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Lisa Ray Stands Up To Protest Against Salman Khan’s Arbitrary Use Of Rape Analogy

 When last week Lisa Ray posted  a picture on Instagram  showing Salman Khan on stage with his leading ladies , their faces morphed with  pictures of silenced monkeys , everyone knew the feisty actress was making a strong statement on the lack of protest within the Indian entertainment industry  against Salman’s ‘rape analogy’

Lisa clarifies that she did not intend to pin the blame on Salman for the trivialization of an issue as serious as rape. “I don’t believe in perpetrating a blame game, feeding divisiveness or responding out of anger or judgement at this point.However since the dye is cast and the ‘rape’ discussion has entered public discourse once again, this is an opportunity to have a positive dialogue about the usage of the word ‘rape’.”

Lisa points out how sensitively issues related to rape are handled in the international media. “In other countries, a trigger-warning is issued before even printing or discussing the word ‘rape’. In India we need to educate the NEXT generation of girls and boys on  WHY it’s a powerful word, how to avoid misusing it and in this way  to learn to treat women, and their experiences equal to those of men, and with sensitivity.”

Lisa feels both parents must play an equally important role in the gender sensitization of coming generations. “Both fathers and mothers can play a big role. And while the media can at times over -react, a family can always use an opportunity like the recent one regarding Salman to examine their own values and attitudes towards the status of women in India.”

Speaking for herself  Lisa pledges to  stand up against  gender insensitivity whenever it occurs in her range of attention. “Personally, I will be braver in my everyday life, in standing up to what I perceive to be words or actions which disrespect women and the feminine experience.”

Unlike many Bollywood  divas who have kept quiet on the Salman issue for the fear of being slammed by his fans Lisa doesn’t mind getting the flak for standing up to what she feels to be right. “I know at times this will make me unpopular, but this is the price of standing up for your values and beliefs. First you need to decide how you feel about what Salman said:  does it bother you? Doesn’t it bother you? If even one person changes  his or her  view on ‘rape’ and women’s dignity in India after this incident, something positive would  have been accomplished.”

Lisa feels the issue has gone way beyond Salman. “Right now, this is an opportunity to elevate people’s awareness, not point fingers. And the media can be a part of this as well by featuring others women’s trauma and stories across India.”

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