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GBV sign of broader culture of violence we have embraced in our lives

26 Nov 2022 at 21:06hrs | Views
I always teach my family that 'sin cannot be successfully micromanaged'.

In other words, an individual can never successfully control or manage the extent at which a particular sin is committed – based on specific conditions.

For instance, if I can ask my wife to lie for me, possibly to someone who has come to my home demanding the money I owe him, telling him that I am not around – what guarantees are there that I do not lie to my wife as well?

Actually, the fact that she is ready to lie on my behalf, makes it quite likely that she is also able to lie to me.

Once an individually has chosen to cross that line into justifying anything that would otherwise be unacceptable – then, micromanaging to what extent, or under what circumstances, this can be rendered acceptable becomes blurry.

Let us look at another example.

If one's spouse or partner is prone to using violence as a way of disciplining or punishing those who may have wronged him – what would make her believe that he will not eventually inflict the same violent methods on her, when she wrongs him?

There is no way a person - who finds it alright to use violence against those he believes have done him wrong – can define who this violence can be meted upon, or those he will never lay his hands on.

One way or another – no matter how much he tries – he will surely beat up those he had sworn would never touch.

'Sin can never be successfully micromanaged'!

As the world marks the beginning of the '16 Days of No Violence Against Women and Children' – this is one of the conversations we need to have as a people.

As we watch in horror the increasing incidents of various forms of violence specifically targeted at women and children – especially of a physical and sexual nature – we need to ask ourselves very tough questions.

According to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), there were 87,000 women killed in 2021 – of which, 50,000 or 58 percent, at the hands of their intimate partners or family members – translating into an average 6 women murdered every hour.

If such alarming figures do not make us stand up in aghast and disgust, then I do not know what will.

However, looking at these figures in isolation would be a grave error of judgment – which, inevitably, will lead us to formulating misdirected and flawed solutions.

This issue goes far much deeper than purely violence against women and children – but, betrays societies that have embraced and entrenched a culture of violence as an acceptable component of our livelihoods.

Nevertheless, in welcoming violence in our communities – whether as a form of settling disputes, political domination and repression, or even enjoyable entertainment – we have being trying the impossible...micromanaging this violence.

On one hand, we see absolutely nothing wrong with men settling misunderstandings via violence amongst themselves, or political parties brutalizing opponents, or regarding watching people shooting or beating each other up as acceptable entertainment.

Yet, for some strange reason, when this brutality crosses the line, and now targets women – only then does it become a problem.

I often listen, in utter bewilderment, to some men saying that they were taught never to lay their hands on women.

Oh, is that right!

So, it is alright to lay your hands on other men – but, somehow, you believe can actually micromanage how this violent trait will be handled?

That is a huge big lie!

As long as we find nothing wrong with certain kinds of violent behavior – sooner or later, this will translate into violence against those we had pledged would 'never lay our hands on'.

As long as our political leaders believe that it is alright to brutalize rivals – this will eventually enter our homes as violence against our wives.

As long as we have accepted that watching people shooting or beating each other – whether as sport, movies, or video games – one way or another, this will become ingrained our minds, and become desensitized, that there is nothing wrong with violence, even within our homes.

This is the blunt truth – and, if we are serious with this activism against gender based violence, then we need to evaluate ourselves holistically.

In fact, let me add this to the equation  - embracing sexually illicit material as entertainment – similarly inculcates an obsession with sexual thoughts, likely to lead to rape, even of little children.

We can never separate the violence and sexual perversion we shockingly witness against our female partners – with an average six being murdered each day, and one women raped every two minutes – from the culture of violence and sexualization we have so lovingly embraced in our lives.

If we genuinely desire to see an end to this repulsive abuse against women – then, we need to make the tough decision to deal with, and uproot, all the violence of which we have surrounded ourselves.

Again I repeat, no one can successfully micromanage sin!

It is as simple as that.

- Tendai Ruben Mbofana is a social justice advocate, writer, researcher, and social commentator. Please feel free to contact him on WhatsApp or Call: +263715667700 | +263782283975, or Calls Only: +263788897936, or email:

Source - Tendai Ruben Mbofana
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