When They Have To Kill Us

Yesterday I spoke with a man who admitted that he beat women. He said he did it and it was their fault. He said it was our fault because we had made him angry and he couldnt help himself because the anger couldn’t stay inside of him so he had to let it out. He said he was hurt so he had to hurt.

He said he started at 17 years old, he beat a 16 year old girl, his girlfriend, because she had done something wrong and she had made him angry and his anger balled his fist and told him to strike a woman. Yesterday a man said women deserved, beatings and murder and violence, because men cannot hold on to pain. He said men were not taught to hold on to pain. He said when men get angry they lash out, so his advice was for women to leave them alone.

The man said women have institutions and support for their pain, men dont. The man said women have places to go when they hurt, they have the Women’s Bureau. He said women are listened to when they hurt. I heard women supporting this man, they said listen to him because in him, through his wisdom and logic is the answer. Somehow in his perspective is the solution to the problem of men murdering women.

And I can’t sleep. Because there was a 24 year old young woman whose blood ran in a supermarket in Mandeville and we are angry because she made the man kill her. The nation is angry at her because she provoked him and he was forced to kill her. He took his gun and emptied his gun in her 24 year old head. There was another man watching the entire thing. What distress she caused that man he was forced to kill her? He had no choice. It was her fault.

And there was another woman in Portmore, and a soldier man chopped and shot her so many times, he was mad, he was angry, he could not control himself. So he chopped and shot her because he had promised her that he would and so he did and when he was done he took a picture of her and posted on his WhatsApp status and we got even more angry. Look at what she did. Yet another woman forcing a man to kill her. She was unreasonable, she provoked him. What did she expect? He said she had a man and there was even a spliced voice note with him impassioned and angry out of control and a dispassionate cold woman responding.

And a 27 year old woman went to bed and she was sleeping he entered her father’s house through the window, her mother heard her scream. She had left him alone with his anger. But he came for her and cut her neck with her father’s kitchen knife. Then he called her father to ask if she was okay. She deserved it the nation said. Why didn’t she leave, but she did. Why did she go back? She had left though. She did something to him, she made him angry.

So now we are here. Trying to return to normal. To fall asleep on a volcano. Reassuring ourselves that the one who sleeps beside us will not do the same to us because we are better women than those three. We are of sound character and further more, it’s those careless women who take money from men, who perhaps dance to a certain kind of music, who cheat on their men. If we are good women, if we wash his clothes, cook his dinner, have his children and go to church on Sundays we wont provoke our men to wrath. Then they wont have to kill us.

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