Thursday, 26 November 2009

And as I was commenting . . .

As human beings – and I know there are laws out there made for us and, whether we agree with them or not, for whatever reasons those maybe – we detest interruptions of any kind be it while eating, writing, commenting or in the middle of a ‘Big Bother Meeting’ board meeting, or worse, in the middle of getting it on.

As a result and at most times, you end up forgetting what you were about to say. But the worst to happen is when you completely forget what was talked about or the subject of the meeting before you were . . . interrupted.

One would have thought this only happens in conversations or the media industry where one would be restricted to/from writing about a certain party, company or even a particular subject and until, of course, it happened to me yesterday.

This was after making time and effort to read a three-to-four or five-page long blog post by Charlene Smith who wrote, or rather, re-wrote an article – ‘Every 26 seconds a woman gets raped, it was my turn last Thursday night’ – at Mail & Guardian blog Thought Leader in line with South Africa's 16 Day of Activism against women and children campaign about the traumatic details leading her being raped by one psycho man a few years ago.

In the article, she described her rapist as well spoken, educated, ‘a good-looking man, lots of women would find him attractive’ and wondered, I think, ‘why does he need to do this [raping her]?”

Unfortunately, there are somewhat silly, incomprehensible and many reasons why man rape.

Smith, however, thought him as ‘not your normal petty thief/rapist’ for she said he ‘he speaks well… [and] has had a decent education’ and that ‘he was clean... [and] had planned this all so carefully’.

The events leading to and after the incident were quite frightening – and you are not surprised as this takes place daily in South Africa where a girl or a women is reportedly raped every second – that it reminded me of where I recently read of a campaign slogan that ‘any man can be a rapist’.

And as I commented, by first writing the response on a word document and later post it on the blog, my comments for God knows who, were unfortunately cut short. This is uncertain whether it was incompliant with the blog’s guidelines.

After reading the comment, I felt like I had just twittered. By twitter I mean having been restricted to writing not more than 200 or so characters as required – or is a standard, and whose standard is it any way? – by Twitter web site.

Even Facebook is better for one can write more than such 200 word characters, but not writing the entire book, of course. Please! – without these somewhat (silly?) restrictions or gate-keeping policies as I prefer, or whatever they may be called.

And as I commented before I was cut short by the editor… where was I with my comment? Oh, you see now what happens with interruptions! I would not have forgotten what I was going to write about, say or comment on if I had not been gate-kept.

But anyway, and as my comments were cut off, here are my cut-off comments in response to Smith:

Just before reading your story, I was trying to write a story to my blog – (Akanyang Africa: – regarding the decision by The High Court in Johannesburg in dismissing an application by Donovan Moodley who was found guilty of having killed Leigh Matthews in reviewing his life sentence ruling in the matter.

Personally, I found it very sickening, sad, horrifying, immoral, somewhat criminal, inhuman that Moodley – whatever his age now and at the time of the incident – and his lawyers (I wonder if they thought this thoroughly before embarking on this ridiculous application) had the legal decency (or lack thereof) in trying to have the ruling reviewed. For what (the hell reason!) reason, nogal.

I spent a couple of minutes in trying to come up with a title for the article because it was kinda trick that I ended up reading something else for I had to take a day or two before write about this despicable decision, or lack thereof, by Moodley and his lawyers (whoever they are or from whatever law firm they may be from), according to Star newspaper.

Like Matthews’s father is quoted as saying and the same goes to the rapists and that’s if when we know them and we hand them over to the relevant authorities and that the authorities do their job in making sure that they spend their lives “in jail”.

As much as it took time and courage in reading your story which help in writing about rape as a subject – I also took time in responding to this article, such that at first as you probably would have or as most writers would do – had to write this response on a word document before posting it on your article, unlike some readers or blog followers who would respond without reading the entire article at first before replying.

And therefore, I hope this response, without Mail & Guardian Online and or Thought Leader’s gate-keeping guidelines, if any and I hope not – finds a space below the main article or on the comments space designated for.

Unfortunately, as I had predicted, these seven paragraphs did not see “a space below the main article [Every 26 seconds a woman gets raped, it was my turn last Thursday night] or on the comments space designated for”.

And sadly, none of Thought Leader Guidelines for contributors, and not commenters to blog posts/articles says anything that my comment contained any “racist, sexist or homophobic remarks” in them or that they were “interpreted as such” and thereby “won’t make it on to Thought Leader".

And as I was saying…

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