#Opinion

Lucknow Driver Assault Case: How Feminism Unnecessarily Got Dragged In The Trend

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The Arrest Lucknow girl trend on Twitter is replete with tweets that drag feminism and women’s rights into a case that can be called road rage at best. A woman, allegedly, got almost hit by a cab and ended up thrashing the man for driving recklessly in a fit of rage. Was the way she reacted to the situation at hand correctly? No. Should we endorse a violent act, just because it was committed by a woman? Certainly not. No feminist in her right mind would back the woman, let alone applaud her for assaulting the driver, even if it was his fault. So then why did feminism get dragged into this unnecessary controversy? Because, this time its about the gender, for the other party.

The so-called “men’s rights advocates” whose sense of morale only wakes up when women demand what is rightfully theirs, wasted no time to point out that the “poor driver” was being mercilessly beaten by a woman. “Is this the kind of empowerment feminists want? What do feminist women have to say for themselves now? You always cry victim and paint men as villains, look how she is behaving.” Or do they want to crucify an entire movement, negate the plight of an entire gender, based on a half-baked narrative offered by two tiny clips of an incident. Isn’t that akin to holding the entire mankind accountable for one man’s crime? What is this brigade’s reaction when women speak out on sexual crimes? #NotAllMen. I’ll just leave it here before moving on…

Here’s a quick Twitter tutorial on how to derail a conversation on equality, assault and road rage, all in one go:

The only valid argument that has been raised, from a gender perspective, in this matter is what would have happened if the genders were reversed? Can we imagine the amount of outrage that would have exploded on social media, if a woman had been thrashed so mercilessly in the middle of the street, with cops being present but not intervening? However, if you followed the story, the majority of women criticised the girl’s behaviour and called for strict action.

These are the same arguments that we had gone over when last year, the Zomato assault video went viral. Feminism was dragged in a story where it didn’t belong.

Physical assault is a serious matter, and the digital men’s rights brigade does a huge disservice to men who have to deal with it, by shifting the agenda to “evils” of women empowerment. If the woman is at fault, she must face legal repercussions, similarly, if the cabbie was driving recklessly, he must be booked too.

Nowhere does the definition of empowerment advocate or demands the right to hit or injure someone. No feminist is jumping up and down, holding a banner of Nari Shakti for this woman, because that would mean advocating abusive behaviour. There is no excuse for such actions and no one knows it better than women themselves.

Sadly, it is this kind of misplaced narrative that limits men’s rights, a valid and urgent cause, to the comments section of tweets and YouTube videos. When an entire narrative is based on not uplifting men and freeing them from the clutches of patriarchal oppression, but pointing out flaws in the drive to uplift the opposite gender, what more can be expected? What is being done to address male sexual abuse, male domestic violence, oppression of men at the hands of patriarchal practices, male career policing, etc, apart from targeting feminism and women empowerment?

Today, I am raising these questions because feminism has taught me, and countless other people, to advocate equality for all, to be better allies, instead of fighting over who is the “real victim.” But sadly, those who call themselves advocates of rights for the opposite gender, have failed to provide any concrete answers.

Views expressed are the author’s own.


Suggested Reading:

#ArrestLucknowGirl: Here’s How Twitterati Reacted To The Viral Video

Video Of Woman Thrashing Lucknow Cab Driver: Where Are We Directing Our Outrage?

Lucknow Cab Driver Assault Case: Five Questions The Viral Video Raises

10 Things To Know About The Lucknow Cab Driver Assault Case

Why Is Arrest Lucknow Girl Trending On Twitter Today? All About The Case