Sunday, October 10, 2010

New Dehli, the Commonwealth Games, and Patriarchal Misogyny for White Men Coming to Take Advantage of Their White Het Male Entitlements and Power

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What follows is from *here*. Click on the title below to link back.

Commonwealth Games Delhi 2010: Special Report- Major boost for sex tourism in India (part 1)
Posted By: Sam Willis Posted In:
Commonwealth Games

Commonwealth Games Delhi 2010: Special Report- Major boost for sex tourism in India (part 1)

Legalising prostitution in a country battling from human trafficking has not quite been the wisest move by the Indian government. Prostitution might be as old as civilization itself however; it is the worst form of oppression and slavery. It is a result of extreme poverty, criminal greed and the patriarchal misogynist nature of society that has evolved over time.

Eight hundred thousand women and young girls are bought and sold each year. What is most worrying however is, if it wasn’t for prostitution this modern day slave trade as we know it would not exist. India, one of the world’s largest developing economies has a billion dollar prostitution industry. According to official figures, there were more than 2.8 million prostitutes operating in the country and actively involved in the sex trade in 2007. This figure is expected to have tremendously increased in the last few years.

What is most interesting however is the fact that according to a Human rights watch report in 1996 there were 10 million sex workers in the country and BBC had concluded in one of its reports that the figure of sex workers had increased to 3 million in 2003-04. Therefore there is a high likelihood that the government of India has under reported the exact figures to evade the eye of the Human rights watch, Ngo’s and media.

With the advent of Commonwealth games 2010 that will be attracting scores of foreign tourists the Indian capital has become a whore – fest. While there has been much talk revolving around corruption during the preparations of the CWG 2010, it has brought a massive influx of money for many. Architects, Engineers, construction companies, hotels, travel agencies and shops. One might wonder who else can benefit from the Commonwealth games. Ruchira Gupta a member of the organization Apne Aap Women Worldwide says ‘look no further than the sex trade’.

According to Gupta, thousands of Indian girls are being kidnapped by traffickers all over the country and being sold to pimps and brothels who are reportedly preparing them for the CWG games in Delhi. It is also noted that the women are injected with oxytocin to make their bodies more voluptuous for the sex trade. Most of the girls that are being kidnapped and trafficked are between the ages of 9 to 17.

One particular anti-trafficking organization working in the Indian Capital, Shakti Vahini states that almost 40 to 45 girls have been rescued since March and the girls belonged to the poorest states of India including Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal and Orissa. According to the Action against Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation of children, many girls are being kidnapped from the extremely poor areas of the country like Tamil Nadu, Chhattisgarh and Karnataka to curb the shortfall of sex workers the capital city faces with the large influx of foreigners. Some say the shortfall is as much as 50%.

These girls are then being trained and coached by pimps. They are also being taught English and words like ‘hello’, ‘how are you’, ‘thank you’ and most importantly the phrase ‘please use a condom’.

GB Road in Delhi India is famous for housing hundreds of prostitution dens in the country’s capital city and according to reports; the red light zone in the capital is getting a major face lift in the wake of the CWG 2010. The brothels are upgrading themselves to provide luxurious facilities and make them more appealing for the foreign customer by installing fridges, air conditioners and LCD TV’s.

Tina Jaswal, the CEO and owner of the No 1 escort agency of New Delhi has said that she is hoping to make some good money out of the games and simple economic principles of demand and supply will ensure that she gets high rates for her call girls. She also stated that their agency has effectively doubled their rates and have increased the number of call girls as well.


Anonymous said...

I told my mother about this and she mentioned that in some Arab and Pashtun societies, men are actually happy when they have daughters so that they can sell them later on. Misogyny is certainly not the white HET man's game. He just has all the power in the world these days, isn't it?

Julian Real said...

Hi Amna,

I agree that misogyny is men's game, and a violent game at that. And it is enforced and made compulsory in such a way as to make it seem inevitable, normal, and natural.

From what I've learned over the last many years, misogyny-as-rape is increasingly a globalised game played with the major power-brokers--corporate pimps, militias tied to governments in overt and covert ways, slavers, traffickers, husbands and boyfriends with wealth or just with male supremacist leverage. I don't know how heterosexism, homophobia, and lesbophobia intersect with globalised racism and capitalism in India and the broader region of Southeast, South, and Central Asia. I don't have a clue about how and to what extent gay men are power-brokers in the region, in terms of assisting the trafficking of girls from homes into the hands of pimps and slavers. (I don't know how many of the pimps and slavers are gay men.)

What I see, from my very limited vantage-point, is a globalised form of racist patriarchal heterosexism that is increasingly virulent in its anti-lesbian/anti-gay agenda and values. I don't see white gay men functioning as the major power-brokers in the "game" of girls and women being sold around the world to straight men. That wealthy straight men routinely participate in the callous and despicable purchase of pleasure at the price of girls' and women's chance of living without serial sexual trauma, is unconscionable while normal. Wealthier men can and do travel thousands of miles to have access to girls everywhere around the planet--knowing that the poorer the country or region, the less likely they will be to meet up with resistance from law enforcement because wealth purchases lawyers and buys non-accountability.

Julian Real said...

I understand that profits always go to the pimps and again, am not sure what the sexual, racial, ethnic, and economic breakdown is of those pimps. In the West, as you may well know, "pimps" are assumed to be relatively poor straight men of color--urban and Black or Brown. In my understanding and experience, the pimps with the most power and control are white, wealthy, corporate, transnational, and not really able to be visually stereotyped because they are not seen, usually, and are not portrayed specifically and uniquely as pimps by mass media including news media. They are, instead, portrayed as successful business-men, running communications conglomerates, hotel chains, and travel agencies. When I see CEOs and COOs of major corporations that involve travel in any way, it is probable I am looking at a pimp--a trafficker, a slaver, a terrorist who commits terroristic acts even if only by proxy--primarily against girls and women.

I have little to no reason to believe such a man is not involved, on some level, in the use and abuse of girls and women as sexual fodder for het male "clients" who treat female human beings, and some male human beings, as less-than-things who supposedly exist only to service men-with-money.

Wealth isn't only found in the hands of white males or only heterosexual males, of course. But wealth rapidly consolidated in the hands of the few, and white het male supremacy is now globalised. To me this means the few are going to be Western white and heterosexual men, with exceptions to be sure.

On a related and also horrific note, as men's sexual aggression against and exploitation of human beings stigmatised as being of lesser value is allowed to flourish on a grander scales, it will become increasingly necessarily to intensify homophobia and anti-gay attitudes and terrorism. Rampant homophobia and overtly anti-gay policies and laws will be needed to ensure that the male supremacist aggression and exploitation being unleashed primarily targets girls and women, not boys and men.

My heart sinks when I hear about what your mother describes happening. And I know that men--Western, Eastern, Northern, and Southern, are too often "happy" to have daughters so they might be raped at home by the fathers, or sold to pimps. This, to me, is one consequence of living in a world with a globally classist, racist, misogynistic sexual economy, where girls everywhere are perceived by too many men as sex-objects for predatorial het men, both local and foreign.

To say it is all a crime, a horror, and a tragedy, doesn't quite say enough. Globalised trafficking and sexual slavery of girls and women, also of boys, also of transgender people, is increasingly (not decreasingly) popular and profitable. And from all the evidence I'm aware of, there is no male-led pro-feminist effort to curb or end this violation and destruction of life.

In India specifically, there are activist women like Ruchira Gupta and many hundreds of very brave women and girls working to get themselves and other girls and women out of the systems of exploitation and violence.

Why aren't there men working similarly? To say that men want this option to sell, to rape, and to exploit girls is to offer up a horribly callous conclusion. I wish I had evidence to the contrary--to know that millions of men globally, gay and straight, will stand up to the pimps--especially the corporate ones. I don't see it happening. But I'll still hope for it and advocate for it, so that the task of stopping the rape and sexual exploitation of girls and women primarily, isn't left only to girls and women to accomplish.

Patti said...

Indeed, many of our assumptions are based on the more readily visible, and thus more readily targetable-by-media, "street level". And who owns the media that targets the "street level"? Why, the white, wealthy, corporate, transnational, of course, who render themselves virtually invisible, and thus can more easily evade scrutiny and criticism in discussions of social change because, for all intents and purposes, they don't exist.

And isn't it interesting how the countries who are currently the most heavily involved in the sex traffic trade are the ones who so overvalued male children that, through their practice of gendercide as population control, they now have an ever-increasing population of adult males combined with an ever-decreasing population of adult females. I guess, in all their infinite wisdom, they didn't see that one coming!!

Anonymous said...

That's the reason I mentioned that white men have the most power these days. However, what about the way Muslim rulers oppressed women and created Harems just so that they could go on conquering in the name of religion. Before Islam, the situation for women wasn't any better. Look at the way women are oppressed in countries like Saudi Arabia. How is it only the White HET male to blame?
Should I think that Arab, Turko-Persian are also almost white and therefore, the next step down in this hierarchy of misogynistic rule?

Julian Real said...

Hi Amna,

The contention of this blog isn't that only Western white het men are oppressive. The contention is that men are oppressive to and structurally dominate women, the rich are oppressive to and structurally exploit the poor, whites are oppressive to people of color and passively or actively support genocide, and that the Global North's capitalism is destroying the Earth.

This ought not lead anyone to conclude, for example, that patriarchal men anywhere are not oppressive to men--individually and collectively, that male supremacist gay men aren't oppressive to women (het, bi, and lesbian) interpersonally and structurally, or that regions around the world don't have their own culturally specific ways of maintaining male supremacy and expressing misogyny.

The reason this blog focuses on how any form of oppression is tied to the practices of Western white het men is because of the particular time in which we live, where pornography, drug, munitions, and sex trafficking, sexual and wage slavery, rape, and ecocidal and genocidal practices are globalised by Western/white het male supremacist corporations and governments. That's something dominant media won't tell us about, nor will "progressive" media, in those terms.

I feel having one blog that focuses on WHM supremacy, of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, isn't "one too many". Do you?

Anonymous said...

Capitalism-- Once again, I will use the example of Muslim men.

The Moghuls were so opulent that when they went to war, wherever they camped was a sight of splendor.

What is Saudi Arabia and Dubai doing now? Wouldn't you call that ecocide? What about what China is doing? Why are there fewer women in China now? Why are chinese women seen by white men as sex symbols? Isn't it because they were oppressed and expelled from their own country in the first place? What is China doing to Falung Gong? Can we deny that genocide due to non-communist beliefs is happening?

I understand that you look from your vantage point but you also talk about countries outside of the Occident, such as India.

Indeed, what you write opens my eyes to look at men with suits in a different way. I no longer assume that they are the more civilized men compared to men in dhotis, or shalwar kameez, or dishtashas.

However, when I go outside, I know that I can walk the streets because I live in a country like Canada, where white men seem to most respectful of all men. I may still be biased.

When I used to think trafficking, I used to think Saudi Arabia and Prague. I find your writings quite educating, but I find that you seem to make men of other cultures less culpable and more or less victims of bad publicity compared to white men.

Pathans that comprise much of Taliban and Al Qaida are known for their homosexual or bisexual behaviour. Their oppression of women is a fact.

Homo or bi-sexuality occured during war time even in the days of Mohammad, when men had sex with each other because they didn't take women with them to war.

Same thing would probably have happened in western armies, until they got women in armies and now they can always rape them or have consensual sex with them.

Homo or bi-sexuality happens in jails in the western cultures as well.

My contention is that homo or bi-sexual men can also largely be oppressors because traditionally, they still are on a higher status to women especially when they are butch' and bi.

When you say your blog is about feminism, you do not indicate anywhere that you specifically focus on the White HET male relation to women and the world, unless I didn't read the description properly.

Julian Real said...

Hi again, Amna.

Thanks for your contributions to this discussion!

I hope I have indicated what the focus is for this blog in the "About Me" section (top right), and in the description just under the name of the blog, within the banner.

This blog focuses on White Het Male Supremacy. That's what happens here, largely, but not exclusively. I have several posts about the misogyny of men of color, the misogyny and anti-lesbian politics of gay men, and the racism of white women. I welcome you to read those posts if you haven't yet.

I fully accept that men of color, in most places around the world, are grievously abusive and oppressive to the women with whom they live, share an ethnic identity as well as identities of nationality and country.

I understand that patriarchy is global, while not universal. There are societies that are rape-prone and others that are less so, for various reasons.

This is my view:

Some forms of abuse, subjugation, torture, terrorism, and gynocide of women by men off North American shores are more common there than here. Some forms of abuse, subjugation, torture, terrorism, and gynocide of women by men are more common here than abroad.

While I agree gay men can, structurally or interpersonally, oppress any woman, so too can many non-queer women oppress gay men structurally and interpersonally. When we're dealing with any two groups who hold positions of both privilege and degraded status, we have groups that can oppress each other. White het women fighting to keep marriage heterosexual, and who are anti-lesbian, and who don't want children taught about "homosexuality" as a legitimate form of sexual expression or experience are behaving in anti-gay/anti-lesbian ways that are oppressive to queer people.

And when gay men mock or berate women, or collaborate with het men to keep women subordinated, they are being oppressive to all women.

And this blog exists to challenge the harm of capitalism and to note where and how the Earth is being destroyed.

The reason you won't see me posting much about China is because I don't have contacts or links to people fighting oppression in China. I do with activists in India, Malaysia, and Japan, however, as well as in Iraq and Afghanistan.

I have many, many posts on what is going on in Central and South Asia that is grossly abusive to and/or lethal to girls and women there. Again, I welcome you to read those and let me know what you think.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Julian Real said...

Hi Amna,

Please post your questions about marriage to one of several discussion posts on this blog on that subject. This post is about trafficking and Western white male supremacist privileges across the globe.

I have posted many times on lesbian/gay/queer/trans issues, and so welcome any questions about those issues to be put there, please.

Thank you. I'd appreciate that because then when someone comes here to look for discussion on those subjects, the conversations aren't buried in a post on an entirely different subject.