A Response to My Brother’s Anger At My Never-ending Feminism

My brother asks, annoyed “What then, is your ideal of equality between the sexes?!”

I take a deep breath and reply:

“It is a world where Eve isn’t villianised,
And banished
For simply being curious
And wanting to know what was out of her reach

A world where Sita isn’t made to walk through burning flames,
To prove that she’s untouched;
But Ram’s purity remains unquestioned

Where Paanchali-
Who wasn’t even Yudhistar’s to stake-
Isn’t pawned off in an attempt to humiliate her husbands

But not a single person considers it wrong,
Because it’s written down in texts age old
That it is but right.

Where Malala isn’t shot by the Taliban
At 15 for demanding
And standing up for her rights
Rights that she shouldn’t have to die for

Where foetuses aren’t killed by the millions
For having two X chromosomes
And female infants aren’t drowned
In boiling liquids as hot as their perpetrator’s anger

A world that doesn’t protect an acclaimed boy
Who is a sexual offender
And a world that doesn’t ask
But what was she wearing?

A world where if my son shall
Like another boy
He is not a criminal
Because love knows no gender, race, creed or religion

It is a world where my father’s ‘honour’ does not lie in my actions

A world where you aren’t actively taught to be afraid of crying
And to constantly wear the face of ‘masculine power’
Where you aren’t pressurised
To be something you don’t want to be

A world which does not celebrate and congratulate you
If your 8th grade teacher took advantage of you
Instead, feels ashamed
And rages and outcries at the injustice

A world that doesn’t treat a man’s depression
Like a joke- like something malfunctioned
And unnatural like it isn’t real
But acknowledges his right to feel something
And validates his meek emotions

A world where both sons and daughters
Are taught to
Be careful as they leave the house
And to behave themselves

It is a world that does not value you more than me
Or me more than you
But both of us equally.”