Category: gender

Day 9 of The Afrobloggers #Winterabc2021 Gender-Based Violence. How We Can Stop It.

Gender-Based Violence. We have created a hopeless situation by mistreating people majorly according to their sex/ gender, socially, emotionally, physically, and psychologically.

The 2016 Uganda Demographic and Health Survey revealed that up to 22% of women aged 15 to 49 in the country had experienced some form of sexual violence. The report also revealed that 13% of women aged 15 to 49 report experiencing sexual violence annually. This translates to more than 1 million women exposed to sexual violence every year in Uganda.
Combating gender-based violence is not something that one person could only do but as a pool of different entities because of its hydra-like embedment in society. you deal with one then the other keeps rearing its head. However, below, simplistically put are some of the ways we could combat GBV.

1. Teach humanity values in schools. Right from the onset, children should be taught the values of humanity. The importance of one another regardless of skin, sex, tribe, or gender. It could easily be taught in schools because some of the homes from where these children come are run by people who never got the chance to be made aware of these issues and still practice them as normal but if we invest in the younger generation, we are sure they will pass this knowledge and awareness to generations and generations.

2. Strengthen education/ social awareness. Relatedly, Education systems should be woven around eliminating gender norms and practices through plays, classroom sitting arrangements, activity allocations, education material genderisations like stories & colors among others. Through this, children would develop without attaching gender stereotypes on the different objects, stories like associating colour pink to girls, toy cars to boys etc.

3. Strengthen gender ministries and how they could foster the eradication of gender stereotypes in the public. This could be done through partnering with the different gender departments within the ministries to organize conferences, seminars, and other activities where they could reach out to the public and tell them of the different gender biases in society and how to fight them. They could also be used to reach out to the different government departments and teach them about gender and how it is a disease in society and ways of eradicating it so that these departments could be aware and try as hard in eliminating it when designing their projects.

4. Strengthen social inclusion projects especially for the women or groups facing gender inequalities in the respective spaces where they are participating especially in activities that further support their freedom of expression and social wellbeing.

5. Enforce the use of law and the justice systems so that when people bring these cases to light, they are strongly and immediately responded to and the corresponding punishments are felt worthy. So many vices stay around due to the justice system’s failure to remit the right punishments thus not offering grave convictions that perpetrators would fear facing as according to their crimes.

In conclusion, therefore, gender-based violence is a vice that we could uproot if we all come as one because of the way it is woven into the different tiers and systems of society. We need the efforts of individuals, families, institutions, communities, states & transnational blocks to triumph over this demeaning behavior.

Day Six of The Afrobloggers #Winterabc2021. Body-Shaming & Stereotyping

Day 6 here and I about the body-shaming character of our society.

She was a young, small, beautiful girl. Very happy in her petit form. Everyone called her a model. She flaunted and celebrated life in her slimness. To the nursery school, she went, fat people were bullied. All sorts of names were thrown at them. Pigs, gluttons, fatso et al. the clothes were even cheap and easy to find by her mother. She was the flower girl and maid to so many events. She played an angel in her school plays.

But then she joined a mixed high school and the scale tilted. The boys in her school had differing tastes. Some fancied those abundantly endowed at certain parts of their bodies and those that are her size. Slim. What they called figure one. The former, figure eight, hour glass and so forth. It was so many a guy’s dream, to have the flyiest girl in school. The one with the biggest assets or the most curling curves. A many African guy’s definition of a sexy woman and many a time associated with being gashing or squirty. If you know what I mean. Competition to be noticed was always stiff. Your beauty, attitude and skills had to stand for you. Your body, that one automatically spoke for itself.

From high school, she went to higher institutions of learning which is just as well the entrance to adulthood and it just got worse. From girls in her class to adverts and social media, the girls with curves were always celebrated. They got the most whistlers from men in the club, on the streets, even lecturers themselves. Girls in so many music videos were those with the body, the lyrics glorified them. It felt like abandonment. Everywhere, they were given the first choices. And because they were the target of most men, they were the ones with the coolest clothes, latest phones and trends.

The body shape field had tilted immensely now. Her skinniness was now being questioned. It was at worst moments attributed to strange diseases. Stereotypes always came up. That small girls had HIV/AIDS, were sicklers and many others while the big girls were always thought to be healthy. That, “how one could be having a disease yet still maintain that look? Shaa. Impossible” and the guys went in. It was devastating.

And then came the money makers. The business men who had seen this trend and brought on to the market creams, body pads, operations and pills for women to enhance their bodies did not help the matter in any way. In fact, they made it worse. The field turned desperate. Many more and more females went for these and soon, the smallest of the girls were getting bigger and were reaping the ‘benefits’. More men and sexual advances with the offers they brought with the demands. The bonuses that came with having booty changed a lot of a girl’s life.

The small ones felt left out. Those who could not afford these felt the world had turned against them. The big booty girls were running the show. With the way they flaunted their curves, the way they dressed, the way they slayed it on social media and the media offers they got to feature in so many media ads. The men adored them, they worshiped the booty. Those who held influence in offices had places offered to the juicy ones. It was that bad. The field could no longer accommodate the small ones. It was a social annihilation. And then the white man has made Samantha the sex doll and it is the same noticeable thing about it. The booty is voluptuous.

But I only wish they knew that not all men are after the booty but the beauty. Maybe the inner beauty and that actually everyone has someone who loves them the way they are. I hope our society corrects that. Everyone deserves to be loved the way they appear. Men should also know this.

Personal Relationships & The Public

internet image

They have always advised that it is more better we keep our intimate relationships away from the public (These days, social media) because truth be told, not everyone is going to be happy about you too together and in the event that it hits some snags, there are some that are going to make the situation as dramatic as a telenovela. That is humanity. That is life. You would be saved from looking like a love failure. A life lesson for many and you’ll miss out on the peace that comes with silent relationship breakups.

But let me tell you, a relationship where people do not come up & tell you how good you are together is boring. It’s less charming. Once in a while we need to hear external minds about our relationships & from there we may learn a thing or two.

Sometimes we know less of the people who say they love us than the public or the people outside of our relationship. People that have been with them longer than we have & usually take some of their thoughts lightly until we are way in too deep a wrong relationship.

Much as we love our partners for our own selves (obviously), public interest is also very important. That’s why you’ll always find fun talking about your spouse to someone who cares to listen & usually seek advice the same way where necessary. Take relationship counsellors for example. There will always be that pride. Seeing the adoration on other people’s faces when you are talking about bae is priceless. Hearing them say how they wish theirs was like yours is unmatchable.

If your partner always endeavors to keep your relationship out of the public, including family then you’re in a tricky situation. They may be either protecting you from the haters or they’re hiding you from those that know their dark secrets.

However, you shouldn’t reveal all because this might give people who want to take you down a chance to know how to do it. Every relationship has its cracks and some people are too good or always out there looking for those cracks. The moment they land on them, the effect may be much bigger than the tsunami.

Don’t Make Her A Single Mother

This is the women’s month and Women’s Day is just around the corner so I found it wise to send them this love letter… and to the men too. This is all about us…and it children.

A woman loved a man. She loved him hard and he played the part. Her dreams were coming true. She was going to be a wife to a loving man and then have him a couple of beautiful littluns making him a father and altogether become a beautiful family.

So when he wooed her heart, she gave to him one of her most precious assets, her sexuality. You can’t blame her because she looked at this man as the perfect candidate to make a family with. Probably because, in the course of dating, he presented that dream quite too often and seriously and so a child they got for a family she hoped they would make.

The bastard instead, was just for a joy ride so once the tot was delivered, off he ran. To the hills or the valleys, across the plains or the mountains no one knew for he disappeared faster than he came into her life. Probably to spread his horn further. A heartbroken female, he left behind. A dadless child he left behind. Abandoned.

Broken heart. Shattered dreams. Hurt emotions and literally a fatherless child with a husbandless mother. She now has to fend for not only herself but for her child too. It is like it was a mistake for her to give in herself to him. Like it was her blunder to leave every other suitor for him. Such a heartless coward.

The world has never really been a cool shade for single moms. The blame they go through for having given in to a man that couldn’t commit. The promiscuous stigmatization they are given. We tend to label them being loose. We tend to pile the blame on her and turn blind to the idiot that played with her heart. That failed to act like a man and take charge of the results from his horn. The struggle they go through finding another suitor that won’t traumatize them for what happened before. Bringing it up in every argument, the insecurities, the ignoring of the child that came with her. That it’s her responsibility and that he starts from where he came into her picture.

A single mother is like a sheep in the wilderness full of wolf packs. Like Survivor Island, she has to keep up or be left behind. She lives in denial of her reality. Having to hide the child from possible suitors thinking they will jump ship once they know she got extra ‘baggage’.  Many men will think she is loose and try to gain sexual favors from her or that she is in a constant disparate need for help (which may be true) and try to get sexual in exchange for help. That is a sad reality. Hardly will any of them try to commit. Many fear that responsibility. “How can I father a child I didn’t father?” It is sad. It hurts.

Now literary alone in the world, that is if her family didn’t ignore her too because many think it is taboo for a woman to have a child and not live with its father. A shame to the family name and also if the father’s family doesn’t treat her any different, she now has to fend for school fees so that the baby gets an education, medical care, housing, food, clothes, belonging and identity, and all this while the father, the husband that was supposed to be is out there sexing other women. Probably they also know that he absconded from his parental responsibilities somewhere but what the heck, he said he loves me too so let the sista find a way to survive with her kid am moving on with the man now.

To the families that are raising the boy child, please teach that boy before he thinks he is now a man that women ought to be respected, honored, cherished, protected and loved. That sex is not everything and once they take on the sex activities, they must be ready for the consequences that come after. That live sex doesn’t give birth to a TV, car or anything but a baby and it is that child, their own seed that they’re going to subject a lot of mental torture to the moment they decide to close the door on them.

Dear player, if at all you don’t have plans of making that woman your wife then don’t make her a mother for nothing. Withdraw, wear a condom or don’t sex her at all and if at all you aren’t ready to take care of a woman and her child then stay away from single mothers. It is that simple. It is not a life she called for.

 Just as well, dear woman, not everything male that says it loves you really does so you do not have to open your legs for them without protection just because they said they love you. Let that niga take his time dating you if need bes while in that moment you’re looking out for the father figure in him. There are always red flags to look out for and yes, some things are actually worth the wait if you’re committed to looking out for the best.

Winter Blogging Challenge. Winter ABC 2020. #6; 4 Things I’ve Learnt From Social Media.

Social media is a game changer. It came and conquered all already existing forms of communication and more and their boundaries and now here we’re, transiting fluidly through the one global village it created. Globalization. Such sites include; Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Tiktok, Snapchat, LinkedIn etc.

From building brands and bringing markets and goods closer to people, to starting relationships or breaking them, building or ending careers to influencing social, economic and political scenes, social media is like a university with a lot of courses to learn from.

When I joined that school, here is part of what I learnt from it;

  1. It has the power to either make you or break you.

Social media, depending on how you use it or with who you interact with, it can either lead you to glory or to the grave. Literary. Many people have gained fame and glory depending on how they decide to use their social media. From being brand ambassadors/ influencers to getting gigs because of the content, people have made a killing. In Uganda, one example can be Martha Kay aka the Range Rover girl. She gained prominence to being who she is today because of the short, comical skits she uploaded in line. Right now, she’s doing a good job as a media personality.

On the sad note, we have seen a number of cases where celebrities or entities have uploaded content that has rubbed wrong on the shoulders of their followers and in the end brands have fallen. Recently, it was the Ugandan media brand NBS on one of its Saturday night music shows where presenters donned the All Lives Matter labeled t-shirts in showing solidarity with the blacks all over the world fighting racism. The next day, the internet was up in arms with some calling for the sack of one of the top dogs that run the station for their ignorance to the matter. Reason being, All Lives Matter is considered to be a counter attack to the Black Lives Matter. It forced them to apologize.

Social media also is part of the leading causes of stress, anxiety, depression and a number of other related issues. This sometimes comes from what people have chosen to put out there. The internet never forgets. Sometimes people put a lot of their lives out there and by the time they decide to delete the content, the trigger fingers have already saved it or screenshot it and it’s too late to salvage. This leaves such sensitive information in the hands of people who you don’t know what they are going to use it for. At one point in time, when you’re on top of your game or on your way there, they can release it to the world and watch your career or anything of the sort spiral down to the ground. Take for example the nude leaks. People have trusted their sensitive beings or sexuality with others they consider lovers. Inside person status but then one sad turn of events and boom, their nakedness is leaked to the world. This has affected people’s brand images and business platforms.

2. Power of networking

Social media has given us the power of networking through the availability of the right social media tools each tailored for specific sections of our lives. There’s LinkedIn for the professional side, Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, and the like for the more social, groupie jazz, WordPress, Medium that encompasses all aspects, YouTube the list is endless. Now with all these sites available, who you friend on them and how you interact with them is what matters the most. They test your networking skills. With proper networking, people have been able to score deals and get jobs and make ends meet. For example me. when I was a dancer, I used to make sure my social media circles included people in the media and entertainment circles because I knew that one day, one of them may be my break through and so in 2013, I got my big break into the media world when from what I was putting up on line, I was contacted by a media personality who offered to put me in his TV show team.

3. It’s the new business & market evolution

Social media has changed the game of marketing and business operations. These days success of some businesses is measured by their social media presence. The weaker your brand or business is on the socials, the lower are your business potential. That means your business is not seen or market is driven there and you need to do something about it otherwise you are going to be left behind. This has led to the emergence of people specializing in growing people’s businesses on line. Call them influencers and social media marketers. They drive sales, views, engagements etc.

People are making ads specifically for the social media people because this is where the money is. This is where yon are to find your target market.

Social media has changed the business scene through promotion of online shopping. People are concentrating on social media because that is where they will find the biggest all-category market and this has brought a threat to other media channels that used to reap big from ads especially the radio industry because now they have to share the money with businesses that have put in placed social media offices to handle online marketing.

4. It’s a screen

Not everything you see on these streets is true. People are living a life to impress or get around and once you are blinded then you are bound to fall. It needs one to take their time before treading with anyone otherwise you may be fleeced. The ladies will post their distresses with a target of looking for a man to gain a favor from or men will flaunt the good life only looking for a woman to sex and go. We have seen a lot of those stories on line. People will pose as prospective business gurus only looking for naïve or desperate soul to swindle. On line dating is a gamble. Many of the cool pics people put on the Gram are a screen to the dilapidated life they’re living and so forth.

Social media needs one to tread carefully otherwise there is a lot of fake it till you make it people.