I am not going to add anything new here to those thoughts, but just add a personal perspective to the whole thing. There seems to be a crop of women growing in the recent times who wear this ‘proud to be a woman’ tag on their sleeves. For me, feminism is something very subtle. It just exists as a voice to say that women exist as sentient beings and they should be acknowledged for the same. In novels, movies etc, when a female is portrayed as an object of desire- it sends the wrong signal. The society treats them as one treats pets- just for one’s personal amusement. Females do not deserve such treatment. They are not great, they are not godlike, but they are humans with emotions and feelings.
Some women, while making their case, try to instill the fear of the Mother Goddess in the male’s mind. A female is shown as someone who is just silent because she has chosen to. In those campaigns, it is shown that if we provoke the women more, the wrath of Durga shall befall all of us. The fear technique is going to backfire in my view because, you are again portraying the woman as someone alien, someone different. It is not very different from the conventional objectification of women.
A woman doesn’t and shouldn’t need to fight to be treated equally. She needs to encourage logical dialogue. There will be men who are not ready to listen to logic, you can fight, punish, ignore them depending on your inclination. The address here is directed toward the more sensible lot among both men and women. The suppression shall get eliminated when better sense prevails. A sense of justice is needed. We need to evoke empathy and familiarity in the minds of men. The thought that women are not from Venus, men are not from Mars, we are the inhabitants of the same planet with more or less similar sensibilities should be enough to curtail the bifurcation of society.
If there are no females fetuses dying in the womb, girls are interacting with boys freely and there is no fear or alienation, the world would perhaps be more equal, more fair. In Western societies, similar feat has been achieved and yet, all the problems related to gender inequality continue to persist. It doesn’t mean that there is no solution. It should be seen as a never-ending battle that cannot be abandoned.
Man is a logical species and should behave logically. If the results are slow or unfavourable, one should strive for minor corrections. Overhauling the whole process, making stringent laws and instilling fear of the female in the male’s mind will only worsen the situation. Now, this shouldn’t be seen as an advocacy for leniency in cases of heinous crimes like rape and murder. Hang the murderers and rapists for all I care. I am here talking about the general mood that is being created.
If you exalt women to a status which is unreachable for a mortal, you will only be giving birth to more rakshasas. As long as there are women who are not posting rants about how all men are evil, as long as there are men who are not foul-mouthing women who reject them, men who respect women’s choices- justice shall prevail. Once this logical sub-species dies out, we will be left with Nazis.