Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Not My Problem!

Yesterday Moira Richards rocked me out of my comfort zone. I was reading her post on how witchcraft is used as a tool for women abuse and my first response when I saw the intro to her piece was, “surely that doesn’t happen in SA anymore?”

I grew up in rural South Africa, where accusations of witchcraft against a member of a community were very common. No, we didn’t burn the accused on the stake. At least, not physically. But word spread in the community, reputations were destroyed and some poor women were isolated/ shunned because they were believed to be witches.

In other parts of South Africa, most notably Limpopo and Mpumalanga, some women were not so lucky. Yes, we did go through our period similar to Salem. And it was not too long ago (less than 20 years). But, as time moved on, I convinced myself that we as a society have moved. We don’t burn witch-accused anymore, do we? Moira’s reminded me not to be complacent.

Question: Do you feel that sometimes it's easier to disconnect yourself from particular societal issues and to go"Thank God that's not my problem!" because as individuals, we also have our own life issues to deal with and that's more than enough? Are we getting numb to the damage people can do to each other?

P.S. Read Moira's series of posts on the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence.
Follow Shukumisa's blog party commemorating 16 Days of Activism Against gender violence

1 comment:

po said...

Yup, I think we all HAVE to disconnect sometimes, otherwise we wouldn't be able to live. Especially if we feel powerless to do anything about a problem. It's too heavy to carry around thinking about it. The witchcraft thing is frightening, how blame can be pinned on a woman rather than looking for a cause or blaming chance.

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