I’ve just stolen a song title, I know. Yet it is true. We ARE the world.
Earlier in the week, Mr O was very upset at something that had happened “back home”. During the same week, I noticed a shocking news story about pack rapes in France. Then there was the 14 year-old shot in Pakistan. The disaster that is Syria continues, seemingly unabated.
We are the world.
There are certain things we should raise our voices about. Things we should say loudly, clearly. We are the world. It is not just about solving poverty, it is about caring for our fellow man, about raising global awareness of atrocities and calling for change. We should be SHAMING the countries into action. Yes, I know, “shame” is a hot word in Australia lately: let’s use it constructively for a change.
While both Syria and the case of Malala Yousufzai are receiving wide-spread media coverage, the other issues mentioned above less so.
In a case that has shocked France and cast a light on a culture of youth sexual violence, two women now in their 20s said that as teenagers they had endured months of almost daily rapes by scores of men in Fontenay-sous-Bois, outside Paris. The case is seen as the tip of the iceberg of the wider problem of gang rapes by youths on poor housing estates.
After a four-week trial, four of the accused were found guilty of taking part in gang rapes, but 10 were acquitted. Those found guilty were handed sentences that ranged from a suspended sentence of three years to one year in prison. Only one man returned to prison after the verdict because of time already served on remand.
There really has been little outrage, or little that I have noticed. Even so, there are many more articles (see related, below) on this than the Nigerian case I am leading up to. France, of course, is considered a first world country. We don’t like to stick our noses into the business of other first world countries, do we? This is FRANCE for goodness sake, a civilised nation. Or is it? In some respects, this ties into my previous article on sexism. When women aren’t considered equal, it is OK to rape them. There is coverage, just little condemnation. We should be making damn sure France is aware this isn’t acceptable! Where is the international pressure?
The second issue receiving little, if any, international coverage and even less condemnation is the news from Nigeria that horrified Mr O. Just because one leaves their homeland doesn’t mean they forget it, as I have written before. One of the statements Mr O made was “There is no love. They can be eating out of the same pot, but there is no love.” He can’t get the waste of life out of his thoughts.
Mr O signed a Facebook petition and forwarded it to me. I was shocked when I signed it that only 8,700 had signed. It is now up to 11,000 but in a country with a population of some 170 million, 11,000 is not a lot of signatories. Of course very few have access to the internet, many would be scared to sign even if they could. They could, after all, be the next target. That is the reality.
I warn you very, very strongly: the video below is not easy to watch. Like the photo I published in Been silenced, we debated whether to publish or not. Do not watch it unless you have a very strong stomach. Mr O and I are both very well aware that this sort of atrocity may in part lead to the sort of experience I had at the hairdresser the other day. Yet we also know that unless the word is spread there can be no hope of raising global awareness, no hope of change, no hope of development.
Substantiation of the situation can be found here: http://allafrica.com/stories/201210130292.html
“We are killing our future by murdering our promising youths on daily basis. Every day we are burying our children and yet this is peace time or are we at war? We cannot keep quiet any longer. We are calling on all mothers and Nigerian women to rise and demand answers from Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State, Governor Murtala Nyako of Adamawa State and President Goodluck Jonathan. We must hold them responsible for these killings.
The murdered students were not entirely innocent. They stole a phone and a laptop. However, they did not deserve what befell them.
I quote from the petition:
We demand that whoever is involved in this killing must face the music, Nigeria must show to the rest of the world that this country is not a banana republic. You cannot be asking investors to come and invest in your country when barberic acts such as this are happening almost everywhere in the country.
We are the world. Sign the petition if you believe in a better world. Help the Nigerians desperately calling for change.
- The Verdict in France’s Teenage Gang-Rape Trial Will Probably Infuriate You [Rape Rape] (jezebel.com)
- Four jailed in gang-rape trial that shocked France (guardian.co.uk)
- Watching your homeland crumble (teamoyeniyi.com)
- Amnesty International Report 2012 (teamoyeniyi.com)
[…] Who the hell can we actually trust? Anyone? What is wrong with the human race? […]
[…] a larger scale, we have had the sort of cases I highlighted in my own “We are the world” article (gross violence warning re the video on that article) and the many civil wars that […]
[…] raped and another in Saudi Arabia gets stoned to death because someone raped her. I care that a child gets shot in the head in Pakistan for wanting an education. I care that some idiot thinks it is OK to paint his truck like the above […]
[…] is so horrified at what was done. Like the case of man’s inhumanity to man I wrote about in We are the world, this is just beyound his comprehension. He said to me, “I cannot comprehend how people can […]
[…] seen gang rapes in France and a young girl shot in Pakistan. Here in Australia we’ve had the terrible aduction, rape […]
[…] We are the world […]
I’m part of a Nigerian Facebook community and when the news broke, we got the full story immediately. I was horrified and dumbstruck. I will not watch the video as I’ve read enough horrid descriptions of what happened to those men who, apparently, were falsely accused of stealing…
Nevertheless, it was mentioned in the US media s but briefly and life went on… I wrote a post about it without naming or adding video… It was my way of not giving energy to such a despicable act. Sadly, these things go on and until we learn to treat each other with compassion and respect, acts of depravity and wickeness will continue around the world… Sadly Malala has paid a price too for such hatred… May those young men rest in peace.
It is just awful that such things happen. I have always been an idealust and I believe Mr O is too. We were both so affected by it. I can understand not watching video, it is horrifically graphic.
I was unaware it rated a mention in the USA media. It certainly did not here that I saw.
[…] brought my family here from what is arguably a third world country. Now I am left trying to explain to them why the western world seems to be crumbling before our […]
[…] Robyn who is married to a Nigerian, Mr O, and I got back as far as her October 14th post called We Are The World and this is where I first saw the video. They worried about whether they should put a link to it. […]
I felt so sad and wept as I watched the film.. The world is so ill-divided that this kind of horror will continue to happen where life is cheap. They stole a phone and a laptop in a world run by corporations where people are encouraged to believe they MUST have such items and where greed has been encouraged and replaces love and compassion..
Those of us who are awake must keep pressing and educating for a better world..
I will sign and share
I have read the full story now about them being “cult members” who stole when they did not get money from a fellow cult member so they took his laptop and phone.. does that make a difference.. of course it does not. To treat human beings like this is never right under ANY circumstances..
I agree 100%. Also, I am not sure “cult” means the same thing in Nigeria as it does here. The use of language is quite different and I suspect it is not the same at all. Even so, there is no excuse for the treatment at all.
I think it probably means like a gang member doesn’t it Robyn?
I think so, but even Mr O isn’t sure of the exact “translation” as he isn’t really sure what we mean by “cult”! All very difficult sometimes!
Thank you Helen. Truly disturbing. Mr O was horrified and didn’t sleep well for nights.
I can’t remember the day that I decided that it would never be enough for me in this life unless everyone got to sleep under a roof, safe and well fed, but it’s been like that for years for me. What is it with ape descendants and their tribal stupidity? (That includes greedy, murdering European Colonist tribes) What is it with dumb human ape descendants who haven’t evolved enough to stop shoving their penises in anyone they can, regardless? If they’re not playing with their penis, they’re playing with a weapon or being distracted by something shiny! Things like this make me wonder about the human race, they really do. Why are too many humans still just behaving like animals? It’s everywhere and the bastard rich and the ruling classes don’t want to make a change. The video didn’t make me sick, it didn’t make me cry, it just made me angry, very angry, and sadly it made me contemptuous of my race of beings who have allowed centuries of this to take place. Thanks for the share; I signed and shared, though given human history I’d say that more rape and murder is on the cards for the future… but let’s keep doing what we can though and perhaps one day…
I tend to agree with you. We recently had the abduction, rape and murder of a young women off a street in Melbourne, about 700 metres from her home. We still love to have wars all over the place.
One day, Richard, one day, we may actually evolve into a worthwhile species.
Thank you for signing and for the sharing.
That is so absolutely horrific. It is completely incomprehensible to me that human beings can stand by and watch that happen. Why can not one person have the decency to say enough is enough, one person to say this has gone too far? Mob mentality is such a frightening thing. It horrifies me that anyone could stand by when the punishment was so outrageous for the crime.
It is no wonder your Mr. O was disturbed in the night because of that. My Mr. o would have been too. I agree it is one thing for us to watch but another for them to see because they’ve lived it.
Thank you for your comment Carla. You are so right.
While is it certainly alleged these boys were not angels, nothing they are alleged to have done deserves this sort of summary “justice”. As the people calling for real justice have said, barbaric behaviour.
Yes, quite another when you have lived it. The kids spoke about people being snatched of the street in the TV interview we did (link in side bar). No wonder they think here is safe!
A life for a laptop.
I went to Nigeria in 2000 and driving through PH and then up country I saw two things that will stay with me forever. The first was a lynch mob chasing someone, on my return journey there was a body beside the road. The second was a blackened body with a cut throat. At the time I was told that they would have been thieves, I don’t know what to say.
Yes, Gilly, that is a common reaction. I don’t think there is anything we can say, other than raise awareness and encourage international condemnation.
My God in heaven, what did they do anyway?
Stole a laptop and a phone.
Ok, stealing is bad, but that was so over the top that I can’t even think of anything to describe it.
I honestly believe it severly disturbed Mr O’s sleep since he saw it. You and I look at it and are horrified. He looks at it and…. well, I have no words, really. It reaches into the depths of his soul. Too many memories, of course, but such a waste of lives. Such terrible retribution for a minor crime.