Thursday, March 02, 2006

Embarrassing The Angels

Reagan-speechwriter Peggy Noonan is embarrassed at how ladies are treated in contemporary US culture.

Do I think this way, in these terms, because I am exceptionally virtuous? Oh no. I'm below average in virtue, and even I know it's all gotten low and rough and disturbed.

"You are embarrassing the angels." This is what I intend to say for the next 40 days whenever I see someone who is hurting the culture, hurting human dignity, denying the stature of a human being. I mean to say it with belief, with an eye to instruction, but also pointedly, uncompromisingly. As a lady would. All invited to join in.

Got us thinking about how disgracefully many Indians behave with our womenfolk in the streets. Via Desipundit, we learn about a Street Harassment Blog-A-Thon planned for Tuesday. We think, such harassment, embarrasses the angels and we add our own uncompromising voice to the growing chorus in protest.


froginthewell said...

Are you saying that airport security should search only men? That such an act becomes a crime only when it is done on a woman? Where is your concept of equality?

While this blog certainly is secular but I find many of your ( PR's ) posts anti-male.

That said, I agree with the sentiments regarding eve-teasing in India.

P. S. : Here in US it is not uncommon for a bunch of girls in a car to whistle to a guy on the road - it has happened to me more than once; does this count as "Adam teasing"?

Primary Red said...

"Anti-male", eh?!!!

That's certainly not the intent. Will try to avoid this impression going forward.

Best regards

libertarian said...

froginthewell: you must be a lot better looking than I am. I'm still waiting for girls in cars to whistle at me - and pray my wife doesn't read this blog :-). Just curious - were you sorely upset by those "advances" ;-)

Seriously though, a giant determinant of the fate of societies is the status (and hence productivity) of its women. Relegate or suppress the energy of your women, and you lose much more than just potentially doubling your workforce.

doubtinggaurav said...

" Here in US it is not uncommon for a bunch of girls in a car to whistle to a guy on the road - it has happened to me more than once; does this count as "Adam teasing"? "

Amreeka here I come.

If any girl whistles at me, it will be either a case of low tastes or short sightedness.

I will like to state here that whenever I have looked at a girl it is always with honourable intentions.

All the Indians remain my brothers and sisters.


froginthewell said...

Libertarian : in fact I look terrible. In India do you think only good looking girls are subjected to eve teasing?

You find it strange when a man doesn't endorse whistling; you *expect* a man to appreciate it but when it is on a woman suddenly your moral indignation is stoked ( not just you but the society as a whole ). The society restricts and shackles men in many ways; but they subconsciously learn to conform because any other course of action will put their ( perceived ) gender into question.

PR : Thanks. Sorry if I was rude.

Xfile said...

Hey, hasnt anybody seen the movie 'Disclosure' (or read the book)? Sexual harrasment is all about *power* rather than gender. Where there is a lot of harrasment of women, the social structures in place are disproportionately in favor of men. But there can be situations where the opposite is true. For e.g., the overly stringent ani-dowry laws in India, (while they are life-saving to lots of women), are routinely misused by some to threaten, blackmail and jail innocent men and their parents.

libertarian said...

PR: then you must be great-looking to compensate for your (self-professed) ugly blogmates :-)

froginthewell: if the man is offended by women whistling at him he has the right to be. I have the right to feel jealous of him. I also have the right to think he's nuts :-) . Sorry if that sounds sexist or harsh.

Best regards

Nanda Kishore said...

Extract from the linked article:

I experience it when I see blaring television ads for birth-control devices, feminine-hygiene products, erectile-dysfunction medicines. I experience it when I'm almost strip-searched at airports. I experience it when I listen to popular music, if that's what we call it.

Is it just me, or does anyone else think this is a catholic ramble (no offense)? I agree that music-videos have become increasingly tasteless and vulgar affairs, but whoever found anything that was offensive to the gentle sensibilities of a lady as far as the commercials are concerned? Poor taste, may be; offensive to sensibilities, you cannot be serious. And what's wrong with "Bob Dole for Viagra"?

PR, while I totally agree with your views on the harassment that many women in India face on a daily basis, there seems to be little to connect the two issues here.

Primary Red said...

Nanda Kishore:

You are correct to note the diffrence in context between Ms. Noonan's writing and India.

Still, at core, she talks about the coarsening of culture -- which is just as true in the US as in India.

And her expression "embarrassing the angels" resonated with us, triggering a need to write about the harrassment Indian women have to endure.

Best regards.


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