advice, domestic violence, feminism, feminist, GBV, misogyny, sexism, shooting, Uncategorized, violence

Why #HerNameWasReeva is Important

Today marks a day of justice for Reeva Steenkamp. Murdered by her now infamous partner and former Olympian Oscar Pistorius in 2013, she and her family can finally attempt to find some sort of peace.

Pistorius was infamously charged with manslaughter, despite having fired four rounds into a locked bathroom door; he claimed to believe an intruder was in the room. Regardless, and as the judge rightly concluded, the intent could not have been different. Four rounds into a small, locked space.  Reeva Steenkamp had little chance.

After being released and confined in his home following only a year of his then five year sentence, Pistorius has finally been sentenced to murder by the South African Court of Appeal’s Judge Leach.

Judge Leach argued:

As a matter of common sense at the time the fatal shots were fired, the possibility of the death of the person behind the door was clearly an obvious result. And in firing not one but four shots, such a result became even more likely.

Judge Leach stated that the identity of the person behind the door was irrelevant to Pistorius’ guilt for the crime.

But the person behind the door was Reeva Steenkamp and on Twitter the hashtag #HerNameWasReeva is once again making the rounds. But what is trending is #OscarPistorius. Many times over the past two years I have heard people debate his guilt or innocence, argue the case, know his name without pause or thought. Many people do not even know his victims first name.

Today, we need to honour Reeva Steenkamp. Today, her name should be trending. Her story should be heard. Her memory honoured.

As is the case with all gender based violence, domestic violence, all abuse: the victim often goes forgotten. It is a pattern in our society to let the victim become silent.

By speaking her name we challenge that silence. We challenge the institutions and patterns which encourage and permit the continuation of gender based violence and abuse.

Today #ReevaIsHerName and tomorrow it will be another woman’s name.

Do not forget the victims.

 

 

 

Advertisements
attack, Bataclan, bomb, France, Hollande, hostage, PAris, shooting

Hostile and Tragic Attacks in Paris France (In Development)

A series of hostile attacks have taken place today in Paris France and are apparently still under occurring in the city; emergency services are being enforced. Several bomb explosions have been heard and a number of people have been (were?) taken hostage during a concert in the Bataclan and their have been reports of shootings at several establishments. President Hollande has declared a state of emergency; all borders are closed, army services are reported to be in the city, and people are being encouraged to stay indoors,

As the events are developing, there is no news as to why or who is behind these atrocities – though much speculation can be found online already, please beware of these conjectures as they can be extremely damaging to minority communities and groups who are (sometimes wrongly) blamed.

I urge all Parisian residents to stay indoors, stay safe and protect one another. You need each other more than even, right now.

Thoughts are with the families and friends of all those who have lost their lives in this tragic event and with all those currently in the city, no doubt worried and concerned.

Stay safe.