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Sunday, May 22, 2022
EditorialUncalled for misogynistic remarks

Uncalled for misogynistic remarks

This time, State Minister for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar came short on the yardstick set by the former minister for information and broadcasting Fawad Chaudhry for judging the IQ level of a female minister. In fact, her allegiance to the ruling party and her gender seemed to be the main factors, which made her a target of criticism for the former minister. The outburst by Fawad Chaudhry came when he called her a ‘low IQ woman’ in a tweet attaching an old interview of Hina Khar’s last appointment as the foreign minister which was in 2011. The remarks received the much-needed backlash from the social media users, regardless of political allegiance, who rose to the occasion and defended her against his blatant sexism and misogyny. No one would deny the fact that Pakistan is in some cases a’ misogynistic’ country, where patriarchal relations and attitudes discriminate against women. In Pakistani society, the female gender is believed inferior compared to the male gender and thus women are often subjected to criticism and slurs. The blatantly sexist remarks by the PTI leader are uncalled for and condemnable. The very distasteful remarks by a former minister highlight the mindset that a ‘majority’ of the male population has regarding females. Women do have a right to enjoy equal opportunities and their gender should not be a basis for criticism. Ever since the creation of Pakistan, women have played a considerable role in the development of society. Broadly categorised, women in Pakistan can be classified as housewives and working women. The role of women, in general, varies with class, rural-urban divide and region. Despite rising awareness, women, in general, have been subject to sexism and misogyny at some point in their life. For a progressive and prosperous Pakistan, it is essential that a general perception of the society should be changed that considers women as subordinates to men.

In addition to the unsavoury choice of words of the PTI leader is the lack of respect he and many others like him have for the female folk. The usage of such comments to disgrace the lady simply manifests the inherent misogyny and sexism that has become the hallmark of how females are looked at by males in general: the physical appearance of a woman becomes the yardstick of a woman’s capabilities. Moreover, those enjoying a good status in society need to demonstrate a more responsible attitude towards the treatment of women in society. Especially, politicians are supposed to exercise extra care in their actions and speech when they pass remarks against their opponents. There should be some limits and no one should humiliate others on a gender basis. Men and women are equal and deserve the same respect in society and they need to be provided with equal opportunities to excel in their relevant fields. They should not be considered inferior and a source to degrade opponents. There should not be feelings of humiliation for men if their mental capabilities or physical traits are compared with women because a woman itself is an embodiment of dignity and courage and history is full of such examples where women exceeded men in many fields.

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