Recently #MeToo has spread rapidly across social media. While it encourages women to speak out on their terrible experiences, one has to look at the other side of it as well to come to a fair judgment. Unfortunately, most of the media and many people jump to conclusion and the accused is automatically adjudged guilty without bothering to examine the truth or facts, also, it is sad to see a movement which could empower women at times seems like celebrities washing their dirty laundry. The media trial went so far that you will be judged, bullied, fired from job and even forced to apologize for a crime that one has not committed, due to these recent developments it looks like you are just one hashtag away from losing your job, pride, freedom and being isolated among friends and family. The notion of innocent until proven guilty has not been followed in these cases. As the title suggests this article is only discussing the potential dark side of this and by no means, it tends to disrespect women or even argue that the accusations that came to the light through the #MeToo are untrue.
Let’s go to the beginning and check how the #MeToo started in India, Tanushree Dutta accuses Nana Patekar of misbehaving with her in 2008 during the shoot for a song for the movie “Horn ok please”. Although the real incident happened a decade ago and only limited information was available about it, media, many Bollywood stars, and many other people had come out and supported her without witnessing it or even having a fair idea about what exactly happened. It was only a matter of time before other women including many celebrated personalities started using #BelieveWomen and #MeToo, a fatal combination to finish off once career and social life, came out with their experiences of sexual harassments and assaults. Many of these cases have happened years ago, although one should not be questioning the late report of these allegations, it raises the question of why they have not filed a police complaint then and now doing character assassination on social media won’t be a justifiable way to operate about it in the eyes of many.
In the previous paragraph I have mentioned the combination of #BelieveWomen and #MeToo as a lethal one, let me explain why. The social pressure of believing all women should not be encouraged as it is undeniable that women as every human being have flaws. The age-out saying “no women will put forward such false accusation” is no longer valid. Recent examples of Jasleen Kaur and the Rohtak Sisters are few of the examples to support it. In case you are unaware or forgotten it, the first case in the above example was against Sarvjeet, who apparently has not done anything wrong, but Jasleen falsely accused him of molestation on social media. Soon the many top Television media started calling with Pervert, run negative media trial, as a result, he has lost his job, his family had suffered mental trauma and it’s been more than 3 years and still has not recovered effects of media trials. There was no media coverage or apologies or hashtag to support him. Similarly, in the Rohtak Sisters case, without checking the facts media trial destroyed the life of 3 teenage boys. They were eventually declared not guilty based on evidence and facts by the court but none of the media who lead media trial on them extended their helping hands nor conducted a discussion about it. These just some of the examples. There are plenty more, to justify media trial is not the ideal way to deal with these cases and one should not blindly believe a girl/woman.
Going back to justify why it looks like a publicity stunt or/and waging a personal vendetta, which Kangana Ranaut seems to be doing. She has shown no fear to speak out against sexual misconduct in the past, however, when there was an #MeToo against movie director Vikas Bahl, she jumped on it and expression own her experience of the same against him. However, they both were seen celebrating the success of their movie “Queen” and partying after that, while the incident occurred during the shoot of the movie. One can’t be blamed to ask why has not she raised voice against him earlier being one of the women in the forefront to fight for women empowerment.
Finally, what exactly #MeToo wants to achieve? Some say it is a platform for women to speak out, while others want to bring the so-called predators to justice, some others use it for creating awareness about these issues and some want to bully or abuse the claimed culprits. It failed to answer what should be the punishment or how to bring these to the eyes of legal proceedings. Also, shouldn’t there be categories of sexual assault, should an inappropriate message or touch weigh the same as a rape. Some feminists do not want any categories, which seems like too harsh and leaving little room for remorse. While empowerment of women is a welcome movement it should not be at the expense of men. It is will be absurd to go on war against half of the population by claiming all men as evil or all women as liars. Hopefully, the media trial and social media judgment will be stopped and real culprit will be punished in the future after proper investigation.
Disclaimer: This article is not the option of either the author or the company. It makes no claim that whatever written below is true, it just put forward an alternative thought against the popular notion.