“Another 3-year-old raped in the city this year”
And it is only March.
This newspaper headline is posted on a pole, in my face, as I drive my 5-year-old daughter to her play school in Cape Town. There it is, one single line, flashing past so quickly, I almost miss it. It is almost drowned out amidst the rest of the headlines stuck to every other pole that give the latest updates on the Oscar Pistorius murder trial.
It is exciting to watch a real live murder mystery unfold, but the reality is, we are blind.
We can’t see the forest for the trees.
This Oscar tree is blocking our view on the reality of South Africa. Reeva didn’t miss it. She was planning to wear black, the very week she was killed, in honor of all her sisters in South Africa who are being murdered, raped and abused by an intimate partners or family members.
Dear world, as you watch the Oscar trial, please don’t miss the point. Please see that the women of South Africa need your voice. They need your prayers and they need you to care.
A report on violence against women in the world states that South Africa has “the highest rate ever reported in research anywhere in the world.” A woman in South Africa is killed by her intimate partner every 6 hours, the highest rate of intimate partner violence in the world. And if it wasn’t for the fact that Oscar is a celebrity, this murder would be a silent, nameless, faceless, statistic.
South Africa is a frightful place for a girl to grow up. One in 3 men are rapists. The President was charged with rape. The police too often rape those who come to report rape. Pastors, teachers, fathers, brothers, too many cannot be trusted and we are all weeping.
In the words of a 12-year-old girl who was a participant in our “Justice Creates” course last year:
“ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!”
Her is her poem:
Ow! Ow! Lord what
have we done now?
Why did they not listen
to us when we say “Enough is Enough!”?
All our Mothers, Sisters and
our families are crying because
of this rape. They don’t want
to lose their children because of this rape.
But now we don’t trust our
Fathers, Brothers and our Uncles
because of this rape.
I wish they will rot in jail and
they will be punished by God.
Nelson Mandela gave us freedom.
But now all our Brothers and Sisters
and die because of this rape.
Enough is Enough!!!
So as you watch Oscar’s trial from your easy chair or check out the latest tweet about the trial from your smart phone, whisper a prayer for our South African daughters, mothers, girlfriends, the girls of South Africa. Pray that our elections in a few months will bring forth South African leaders who care about this violence and will be a voice for the sisters. Pray that this nation will value all of our women not just the celebrities.
Enough is enough.