Stop hateful, hurtful treatment of others, more so women

A protester speaks to a crowd in Raleigh, North Carolina, US, during unrest following the death in police custody of George Floyd. The protests have spread around the world, including SA.
A protester speaks to a crowd in Raleigh, North Carolina, US, during unrest following the death in police custody of George Floyd. The protests have spread around the world, including SA.
Image: REUTERS/Jonathan Drake

Last week was heavy, not just here in SA but the world over.

Firstly, we have had the weirdest, most difficult first half of the year, collectively as the world. And while our friends in the northern hemisphere may be closer to a possible ending of this nightmare, we still have the worst of it.

Corona, Covivi or whatever else name you might have for it, is possibly the worst thing we all have had to live through. And each day brings with it yet another day of worrying and I wonder if we will survive this invincible force that seems intent on inverting the world order as we know it.

There have been so many things wrong with the world; things have been tolerated without much resistance and this virus arrived and said, "Hey world, here's your arse, it's showing."

One thing in particular that has made me feel heavy is finally reckoning with just how hateful we are as human beings.

The United States of America, the once upon time hero of our childhood dreams, came to a standstill after the death of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis police department. The people took to the streets, despite the heavy threat of the coronavirus in their midst, to protest against being hated merely for existing and drawing breath.

Racism, among other things, is the conditioning to hate that which does not look like you. To look down upon that which you are, that which you deem to be inferior to you.

Black people understand this. It is the one thing that the black community can agree on. It baffles me continuously, and I have written about it here before - how we can in turn be hateful and intolerant to other groups of people among us.

We live in a world where people constantly need to justify and fight for their right for existence. Black Lives Matter need not exist, but so should not a LGBTQ Rights Lives Matter, nor People with Albinism Matter. Fat people need not have to have body positivity conversations because they are shamed and ridiculed.

When the news outlets started hinting at a looming coronavirus related disaster in Tanzania, I said a silent prayer, "God take only the homophobes".

White people continue to thrive and prosper despite the hatred and intolerance shown to other groups by them. Their privilege affords them life and ease of breath.

Heterosexuals people continue to live, have careers and families despite the hatred and intolerance they show towards the gay community.

We have been conditioned to hate and want to oppress that which we are not; this is evident when it comes to race, sexual orientation, skin pigmentation, religious background and gender.

In the past week alone in SA, so many women have been killed in the most brutal of ways that it is hurtful to try and begin to count.

Pink has a song with Khalid titled It hurts To Be Human; and right now, it is excruciatingly painful to be human, to be a woman in SA.

Do the men and women in SA not read the same history books? With the violent past of apartheid, how can South African men want for women to live in the same way as what black people lived under that regime? To constantly be in fear of being hunted, of being killed. To be expected to toe lines that are violent or pay with our lives?

In the middle of a pandemic, the biggest threat to humanity, why are we still prioritising power over each other?

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