The Value of Vigil(ance) in Ending Sexual Violence
What do we here in the U.S. take away from the brutal gang-rape and death of Jyoti Singh Pandey?
Across our world, miles away from the original site of violence in Delhi, India, a wave of protests and vigils have honored Jyoti and demanded an end to sexual violence. Leading the wave, thousands of protesters in Delhi have faced tear gas, water cannons and otherpolice force in order to say India needs stronger laws against sexual assault while fostering a society that does not condone gender violence -- so that it is no longer themost dangerous place to be born a girl child.
In the United States too, with our own sobering rate of sexual assaults faced by one in six women and one in 33 men, a number of vigils for Jyoti have marked local calls for community response to sexual violence.
At a recent vigil last Tuesday evening, where I contributed a poem, hundreds of community members gathered in Union Square, New York City to honor Jyoti and offer support to stop sexual violence around the world and here at home.
Then again, in an article speaking to the spread of U.S. vigils honoring Jyoti, commenter Douting Mind, asserts, "What a waste of time." Indeed, you can't bring a body back, erase suffering, wish away experience. Laws are slow to change. Society, sometimes even slower.
Thank you, Purvi, for writing this beautiful and necessary piece.
Read the rest of her post here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/purvi-shah/sexual-violence_b_2528787.html