First and foremost, let me say that this brief passage of words is meant to inspire. To push us to end a problem as old as mankind itself. Rape. This is not a new evil that besets us, it has been going on for ages. However it is coming to the fore and it is high time it did so.
Rape has for a long time been used as a method of control, dominance and even war. It’s said that Genghis-Khan raped so many women that one in two hundred have his genes. The romans and Turks would rape both woman and men to break the spirits of their enemies and cause the shunning of those individuals. Even dolphins use rape as a tool. A school of dolphins will rape a rival schools female’s safe in the knowledge that if they fall pregnant they will be killed by the members of their own school. Now with the exception of the dolphins, this crime is unforgivable. Its history proves that the only key to solving this dire equation is to not let history repeat itself over and over again. But how?
Well, despite our shocking rape stats, we are not the only land that is suffering from this litany of violence. One only has to jump on the net or turn on the T.V. to see that this is a global pandemic. We were all stunned into action (or silence in my case) by the sadistic gang-rape of an Indian student on a bus. We read in horror about a Saudi man that raped and beat his five year old daughter to death. Or the case of David Parker Ray who spent one hundred thousand dollars building a torture room to for fill his sick fantasies. And finally the sad sad case of Anene. One asks one self, but why?
The answer I believe lies in respect. Now as a country that knows a thing or two about respect and the changing of attitudes I believe that we are perfectly poised to help lead the world in ending, or at least, seriously curbing this scourge. But again, we come back to the question of why. Why are men doing this in the first place? Are they just sick perverts that like to see women suffer? Did it happen to them as children so they think its ok? And so on and so on. That is a question that I won’t even attempt to answer. Tons of research has been done into the workings of the mind of a rapist and myriad answers have been found. The real question is, why would I rape a woman? Or a man for that matter. Respect. Simply that.
As a young man with family and friends, I have seen first-hand that rape is a reality that faces all of us. I think to myself that if one in three women is too been raped in her lifetime, would it be my wife or my daughters? Respect.
Respect is earned and not taken, in order for respect to take shape it must be earned by both sided. Now, I’m certainly not saying that the victims of rape deserved it in any way, but they are as much a part of the solution as the perpetrator is a part of the problem. Women are guarded these days, and men often feel that rape is a way to get through that guard. Crazy as it seems it is a problem. Respect from the woman’s side I believe will come from openness. Not shocking radio adverts but through the wonderful ways in which women seem to network. By opening the channel of communication men will learn to respect that women are united, strong and above all else, not going to stand for it. Harsher punishment for rapist great! But will it stop it, I sincerely doubt it. Shame I believe will act as a powerful weapon. As for the implementation of this weapon, well there I’m not sure.
From the men’s side, again I say respect. Respect our mothers, sisters and daughters. One of them might just be raped. And to the men reading this, look at the line above and choose one! Your mother, sister or daughter? Impossible I know. But that is what it has come to. Mind the things you say, be conscious of your actions. Because it’s those little actions that have been allowed to slide. Those little utterances have given rise to this emotional genocide that is cutting a wide swath across our countries and souls.
I leave you all with this. I, as a young man, will today do my utmost to be more open with the women I know. I will do my best to ensure that I am mindful of the things I do and say. That I will be involved in ending this problem (and that doesn’t mean just buying T-shirts) where I can. And that I, one lowly person, will take the steps that I can to make sure that I will never by an abuser or victim. That’s my little vow and I hope that you who read this will do the same.
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