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  • Writer's pictureAmit Shankar

Me Too, Ambedkar and Pride Month

The past week was quite unusual for me, as three distinct events occurred. Despite their lack of connection and varying natures, they left me pondering.

The first incident was quite amusing. We had shared our agency credentials with a mid-sized brand. The head of marketing contacted me, pointing out a spelling error in our credentials document. While I agree that spelling mistakes and typos should be avoided, advertising agencies are hired for their creativity and originality. Can one judge our work across various industries, countries, and continents based on one spelling error? Besides, if the spelling factor was so important to him, he should have hired a proofreader instead of a communication firm. However, this marketing head is quite difficult to deal with. He tends to be a bully, belittling people and flaunting his superiority. I'm convinced that this behaviour is rooted in his childhood experiences, such as being bullied in school or being abused. His actions piqued my interest, so I asked a member of my team to conduct some research on him.

It’s unfortunate that Mr. Perfectionist was unceremoniously fired from a tier-one advertising agency due to sexual harassment complain, a #MeToo.

Since then, he has worked with a few inconsequential brands, with a checkered employment graph. What baffles me is that companies are still willing to hire him despite the blemish on his resume. But then we live in a society where even the court believes in giving a rapist a second chance. To mend or rape another girl is a million dollar question.

The second incident I want to share wasn't exactly pleasant.

I had a discussion with a friend about Ambedkar, but things took a turn for the worse. While I have my own opinions about the man, I didn't expect my friend to get so angry and resort to name-calling. It was especially hurtful because we've been friends for a while now. I apologised to my friend because I know that in today's times, it's easy for friendships to end over divided or diverse opinion. For me, friendships are valuable and the lesson being, think twice before discussing politics or political view with friends.

Last but not least is about this month, June, now being branded as #Pridemonth.

As far as I can remember, till a few years back, society was clear about sexual orientation and preferences. Men with other preferences were referred to as G****. So how come suddenly, being a G**** has become a matter of pride?

Is “Garv se kaho hum G**** hain” the new slogan for this generation?

To me, it sounds ridiculous, albeit I am for freedom of expression. Do what you want, try your kinks, sleep with a man, a woman, a sheep or whatever catches your fancy. But please stop rationalising it, seeking approval and trying to position it as a way of life under the garb of freedom of expression.

Imagine a world without real men, serenading real women.

Imagine, folklores bereft of valour and literature devoid of feminine beauty.

Imagine men-women signs on washroom doors becoming a thing of the past.

Imagine our frontiers being protected by men wearing nail paint and lipsticks and an IVF-bred generation addressing bearded men as a mom.

Even John Lenon would have shuddered to 'imagine' this.

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