MARCH : A MONTH IN HEADLINES
As an aspiring writer, I, like many others suffer from writers block 90% of the time and it's usually a miracle for me to find something to write about. Recently it's been a little bit different. There is so much for me to write about. So much words to spill onto the digital pages of this blog. I just don't know where to start.
Okay, hear me out. From this point forward. I'm starting a new section of my blog. Every month I'll recap news stories and other interesting events that have happened during the month that draw my attention. That way, you can keep up to date with the world and all its headlines as well as hearing my commentary and narrative too. A win, win in my opinion.
So, Lets get started
Ah, March. The meteorological start of spring; the supposed beginning of new life and with it a fresh start. It seems that 2021 didn't get the memo. March 2021 shows us that the world is regressing more than it is progressing. Rape Culture, Racism, Removal of Human Rights, Islamophobia (etc) are still firmly seated at the top of newsfeeds and I fear that they have no intention of going anywhere anytime soon.
(DISCLAIMER: THESE EVENTS AREN'T IN CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER)
On the 3rd of March, 33 year old Sarah Everard was walking home alone from her friend's house in Clapham at 21:30pm. This was the last time she was seen alive. She never made it back home to Brixton. 7 days later, on the 10th of March the metropolitan police uncovered human remains in a woodland in Kent.
This immense tragedy, having not only caught the attention of the government and mainstream media but has brought the hashtag #NotAllMen back to the forefront.
Now Sarah took every safety precaution that women are taught if they are to be walking alone at night; she wore appropriate footwear, she called her boyfriend when she was leaving her friends house, she walked down brightly lit roads. She did everything she was 'meant' to do...yet she isn't here anymore, a metropolitan police man murdered her. If this doesn't suggest that we women are not to blame for being attacked then I don't know what will. Women are not the one's that need to change, Men need to change. And yes I will say it louder for the people in the back - yes I'm talking to you. Yes, you, the one ready to reply with "Not all Men". Men need to be educated. They need to know what it feels like to be scared of walking anywhere alone. What its like to feel the stares of eyes on you back and the sounds of footsteps closing in on you as you cross a dark road and you hear someone behind you. What the cold metal of your keys feel like in between your fingers.
Men need to be educated. Educated not to rape, educated on how to make women feel safe in their presence. Now, to the 'Not All Men' crowd, I will say. We are not being reductive, we know you aren't all bad. But what we don't know is who's who. We do not know which men we are safe around and so we are wary of all of you. I don't know about you but if 97% of us have been sexually harassed then I'd say our trust issues are incredibly valid.
On the 16th March, a series of shootings occurred in spas in Atlanta, US. Eight people were killed, six of whom were Asian-Americans. These horrific events serve as a terrible elevation of the ongoing racism and discrimination of the Asian Community not just in America but in the western world as a whole.
Since the coronavirus outbreak, hate crimes against the Asian Community has risen significantly (see my other post 'Happy Lunar Year' for statistics) and it seems as though these crimes are rising in sevenfold. What makes matters worse is that the perpetrators of these crimes are not being held accountable for their horrific, inexcusable actions. After the Atlanta Spa Bombings, Robert Aaron Long was charged with murder, but it is the words of the police captain that highlight the racial bias in which these hate crimes are treated if the perpetrator is white. The police captain, speaking at a police conference after the arrest, said:
"yesterday was a really bad day for him and this is what he did".
"A really bad day for him", well tell that to the families of the victims, the families that will now have an empty chair at their dining table, the families that never got to say goodbye to their loved ones. Tell them that he was having a bad day, that you are excusing murder. My heart goes out to these families. These murders of these individuals should be a wake up call. A call to arms, a call to stand with the asian community and fight back against the racism and discrimination surrounding us; fight back against the society contaminated by white supremacy.
The victims of these attacks were: Delaina Ashley Yaun, Xiaojie Tan, Daoyou Feng, Paul Andre Michels, Hyun Jung Grant, Soon Chung Park, Suncha Kim, Yong Ae Yue.
REMEMBER THEIR NAMES AND HELP STOP ASIAN HATE.
check out https://stopasianhate.carrd.co/ to find out what you can do to help.
Towards the end of March and through to April, #KillTheBill protests have erupted up and down the UK. The 'Bill' in question is The Police, Crime, Sentencing courts Bill.
This bill, if it is to be passed in parliament, has the ability to tamper with our rights to protest and our rights to freedom of speech. They propose to do this through allowing the police to place time limits on protests, to set noise limits and to even have the ability to convict one person if they are protesting and do not abide by the police's requests. it's a complete violation of our basic human rights and our freedom of speech and expression. Almost all of the change we see in society has come from protesting. Protesting is supposed to draw attention, it's supposed to be disruptive, it's supposed to be seen as a nuisance and inconvenience people. Without disruptive protesting the Jim Crow Laws would still be in place in the United States, Women would still not have the right to vote, Homosexuality would still be considered a crime. Societal progression is arguably fuelled by disruptive protest and I'd hate to think of the world without it.
Visit bit.ly/rejectthebill to find out how to prevent the bill from passing.