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 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 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 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 usual clarity of thought...sadly no epiphany.


  1. there are so much brutality in the media (in movies, music videos etc) that "abuse" have become, it seems, the norm.

    A little shake up here and there and we women, it seems brush it off... then it has escalated in physical abuse and we wonder how things have reached to this extreme.

    Women needs to start protecting themselves and their personal space. We need to educate our children on what is right and proper. But I guess, some mothers can't do that, because they do not know for themselves what is right and proper.

    It's a sad case... Too many violence against women have become common place in St Vincent. Nowadays, we, women, should not take threats by men, as joke. I think that's what happened to the girl who got killed at the bus terminal. This man wanted her and I think she brushed it off, but look what happened. We really have to protect ourselves because it doesn't seem as if the government is doing a good job.

    Look when the girl said that the PM raped her... nearly everybody dogged her out as liar. And look the case got thrown out everytime it went to courts... her identity was even revealed... and justice was never given to her or the pm, if she was lying.

    So now any man seeing this will think if the pm can get away with rape, why should I resist my urges.

    It's sicken and I don't even know what we can do as women... Should we band together with a louder voice and show that we mean business?

  2. My friend we have settled for so little in our lives believing it is well and good to be treated poorly. A friend of mine recently asked why I write so often about violence to women. In his words "you really have a thing about this violence". I tried to explain to him that I can't let it go at all especially when I see it everyday around us.

    PS check out Globalvoicesonline.


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