Holla Holla We dem boyz.
Holla Holla; we making noise.
Over the past few weeks, our internet has amassed a serious volume and number of disturbing stories. There’s the dress one, the baby being abused by her nanny/maid depending on what vocabulary you use and most recently, the racism one about Michael Brown.
Strip Me Not:
There’s this mentality that people have and are expressing that when you dress up, the clothes on your back are for the people around you. Meaning that, whatever you decide to wear has to be deemed appropriate. I have no qualms about decency; are jeans decent? are vests decent? are midi-dresses(for the male readers these are dresses that fall halfway between the knees and the ankles) The answer to all the above is a simple and unanimous YES!!!
And these are exactly what the victims were dressed in.
There are people out there convinced that the women had it coming. The videos of which i can’t even get past a couple of seconds, bear voices of the perpetrators and crowds screaming “Vua! Vua! Toa yote!” loosely translated to “Undress them! Undress Them! Take it all off!”
To some extent I do agree with the fact that the levels of decency must be respected enough such that when you wear something, you don’t have to feel overly exposed to the atmosphere. But there exists some strain of human beings that believe that women are there to be objects of pleasure and that alone. SO tell me dear readers, will someone with some misplaced and misconstrued mentality really let any female pass them by without lusting after them? It wouldn’t matter if they are adorned in a buibui, long skirt and wrist cuffed shirts, school uniforms, jeans vests, sweaters. Their aim will always be to look for what they want and try to get it by all means.
There was a protest early last week labelled “My Dress My Choice”. I think it was insanely brilliant. Regardless of how many people have asked “So now that they held the protest, now what?” ; or the best one I’ve heard “Why should our fellow men be privy to such nuisances in the name of advocating for women’s rights?”
In life, there’s always the good and the bad; the positives and the negatives.
Ask yourself this though, if you’ve watched the videos(which are insanely explicit) and have seen what those poor defenceless women went through, and HAVE YET TO DO ANYTHING yet you sit behind a screen and expose your ignorance to the internet by asking “so now?” are you any better? really? At least the protesters went out of their merry way to recognize that the dignity of the victims has been stripped off of them(literally) and were in a way trying to restore this dignity by giving them a voice and a platform.
Why should everyone be up in arms? Men included? Because you are from woman.
You have, or had a mother, a wife, a sister, an auntie, a grandmother, a daughter, a niece.
Would you strip them? I know the unanimous answer to this is a resounding NO! But how would you react when you come home to find that there’s a video of your “insert female relative here” was stripped in a public place by a bunch of rowdy men who then also tried to violate her? A video that was sent to your Whatsapp, and is doing the rounds on social media?
Would you lay your hand on another female knowing very well that it could be your “Insert female relative here??”
Isn’t there a better way to deal with the “indecency” as is claimed? Like perhaps and I’m going out on a limb here, covering her up and shipping her to the police station to be booked under indecent exposure?
And it seems that the perpetrators of the strip to teach actions are retaliating against the protest from last week. This new week, more videos have surfaced where women are being fondled after being stripped.
So you, Yes YOU behind that screen that is shaking their head in complete agreement with the perpetrators actions on stripping…are we still having the same mindset?
As I pointed out before, there’s a difference between tradition and whatever mentality people are trying to hide behind today.
It makes sense that we’re in Africa and some shit shouldn’t fly here because we’re cultured but to be honest, there’s nothing about tradition being practised by these “judge-jury and executioner” style men that strip women and consequently take turns to fondle them.
You cannot change the mind and opinion of someone who before they left the house decided that they would, if the scenario arises, willingly strip a woman and fondle her private parts on the guise of tradition.
But once again, I’m here behind a screen aren’t I?
I’m pretty sure that I would not know what to do if this happened to me. I cannot begin to empathize with these women because I do not know how it feels to be in their shoes. All I’m doing is sympathizing, pitying and as many of y’all are, thanking the stars that it’s not me.
And in fear and constant suspicion I am living, because even my loosely fitting jeans and my thick woollen sweater aren’t enough reassurance that I will be spared if I were to step out into the city.
Don’t ask the people who are sharing their opinions why they felt the need to do it but instead, come up with your own opinion. Don’t squash others voice because you have nothing better to say. If you have no solution, do not rain on the parade of those who are trying to seek one out. Just sit down, please and thank you.
Where has the society that we once knew disappeared to?
We talk about Ubuntu but noone wants to mention it in the midst of all this drama.
A child being abused by a nanny.
A young man being shot more than 6 times without any form of defence or any voice.
I know I’m writing to the wrong people but sometimes you need to vent and let it do its rounds on the internet.
Can we revert back to this tradition that we claim to be practising so hard?
If not then can you not turn a blind eye to what is happening around you?
Can we simply not be so quick to point the blame to any party or to judge?
Can we not be so quick to insist on tradition yet the people doing this follow no tradition but some form of “Mutated primal instinct”?
We are not animals so we cannot keep behaving as though we haven’t learnt about morals and cultures.
Some will insist that this is only happening in the towns and cities like Nairobi and Mombasa but how about the many other unreported cases that take place in the rural areas? Is it still a case of tradition?
But then again, this is my opinion I suppose.
In the mean time, take a peek at this article that I came across that is pretty interesting.
Beyond My Dress My Choice
Until my next interaction with you lovely souls,
Good health, Positive Vibes.
A concerned face behind a screen.
A voice behind a keyboard.
A concerned citizen.
A daughter, sister, niece, granddaughter, auntie and future wife.