Not just skin deep prejudice!

One thing pretty consistent amongst we Indians is white skin fetish. Nowadays we all are running after fairness including boys. Here in India fair is beautiful, its a virtue, its national aspiration. Fair girls are often called pretty whereas darker tone are often ignored to such an extent that they find it difficult to get a match for wedding. Most of the boys want to date fair girls. Still in many regions, people are like, ‘ladki hui vo bhe kali’ or ‘ladki doodh se gori hai’. The matrimonial ads hunt for ‘fair and beautiful’ bride. Even the concept of tall, dark and handsome man is futile in India.Why? Complexion shouldn’t matter deep down.

Its appalling to note that we need to import models for our advertisements and worse yet movies. Commercials shows a dark girl moping the floor, she is kind of whip out and after applying some fairness cream, she suddenly conquers the world. Fairer is more successful, more confident. In general notion dark is everything but sweet. It is creating such a scenario that if one sees a dark and fair girl side by side, equally attractive, dark- take to hotel and fair- to mom. At the end of the day, commercials are mirror of society, they reflect what we want deep down but it’s also their responsibility to portrait it in a more ethical form.

In western countries, tanned skin is considered aesthetic, and we find fairness aesthetic. Yes, we always find grass of other fence greener but your skin is the tag of your self hood. Why change it? Why rush to store to buy a fairness cream. The total size of the grooming products market in India was estimated to be worth Rs. 8.0 billion in 2007 and the total fairness cream market alone is worth around Rs 820Cr. What’s the truth? Can fairness creams, soaps and talc turn Black Beauties into Snowhites? Expert verdict is a clear no still sales of fairness products continue to gallop.

Go for beauty enhancers, not fairness enhancers.

Here the irony is we Indians complain that others are racist while we are hardcore racist, it’s in our blood. I’ve met girls who say ‘I’m attracted to fair girls”. Fairness is playing to certain kind of neurosis. It is creating a void between dark and fair girls. I have friends who seems to grade themselves low just because they have dark skin tone. They envy fair girls, blame them and it’s not their fault, society is forcing them into this.

A talk show on NDTV suggested that the word ‘fairness’ be banned.But if we look at things we would understand that the folklore is deeper than the commercials. I personally think that the word ‘rich brown’ should be use instead of ‘dark’.

No offense meant to anybody, I am not protesting against fair complexions, I am trying uproot discrimination on one’s colour. It is our responsibility to stand against racism.

A small change can make a big difference. You are the only one who can make our world a better place to inhabit. So, don’t be afraid to stand.

On Jul 31, 2010 @ 21:13


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