Men are a cruel breed

The story in Sowetan yesterday about a man charged with killing his wife and three children sounds all too familiar. It has become the norm for South African men to kill their partners and sometimes their children each time a relationship goes sour.

The story in Sowetan yesterday about a man charged with killing his wife and three children sounds all too familiar. It has become the norm for South African men to kill their partners and sometimes their children each time a relationship goes sour.

What is particularly shocking about our story is that the man in question has apparently told the police that he will plead guilty to killing the children "because they were innocent" but not the wife, whom he accuses of being unfaithful.

Murder remains a black mark on our society - men, and women sometimes - tend to justify violence against women whose sexual proclivities irritate us, for example sex workers. Men must discard the silly belief that they were put on Earth to "discipline" women whose behaviour they do not approve of.

The justification that the woman's conduct in a relationship entitles the man involved to assault, rape or murder has no place in a modern society based on equality and human dignity. Such conduct speaks more about the man involved than about the woman who is allegedly being punished.

We have no right to call ourselves a free society for as long as we regard some among us as lesser than the rest, on account of an arbitrary fate of being born female.

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