I have always been strictly against ill-mannerism and profanity induced everyday language, ever since my early-teen days when my peers were happily volumizing their vocabulary on explicit language. I tried to talk my close friends into maintaining decorum in the way we speak and not embrace the popular culture of abuse induced words. I do that even today and get called (apparently adorable/friendly) names for correcting people when they use profanity for no apparent reason. And every time I had been asked to “calm down” and “chill” – since it’s not a big deal, it’s just how friends lovingly talk to one another!
Strangely, I have never craved for a relationship this “loving” that I’d come down to question my dignity or vocabulary. I’ve been called uptight, too straight, baccha, behenji, too nice, and other “adorable names” because I despise conversation dripping of vulgarity and can never sit through it comfortably.
Why the blog
This Sunday, social media in India exploded with people reacting to a disgusting video where a man claiming to ‘respect’ women blatantly threatened to rape a female comedian and her family. To think he dared to utter those words makes my blood boil. And all this for what? Publicity. That pathetic stinking lump of a man had the audacity to express such demonic thoughts feeling he could get away with it in the name of comedy and entertainment. The video in question is a year old where the comedian is, very evidently, making fun of rumours about the upcoming statue of the founder of the Maratha empire Shivaji Maharaj, and not of the warrior kind himself. But the wobbly sentiments of some people were hurt, which included the huge number of followers of the Instagram influencer who took it upon himself to call out the comedian by threatening her and eventually letting the entire world finally see his precious thoughts safely caged in his myopic mind.
Every sound mind expressed their concern for the safety of women and called out publicity-hungry content. Many said and agreed that name-calling and constructive criticism are not the same and that one should not stoop to such levels to express their disapproval of a content creator’s product.
Thanks to the timely actions of thousands the guy was arrested.
Why we need discipline
It is not a very difficult task to maintain decorum in some aspects of life. Discipline does not necessarily cancel out the ‘having-fun factor’ from life but makes one responsible enough to know what to say, how much to say, and when to stop. I believe there’s little good in everyone – it just needs a tonne of motivation to bloom; whereas the demonic bit inside every soul awakens with just a little nudge.
There’s no immediate substantial harm done when you use explicit language to make fun of (read insult) someone. But every time you go uncorrected, the pride of being right grows within a person gradually. That feeds in their feeble sense of invincibility and eventually creates monsters out of them. Of course, it does not work the same way for everyone – perhaps just 1% of the said peers’ population turns into these monsters. But this seemingly tiny bit of monstrosity resonates into producing a massive volume of victims ruining them forever beyond repair.
Growing up with the advancements of technology I’ve come to notice how opportunist and greedy people misuse it. It is true, that one cannot become famous online with just good content (in the real world, good content is not really the king), but what one needs is to keep up with current trends, and be good at selling their content – which might most definitely not be original, but surely offensive and cringe-worthy; since that’s what excites people!
The point of talking about my absolute hate for abusive language is to show with actual examples of how things go beyond one’s control once their tongue starts wagging. Never have I ever championed shows and standups that are abusive, and never will I do so.
the root cause
When my contemporaries cheered and laughed at ‘roasts’ I could not help but question the darkness nestled in their minds. Again, I was asked to ‘take it easy’, ‘not think too much about it’, and indirectly was called frustrated, depressed, or just ‘too sensitive’ for being non-compromising. While I felt left out, sometimes friendless, and helpless for not being able to do anything to stop that invisible parasite eating away their minds, initially, I stopped caring altogether later. I stopped bothering about how to change the people around me, ’cause by then I attained enough maturity to understand it’s not a task for me alone but a matter of self-realization.
I still do continue to correct people about profanities cause it irks me to the core when people limit their vocabulary to the f-word. If your sentences begin and end with f**k, s**t, a**, and the likes, it’s time to get back to school-level books to brush up your language skills. I would understand the use of profanity when one is angry and has enough reason to be. After all, if a word exists there’s a use for it, but should one be misusing their freedom of speech to cultivate hate and sheer patriarchal authority in the name of fun? NO.
Some comedians, YouTubers, and other form of influencers often take things too far with their free flow of speech, and even before they realize they cross several lines. Many might argue that it’s fun to roast someone and that they have agreed to it, but is it really so? Would you be sitting with that smirk on your face if you were being roasted? Could you say for sure harsh words don’t affect the mind? Think over it.
How adults go astray
Society, it seems, is voluntarily walking towards doom. It is 2020, and still, people (including the so-called educated, belonging from ‘khandani’ families) believe that rapes happen because of the way women/ girls/ grandmothers/ babies dress! Their outward progressiveness is limited to “allowing” girls to study away from home, or “allowing” their wives to continue to work after getting married. This widely diverse yet so strangely similar category of men rushes to protect the “honour” of their motherland, their culture (read about the protests and violence in Rajasthan over the film Padmavat), ‘their God’ who they barely know anything about. And in the process of this very brave act of protecting, they cause more damage to every logically-sound mind and body. This false pride awakens a sense of authority within these people to decide someone’s fate because they think different, or act differently; this sense of power makes them feel invincible for which they go to extents of threatening people’s lives, women’s bodies, and others’ belief systems.
It is NEVER ok, even a bit, to make fun of women’s bodies(or men’s). If this lesson is not given to young persons who get drawn into the fancy of being in trend, they swell with time and come out in the worst possible ways scarring our society.
Hypocritic vicious cycle
It might shock you to know that most of our population feeds on twisted, vulgar, threatening, and voyeuristic content online. Working with digital media organizations, I have witnessed that first hand. When I first noticed the disparity of views, likes, and comments regarding the content on various topics I was shaken to the core. The public blames the media/social media platforms for dishing out ugly content to them. However, I noticed responses to educational, creative, and happy content being overtaken by those of the ‘ugly content’ by thousands. This made me question the whole system. It is a vicious cycle – the public blaming the media platforms for producing violent content and the media platforms blaming the public for watching more of such content, therefore, giving them more reason(and business) to prioritise violence over other topics.
It should be an individual effort to choose the right content online and call out what you feel is unworthy in a responsible way. It is also not that simple to hurl abuses in protest of offensive content and think you’ve donw your part. That way you are just adding on to it.
Try to bring change
It is NOT ok to consider yourself cool, badass, alive, bekhauf, bindass, or carefree when your acts reek of offence and criminal. It is long past time to take action to nip them in the bud. If you cannot change the mind of a condescending adult, at least try to stand your ground and make it clear that you do not agree with their unpleasant thoughts.
Bring up your children to be respectable and responsible adults and not flesh-eating parasites in the guise of men(see, you can insult without using profanity).
I know most people won’t read the full text, I know many would argue with some of the things I wrote, while some of them might want to discuss and share knowledge upon topics, other would just yell, scream, and blabber with no apparent focal point…
I don’t take it to the heart anymore, as opinions of random people don’t matter – not anymore.