Double standards exist everywhere, I know, but I've seen an unbearable amount with Pukhtuns (because, silly, silly me! I expect them to be so much better than all other people in the world!). And, yes, I know the following happens in other racial groups too, but I'm "singling out" Pukhtuns because, in case it's not obvious already, I'm a Pukhtun myself. I see no logic in taking on all of the world's issues and talking about every single problem of every single nation. You do that yourself.
Here's the deal, ok?
A few days ago on one of my FB accounts (I have two), this Pukhtun guy messaged me and said "hi, how are you?" I replied a couple of days later (deliberately) and said I was well, thank you. He replies instantly and says, "What is your name? Where do you live? Are you studying or are you married?" (lol :D like I can't do both!) I replied a couple of days later with, "Hm... too many questions at once. Why don't you visit my blog and have alllll of your questions about me answered, bro?" He replied, again instantly (freaky, I know, right?), with something fobby, like "Will you be my friend?" And I replied with:
"Well, let's see. If a male asked your sister such a question, how would you feel about that?"
It's not that I would have any problem adding him to my list (on one of the accounts), but it's just that I wanted to make him think about something. And I wanted to test how a random Pukhtun man was going to respond to my challenge. I've done that to a few other Pukhtun males, but they usually just say, "Don't bring my sister into this." lol.
Pukhtun men, like many other men, I'm sure, say things to us Pukhtun women/girls that would make them flip out if they heard a male saying to THEIR sisters, daughters, wives, mothers. Yet, they talk to us like we have no respect for ourselves. How cowardly. And they mistake this for "honor" (ghairat in Pashto). Pitiful, I know.
Anyway, so, guess what the guy replies with! He basically called me a slut (in Pukhto) and said that his sister is too respectable to use Facebook (LOL!!!), that he'd never let his sister join FB, that only slutty girls like me join FB, etc., etc. I was cracking up. Though I wasn't planning to respond anyway, he blocked me even if I would've wanted to :( So heartbroken, man. So heartbroken!
Why was this guy offended that I asked him how he'd feel about a guy talking to his sister the way he was talking to me? It's very simple, as far as I understand it. Let me explain.
Over the past few years, since like late 2007 till now, I have met many Pukhtun men online who practice too many double standards. And it's not like these guys are illiterate as the guy I mentioned above: most of the ones I'm talking about, that I have personally conversed with and had big discussions about society, culture, religion, etc., are quite educated. [I'm going to be writing on this in detail, with examples and all, in a near future. Please stay tuned and be patient. Thanks!] But there's still something about them that makes them think that ANY Pukhtun female who will talk to men who are not directly, immediately related to her is close to being a slut. These same men "support" and "respect" us for what we Pukhtun women do (blogging, having intellectual discussions with them in public forums, writing pro-women poetry, etc.), but they would won't let their own sisters/wives be among us. The next time a Pukhtun man says, "I wish we had more Pukhtun women speaking up for women," tell him, "Good call - where's your wife/sister? Why don't you encourage her to do this as well, then?" He tends to shut up. [Again, I'll talk about this in detail next time, but you get the idea.] So you see, they themselves talk to women in ANY way they like, but if their wives dared to talk to men the way they talk to me or other Pukhtun women who're active on the Internet, their masculinity -- as fake and feeble as it clearly is -- would be challenged, and, of course, they can't handle that.
Let me clarify that this is not all Pukhtun men. Of course. It's never all. I know of a few Pukhtun men who respect me so much I know they'd kill any man who they found out was disrespectful to me. (No, seriously.) They're really kind and supportive. But those are few. Those are the exceptions.
Mostly, though, the ones who consider themselves "liberal" are like this: they think that BECAUSE I support women's rights so much and speak a lot on women's issues in Pukhtun societies, I must be okay with their approaching me in a way I find completely indecent and disrespectful. And that way is asking me some very inappropriate questions. I've blocked many guys who've done this, whether on FB or on any online Pukhtun forum, but the Internet world is unfortunately replete with them. The problem is that these guys are "educated" AND outwardly support women's rights, such as good education for Pukhtun women. Me, I used to respect any man who was like this when I first started joining these online Puhktun communities -- and then I realized that many of these guys were just fake. Their own wives, for example, are suffering in Swat, Pekhawar, Banu, wherever they may be from, while they come on these online forums and shit about the sufferings of PUKHTUN WOMEN and want "liberty" for Pukhtun women ... and you ask them what they're doing to alleviate the situations of their own wives, and their answer? This: "That's how our society works; there's nothing I can do about it." Hell yes you can, you dirty piece of shit!!
But, noooo - they'd rather live away from their wives (understandably for employment purposes) and (NOT understandably) cheat on their wives with younger girls with the excuse that "my wife is not educated so I can't have intellectual discussions with her" or "she doesn't want to be liberated, even though I'm trying to liberate her." What the hell? Really?!?! You can't LIBERATE anyone, you ass. She has to liberate herself. And what do you mean you've tried? How have you tried? Does she know how you talk to other women? Does she know that you have no respect for her whatsoever when you're physically away from her? Does she know that you don't give a damn about her health because, in your ass-ish opinion, that's just how Pukhtun women live and your wife is no exception?
My point is, the concepts of freedom, liberty, "educatedness," women's rights - all of these are completely misunderstood by many Puhktun men, especially the apparently educated ones. You can't call yourself educated when you think that ALL the concept of women's rights entails is a woman being sexually loose, being as open with any guy as she wants, tolerating disrespect from men, etc., etc. Though I have minimal conversations with Pukhtun men today (until a year or so ago, I talked with them frequently because I thought I needed to share my ideas with them desperately. That was dumb of me. I'm so glad I remembered this precious bog of mine, where most of my conversations with Pukhtun males are now public.), I'll never, never, ever understand what makes an "educated" man think that it's okay for him to use any terms of endearment with me such as "darling" or "sweetheart" or "dear," or send me hearts (lol - believe it!). They call me something I don't like once, and I warn them not to do it again because, just like their sisters wouldn't like it, I don't either! And if they do it just one more time, they're out of my list. I don't need such men in my friends list, even if it's just in the virtual world. Again, their reaction at the mention of their "sister" (I don't even know if they would have any sisters at all, but they usually have someone in their family/relatives they can consider a sister) is ALWAYS worth millions, I swear: they erupt! "How DARE you bring my sister in this?" What? What did I do? I only reminded you that you are never, ever to talk to me the way you wouldn't want any male to talk to your sister. What's the harm in such a reminder? And it's their response to this question that can tell you everything about them and tell you that they really have no respect for you!
I don't believe everyone deserves to be respected by default (respect must be earned), but I certainly don't believe everyone should by default be disrespected. If you believe I have earned your disrespect, simply never interact with me. But you call me any word of endearment or talk to me in a way I don't like and tell you ONCE that I don't like it, and you insist on doing it - you're out. My living in the "west," the infidel, depraved west, does NOT give you any excuse to call me Dear or Darling or Baby or Sweetheart or whatever else, and it certainly doesn't mean I'll accept your approaching me in a way I find indecent and intolerable.
A Pukhtun male once told me that he is certain (he said he knows, actually, but I'll just say he's certain) that over 60% of Pukhtun men have at least once in their lives committed adultery, chances are with much younger girls. I asked him why he thinks that, and he, living in Pukhtunkhwa and knowing tons of Pukhtun men personally and having such discussions with him on a regular basis (he told me so), said: "Because most of them are married to women who are not on the same intellectual level as they, and so they easily get attracted to women who are on their level and turn to them for both sexual and intellectual satisfaction."
I don't know how much sense that makes, but that's according to one man out there. And from what I've seen of Pukhtun men online, I have to admit it sounds true.
Also, take a look at the following photos to see how these men (again, NOT ALL PUKHTUN MEN! Just a large percentage of them) treat and view women. Someone, please, please explain to me what makes these men think that because a girl's picture is public, they can make such filthy comments on their pictures ... or that even they can share them with the world!
|LOL. The same FB page that puts Pukhtun women's pictures on display and asks people to KISS and HUG them is telling people to "SAVE girls?"! What a joke. Oh exceptionalism ...|