That rape/molestation argument, and my experience at the National Assembly

Posted: March 10, 2014 in DAY 2 DAY
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I’m a little upset tonight, and I’ll tell you why in just a minute. First off, apologies I’ve been inconsistent. I know I owe chronicles from my Hamburg and Abuja trips, and I will get to them in good time. This piece however couldn’t wait.

It is inspired by a post I saw on Joy Bewaji’s page on Facebook this evening, and because I want this piece to have the right context, I’ve got a screenshot for you.

Screenshot 2014-03-10 22.24.47

My comment was along the lines of I’d make sure I gave the person a permanent injury, and even if my breast was hanging out of my top or if I put it on my forehead (because it is my body part), it doesn’t give anyone the right to touch it.

Then I saw a comment from a guy who said “You see — I have two daughters, one much younger and I tell them always to dress up and cover up — so that they don’t have crazies stirring at them in an unwelcome manner”.

And that got me really ticked off. For some reason it just really annoyed me. My comment (in response to that man) is italicised below.…/this-has-got-to…/ 

Did the 4-year-old in my blog from 2010 dress ‘indecently’? How does a 4-year-old entice a 45-year-old man?

I am not a parent John* (I see you’re throwing that around a little bit now) but I have this thing that my folks (who are parents) taught me, and that is self-respect. They taught me boundaries and God bless them, I have a brother who they taught him the exact things too.

Some men are animals. Not all, but a good number of men are animals. Animals because they lack self-respect, and self-control. Tis’ the absence of those two that make animals in the forest eat one another, do numbers one and two ‘anywhere belle face’, and all the things that generally separate man from beast.

In my first comment I said even if her breast was hanging out, heck even if it was on her forehead, he had absolutely NO right to touch it. That is what separates man from beast. It’s spring now, and the teens here are preempting summer and wearing the tiniest bits in their wardrobe. Are you saying because they are dressed that way they are ‘not being cautious’? Are you saying they are asking to be molested?

When I have children (and therefore become a parent), I will teach my children to dress decently only because it is the decent thing to do, not as a shield against molestation. 

It is these excuses we give for depravity that tire me. Absolutely grate.

Following on from that, here’s an experience that’s barely two weeks old.

I was in Nigeria in the last week of February, and among a number of meetings was one with a Senator. Venue? National Assembly. Now I’d never been there (accompanied or on my own), so I was already a little apprehensive. And it was HOT.

Got there dressed in a knee-length, small-sleeved, black corporate-type dress, and brown heels. I got to the gate and was told I couldn’t go in because they had a policy against sleeveless dresses so we wouldn’t “entice the Assemblymen”.

I swear I pinched myself to be sure I was neither being pranked, nor starring in my own horror movie. I got them to let me in (involved calling the Senator’s office and protesting), but at the door of the complex, I was again told by military men at the door there was a policy against ‘seductive dressing’, including sleeveless dresses. Remember my dress had a small sleeve? All of my attempts at explaining the difference between ‘small sleeves’ and ‘sleeveless’ were akin to trying to catch the wind.

After all said and argued, ladies and gentlemen, I had to go home to change.

Got home, changed into black trousers and a blue long-sleeved top, same heels and the taxi drove me back there (think about how much I had incurred with this Israelite journey). Went in, met the children of God who are the ‘special assistants’ to the Senator, and when my business was done, I started the long walk under the sun outside to where my taxi was waiting.

Next thing a car passes me, reverses a bit, and stops. The right back window goes down and a man tells me “fine girl, leave the sun, come into my car”. I looked at him, gave him the dirtiest look I had, and continued walking. Brethren, the car followed me till I rounded the corner, catcalling, begging me to enter the car and tell him why I was frowning, etc. He didn’t stop till I turned the corner, then the car drove off. It had NASS plates. I know the guy (I went online and searched all their faces till I found him).

Wasn’t it for an animal like this I incurred bills on my taxi, and suffered more exposure to the sun than necessary? Isn’t it for these ones I was sent home because a sleeveless dress (never mind that it wasn’t sleeveless) would entice them? Who on earth are we kidding?

Ladies and gentlemen, you are either an animal or a human being. This excuse we give about women inviting molestation or rape on themselves because of the way they are dressed is sickening.

What did this girl on the way back from her grandfather’s funeral do to invite rape, by 6 men who threw her in a ditch and left her for dead afterwards?

It is also hypocritical because, like I said to the creature of God who asked what a young lady was wearing when she was molested by thugs posing as officials of the Abuja Environmental Protection Bureau, the easiest way to show that your argument is a lie is to let your sister or mom be the victim, be the person raped or molested.

Let’s have this argument if your first question is about what they wore to ‘invite it’. Otherwise can we please train our children up in the way they should go already?

P:S – I did a blog (can’t find it) once where I said I’d set on fire anyone who ever touched my kids inappropriately.

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  1. Temitayo says:

    Ghen ghen, Fairygodsis don vex, as for me sha, I’m a man, disrespect me – I won’t talk, I no like wahala. Oya disrespect women , God himself will feel for you when I finish teaching you the lessons on respect. …


  2. 1 + The One says:

    So many truths in this post! Ignorance is one of the biggest problems of sexual abuse in Nigeria! That, and the patriachial system. We honestly need to start building a more responsible society of men who respect women! And not lay the fault of every mishap at the doorstep of a man..
    That man on the bus though.. What a huge joke! Someone that should have been immediately arrested. Pervert oshi..


    • Proper pervert!! And shame on the people who didn’t speak up for the poor lady (even though she didn’t need them, super woman)!

      There’s ignorance, and then there’s wickedness that’s been fed fat by excuses we’ve come to accept.

      It has to change, starts from all of speaking up!


  3. Tunde Ogedengbe says:

    Self-control is a fruit of the spirit. Traditionally, we are trained to imbibe self-control but in reality, the flesh is never overcome by mere training. No human being can naturally overcome the lust of the flesh without a new-born experience (John 3:3-6) and a deliberate yielding to the Spirit of God to help in developing the fruit of the Spirit.
    Before the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, whose advent eventually led to the coming of the Holy Spirit, God established the Law for the Israelites, as an instrument to govern their day-to-day conducts and their societal obligations. The Law consisted of rules/regulations and consequences of falling out of line. 1 Timothy 9-10 says “knowing this: that the law is not made for a righteous person, but for the lawless and insubordinate, for the ungodly and for sinners, for the unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, for fornicators, for sodomites, for kidnappers, for liars, for perjurers, and if there is any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine”. Galatians 3:9 tells us that God introduced the law because of transgression. What’s the relevance of this? Human beings don’t have the capacity of their own to do things, just because it is the right thing to do. God used the law to make us aware of our natural level of disobedience/depravity and the law stipulates the punishment when we go out of line.
    Human societies have adopted this principle – laws are enacted in societies to “regulate” our behaviours & conducts. While it is true that the guy who did that terrible thing of molesting the young lady lacked self-control (as you rightly said), what in my opinion gave him the audacity to do such a terrible thing was either the absence of any law on sexual molestation/harassment or/and (if such a law exists), lack of commitment on the part of those who are in authority to enforce such a law.
    My wife and I have several times “laughed” at reported incidents of sexual harassment here in the UK. Our “laughter” is not a mockery of the system, neither is it a demonstration of disrespect to the victims, but a cynical laugh of the environment we grew up in. I have worked in a company where the MD slept with almost every “matured” female who worked in the company – they dared not refuse him. What do you say of what has become a norm in the Nigerian society, where men in privileged position demand to sleep with female candidates in exchange for jobs? What form of right exists in the Nigerian legal system to discourage such wicked conducts? What is the prospect of successful prosecution of accused persons if such cases are reported? This in my opinion is the crux of the matter, rather than the obvious lack of self-control demonstrated by people who have behaved themselves without regard to the dignity of their victims.
    Evil thrives where the there is no law or where there is no respect for the rule of law. While the existence of appropriate law and robust enforcement of such laws do not in themselves eliminate such incidents (after all we see people break the law everyday), it serves as a deterrent and helps to instil some level of sanity in society.


  4. Nnedimma says:

    I can’t say half what I normally would. I’ve done all my ranting during the reading. All I can say for now is, molest my daughter at 8, 18 or 28 and I will show you how to dress.


  5. ifemmanuel says:

    I think something has happened to our collective intellect as Nigerians if this many of us think ‘covering up’ prevents molestation. I’m all for dressing appropriately and all, but I think it’s a way of dodging responsibility on the part of the men (and women) who make it an excuse for animals like the one that tried to touch that young lady.
    People should suck it up, train their boys to be responsible young men who fear the Lord enough to honour a woman’s body and when any of those boys decides to ditch the training and become an animal let us not hesitate to deal with him until he changes. Sometimes I wish people can feel for a moment what it means to have someone close to you molested by men, then I realise it is unchristianly to wish people evil so I stop myself.


    • Hello Ifemmanuel, welcome to my blog!

      I could give you several high fives for this comment I tell you! The bit that irks me the most is saying (or implying) that women invite rape on themselves because of the way they dress. Why don’t they (rapists) go to swimming pools so they can attack all the bikini clad females there? Like, how low can we go with making excuses for really bad behaviour?

      And yes, praise the Lord for training our sons and daughters right! It is our responsibility!


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