View Full Version : Baby Rape and South Africa. WHY?
February 21st, 2008, 02:16 PM
For some reason, South Africa has a higher incident of infant rape than anywhere else in the world. Some blame the "virgin cure" myth for this. However, this myth is not exclusive to South Africa and does not seem to impact these other cultures so dramatically. Could the "virgin cure" myth be the cause of such high incidents of infant rape in South Africa? If not, what is?
The "virgin cure" myth is not confined to Africa. (http://www.scienceinafrica.co.za/2002/april/virgin.htm)
Should the government in South Africa be doing more to dispell the myth? (http://archives.cnn.com/2001/WORLD/africa/12/10/infant.rape/)
This article explores the impact that the slow evolution of empathetic parenting might have on the issue. (http://www.geocities.com/princessmoonbeamtrust/infant_rape.htm)
Is it possible that, for reasons associated with social development, South Africans are more like animals who are prone to harm their young or the young of others?
February 21st, 2008, 04:25 PM
I had this whole response typed up and just about then Mr. Imp decided to hard boot the wireless router. Now, aside from a dead spouse, I also have to retype my post.
Which is really okay, because it was all anecdotal regarding my friend who left South Africa when his wife had their first child because of this issue. He thinks that it's not just the "virgin cure" myth, which really has evolved into an "infant cure" myth, but that there are a lot of gangs who require infant gang rape as an initiation rite. The very low seroconversion rate of victims (less than 1% seroconvert to HIV positive) seems to indicate that the virgin cure isn't the only reason babies are getting split open.
I need to educate myself more on this topic so that I can discuss it intelligently, because this is a topic that, while tough, needs to be discussed. We're starting to see more and more infant rape here in the US as well, and while ours may be partly attributable to methamphetamines and available child porn, there have to be other reasons as well.
Thanks for bringing this up, Athena. I'll do some reading and be back, no doubt.
February 21st, 2008, 07:26 PM
I would be curious to see the apartheid statistics and how they compare with the current ones. My guess is that there has been an explosion since its end. While I'm not about to suggest that an apartheid system with clear penalties being imposed based upon race is good, I do think this helps to drive home a point about colonialism. I realize that alot of people will disagree with me here, but colonialism on the whole, but especially in certain seemingly inept regions, was a good thing.
Look at Zimbabwe. It was once the breadbasket of Africa, and had a flourishing economy. Now it is crippled by poverty, with inflation rates exceeded only by the Germans after World War I. Most of the competent farmers were driven off of their land or maimed by rogue bands of hoodlums.
Or consider the situation of Tibet. Before the Chinese occupation, the country was basically a backwards, uncivilized theocratic state. Brutal torture for the mundane was common, more so than in present day China. Bad as they might have it now, an independent Tibet would be far worse.
I'm not suggesting nations colonize, at is rarely in their own best interest to waste the money and other resources needed to maintain order and develop these wastelands. And it naturally poses a rights question, at least on the national level, as it undermines sovereignty. But there are alot of places that would benefit from a return to foreign rule.
February 22nd, 2008, 01:00 PM
i don't think there's more rape, baby or otherwise, than there has always been.
we just read/hear about it in abundance in this day and age.
February 22nd, 2008, 04:04 PM
I'm not suggesting nations colonize, at is rarely in their own best interest to waste the money and other resources needed to maintain order and develop these wastelands. And it naturally poses a rights question, at least on the national level, as it undermines sovereignty. But there are alot of places that would benefit from a return to foreign rule.Sometimes nations have to go through growing pains to become a better nation, and sometimes that involves having a parent tell them what to do.
February 22nd, 2008, 08:28 PM
Sometimes nations have to go through growing pains to become a better nation, and sometimes that involves having a parent tell them what to do.
I'm not sure I quite catch your meaning. As I understand it, a nation is at its best when the liberty of the people is ensured, the visability of government is minimal, and the economy is strong. The closer to that a nation is, the better. While all nations have their flaws, some are much less severe than others.
The United States, the UK, or any any other Western power doesn't become better by being a colonizing force. One might argue that they are acting morally. But even if true, it unfairly assumes that government has moral obligations outside of its basic functions. And that is not an idea that sits well with me, as it opens a pandora's box of potential abuses.
If though you mean that these nations need some outside intervention, there is alot of truth to that. But what I am suggesting is that some lands need to be colonized on an essentially permanent basis. Some former colonies, ones that had no natural resources, were poor upon independence, and got no Western aid have turned out quite well. Singapore, human rights violations aside, has become an economic powerhouse in the region, and a shining example of what a post-colonial state can achieve. By contrast, Zimbabwe has degenerated into a paradoxic blend anarchic chaos and repressive autocratic control. Its economy is among the worst in the world, in spite of being liberated under much more favorable terms.
Unfortunately, there are nations that, even with plenty or resources and foreign aid, cannot sustain themselves. They are the lands I believe would benefit from foreign management and oversight. When you have Health Ministers who don't even understand HIV transmission mechanisms (Kenya pre-chaos) or countries where more than 40% of the people have a serious STD (Swaziland), it is clear that the population is not generating people who are both fit to lead and willing to inherit the suffering and death threats that come with such authority.
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