Another day, another scandal. Yesterday, Hania Amir posted a #nofilter selfie showing off her acne-riddled skin for world to see. Part of why she decided to do so was to showcase that no one is perfect, that we all have imperfections. Actor known for his comedic roles, Yasir Hussain took an opportunity to poke fun at Hania by calling her “Danedaar”, completely missing the point of the whole post.
By exposing her vulnerability for the world to see, she set an example of how human we are. That no matter how much Photoshop or makeup that is used, celebrities are still people. And that was the point of it all.
The worst part about all of this is that the lesson it send to other people. The truth is we live in a pretty harsh world. Nearly anything can go wrong, nothing is guaranteed and everyone has an opinion. This uncertainty in the human existence makes human’s insecure. It could be about the way we look, talk, act and even think. We may think we are not smart enough. Or strong enough.
Part of getting over that insecurity to sharing it with the people around to, so that they can tell you how wrong you may be. When someone is made fun for expressing emotions, they are less likely to express themselves in the future. That makes them harder, more jaded and reinforces their insecurities.
However, Yasir Hussain decided that this was too much for him. He missed the point, and decided to make fun of Hania Amir’s insecurity. The problem isn’t that he made a joke about a person’s appearance, which could be problematic. It’s that he made a joke about some’s insecurity fully aware that Hania Amir was insecure about it. He just couldn’t care. But luckily, social media did. Yasir Hussain was taken to (social media) court and dragged by Pakistani social media.
However, he’s probably not going to learn from this. This isn’t the first Yasir Hussain as gotten into trouble for his humour. Just a couple of weeks ago, Yasir Hussain decided to insinuate that being Trans is an insult. Then there was the time he made an insensitive joke about child rape at the LUX style awards. Yasir Hussain really knows how to get his foot in his mouth. But it’s speaks to a much bigger issue within our society;
Now some of you might have cringed at the idea of this term being thrown around, but most people do not really understand the implications of the term. Toxic masculinity refers to the socialization process that discourages boys from expressing emotions and social expectations that men seek to be dominant (the “alpha male”) and limit their emotional range primarily to expressions of anger. This can lead to men being stunted, emotionally. We encourage this as a society by propagating social gender roles.
This leads to situations like this. Instead of responding to emotional situations with a kindness, Yasir chooses to respond with a joke. Instead of being able to kind and nice to his friend, he’s trained to make fun of it. To dismiss it. Because as humans, things we don’t understand, we invalidate.
I wasn’t kidding when I said that Yasir Hussain cannot control himself. The thing is toxic masculinity is taught. The same way society pushes women towards more nurturing roles, men are pushed towards more aggressive and violent roles. This has prevented men from being able to handle emotions. As children, boys are told to not cry, to come off as weak. Boys are even made fun of for being “too emotional”. This cycle continues every time, every generation. The fathers tell their sons that men don’t cry, their friends make fun of them for doing so and as a result, they suppress themselves. It’s such a big problem that they are now ad’s specifically targeting the emotional restrictions of boys.
While Yasir Hussain is just making jokes, and as a comedian, he has every right. But the problem is much bigger than him. We live in a society where young girl have acid thrown on them for rejecting men’s marriage proposals. Men are trained their whole life to become soldiers for a war that doesn’t exist. Let your boys cry, let them learn emotions. Before it’s too late.