The ‘Shame’ Associated With Sex Ed: Can We Stop the Hypocrisy?

The acerbic truth is that we've been impuissant in stopping or even reducing incidents of rape in our country. People are indifferent about such cases because it doesn’t really affect them directly – but at the same time they are also worried. If we want to put the brakes on this or reduce the crime rate, then we need to evoke fear of punishment in such inhumane minds – because currently our laws are not strong enough to do so. Also, we’re familiar with the delay in the legal battles within our justice system.

According to the National Crime Records Bureau 2013 annual report, 24,923 rape cases were reported across India in 2012. Out of these, 24,470 were committed by someone known to the victim (98% of the cases). A majority of rape cases in India, as elsewhere in the world, are never reported.”

Why Do We Try to Pin Rape on Everything But the Criminal?

Multiple cases of rapes are popping up every day. Even girls as little as 2 years old and women as old as 85 are being raped. Most of these rapes are not even reported because women from rural backgrounds have little idea about how the law can help them. Women who have been deprived of an education are still afraid to talk about it because they are still made to believe that it’s their fault if they are raped. Our patriarchal society still believes that women should be more careful and stay away from any trouble because men will anyway do what they want.

Parts of our society still believe that incidents like rape are shameful for the woman and her family. We can still find cases where such families are being boycotted by the entire locality. How can we still not realise the importance of talking about this? How much longer are we going to ignore it and blame it on everything else that has nothing to do with the crime?

Rape does not occur because of clothes, illiteracy, money, late night journeys; rape is the outcome of a broken and sick mind. Tainted thoughts and inhumane people are causing rapes and we need to accept this fact.

Do you ever notice how, when a prostitution scandal breaks out and some major names are involved, the female's name is quickly revealed while nobody ever discloses the names of the men involved? Why does that happen? If it's considered illegal for a woman to be embroiled in a prostitution racket, then on what basis are you excluding the men?

Hypocrisy in some cases can be extremely dangerous for us. We don’t see men as criminals of this heinous crime and try to pin it on something else. Some of our political leaders try their best to not help when they make completely illogical statements.

Spot and Stop the Hypocrisy

We are shameful of something as basic as sex education.

Despite being amongst the world’s largest porn consumers, we prefer not to talk about it openly. We are too sheepish to talk about sex, we consider sex before marriage a taboo and conversations about sex against the norms of society; but such logic flies out the window when it comes to viewing porn. Why? Because that is best done behind closed doors, hence we’re fine.

I have noticed how uncomfortable so many of us feel even whilst reading out the word ‘sex’ on an application form (in place of ‘gender’ in some cases), because we’ve been conditioned to believe this term is taboo.

Until and unless we start accepting that this is an extremely crucial issue which should be our priority, we will not be able to resolve it. The first step might be to spot and stop hypocrisy.

(The author is a dropout of NIT Allahabad and is currently an aspiring filmmaker. He is also the contributing editor of “A Potpourri of Vestiges” and runs a popular blog on Quora. His work has been published and featured in IMDb, Café Dissensus, Science Reporter, Dainik Bhaskar, DB City and other publications.)