In a recent article, WSJ compiled an arbitrary list of suggestions for avoiding sexual exploitation of women and to ensure their safety. The article cited Shop mannequins, skirts, dating, bollywood, public events facilitating physical intimacy, internet pornography, co-education as some of the reasons to be tackled for reducing crime against women. Technological solutions like a wrist watch and cultural solutions such as revival of Hindu culture and praying to God were also proposed. These suggestions have come from various sources including politicians, social activists, women activists, technologists and administrators. Each of these suggestions proposes a partial solution. But the compilation fails to propose a comprehensive solution to the problem.
Media.syndicate proposes the following minimal set of suggestions to tackle the problem in a holistic way.
- Avoid touch: Physical touch could escalate emotions and prohibiting physical touch socially would go a long way in ensuring safety of women and children, especially from sexual exploitation. The touch to be avoided includes public physical touch between any two individuals of opposite gender. It is also advisable to avoid touch among married couple in public. This suggestion may look strange and archaic but careful consideration would reveal its worth.
- Avoid private interactions: Private interactions between two individuals could lead to escalation of emotions, physical intimacy or to reduction of conversational barriers. Avoiding private interactions – including private conversations, spending time, working together would go a long way in ensuring safety and security of women and children. Many of the interactions between two individuals can also be done in the presence of others. For example, a student gets guidance from a teacher in the presence of other students. In the workplace, subordinates can receive separate instructions from their manager in the presence of their other co-workers.
- Maintain interaction barriers: Maintain barriers in interactions such as conversations, e-mails, chats, phone calls. Keep the interactions formal. Maintaining formality in dressing, and behaviour would also help.
- Legal provisions, social norms are to be based on the three suggestions listed above.