Speak, Rise Up Against Rape

By Uche Amunike

The National Association of Women Journalists, NAWOJ, has just concluded her 7 day campaign against Rape and violence against women. It was an activism that reverberated round the globe, so much so that my dear friend and brother in far away United States of America, heard our cry and wrote articles in solidarity to this very sensitive cause we so passionately championed for the future and safety of our girls and the good of society!

He is Major Henry Okoroafor of the United States Army and this isn’t the first time his article makes so much sense that I can’t help but share it with our readers. He titled it ‘Speak, Rise Up Against Rape’. Please enjoy…

The rape of innocent girls in Nigeria has reached an alarming point that every sane mind should stand up and say ‘no’ to this heinous crime. I am not a psychologist and I do not lay claim to any profession within the realms of mental health. But as a full blooded alpha-male, with my head on my shoulders, I can comfortably say that rape is a CRIME.

It is a barbaric act that even some hardened criminals abhor. So why do some men and even women support or shame the victim? I think because they exist within the sphere of animal thought process too. Rape is not the crime any sane human would wish on even his or her worst enemy. It is a crime that diminishes humanity. It is a crime that kills the soul of a people. It is a crime that destroys cultures and stops life.

There is a reason why nations are addressed in a feminine gender. It is because of the unique and divine power women are endowed with to give birth. This is the singular, powerful attribute women have over men and it is not minimal. The near death experience a mother goes through during child birth is one of the reasons our mothers are revered with every fabric of our being.

I don’t know about other cultures, but in Igbo land, it is a highly dreaded act for women to go bare-chested and cry out to our ancestors because we know the outcome is always deadly. Those who understand the significance of bare-chested, enraged mothers would know there is power in a woman’s body. So why do some men continue to insist on defiling women in acts of sexual violence? Some see it as power exertion and others see it as conquest by any means.

But I can tell you that any man who chooses rape as a means of expressing his sexual prowess is weak, defeated and sick. There is no power in it. There is no respect in it and definitely no happiness can ever come from it. Most times when I make these posts in support of women, I get hounded by some men, who come out of the woodworks, swinging. They often announce their presence with name calling, without any intellectual substance to hold their grounds against mine.

But I do not worry about those individuals because they are the ones am talking about. If their reactions are not in the contrary to my argument, then I must have been preaching to the choir.
Those who shame the rape victim for her mode of dressing should ask themselves how many times they see women jump on a nicely built, muscle ripped, six packed honk just because he is wearing sleeveless tank top? An average red blooded babe salivates over well sculpted dudes, but it ends at just admiration.

Why must some men take it to an extremely violent height and then justify it with mode of dressing? That is just weakness speaking through them. These are men with low self-esteem and society misfits that deserve to rot in the pit of hell. I would have wished rape on the daughters of every rapist but that would go against what I preach because they are women and do not deserve such either.
So I would rather wish every rapist a violent end to his life. Why am I speaking out now, you might ask? I am doing so because I am a father of four adorable Princesses and a lovely Prince. I have to let them know that they are as good as any man or woman out there, if not better and that they deserve respect and dignity just like everyone else.

But most importantly, they need to hear that as their father, I am here to protect and defend them even with my blood if need be, until the day I draw my last breath.

I am speaking out for my lovely wife because she deserves nothing but love, kindness and respect for the goodness she’s shown me all through our married life. I speak out for my great mother who raised six honorable men and two great women. Am speaking out for my two lovely older sisters who by example, showed me how wonderful a woman’s love can be when she’s appreciated and respected.

I speak for that orphan who is constantly raped by her boss because she is a lowly house maid, without a voice. I speak for the poor street hawker who is afraid to go out again because all she sees are devils, waiting to take what’s left of her lonely life. I speak for that widow in a thatched house in your town, who has become a feast for the village drunks because the culture does not have a place for her protection. For these reasons I speak and yes I will continue to do so.

I lend my voice in the strongest terms in condemnation of the rising heinous acts of physical sexual violence (rape, assault, or groping) against women. I ask that you do so too.

Well, the above article by Major Okoroafor raised a lot of dust, which was why he had to do a second one, not only  to drive his points home to his critics but also to reiterate the fact that he absolutely condemns RAPE and everything it stands for. This time, he captioned it, May You Be Raped! Please Read…

 May You Be Raped!!!

Since I wrote in total condemnation of the heinous crime of rape, I have been inundated with reactions from various pressure and interest groups. Majority of who shared their feelings in alignment with mine against rape. I appreciate their collective shout and determination to fight these rape monsters. Interestingly tough, there are some who have come out with daggers drawn to protect the rapist and shame the victims.

What makes matters worse is that most members of this demon’s squad are women and sadly, young women. Majority of them use religion to tow one particular line of argument, bordering on the victims’ mode of dressing. But some strange elements among them went as far as blaming even a 12 years old rape victim for looking plump. Another argued that some of the raped babies were born as evil children anyway.

I am yet to fully process the trauma of hearing from these weird minds and the excuses they make to blame and condemn rape victims. I am sure if you read or heard them, you would be traumatized as well. Ironically, I checked out the woman who made the assertion about the 12 year old victim, just to ensure she is actually a woman and not someone writing through a proxy. But to my greatest dismay, she is a mother, who has a child that fits the description of the children she was talking about.

Are you thinking what I’m thinking too? When did we descend this low to the point that women, created by God just like men have become nothing but objects that could be used to satisfy orgies, raped, subjected to emotional torture and killed for money rituals and it is okay? Since when did the life of a little girl become worthless to a mother, so much so that it is okay for a sick man to rape a baby and a woman who calls herself ‘mother’ gives a thumbs up? Which sane mind justifies this nonsense about referring to women who give birth to men as mere women? Am I the only one outraged here?

Then there are those who came for a verbal dust-off with me because I said I am ‘A full blooded Alpha male’. This term ticked them off because they would have preferred the article coming from a low self-esteemed fellow, just cheering with the women crowd. I am not that man. I lend my voice on this issue because it is worth doing and I owe it to every woman out there to include my wife, my daughters, my mother, my sisters and yours too.

I am a proud officer of the military and a war veteran. So if you are looking for a ‘wimpy cheerleader’, you’ve hit the wrong target. I don’t know what that term connotes for you and I would not degrade the experiences that make it awful to you by any measure. However, the term Alpha male, according to Cambridge dictionary is ‘the most successful and powerful male in any group’. I have been a Soldier for more than 23 years.

I am trained to get after my goals, pursue my targets with vigour, stand out wherever I am, be a leader and make no apologies for my accomplishments. The fact that you might have had terrible experiences with men is not a reason for me to join you in fighting every man, except if you are not sure of what you are really fighting for. I condemn every rapist or wife batterer, but that does not mean all men are bad.

That I promote and respect all the good women in my life and those I have come across does not mean all women are good. I am not the type that lumps people into one basket and pass judgment. So don’t try to enlist me into your men bashing platoon. The issue here is not about what you think of me. It is about all of us condemning this barbaric act of rape and most importantly, showing support to the victims so that they can heal. Take it from me, real men respect women and I’m one of those. If men or women bashing is your forte, do it on your platform.

I have rather come to the conclusion that I will not be able to convince some of those who are bent on shaming rape victims otherwise. So I will gladly wish them this: For any man who thinks it is okay to rape a woman, may your endeavors and efforts be raped by nature so much so that sickness and sadness shroud you.

For every woman who blames a rape victim, may you never live long to see what those victims became in the future. For any man or woman who blames little rape victims and calls them evil children, may that day of your thought be the last you will ever set eyes on a child. For those who would come after me or wish me ill for speaking the truth, these are for you as well!

Oh Well! I rest my case!! Daalunu!!!

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