I feel humiliated every day, as I mark my attendance in this God Damn hostel. I feel humiliated when I see the lock being put on the door. I feel humiliated every time a security guard finds it in his right to tell me what and what not to do, where or where not to sit or stand, when or when not to arrive in the campus or hostel. All this for propriety sake and who define the propriety? Those who exploit it. Guards letch, policemen rape and the administration is not untarnished either. What kind of perverse mind makes a group of four guys and girls sitting on the library steps shady, inappropriate or offensive is beyond my understanding.
Reason being? Safety. From Whom? From the very guy(s) sitting with me, whom I have trusted to be decent. But of course, girls do not have the sense for that now, do they? I have to be protected from the people I believe to be safe with. The fact that they seek to prevent something which is by the agreement of both sides and always fail to even appear when it is unwilling makes the situation all the more ridiculous.
Besides, the very hormones they seem to suspect, I wonder what makes them sure of those produced by the ones employed to suspect or their own for that matter. I definitely am not. The guard at the library entrance, given the duty of ‘checking’ out, quite literally from top to bottom makes my skin crawl. Every time I pass through any of the campus' gates, I am painfully aware of security guards’ shamelessly unwavering gaze.
The fact that our administration believes in enforcing of security by caging in the endangered rather than impeding the pursuer has been embedded so firmly in the minds that the guards have assumed all the rights to rectify any girl and in any way. They snigger as I pass, pass lewd comments when going by on a cycle and have the nerve to warn me against reaching my hostel after 10 PM. Needless to say that to prevent anyone else from doing so is something not of their concern but of course they take sufficient care to point out our fault in being present at that place.
Also, what is so grossly wrong in two full grown adults deciding to spend time together, and why are they not given the choice of how they want to spend it so long as it does not defy the acceptable normal forms of social behaviour. They can anyway do whatever they want, I wonder if the administration comprises of too genuinely and abysmally dumb contingent to know this, or that these rules are the product of their frustration on the realization of this fact.
Yes, I am fully aware of my vulnerability but I would like to have the right to take care of it myself and count upon the administration to make it safe for me to do so. I can be trusted not to venture alone on a deserted road, I do not need to be told not to. But even if I do, I would like to believe that I have every right to do so and I have the support of people being paid for it.
If I stay out of hostel after 10, alone or with any guy, that should be my choice. What I choose to do should be my discretion. I defer the rights of defining morality for me to no one. And yet, I have the care takers dictating me on every corner. The sheer insanity, unfairness and illogicality of the situation eats my insides with rage and make me want to rip apart the person before me, piece by piece.
In my opinion, it is more of an exercising control thing than any genuine concern for the person. The wardens and the supervisors employed in a girls’ hostel have come to consider it as their kingdom where they are the queens. It is a sadistic pleasure they derive out of making the girls miserable to spice up their hopelessly mundane lives. Who does not crave authority? Oh what a thrill it gives them to call up our parents to insult them when we are late and demand an apology letter. If a male worker letches on a girl, it is of course the girl’s fault in wearing shorts. If a thief steals, it is the fault of the victim that she left her clothes out to dry. This campus abounds with pathetic rulers, too impotent to do anything that calls for a bit of effort.
All this but, much pain though it causes me, is bliss. I read what goes on in the world beyond. That women’s bodies are a site of punishment to the male members of the family is a thought that makes me want to hunt down every man with this mindset and turn him into an eunuch. It starts at the elementary level, where it is the mothers and the sisters who are targeted whenever an abuse is to be hurtled at some guy. The fact that I serve as a warning to my father on certain occasions makes me want to disappear.
The instances of gang-rapes, performed in the presence of police, ministers and most agonizingly the sons, brothers, husband or father of the woman are too frequent to be considered as a work of few disturbed minds, it is a carefully developed system, nurturing on the way our society is fabricated and functions. I am too paralyzed by the thought to express the anguish it causes or to write any further.
I wonder at the solution of it…and I see none. I am left to live with my helplessness and slowly wither inside.
I cannot be a woman. I do not want to be a man. I'd rather not exist.