Patriarchy has become such an ingrained part of our lives, that today, victim-blaming overshadows even factual reporting, especially in instances of sexual and domestic violence. Simply put, we tend to passively talk about violence against women, ignoring the very active role that men, as perpetrators, play in committing

MeToo
Source: SIPRI

The all-pervasive victim-blaming, and the need to put the onus on criminals and not their victims, is exactly what American educator, filmmaker, and author Jackson Katz talked about in his Ted Talk, Violence against women — it's a men's issue.

In his talk, Jackson talks about how domestic and sexual violence is not a women's issue alone, but rather, also a men's issue because men are the most common perpetrators.

Jackson Katz
Source: Ted

He added that it's time we change the questions from what the woman was doing/wearing/or behaving like to "what's wrong with men?"

Let's be clear: Asking questions about Mary is not going to get us anywhere in terms of preventing violence. We have to ask a different set of questions. The questions are not about Mary, they're about John. They include things like, why does John beat Mary? Why is domestic violence still a big problem in the US and all over the world? What's going on? Why do so many men abuse physically, emotionally, verbally, and other ways, the women and girls, and the men and boys, that they claim to love? What's going on with men?
Stop Violence
Source: Latest laws

And now, in the wake of rising rape cases in India, people are sharing his message on social media, reiterating the need to educate, and where needed, punish the men and stop controlling and blaming the women.

In fact, Anushka Sharma and Kriti Sanon also penned notes on Instagram about how male privilege begins from home, from the very time a boy is born, and it's high time we end patriarchy and build an equal society.

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Its not a new story, its an old one! We have witnessed several such cases that made us angry, disgusted, upset, numb and scared all at the same time! People voiced in millions, protested, condemned, demanded the culprits to be given the most horrifying punishment possible, participated in candle marches and more! But the sad truth is that NOTHING changes!! NOTHING! India recorded an average 87 rape cases every day in 2019 and 4,05,861 cases of crimes against women during that year- 7% more than 2018. (Not citing 2020 because lockdown statistics won’t reflect the real state) It is the MINDSET that needs to change! The patriarchal thinking that is set so so deep in people’s minds for years! It needs to change from the very base! The upbringing of both boys and girls.. that doesn’t teach them to differentiate or doesn’t tell them that men are superior or crying is a girls’s thing, that boys can be out till late, but girls shouldn’t. Instead of worshipping your daughters and touching their feet on Kanjak/Ashtami, give them equal treatment and equal opportunities! Tell them they are no less and educate them so they can become independent. Instead of pampering your sons, saying “boys will be boys” and telling them that they should know how to control their wives, teach them that a man isn’t “manly” if he cannot respect a woman! When Gender Equality will start at HOME, change is inevitable! 🙏🏻 Illustration by @newindianexpress

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It's no longer enough to simply demand action. We have to now lead the change we wish to see in the world, and one way of doing that is to change the way we talk about domestic and sexual violence.