A few things on my mind

How much is that going to cost us?

Posted on: May 20, 2014

 

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I have like many been fascinated by the response to the #Saveourgirls campaign. As a woman and a mother this is something which obviously concerns me. And as much as it has received global attention, it will eventually be overshadowed by some other world tragedy. But while it still has the spotlight, maybe we should be looking at the root of this problem – that worldwide women are a commodity – and one without much value.

The abuse of women is endemic. Women are raped, trafficked to be sold as sex slaves drug mules and still no one has managed to put a cost the loss of their dignity and self-worth because you can’t put a monetary figure to it. I was once held up at gun point and during the robbery – I was shaking as a leaf – and one of the robbers said to me “Don’t worry, we don’t rape” I could have kissed him had it not been for the gun pointing at my face. The second time was only a few weeks ago when my husband woke up to find a man tiptoeing out of my room. I, clad in nothing else but a t-shirt– the perpetrator left with nothing but a cell phone – made sure he did not wake me up. It could be that he thought he had just entered a scene from ‘The Exorcism of Emily Rose’- I snore. I am being facetious I know – but I have been lucky. And that is what we are now calling it – because the chances of being raped a higher than of not.

I went to wedding once and the priest’s sermon was about placing value. He told of a prince that was ready to wed and after a country wide search he could not find a suitable princess. However, there was a local village girl that he had taken a liking to. Not overly convinced, the king agreed and said that at least she would not cost them the dowry a princess would have cost. To which the prince told his father that whatever the dowry he was going to pay for the princess, the king must triple it for this local village girl. Surprised by the prince’s demand, the prince responded “It is only through us placing value on her that the rest of the kingdom will follow suit” 

He was saying that all men must place value on their women, husbands on their wives, fathers on daughters and sons on mothers. The amount of value these men place on the women in their lives, it is the value that society will place on them. Every year you see the most influential leaders across the world congregate at places such as the World Economic Forums to discuss the facilitation of ‘peace’ and globalised trading, but the sexual misconduct against women and children still does not make it on the main agenda. Yes there will be side meeting on gender inequality – but that is again in the workplace where the money is. The plight against women doesn’t feature on the main agenda is because we are not deemed as a valuable asset – well we don’t have a monetary value.

It took the questioning of costs relating to our President’s house for him to mention that the upgrades to his house stemmed out of a need for heightened security because one of his wives was sexually violated at that house. Would you then not have thought that this would be the man who would have zero tolerance on sexual abuse in this country?  Would that not have made him want to make sure South Africa was the safest place for women to be in?

My husband always says the day that boys start finding interest in our daughter, is the day that he buys a gun and will take every visit by the suitor as an opportunity to clean his gun. And we all know those dads – the ones that you knew that you fuck with that his daughter – he will come sort you out.

Where then have these men gone? The ones that are able to stand up for their women, be it mothers, daughters, sisters and say “Not on my watch” Imagine is every potential perpetrator knew that every man in this world would put him down without hesitation if he touched any women inappropriately. I guess it would be up to the men to find it inappropriate first.  

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1 Response to "How much is that going to cost us?"

I love Dude.

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