She wasn’t yet 10 years old, when my first daughter shot me a sideways glance and said “They don’t like us do they?” “Who?” I said, like most multitasking mothers, barely looking up from the object of my latest distraction. “Men”, she replied. Wow! That got my attention!! Immediately glancing up to behold her blank expression, I retorted, “Why do you say that?” I was totally baffled! She was raised in a home where equality was fully the norm and by a father who had never expressed any views but the full equality and the rights of women. The problem, you see, is that my daughter was being brought up in a wider society where misogyny is the order of the day.
For clarity, let’s turn to Wikipedia:
Misogyny is the hatred of, contempt for, or prejudice against women or girls. Misogyny manifests in numerous ways, including social exclusion, sex discrimination, hostility, androcentrism, patriarchy, male privilege, belittling of women, disenfranchisement of women, violence against women, and sexual objectification. Wikipedia
Let me start by apologising for the generalisations I am about to make. There are a minority of men who hold women in very high esteem and project a high duty of love and care upon them. Confident husbands like Timi Dakolo, great gender-neutral bosses; godly pastors. However, the overwhelming majority of men in our society are misogynists.
From the driver who shouts “woman driver” in retaliation to my driver’s annoying maneuver; to the security guard who retorts “ I get your type for house” at my sheer audacity in refusing he search my bag; to the waiter who greets “Good afternoon Sir” as I and my male companion settle down for lunch; to the husband who boldly declares the existence of his girlfriend/s to all who care to listen; to the bosses who pass you over because “it’s a man’s job”; to the landlord who produces your eviction notice because “I didn’t know you were a single woman”. The place is crawling with them. However, I’m not writing this to those ignorant, spoiled, entitled men. I can’t understand why they are not enlightened or mature enough to realise that promoting women’s rights will only do them good in the long run, but that’s for another post.
Today, I’m talking to my sisters…. The Rape Culture Enablers!
You see, misogyny naturally leads to abuse, – domestic abuse, sexual abuse and rape! The acceptance and promotion of misogyny is a great breeding ground for RAPE. So my sisters:
- – Every time you talk about how you, a woman, prefers men to women because blah, blah, blah, ….you are promoting Rape Culture
- – Every time you suggest to your children that your sons have more rights and value than your daughters … you are promoting Rape Culture
- – Every time you call a woman in revealing clothes “asewo” … you are promoting Rape Culture
- – Every time you ask a young girl to hurry up and find a husband so she/you can finally stop being ashamed… you are promoting Rape Culture
- – Every time you ask why a victim didn’t speak up earlier, why she was there, why she wore that… you are promoting Rape Culture
- – Every time you look away as your husband chases and beds his side chicks … you are promoting Rape Culture
- – Every time you replace your domestic help because your husband fancies her or slept with her… you are promoting Rape Culture
- – Every time you hush the latest abuse/ rape in the family…. you are promoting Rape Culture
- – Every time you protect your rapist brother, husband, PASTOR…..YOU ARE PROMOTING RAPE!!
Just like the fight against racism has to be led by blacks. We, women, have to rise up to fight against misogyny! This is a good time to start! Thank you for reading. And please ask yourself, “My silence at this time……Is it promoting Rape Culture??” Please leave/send your comments. I would LOVE to hear your views