Saturday, May 6, 2017

Movie Review: Martyrs of Marriage

The Dowry laws of India are being used by angry, gold-digging wives to extort money from their husbands and extended families. These laws have resulted in the arrest of grandmothers, grandfathers, and toddlers alike, who are then subjected to extortion by their tormentor, who promises to withdraw the charges if sufficient money is paid. Many of the targeted husbands are driven to suicide when they face the hopeless tangle of laws and excessive demands of their wives.

Indian filmmaker Deepika Bhardwaj takes a hard, and damning look at the corruption within the legal system -- lawyers often take a cut of the settlement and coach the complainant on how to maximize her "winnings" -- and presents bone-chilling actual footage of the heartless, vindictive behavior of the women who abuse the law for money. The website MartyrsOfMarriage introduces the film as an examination of section 498A of the Indian Penal Code:
In Criminal Law, Blackstone formulation principle states “It is better that
ten guilty persons escape rather than one innocent suffer.” It’s a principle followed under criminal jurisprudence the world over.
However, in India - a law that has been in place for three decades has been decried as an instrument of oppression, injustice and a reason for suffering of lakhs of innocents in an endeavour to punish the guilty. Brought on the statute in 1983 to protect married women from violence within marital home, section 498A of Indian Penal Code, also known as the anti dowry law has often been called as the most abused provision in the Indian jurisprudence. This abuse has been documented by the highest courts in India time and again through several judgments. In 2005, Supreme Court of India used the term “Legal Terrorism” to describe misuse of this law.
Martyrs of Marriage is a documentary film that documents the injustice that has been perpetrated on people because of misuse of section 498A of Indian Penal Code. 
Bhardwaj started filming Martyrs of Marriage about the same time that Cassie Jaye began filming The Red Pill, and these two films were released within a few months of each other. While The Red Pill deals with the Men's Rights movement and the many issues facing men, primarily in the west, Martyrs of Marriage goes after this one specific and well-known injustice within India: The abuse of Dowry Laws. Bhardwaj examines several cases in which families were tormented and lives were tragically destroyed, and interviews high level lawyers and judges as well as feminists working within the legal system.

Some people will take issue with the films claim that these Dowry laws were necessary when they were introduced in 1981 in order to address what feminists claim was an epidemic of domestic violence. Critics could easily argue that these laws were merely enacted for political reasons, aided by a gynocentric bias within the culture, in the hope of appeasing militant feminists and winning votes ... something that we still see happening today in the west with Yes Means Yes and Zero Tolerance laws, as well as the nonsensical feminist claims of Pay Gap and Rape Culture. But whether justified or not, this criticism does not in anyway detract from the film: the Dowry laws are unjust, actively and widely abused, and families are being destroyed today.

Many of the highly placed judges and lawyers interviewed acknowledge that the abuse of Dowry laws is rampant and that the law needs to change, but the film also reveals that the feminist activists have absolutely no concern for the total destruction of the families entrapped by the Dowry Laws, and even less for the loss of so many male lives.

This is an important film not only because it reveals this injustice in India, but also because it shows the eerily uniform contempt for men, and the self-righteous pleasure -- indifference at best -- that feminists have for the pain they inflict upon their prey everywhere that they hold power in the world. If you care about justice, or about families in this age of militant feminism, you must see Martyrs Of Marriage because it reveals as much about the deceitful, vicious, and destructive cruelty of the global feminist movement, as it does about India's Dowry laws.