It’s all the same again, you have nothing to do, better check some notifications, you are scrolling on Facebook, you see a post on sexual harassment, you see the baby girl’s picture, robbed of life, you wonder if God has stopped giving humans humanity. You are obviously disturbed, you write a nice long caption about how we ourselves have allowed for this to perpetuate to this extent, how we need to fight this, why we need to get rid of it, and so on. You open twitter, there are people speaking up about these tabooed issues, it makes you happy you retweet, tweet, hashtag.
You feel like you have done justice to the Zainab, to Tayyaba, to many many other women and children raped each day, you believe that you have raised your voice, you have contributed.
You are sitting amongst a few close friends, the topic is brought up, you get one or two to believe and understand how social media can bring change, and how you have to help change the society.
You blame the culture, the misogyny, the vicious cycles, the triple shift burden, the ignorant family, the background, the country, the character, the lack of morality, the lack of humanity and then you move on with your daily life. Not to be disturbed till the next time a beast strikes.
This type of activism does help, on paper, you are one of the supporters, but when there is an incident in front of you, where you are required to take action, where there is a person being exploited by the same society, by the same mentality of our society. You rely on the culture of silence to make him or her not raise her voice. So there isn’t a scene, so the problem is solved as soon as possible, because if it went to the police, it’s not going to make a difference, it would just bring trouble and inconvenience your way, your name will be dragged around too, you don’t want that kind of trouble. You shy away from all that you stood for and rely on the same set of things you were so strongly against to get you out of the situation.
Now here is when you become a traitor not just to the cause, but to yourself. You refuse to implement all that you spoke about while being a keyboard warrior.
How is that activism of yours any good when you refuse to make your contribution to breaking the culture of silence, removing the stigma surrounding the issues, demanding and resiliently getting some form of justice. The perpetrators rely on people like you and their cowardice; don’t let yourself be one of those who turn their backs to the issue when it demands to be heard.
When there are people who need you to stand up to get justice, the victim blaming, the stigma, the silence, the shame that talking about these issues bring need to be broken and that cannot be done unless we are all ready to bear with some stains that the process brings.
And it’s okay because these stains would be our contribution in achieving something we so desperately need.