Because I have a vagina I live in fear on a daily basis. I am target to men who feel entitled to my body.
Last night I struggled to fall asleep thinking of how to pen this down following the rape and murder of Uyinene Mrwetyana.
I followed twitter posts about her missing from last week and my heart broke when her death was confirmed. This just reminded me of how we are not safe as women, anywhere.
Being a woman is a danger in its self. Early this year I moved out of my uncle’s house to stay alone in Hatfield, I was warned about the robberies but austerity measures happened and I am still there.
Everyday I make sure to get home before six because there are cars that drive around the neighborhood snatching hand bags from ladies. Their target is women. Before dropping off I switch off my phone, put it in my bra together with the money I would be carrying.
At one point I was considering buying pepper spray or a taser but it’s so expensive. Secondly what if I panic and unable to use it during an attack.
In town again I walk in fear of having my phone or wig snatched from my head. In the club I’m in fear of having my drink spiked, I’m in fear of boarding an ET with a lot of men, I’m even in fear of asking a fellow brother to escort or help me with something because I am a target.
Because I have a vagina I live in fear of dying with my hands up or legs open. Feminists are battered left right and center on daily basis for trying to explain how violent men are to women but what do you have to say when one says Yerre Ustrongo Lomntana, Ufe Kade meaning “she was so strong it took her a long time to die”
How does one feel so entitled to someone’s body. How does one catch an erection and penetrate someone’s daughter, mother, sister, aunt, wife or friend?
Uyinene Mrwetyana’s case is not the first or the last but this just shows how vulnerable we are as women. Because I have a vagina I have to constantly think of how to be safe.
The fear that has been instilled within us prescribes where we walk, park, sleep, eat etc. The stalking, sexual assaults and battering should stop.
According to Senator Joseph Biden, “the single greatest danger to a woman’s health is violence from men.”
This does not only apply to strangers but women also live in fear of men close to them. It could be your father, uncle, brother, boyfriend or neighbor.
According to the Adult Rape Clinic 75% of rape cases are by known persons which is inclusive of relatives.
Remember even in relationships consent is important. Coerced consent is not consent. Implied consent is not consent.
I asked women their fears and their thoughts on Uyinene’s case:
- Nothing. There’s literally nothing I can do. Whether I am at home or the post office or on campus or in the club, whether I am drunk or sober or wearing short clothes or wearing a long skirt I CAN GET RAPED. And that frightens me.
- I can’t afford a taser but now I feel the need to look for pepper spray.
- I hate that the things that could protect us like tasers and pepper spray are costly so even if I can get one, there’s a poor girl who has no fighting chance at all.
- I get scared the most in kombis especially cause I finish around 7pm at school. And being short and small bodied doesn’t help, I’d probably look like an easy target.
- Got out of the kombi once when there were more men I think there was like one woman.
- Imagine being rapped and killed, That’s torture .And being raped and left to survive That’s worse because I’ll be alive but dead inside, SAY NO TO RAPE.
- I’m just imagining how scared Nene was guys and my heart is breaking to pieces. Poor girl must have been dying already way before she was actually murdered ? No one deserves to go through that torture, rape should just be considered as killing as well because there is no difference. As for this guy, he should be charged for 2 accounts of murder and they should let him hang.
- And if it was possible kill him a million times with torture.Hanging is not enough
He should be castrated cut to pieces and just be killed again.
- If l fear anything is this world, its rape. Imagine how a woman will survive after encountering such a traumatic experience. Trust me, you will take the pain to the grave…it’s that kind of pain that you will never heal from. It affects everything around you, from your thoughts to your relationship with other people.
- It’s beyond one’s privacy being invaded. It’s having something taken from you. Your strength, your courage, your everything.
- I mean l get irritated when a random stranger mistakenly touches me in public. Tell me how do l get over someone sexually abusing.