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Arjun Reddy Actor Rahul Ramakrishna Reveals He Was Raped As A Child. Consent Is A Concept That Applies To Both Genders!

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I don’t intend to sound like someone who spits in the plate they eat out of, but as a society, we are gravely lost on the concept of consent. And I say this after much deliberation. With the sense of entitlement that we inherited from our flawed ancestors, we have been — conveniently and on a subconscious level — averse to the idea of consent. And by that, I don’t mean just the men of the country, the rape crime rate of the country being a testament to that; a lot of women are also guilty of taking advantage of the skewed narrative here. And we say this after having come across Arjun Reddy’s actor Rahul Ramakrishna’s tweet, as he shared having been a victim to rape himself when he was child.

I am a feminist and no I haven’t become one but I was raised like that. As was my brother. But in doing so, my parents ensured to teaching us that though it is important to value women, we must not do so by devaluing men. Consent is just as important to men, as it is to women, and is not gender specific. If we as women, expect to not be spoken to, touched, or engaged with, without first being sought permission from, then we also need to keep in mind that it goes both ways.

But sadly, like our stereotypical mindset believes that men aren’t supposed to be vulnerable, it also trivialises the non-consensual sexual advances towards men. An emotion we deeply resonated with after we read Rahul Ramakrishna’s tweets about when he was raped during his childhood. In a series of tweets, the Telugu actor who shot to fame after his role in the film Arjun Reddy, Rahul revealed how he has been carrying his past trauma for so long now. He wrote, “I was raped during childhood. I don’t know what else to say about my grief, except for this, because this is what I seek to know about myself. Everything hurts. (sic)”

Continuing further he said, “I live with the crime perpetrated upon me. There is never justice. Only momentary relief. Teach your men to be nice. Be brave and break societal conditioning. Be nice.” And yet again, we were left saddened more than shocked by just how horrible a place this world is. And while we usually blame the onus of this horror and terror on the men of the society, they too have been silent victims of just the same, for a long time now. The number of women who faced sexual assault exceeds the number of men who went through the same but it doesn’t mean that they don’t need justice and safety.

The flawed conditioning, that we all have been somewhat subjected to from the time we were born, wasn’t just limited to letting the boys feel superior, dominant and entitled to demanding favors from women, but also from women taking them for granted. A thought that can be corroborated best with an example, that left us wondering if we too have been party to building this patriarchal society. In a recent interview, actress Kalki Koechlin had revealed how she was a brat and in her free time she was, “I was making dirty jokes and I was grabbing boys and kissing them. I was terrible,” that right there, was what the problem was.

Had this been a statement made by a man, where he would be seen reiterating his experience of grabbing women and kissing them, us woke feminists would’ve torn his words and reputation apart by calling him out on his passive aggressive and misogynistic behavior. But because she was a woman, no body thought much about it, and that is where the problem arises from. From being expected to act macho and chivalrous all the time, being strong, not crying, paying the bills, we somewhere end up stereotyping them too and then later, exploiting them for it.

All this while, when the world urged the need for a #MeToo movement for women, there also came a #MenToo movement, that would have been equally important, but strongly condemned and put down. And perhaps this is why, we urgently need to understand the importance of balance and equality. Because this goes both ways, and one can’t come around without the other. The concept of feminism, equality and consent doesn’t have to revolve around gender. It needs to be understood and applied universally, and that includes treating the men right and not burgeoning them under the societal paradigms and using it against them.

Also Read  : Sona Mohapatra And Vikramaditya Motwane Slam ‘Kabir Singh’ Director Sandeep Reddy Vanga For His Hypocritical Tweet

And while we urge the society to be better, just as Rahul Ramakrishna did in his tweet, we also can’t help but smirk at the irony here, of him saying this after doing Arjun Reddy, a film doused in toxic masculinity. His character in that film is basically the poster child of misogyny and prejudice. And don’t get us wrong here, we feel deeply for the trauma that he has endured, and laud his strength, but his actions have quite evidently gone against the words he endorses, as he asks people to break societal conditioning and be nice. Because, Arjun Reddy, was far far from any of it.

Also Read : Parvathy Thiruvothu Clearly Explains The Problem With Movies Like Kabir Singh And We Love Her For It

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