Answer by Raakhee V. Menon:
Sexism is a social evil… whether directed against men or against women. Although it must also be said that even if I, as a woman, try to equal it out, I have been met with reactions from the opposite sex which has made me think if these guys really want equality or not. I’ll not talk about that on this answer as this is not relevant to this question. So here’s looking a few instances of sexism faced by men that I have personally seen people I know being subjected to…
It’s totally okay for a girl to bawl in public, but if news goes out that a boy’s eyes looked teary, he’d be made fun of and becomes the butt of sexist jokes overnight. Society demands that men shouldn’t cry. This is stupid! Human beings are not capable to holding in so much emotion. It has to be released. Holding in emotions over a long period of time is one of the main reasons why a majority of the cardiac arrest cases in India are men.
At a restaurant/shop/cinema ticket counter/wherever, it’s almost an unsaid rule that the man has to pay for both. If the woman pays, the man is thought of as being a lesser individual who is ‘making the woman pay’. This is demeaning to the woman too. Gone are the days when the man was the sole breadwinner. If a woman offers to pay, it’s because she can afford to. When two individuals are getting equally paid, then what’s the issue?
In public transport, when a woman gets into the vehicle, any man sitting is glared at until he gets up and requests the woman to take his seat. Unless he is sitting in a seat reserved for ladies, or if the woman is physically weaker in any way (aged, handicapped, pregnant, accompanied by a small child, etc.), I see no reason for any man to leave his seat for a woman.
Women can openly gawp at movie stars and say how handsome or hot he looks. If a man says the same about a female movie star, he’s an ogling pervert. Not fair, I say. If anyone has a problem with men talking openly about women they find attractive, then they should not do it themselves.
I was standing in the queue to buy a movie ticket when I noticed some commotion in the next line. I saw a guy clutching his chest with a pained look on his face and visibly furious woman with a clenched fist glaring at him. Apparently she had punched him in the chest because she thought he had touched her bum. He kept pleading with her that he didn’t do anything. But nobody would believe him. And when the people standing by were talking of calling the police, I turned my face away in disgust. I’m not taking sides, but without even trying to find out the truth, how can a woman’s words be always true? Once I thought somebody had done likewise to me. It was just my bag brushing against my bum. What if I had wrongly accused that poor chap behind me? I’m not justifying all men. I have been subjected to some very sorry incidents too. But that doesn’t mean I judge all men in the same way. What if it had been one of my loved ones in place of that man? What if they were truly innocent? Are men ever given a chance to explain? No.
Apparently, a woman friendzoning a guy is okay… she has the ‘right to choose’… a man friendzoning a girl is supposedly cruel… he is ‘playing with her feelings’. I’m still trying to figure this out.
A man is ‘not supposed to like’ certain things which are apparently ‘female interests’… like cooking. The more ignorance he feigns when it comes to kitchen matters, the more his masculinity. Stupidity! And despite this idiotic thought process, the world’s best chefs are… *drumrolls*… men!
A man who takes care of his skin by applying face masks and stuff is thought of as a sissy. Again, a stupid thought. Everyone has a right to good skin. And there are no instructions on face pack boxes that read ‘For Use Only By Women’. Duh!
A man who listens to his wife is termed ‘hen-pecked’ and I don’t know if there is a term for a woman who listens to her husband. If he doesn’t listen to her, he is an oppressor with no regard for her feelings… and if he does, he is ‘hen-pecked’. What does society expect men to do then? It’s a sad state of affairs, really.
I’m considering turning off commenting for this answer as I’m expecting brickbats from some very angry women. If things get too nasty, that’s what I’ll do. No point in going on denial mode, ladies. It’s the whole truth… and we all know it. Either we strive to put an end to it, or we learn to live with it. Denial is not a solution. For the record, I am not saying that all men are gentlemen. There are several monsters out there. There are monsters among women too… gold digging, manipulative, whatever. But are all women thought of as being so? No. Would we take it sitting down if such an accusation were to be made against womankind? No. Then it’s not right to generalize. That’s all I’m saying.
All images from Google images.