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In all Fairness

Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the fairest of all?
Me? I am dark. All the children of this soil are dark. Brown is the color of my countrymen.

My Krishna. Shyamsundar, Meghashyam, Krishna: All these names describe his color: black. The tall, dark and the handsome Yadava, who stole the hearts of millions.

My Rama. The yugapurush of all the times. The dark king of Ayodhya, still rules the hearts of billions.

Draupadi, Rukmini, Damayanti, Sita: the damsels known for their heavenly beauty. All of them dark ... shyamala. My country when personified is: suhasini, sumadhurbhashini, and shyamala.

Why so far back in time? The dream girl of yester years Hema Malini, the super model Madhu Sapre, Deepti Naval, Rekha, Smita Patil are a few dark yet beautiful faces.

One can be dark and beautiful. Pickup a thousand white faces and 80% would be far from pretty. Why then this madness for the fair color? Why all these derogatory ads of Fair and Lovely, Breeze, Santoor? Call it colorblindness?

Scientifically speaking: Melanin is the pigment that gives the color to the skin, hair and iris. The amount of melanin your body will produce is an inherited attribute. An attribute that was choosen by a race, to survive. More the melanin, darker the color. More exposure to the sun, higher the level of melanin. Higher the level of melanin, better the protection from harmful UV sunrays, lower the risk of skin cancers, higher the quantities of folate. (Lower Folate / Follic acid during pregnancy causes birth defects.)

So higher melanin levels are necessary where the exposure to the sun is high. It protects the body. Being dark is healthy.

Why then project the fair color? In the ad world, in the TV world, in the Bollywood? And even when choosing a life-partner?

Why deny the brown color? Why deny something that is: natural, healthy and beautiful? Accept it. Own it. Love it. Adore it. Flaunt it. Let brown be proudly projected as the color of India. Let the world know that Brown is beautiful too!

Jun 21, 2011, 12:25 AM