Sunday, November 29, 2009
Silent cries of acceptance
The whole issue of violence against women has panned out on a local and international level within the last year...we have experienced as a nation gruesome acts of violence against the female gender that has created a unsettling fear among all of us - from Lokeisha to the Tokyo beheading to Rihanna to the spate of raping.
And I question the foundation of this phenomenon...I say foundation because it seems to be an erroneous but basic element to so many female/male relations in our society. I was blessed never to see abuse in my home and even in my immediate surrounding neighbourhood but I know this is not the experience of many.
I will never forget having a discussion at the Community College (now A'Level) several years ago among my peers. A 'good' guy friend of mind firmly stated that "every now and then, you have to pelt some blows under a woman...so she could know who run things". I was appalled but I pursued the conversation simply because I was curious to find out how the hell could physically exerting superiority over another human being become an acceptable mind-set. The last I checked that thought process was applied to slavery, indentureship and chauvnism.
The discussion led up to rape and when does sex turn into rape or vice versa. A guy I will call E said, "Well sometimes, the girls like to tease and not give up the sex...so you force them until they go silent and stop fighting." That stopped me in my tracks. In my virgin naviete (at the time) I thought sex was supposed to be a mutual thing between two consenting and horny people and rape or "forcing until they become silent" as E called it was an act of someone suffering from a mental defect.
So, how acceptable is this behaviour and who thinks it to be the norm? I fear it is too many...
I sat in my car on Friday and saw a group of secondary school girls pass me...laughing and swaying with the joy of youth. For a moment, I reflected on those carefree days. That nostalgia abruptly ended when a young man approached the group from the opposite direction and literally pulled one girl into a neck hold that was straight out of a MMA fight, with a smirk on his face. The girl managed to get out of hold but the guy held onto her hand and dragged her with him several feet away from her friends until she pulled away...with a pissed look. Then she flicked her hair and ran to catch up with her friends....laughing and the young man just strolled on his way.
(1) No one stopped him...not her friends...a passerby...a vendor...not even me. Not one of us outwardly expressed concern as to how the girl was being treated.
(2) She laughed it off...it was acceptable to be 'man-handled' and I wonder if her struggle was really a struggle at all.
(3) The guy said nothing to her...whatever familiarity existed between them did not even warrant words...affection was equalled to a wrestling move.
And I am here left with a mirage of thoughts - am I being too judgmental; I have played rough house with my guy friends before and still get into a tustle now and then.
This is one entry that has left me more confused than when I started...no usual clarity of thought...sadly no epiphany.
Posted by SVG epiphany