A BRIEF ANALYSIS OF GENDER BASED CRIMES
Two landmark agreements – (a) International Conference on Population and Development in Cairo, where 179 countries signed an agreement to take action in favor of women's empowerment and (b) Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing, where the international community committed to achieve gender equality, and 20 years later we are still struggling. Exactly where did we go wrong? Both at the macro and micro level, most women continue to be disempowered via torture and sexual violation and live in constant fear.
It makes me wonder what level of effort is required to end violence against women. Dr. Rona M. Fields, a clinical psychologist in the DC metro area, says “NGOs and international courts must provide a forum for the protection from and prevention of gender based violence”. I see NGOs everywhere trying to rescue, protect, rehabilitate and educate victims and others. NGO or not, every person with a conscience is trying to do something to keep the world beautiful. Maybe international courts need to expedite justice. I know it’s easier said than done because laws are complicated and international treaties complicate cases even further.
While analyzing increase in gender based crimes, I had to take into consideration ‘lack of education’ and ‘increase in population’ as contributors. It has been established that education is a solution to most issues and helps to empower women, men and children. Thousands of organizations across the globe have chosen education as their mission and are delivering results. Now let’s review the issues related to population increase. There is really no way to prevent it unless governments intervene like they did in China in 1979 when the one-child policy was put in effect. What I am getting at is, higher the population, more the crimes and more reporting of the same. However, femicide may take care of the population ‘increase’ issue sometime soon!
For those wondering what femicide means - it was first used in England in 1801 to signify "the killing of a woman." Almost couple of centuries later, Diana E. H. Russell narrowed the definition to "the killing of females by males because they are females." Russell believes her definition of femicide applies to all forms of sexist killing, whether those killings are motivated by misogyny (the hatred of females), by a sense of superiority over females because some cultures believe that males ARE superior than females, sexual pleasure, or by assumption of ownership over women. Some of the ‘isms’ from yesteryears have left behind deadly legacies. Those laced with firearms and ammunition have become deadlier than ever. This, in my opinion has resulted in a series of ‘cides’ like genocide and femicide.
The last two contributors that I am about to mention are perhaps better left unsaid - politics and religion. Both these are not confined to geographical boundaries and have made their way into every fiber of our lives. I am sure we agree that force, intimidation tactics and brutalities have been carried out in the past, specially, in reference to wars. But what’s going on presently is very different from those traditional wars. Modern day religious wars result from convoluted thought processes. Dr. Rona M. Fields’ in her ‘Against Violence Against Women: The Case for Gender as a Protected Class’ combines the psychological, sociological, anthropological aspects of violence against women with womens' studies from across the world to examine cases and causes of gender based violence. Her findings from the case studies reveal how irrational oppressive behavior is justified by different cultures and societies. She enumerates how in some countries like Sudan, China, India, Afghanistan, and in Europe, the culture is to politicize religion and other archaic belief systems to rationalize irrational, oppressive behavior.
Gender based crimes, like everything else will continue as long as we allow. Women are putting up fights everywhere they possibly can, even in the face of death! If you’ve been watching the news, you already know what I am talking about. The movement has started and is slowly gaining momentum. Not sure how many lives have to be sacrificed before all this ends or at least plateaus. Call me a hopeless optimist, if you will, but I do see the end of the tunnel. Sometimes problems don’t resolve till they acquire heightened proportions. The uglier it gets, chances are, sooner it will end! So hang in there, don’t give up just yet.
About the Author : As a child, Rupsi (pron. Roopshee) was actively involved in charitable programs through herschool and communities. Due to her parents' involvement in educating under-privileged women and children in India she knows no better than to do so herself and pass on the baton. Currently she pursues her passion to empower women through HOPE IN LIFE FOUNDATION (www.hopeinlifefoundation.org), a non-profit public benefit charitable organization that she started in California to end domestic abuse.
The organization has a ‘preventative’ approach towards the issue and uses structured training and education programs to enable women to be fearless and financially independent. She works with local schools and colleges and adults in communities to educate them about respect and self-worth. With an MBA and over a dozen years of IT experience in the USA, she is an accomplished, dynamic professional who has been consistently recognized for successfully managing programs and projects while demonstrating the ability to lead diverse teams to new levels of success in various industries and fast-paced environments. Join her in her commitment and show your support to end one of the fastest growing epidemics in the world. If you seek more information, please contact her firstname.lastname@example.org.