Saturday, February 14, 2015

Of Section 377 and Valentine's Day

So Valentine's Day finally ends, with happy endings for some people, and some people left saying "मैं आत्महत्या करना चाहता हूँ। " How ever it might have gone for people, their stories of love, either requited or unrequited, it was the same - girl loves boy, boy loves girl, yada yada. But amidst all the gooey stuff, not to mention the lust, we've forgotten that Valentine's Day is meant for celebrating the love that you share with your lover. When Section 377 was reimposed, it didn't just prohibit sex between people of the same genre. It meant that two people of the same gender who love each other deeply, now shy away from public displays of affection, even communication with each other. This is not only hurtful to the people concerned, it is 'against the order of nature', as gay or lesbian sex is purported to be. If two people love each other, then there is nobody who humanly has a right to separate the two. So homosexuality is against Indian culture? Then do tell that from whence some of the sculptures found in the Khajuraho temples, as well as some verses of the Kama Sutra sprung forth? Unless moral policing is stopped, ignorance is wiped clean off the slate that is India, homosexual lovers can't live without fear. And where lovers can't live without fear of death by the state, Valentine's Day is incomplete.
On a slightly unrelated note, one may quote Rabindranath Tagore:
Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high 
Where knowledge is free 
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments 
By narrow domestic walls 
Where words come out from the depth of truth 
Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection 
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way 
Into the dreary desert sand of dead habit 
Where the mind is led forward by thee 
Into ever-widening thought and action 
Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake 
The father of our nation would be turning in his grave now, had something called the soul existed in the first place, and immortality of the soul would be a given. Not such a free land anymore, eh Gandhiji?

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