A beautiful Instagram influencer posted a video of a male gym-goer, crouching to take what he thought was a sneaky photo of her arse during her workout a while back.
Reading through the comments, I felt immense sadness.
What kind of world do we live in? Seriously?
And when did “consent” become flimsy and situation-dependent?
When did the world become complacent over personal space?
When did we start needing a society that is making rules to prevent us from being stupid, rather than calling people out on their bad behaviour?
This guy is an ill-mannered man who behaved badly and deserved the embarrassment of having someone speak out loudly about his conduct. As strong as my feelings are regarding this event and others like it, I would have reacted the same—ignoring him and his blatant disrespect for fear of an ugly confrontation.
Which got me thinking.
Is the world ever going to be safe for everybody when it seems some cannot tell the difference between legality and simple manners anymore?
Has it come to a point where we are justifying the need for a codification in law for common sense and manners?
(In this case, the law needs to be respected to be useful, right?)
Did you know that rape of one’s spouse is still acceptable in some places?
As a survivor of rape, the feelings of filth and guilt are the very same, if not worse when it is someone who is trusted and was once considered one of your life’s greatest blessings.
Are these types of situations binary in character? No.
And sadly, I don’t have all the answers.
But dear friends, as a survivor, a mother, sister, and human being, with respect, I call on you to unite with me in the combat against such widespread behaviour.
Here’s how we can start making small changes one step at a time:
>> Put our ego aside and forget what this person looks like, sounds like, and focus on the behaviour only.
>> Call the behaviour out.
>> Give them an example of appropriate behaviour.
>> Stand your ground. (Clench those fists and stay strong!)
>> And most importantly, support each other in these situations. It doesn’t matter what the environment is. If the person feels threatened, imposed on, a sense of their personal space/self is being stolen, you back them the f*ck up because through unity, there is strength.