based on morality, laws and other things will just make things worse, rather than better. A man who wants to have sex, and is not married, and is then bound by laws which don't allow him to seek it by paying, just gets frustrated and desperate, and looks for it in ways which hurt more than help. He will grope, he will eve-tease, molest and in worse cases even rape. No, I am not giving a plausible, or pardonable reason for these heinous acts, but just talking about some reasons, why they may occur. Not every man or for that matter woman in the world has moral mindset that prevent them from satisfying their primal urges. And the need for sex is nothing if not one of the most primal urges in mankind.

There are many arguments about whether it is in fact man or woman who has a greater sex drive, but that is not my point of concern here. My point of concern is as long as there are men out there who want it, and have either physical or monetary power to get it, sexual crimes and trafficking will not stop. Can we kill the desire of men, who do not have the convenience of having a wife/girlfriend/willing sexual partner at hand to satisfy themselves? I think not. The fact remains that even a lot of men who are married, especially in India, get very little action. Think of a family living in a chawl set up in Bombay. One huge room, parents and 2-3 kids sleeping in the same room, how often do you think the couple end up engaging in sex? Very very rarely. And though I would like to believe that a middle aged, father of three, would control his urges, the fact may be very different. So when in a crowded bus on his way to work, he gets the opportunity to stick himself to a woman, he does it, and in that way he becomes a molester. The woman curses him mentally, maybe even verbally, tries to move away the little she can, and yet she has been touched in a way that she did not want to be, and nothing in the world can take that back. The mental scar is formed. We know, under other circumstances, the man himself might have tried his best to maintain ditance, but things what they were, he got the little thrill or pleasure he could out of the circumstances, and yet we will not acknowledge his need. If this man could go, pay for it, and satisfy himself somewhere, would the women on the streets, not be a little bit safer? If pornographic material was available to him, conveniently, would he not probably have used them to pleasure himself?

My point is, that there are women out there who would willingly have sex for money. or favours or even just for the pure physical fun bit of it. If they could openly provide their services in exchange for money, or anything else, life would get a lot easier for women who do not wish to be touched/groped/raped or molested. But we attach social and moral stigma to such a choice of profession, and hence even women who would take up this service, often enough, do not, or do it in the sly, which means their services are not openly or easily available. The demand hence remains much higher than the supply, and so to bridge the gap, trafficking begins, women, and even young girls are forced into the flesh trade completely against their will, and that is just straight up, unjust. In a place where seeking sex, and consensual adult sex does not have any immoral associations, the cases of sexual crimes, as well as trafficking for the same would not occur. Because the cause for any of these things is nothing but the want, the primal desire which is left unsatisfied.

Not every man on earth is virtuous enough to be bound by moral bindings, religion or even law. There are cases of pedophiles abusing their position in the Roman Church, there are the devdasis in Hindu Temples and many such things, which show us that not every person is capable of being moral. And the laws can do nothing till the harm is already done. What is the point in prosecuting a person after he has already harassed or raped a woman. What we need is open acceptance, and a society which believes in real freedom, and like minded adults are allowed to do what they wish to. When I read about the swinger's clubs booming here, in the newspaper, my pre-programmed morals kicked in at first, but then I realised what a wonderful thing it really is. Willing adults are doing what they want to, to keep themselves happy and thus the rest of the population stays safe, instead of having amongst us people, who are frustrated and unsatisfied. The sex drive is a natural need, quite like hunger, so though, when on a diet, we mind what we eat, curb our hunger, every once in a while the need gets the better of us and we binge on what we should not. Fortunately the binging does not bother anyone else, but going berserk with the need to satisfy sexual desire often leads to too much harm.

I am sure many of the molesters and rapists would have stood on the other side of the line, if they could legitimately get what they needed. Unfortunately in the present scenario they don't, and innocent women walking the streets, end up bearing the brunt of it, which is completely and totally unfair. Maybe morality can be preached in a way that psychologically completely revamps man's actions, but that way has not yet been found, and till such time that we do, I think an open honest approach to things, and basic human needs would make life a lot easier and safer for every woman. Trafficking would not happen, if the women who willingly want to have sexual relations with men, could openly do so, without being prosecuted by law or fake moral bindings. It is high time people accepted one of the most basic natural needs of man as normal, and does not judge anyone who seeks to fulfill it.


mindspace said...

quite a valid point GM.

Sraboney said...

"And though I would like to believe that a middle aged, father of three, would control his urges," GM, why should a middle aged man need to control his urges? Don't older people have needs?

I agree with you...If consenting adults are willing to swing or visit a prostitute or engage in any other form of activity to satisfy their sexual appetites, then they should be "allowed" to do so...That's why I think prostitution should be legalized...Illegal trafficking will cease...

Smitha said...

GM, Everything you have said is valid. Legalizing prostitution will definitely make life easier for the poor women who are pushed into it, and will also prevent further victimization. They will be in a much much better position than they are today.

I loved the way you ended it - it makes total sense. 'Trafficking would not happen, if the women who willingly want to have sexual relations with men, could openly do so, without being prosecuted by law or fake moral bindings' - Absolutely.

Passionate Goof said...

Mindspace - Thanks.

Sraboney - Of course older people have needs, no doubt about it, what I was trying to say was, that is the way we put up expectations as a society. When a teenager whistles or eve teases, it is thought of as acceptable, but not when an older person does it, simply because we expect them to be 'more controlled'.

The Soul of Alec Smart said...

Even though I believe that the solution sexual crimes can come from only much deeper understanding of a nation's psyche than just legalizing prostitution, I do agree. There are 2 things that I'm thinking of:

1. In a country like India where people care more for societal perception than what is legal and what is not, I doubt that too many prostitutes "choose" it anyway. Some of them are themselves victims of sexual crimes. Some have seen no other way of life (second generation). And some come to it because of being under-qualified for any other job. So, legalizing it may make their lives easier, but not any less taboo. Knowing that fact, it doesn't seem right to say prostitution is the way to go.

2. Sexual repression is not something for which one can prescribe a solution. It is something that manifests itself in totally inappropriate, and sometimes dangerous ways. And I doubt "getting some action" is about to cure it. Pedophiles do have access to adult porn too right?

Very well-written I must say. Also, thanks for leaving a link.

Passionate Goof said...

Smitha - Thanks. I think its the fake morality where the society denies that every human being is sexual and has such needs, that these issues arise.

Soul of Alec Smart - Indeed, the mroal/social pressures are more prominent than the laws in this case. Pedophiles, are perverts, and there is no excuse for them. But talking about the average male adult, who desires sexual activities with another adult, I think legalising prostitution, would help a great great deal.

Trishna said...

something for you here-

Mamma mia! Me a mamma? said...

What a well-written and articulate post, PG! An excellent read!

Passionate Goof said...

Trishna - hey! Thanks. :D

M4 - Thank you M4. :)

MRC said...


Thought provoking post this! Still thinking and my first thoughts are-

Legalising prostitution is not a black and white area. On the one hand it would probably allow women who WANT to do it, to do so with some measure of protection,but it would still not stop human trafficking...there will always be someone who will claim to provide "more thrills" for less, and to do so would be coercing a helpless person into prostitution. Also, as someone commented earlier, just legalising the "oldest profession" will not ensure automatic social acceptance of the willing practitioners of it.

That said , I agree that social or legal censure on sexual acts between two consenting adults doesn't seem fair, as long as their doing so is not hurting anyone else's emotional well being.

Still thinking...

Rakesh said...

OMG! What a post from a totally different perspective GM! I think you were thinking about Men's Day while writing it coz. the men of the world would be truly happy :P he he..

Jokes apart, though I feel that legalizing prostitution may not be an exact resolution to the problems of eve teasing and rape but there is definitely a huge valid point in what you've said.

I do agree that sex is a primal urge, as basic as food and controlling it by law or morality is indeed, as you said, treating the symptom but not reaching the cause. There are bound to be a few frustrated outbursts now and then which will then be borne by innocent females.

PS. You do have guts to openly call swinger clubs wonderful. Awesome guts!

Piper .. said...

excellent post! I have infact been thinking about all issues related to prostitution for a while now. I`ll tell you why when we next chat. But this post made a perfect read!

Passionate Goof said...

MRC - No its not black and white AT ALL. But, shoving it under the carpet or making it illegal, just means more bribe for the corrupt police, or free 'servicing' for them. Human trafficking may not completely stop completely, but it will atleast reduce, if women who want to take up the profession voluntarily can do so without hassles.

Rakesh - Hmm, and maybe I should pass this comment onto Sakshi. I am not saying legalising prostitution will stop everything, but I strongly believe it would definitely reduce the incidents, since the primal urge could then be satisfied legally, and the need/frustration would reduce. Not even in my dreams do I think it would take the numbers to zero. Whats wrong with swinger's clubs??? These are adults doing what they wish to consensually, atleast no one is being raped or molested here.

Piper - Pukka, and when do we chat again???