Who is guilty of rape? The Council of Common Sense has a verdict!
From the Wit-hole countries is African Arguments’ satirical section. It’s the news, but absurd. It’s sometimes better than the real thing, sometimes not quite real, and sometimes much more real.
[opening broadcast music]
Good day and welcome to the news bulletin hour.
I come to you live from the steps of the court where inside, the Council of Common Sense is reaching a verdict on who is guilty for rape. This case is famous for being prosecuted by the entire male population across the continent (a large number of them Nigerians and South Africans). Earlier today, the suspects’ lawyers summed up their defences in this centuries long court hearing and we’re expecting a decision imminently.
To recap, these are the three defendants we’ve come to know so well and how their questioning went:
Suspect Number 1: Late Nights
The Council of Common Sense heatedly debated this suspect. Scientists, shamans and creatures of the night like bats were all called in to give evidence proving whether this natural occurrence of time was responsible for cases of rape. Was it perhaps some mysterious rays the sun gave away as it set? Did the moon inspire feelings of violence specifically directed towards women, similar to werewolves?
Suspect Number 2: Short Skirts
This suspect’s trial took ages. Hundreds of expert witnesses were called to the stand: textile makers, designers, tailors, illustrators, capitalism. The Council wanted to know what mysterious, malignant threads they used that could be inspiring targeted violence. The suspect in question gave a spirited defence of itself, proclaiming it is not new to such accusations which have apparently hurt its reputation.
Suspect Number 3: Location
This suspect was particularly hard to pin down. Because the prosecution could not decide what portion of this large, expansive suspect is particularly suspicious. Who, or rather where, is guilty? Is it hotels, churches, Islamic schools, private homes, university lecturer offices? Or is it the homes of celebrities, schools, airports, restaurants, public bathrooms? Where exactly is guilty of rape?
While we await the Council of Common Sense’s verdict, I’ve been also been speaking to some men who have been offering advice on how ordinary men can help stop sexual violence regardless of the guilty suspect.
One expert man said: “To stop gender based violence, we must furiously type ‘We need to put an end to gender-based violence’ on social media.” He emphasised the importance of not being distracted in this essential action by other activities such as holding the men around us accountable, contributing materially to the cause, or believing and supporting women.
Another men’s rights advocate suggested that ordinary men can help by chanting #NotAllMen at every opportunity in order to spread awareness that a few men aren’t trash and guilty of apologising for or enabling sexual assault.
Finally, one particularly experienced campaigner explained that “hyperbole like #MenAreScum is a danger to the world’s most important resource: men’s egos. Yes, some men behave badly, but it is only a few bad apples. And yes, a few bad apples spoil the bunch, but men are not fruit,” he said.
Breaking news! The Council has come back with a verdict. Let me listen in.
Well, in a startling turn around, the Council of Common Sense has acquitted all three suspects! Instead, it has found another party guilty on all counts. The judges said it would take too long to name those guilty, but simply invited the all-male audience to look in the mirror…
…and just to reiterate again, this is satire. Read more of From The Wit-Hole Countries here.