I am a South African, and I am proud of it, extremely patriotic but I’m scared to live here. I’m 22 years old, living in a relatively middle class area, low crime rates, quiet, nothing much happens. All those demographics mean zilch to me because I am so alert every night. I go through nightly procedures to ensure safety. It’s exhausting. Just to sit in your garden alone, late at night and not have the inkling of a thought that something bad would happen to you. Aaah. I can dream hey. South Africa…oh South Africa.
This culture of rape is breaking my heart. Every day I log on twitter to follow headlines from news24. I remember at least 3 rape cases reported. I was so upset after I read about the student who was gangraped in Pretoria. Today, I saw someone update their status about a ten month old baby getting raped. TEN MONTHS? People just carry on with their day. People have stopped listening and that in itself is so so scary. Where’s the love for humankind, when did everybody turn on each other? This really breaks my heart because I don’t know what to do about it. I feel powerless to do anything. I visited the website of the Department of Women, Children and People with disabilities and I was disappointed to see the lack of interaction and updates. Mind you, the last update on the latest news was October last year. What exactly are they doing there? Rolling up joints with their two hundred rand notes, blinging it up, sushi for everybody! I’m not going to go into how corrupt our government is because well, that’s old news, everybody knows that. I’ve known it since I was small.
Thing is, we need to do something about the rape in South Africa. There has to be a strategy a plan, something, anything to put a stop to this. How do men think this is okay? Who told them that this is okay? This is not okay, AT ALL! Yet, it really baffles me, I cannot understand that mindset. Two young boys told me that by the time they 15, they would rape a girl. I was mortified, they saw absolutely nothing wrong with it. There is the root of the problem, education. Those boys definitely missed the part where somebody told him that rape is not okay. I have always said that the foundation of any country is a good education system. A good education system makes a good country, a healthy country. Yes, educated men rape too, however, one can never stop learning. Men can be taught not to rape.
It should be made compulsory by the government for men to attend seminars where these issues are brought up and dealt with. It would be confidential and therapy sessions would be offered. Perhaps we need to look at it from that angle. Also, in schools, male mentors for young boys. A lot of female headed homes exist in South Africa and the influence of a male figure on a young boy can be rewarding.
Educate educate educate, liberate liberate liberate. (I’m singing)
In the meantime, I’ll be keeping my eye on the news, and thinking of ways to stop this. I can’t let my fellow sisters go through this, this is bullshit. For real.