SIMPLY BEING | SIMPLE BEING

Women police officers in Indian films

… are always painted in the worst of colors. Not that women, in general, are depicted in a realistic manner as professionals. Take the case of a woman police officer. She is generally a firebrand, a haughty woman who literally begs to be ‘tamed’ (how it PAINS me to type that word but that’s the most apt description) by the hero who is obviously righteous, fair, and reasonable. And if he gets a little violent and ends up acting rough with her, it’s only because she asked for it. At the end of 32 reels, she has reconciled to her rightful place, next to her man, content to defer to him, and of course, when it comes to song-n-dance, she will be open to him slapping her butt, playing with her breasts – basically, making her look like a complete slave around him.

It was after taking a course on gender last Fall that I started viewing all these events in a whole new light. I can only be thankful that the leading men in my life, my Dad and Pinch, have never, not even ONE TIME, ever made me feel subordinate or weak, in any aspect of my life.

Reminds me of a time when I asked Pinch (this was much before we got married) about a hypothetical situation. What if I had a career that involved some level of danger (maybe an investigative journalist) and I had to go to a high-risk area for an assignment? Would he bar me from going? I still remember his response. He said that he would do all that he could to make sure that I was safe. Beyond that, if it was my wish to go, he wouldn’t disallow or discourage me from going.

Art of Living is doing such amazing work in places like Iraq and Afghanistan. Trauma relief programs have been conducted with bombs going off in the distance. Yes, the work we do sometimes places us in situations where our very life is at threat. Yet we continue to do what we have to do – help those in need, provide support and knowledge to the ones whose very lives depend on it, be there. I am positive that if I were to pose the same question to Pinch (or even my Dad), the response wouldn’t be different from what it was so many years back.