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If a man stares at me,

Then it is his eyes that sin, not my breasts.

If a man can work from 9 to 5, have children and still be a good father,

Then I can do the same and be a good mother.

If a man takes my short skirt to mean consent,

Then he should know: consent comes from my thoughts and my words, and not from my dress.

If a man is not questioned when he swears and smokes and drinks,

Then what makes him question me - only one half of the population,

Police only one half of the problem?

If a man can decide where he wants to live, what work he wants to do, how he wants to dress, who he wants to marry,

Then I too can, and still retain my modesty.

My choices are mine, not his to judge,

My body is mine, not his to touch,

My mind is mine, not his to corrupt

With his biased notions of equality, his twisted views on humanity.

If one can't survive without the other,

Then why this illusion of might?

Two halves make a whole,

But one hollowed shell is only a hole.

~Ila Manish

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