Rape is a crime that thrives on silence and denial. Rape culture normalizes rape and sexual violence is excused in the media. As objectifying women continues to be normalized the rape culture WE have created continues to flourish.
We live amongst a society where we are taught how to avoid rape instead of men being taught self-control. We are taught to yell fire instead of rape, to let no one watch our drink while we go to the bathroom but tell me, when will this come to an end? When will I be able to walk down the street without being barked at as if I’m some kind of animal? When will I be able to wear what I want without society deeming it as inappropriate because men can’t control themselves when they see a bit of skin?
We’ve got this all wrong; Rape has nothing to do with sex but everything to do with power…Men rape because it’s asserting their dominance not because of the length of my skirt and the height of my heels. And men will continue to rape because we have allowed justice to be an exception and rapists feel above the law because…Well the law hardly touches them and WE as society simply tolerate them.
Unfortunately, No amount of hot showers can take away that night; no form of justice can restore a victim’s dignity and purity. No amount of therapy sessions can take away that night.
The night that she continues to relive because she is questioned more than her perpetrator is, she is asked what she was wearing and if she was flirting, but last time I checked…Ones clothes do not determine one’s consent and flirting definitely doesn’t mean I’m asking for it.
This subject has been taboo for way too long. I will no longer be silent and you will no longer be silent and she…she should have never been silenced. Her story should have never been muted and her pain should have never been silenced.
We need to stand up against this crime against humanity, rapists should be punished. We, as in you and me need to stop making victims feel ashamed and worthless; we need to stop labelling them as “easy” because just like you never asked to be raped, she didn’t either. Her “no” meant no but he saw it as the start of a negotiation, as he thought about the lyrics of blurred lines by Robin Thicke that read “I know you want it” but between you and me, she never did.
Written by: Nana Madwe