HIGH TIME – Thinking needs to be changed!

Today when world has progressed so much, we as a society are still stuck with the old traditions and stereotypes.Issues like gender bias and honor killing have always been the highlights of our news papers.Gender bias is not only creating problems for ; its also affecting the growth of our society.

Men and women should have equal rights in every society. None of the gender is inferior or superior. But unfortunately in our society females are the one who can not contribute for the welfare of the society and who are considered inferior than men. Even in the job market men are preferred over women. We live in a male dominating society and certain stereotypes have become a part of our culture now.

Stereotype is defined as “ideas held about members of particular groups, based solely on membership in that group.” Females have been the most discriminated group in our society through out the history. They are always stereotyped as weak,helpless,home makers, who only do the house chores and take care of their children. Who always need a man to save them and help them in difficult situations. But this is totally wrong. Women who can get education equal to men can equally work with men and contribute in the society.These wrong stereotypes eliminate opportunities for women in the society. They are always stereotyped as the one who gossip and who don’t have facts while talking to others. While men are always considered to be a reliable source of information and they have more convincing power than women. These stereotypes get stronger when different institutions such as schools, media and family members agree upon them. Through the validation of these institutes, discrimination amongst the gender arises.

The discrimination through stereotypes about women start from the childhood. Firstly when boys are sent to English medium schools to make a better career and girls are sent to Urdu medium schools with the thinking that they don’t need to study much as they will be married in early age. All they will have to do is house chores and up-bringing of their children. Secondly fairytales change the mind of young generation to a large extent. If we talk about fairy tales each story has a helpless, innocent girl where as males are shown as brave and saviors. Mostly females are the ones who play negative and evil roles in the story. This affect the mindset of young children and throughout their life they believe that females are the one who always need help from men.

The image of women is always stereotyped as childish, helpless,sensitive,irrational,emotional and most important that they do not have interest in making their career. this is a wrong concept, females want to make their career; only the thing that stops them doing so is lack of opportunities. These stereotypes occur because of the thinking of the society which is usually against women. Sons can marry with their own choice but daughters are killed in the name of honor ,if they try to tell their choice, this is due to discrimination among the genders and stereotype that women can not make a right decision.

When these institutations validate stereotypes against women the thinking of society never changes ,so each institution should play an important role in eliminating this discrimination against women and society should change its thinking.Women should be given equal rights as of men. Media can play an important role in changing the thinking of the society by showing women as role models and by highlighting their strengths and capabilities.This will change our thinking and eventually these stereotypes will eliminate from our society.Screen-Shot-2014-02-21-at-3.32.31-PM

There should me more events like “zero discrimination day” to protect the rights of female and maintain equality in our society.We need to change our thinking for the welfare of our society. Eliminating these stereotypes from our society will help us to generate a healthy lifestyle.

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–    Rabiya Iqbal

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