SOCIETY DECAYS RAPE FOLLOWS

In times of yore none dared to go out of the institution of marriage to lay emphasis on sexual enjoyment. Since the dawn of civilisation institution of marriage was treated as exalted and sacrosanct.

Today one reason why we see increase of rapes is due to the falling sanctity of an institution called marriage as our modern societies are evolving rapidly with the norms once vogue being thrown out of the window.

South Indian Brahmin marriages were performed over seven continuous days and then it came to be limited to three days. Today it could be one day affair before it becomes a half-day affair. In Gujarat it can be mere a few hours affair.

A close friend of mine was sleeping until 8am in early 90s on his marriage day. He was to go to Nadiad to marry second time. After getting ready he took an hour to reach there and by 3pm he was back with his wife. When I asked how dare he sleep till 8am on his marriage day he said without concern, “arre shaadi ke din toh mujhe sone doh.” This guy had coolly dissolved his first marriage just after one month of living together. He and his first wife had gone to a judge residence and sat down and decided that all is well if it ends in separation. This is how the modern life has changed though a few Puritans here or there still stick to their own old rules.

However the dubious distinction for this steep fall in moral values goes to the Americans who seem to be proud of their permissive society. On Saturday I was watching History Channel programme “How Sex Changed the World” which showed the promiscuity getting a decent veneer during the WWII when Gis were kissing their girlfriends goodbye and never to return while their girlfriends made merry.

One out of every three American servicemen married by the end of the war and so did the doubling of divorce petitions. Under US wartime law if a GI husband overseas refused to consent to proceedings, his wife often found it impossible to obtain a divorce as long as her husband was in uniform, because many American judges regarded it as their sacred duty to try to preserve the sanctity of the family while the war was on. After V-J Day this restraint was removed and the number of divorce petitions shot up.

Strangely many women who were into extra-marital affairs had received a measure of social acceptability from the American society. Today an American is not bothered if the woman he is marrying has lost her virginity as he himself may be guilty of spoiling someone else’s.

Premarital sex has become common and when Vajpayee had embarked on a dangerous minefield of providing share in property to the live-in women was he recognising this fact? I am left wondering, somewhat humorously, if Vajpayee had been successful in bringing this law wouldn’t it have reduced girls to be a live-in partner rather than going for a marriage if only to corner a bonanza of property?

American sexual revolution is affecting everyone as the world has become a global village. Nearly everyone in the US has had a sex before marriage and one statistics shows that 95% of Americans don’t wait until their wedding night. Today porn too is unlimited on the net. What does this show?

Gujarat too has become a mini America in many ways with many men going for it no sooner the betrothal is over. Some even go for divorce even before the knot has dried as I had pointed above about my friend.

Sexual morality has changed world over and nothing like it that which happened in America. Even in Hong Kong during the time when it was under British control there were reports that Hong Kong mothers were giving pills to their daughters before they went to school to prevent unwanted pregnancies. The US of course has the highest unintended pregnancies and abortions. Sexually transmitted infections too are high there. And sex before marriage is a rule in the US rather than exception.

Rapes were once violent. If there was no violence it was not treated as rape. Today the definition of rape has undergone dramatic changes. Rape as defined in the IPC can mean there is no need for real penetration to take place for rape. Even if the man brushes his organ with the woman’s it amounts to rape. No need for hymen to be ruptured to prove rape committed if the argument was no consent was obtained. So many classification of rape has come into existence and unfortunately India has the highest number of laws to harass its citizens and anyone can be accused of rape and worse lynched on the road with police watching the gruesome scene with placid disinterest if Dimapur is anything to go by.

But the actual culprits are the cheap Bollywood thrillers with heroines sexually gyrating their hips with music and the titillating TV commercials. Today the USP of Bollywood is cheap titillation as the monsters have no storyline to offer. The advertisements too give the impression that immorality is no sin and all that a boy needs to do is to look at the girl for her to come falling in his lap. Many innocents youths are misled. On the other hand there are no counselling centres on sex nor there is anyone to talk to so that the good and bad of sex can be understood. The pitfall of indulging in rape is immense and the Indian laws are so barbaric that the rapist foolishly thinks murdering the victim is a better way of escaping the noose of law and charge of rape as Billa Ranga case shows.

Every culture from time immemorial has had THE BANNS OF MARRIAGE {public announcement of impending marriage between two persons}. Premarital sex then was clearly taboo and was violently resisted often leading to the death of the culprits. But today with fast evolutionary lifestyle since the last 50 odd years modern societies have succumbed to pressure in relaxing moral values and decencies. Not everyone is going to get married and what is wrong if the compulsion of experiencing this fundamental human pleasure leads to the perversion of sex itself, seems to be the convenient question?

Today we also see rising sexually frustrated marriages and sometimes ending in brutal murder. Hypocrisy in sex leads to perversion complicating the matter further.

Those who oppose the BBC Documentary on Nirbhaya are acting like peddlers of purity. The purity peddlars shed no tears for the poor prostitutes who suffer ignominy and indignity without even getting the basic courtesy that a human being deserves. The government is too stone-hearted to care. Indeed these wretched humans, as the Mumbai police admit, do a great service to the society at large and prevent crime like rapes from becoming common. Yet many prostitutes have kids to raise and with barely enough to keep body and soul together they are forced to lead their children into their profession instead of seeing them get good education and a decent career. Who is to be blamed for this? The BBC or the British Government?

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