Tuesday, September 29, 2009

How much of an exception is this?

Tamil Nadu is one of the states with the best statistics in India. It has a high literacy rate (73%), a high Human Development Index (0.736, compared to India's 0.61). It has a massive urban population and a fertility rate of 1.8 children per woman (which is less than the US' fertility rate). Tamil Nadu is as good as statistics get in India.

So, it is severely disappointing to see this news story from TN. Whipping women (as a form of exorcism) is certainly a big no-no in western society. And it is not as if it is just one woman being whipped - it is 2000 - a number too large to scoff at.

How should policy deal with this outrageous incident? Should the government step in and arrest all the offending priests? Should the women who were whipped against their will (apparently there were some who got whipped consensually) be given free legal aid to sue the priests and get them jailed?

I am sure that this awful incident is the exception and not the norm. My question is: how much of an exception is this?


The UN is passing a resolution calling the Hindu Caste system a human rights abuse. I whole-heartedly support this measure. If 65 Million dalits still face widespread discrimination (as I know they do, what with myself being Indian and all), perhaps international humiliation will shame Hindus into renouncing their caste.

If I were a hindu, I would renounce my caste. I am not a Hindu. I am an atheist, so I do not have a caste to renounce. As a statement of solidarity with the 65M Dalits of India, I implore all my hindu reader(s) to renounce their caste.


Varun Gandhi is causing inconvenience to a lot of people around the planet. Much the same way Adolf Hitler caused embarassment and inconvenience for all other people called Adolf on the planet. Varun Gandhi's latest espousal of a delusional right wing ideology (which claims that western music and culture are awful, but Hinduism's shameful treatment of 65M Dalits is the way to go) is no doubt causing immense heartburn to all those called Varun in the country. He has ruined a perfectly good name. Now, how many morons will call their son Varun?

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