"Would you rather have tea or coffee?" Nancy's mom asked Meeta, her sister-in-law who had come home to invite her for her daughter's ring ceremony.
"I'd like your special masala ginger tea." she replied.
Nancy's mom walked towards the kitchen to bring some snacks and tea. Suddenly, Nancy hugged her aunt and asked her about her well-being. After spending some quality time with her aunt, Nancy excused herself as she was getting late for her basketball practice sessions.
"So, how are the engagement preparations going on?" Nancy's mom asked Meeta while serving her tea and snacks.
"Everything is wonderful. Although, why don't you ask Nancy to do something about her skin? Haven't you noticed Nancy has turned darker than usual? Why don't you ask her to apply some good skin brightening creams like Fair & lovely or Himalaya Fairness cream?"
She continued to give a list of tips and tricks to get fairer skin. Some of her tips included facial masks, applying mud packs, using turmeric, saffron, applying facial bleach regularly and the list goes on. Nancy's mom looked at her, smiled and asked Meeta how her daughter's body color affected her.
Meeta replied, "Do you know Gupta Ji's daughter? Well, she has turned 30 and is still unmarried because of her dark complexion. Many families have rejected her because of her dark skin. I don't want the same to happen with Nancy, that's why I mentioned it".
Hearing the inanities, Nancy's mom laughed loudly and replied between the chuckles, "Meeta, which century are you living in? My daughter is an MBA graduate and a state level champion in Basketball. I don't think my daughter would have any issues in getting married because of her skin color.
She is responsible, well-educated and qualified and to top it all, she can take care of everyone. I'm proud of her. Her body color has to do nothing with her marriage."
Meeta said, "What you just said only looks good on television and books. No matter which century you are living in, our society wants a bahu (daughter-in-law) who is beautiful and fair. It doesn't matter whether she is a basketball champion or an MBA. The first criteria a family looks for is a fair and beautiful girl, not someone with dark skin."
Nancy's mom replied, “Well, I don't agree with you”. She silently took the cup and went towards the kitchen wondering if Meeta was right. Well, to be honest, the answer is YES. We talk about modernization. But the truth remains the same even in this century: we witness that girls are judged according to their skin color, no matter how educated, talented and responsible they are.
Most times, girls with dark complexion get to hear a list of tips from some distant aunt or apparently, the beauty expert on how they can have fairer skin. In some families, women with dark complexion are considered bad omens, thanks to the superstitious beliefs of the society. They are often rejected for marriage that humiliates them on so many levels.
Should her skin color decide who she spends her life with? Will this racism ever end?
A woman is beautiful because of her personality, her kindness, her character, her talent and her capabilities. Fair skin will only make a woman look appealing or attractive on the outside, but what is inside is what's more important.
Every woman is beautiful in her own way. Complexion should have nothing to do with her present, past or future.
I wonder who gave anyone the right to judge someone according to their complexion to the society?
She is as free as a bird. Let her live her life the way she wants to live it. Let her live freely. In this century of knowledge, racism only proves how low in the society you really are.
We all bleed the same color by the end of it.