By Jeniel Lamb
The issue of female safety, globally, has been a problem for many generations and foreseeably, for many more generations to come. It is something that we as members of the society have to face on a daily basis – whether it is hearing about a victim, knowing a victim or actually being a victim.
Women are subjected to many forms of abuse, rape, abduction and other kinds of endangerment.
The United Nation’s Women’s website shows statistics about women’s safety, globally, and one such statistic shows that many women are subjected to different forms of violence. “It is estimated that 35 per cent of women worldwide have experienced either physical and/or sexual intimate partner violence or sexual violence by a non-partner (not including sexual harassment) at some point in their lives…”
This statistic essentially speaks about physical and sexual violence against women. It doesn’t speak to verbal harassment – which is explained in the same subsection where it states that sexual harassment is not included. This means that many women, if not all women experience some form of sexual harassment during their time on this planet. It is a constant fear for most women. It is a struggle for women who will have to be on the street, who have to work in environments within which they are not comfortable and who have to live in homes within which they are not comfortable.
It is a general fear for women that someone (likely a man), will harass them whether physically, sexually or verbally. Another common fear is that of being kidnapped. Women, whether taking public or private transportation, live in fear that they will be abducted, whether to be robbed, raped and/or killed.
There was recent outrage over a YouTube video made by local Jamaicans where a young man and his friends played an abduction prank on his girlfriend where she ended up crying for the duration of the video. It was then revealed that it was a prank and the video was uploaded to YouTube where it was flagged. Many are upset at the blatant disregard for victims and at the idea that abduction could ever be seen as being funny, or used for social media views and “clout”. This video had many persons locally speaking about the constant fear that women are faced with and it not being a joke.
Social media has also been “up in arms” about a new rape prevention tactic – the “rape condom”. This is a contraption that women have to push inside themselves which thereafter clamps and sticks to the penis of the rapist in their penetration attempt. This device, however, might prove to be more dangerous than protective since a rapist might become more aggressive after noticing or feeling the contraption on his appendage.
This adds to the list of other devices that women are advised to walk around with and the procedures they are advised to adhere to in hopes of not getting raped or otherwise assaulted.
Both of these social media discussions have given rise to the point that men are either completely oblivious or they are expected to do nefarious things and therefore women should always be paranoid of their environment or be protected in hopes of escaping serious situations.
It seems almost hopeless that there will ever be a time where women will feel safe and it can be said that it is unfair to women globally that they have to deal with these situations on a regular basis. There is also the point that an abuser should be held accountable and victims should be believed, but in regards to all the above, our society simply isn’t there yet and the best advice would be: Stay safe ladies.
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