Clear your conscience, do the right thing

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I am beginning to think that the causes of rape, sodomy and all the evils that lie on the same axis are just about as elusive as Osama Bin Laden and his original gang.

It may not be the best comparative there is, but what could I equate to the emotional and physical destruction of the lives of hundreds of thousands of people across the globe. Neither phenomenon is alien to the farthest corners of this massive habitat we call earth and it is making me sick.

From the time I was old enough to understand sentences in English, there was always a tragic story on TV, radio, in newspapers or being whispered into someone’s ear. Almost on a daily basis. They have never stopped.

In the same way, there have been tales of suicide bombings, mass destruction of ‘infidels’ and secret societies whose specific objective is to weave intricate ways of killing as many people as possible, to drive a point home. Nothing makes sense.

In the past week, every time this white haired man who among other things secluded and molested his own daughter for 24 years came on TV, I would get a bad taste in my mouth.

And as I felt some sort of gratification in the life sentence handed to the Austrian monster Josef Fritzl, I wondered how old his daughter was when he began meticulously planning the ‘House of Horror’. He designed it, obtained authorisation from government inspectors, worked out how to fool his wife and tenants, arranged for the ‘detainees’ to get food, water, some toys and then eventually put up this cellar. The bathroom and shower was a sure sign that it was not designed to furnish a one-off impulse.

I wonder what brought it on. Did Elisabeth (Fritzl’s daughter) have a cute toothless smile lined with dimples? Did she look at her father with big trusting eyes and smile widely whenever he was in the room? Had he been waiting for her to become 18 to begin the abuses, maybe to clear his conscience?

People have called him all sorts of names but no one can say with utmost certainty that he did A and B because of C and D. Some psychiatrists branded him mentally uneven because they could not fathom what this was about. Others claim he had full knowledge of what he was doing, and did it.

This horrendous story is no different in ghastliness from a recent case in Kenya, where a man raped a four-year-girl, (she died soon after) and then buried her to hide his crime. Thankfully, neighbours ratted him out and he was caught. I am waiting to hear what jail term he will be given.

I don’t know any Kenyan who hasn’t heard a case of a child – boy and girl – being molested by the house-help or the neighbour’s teenage child, or the man of the house. Often, those accused deny their guilt and go scot free, but its time that stopped don’t you think?

All Kenyans need to get up and fight this. Don’t ignore it when you hear of something tragic just because this child is not related to you. Report the matter to the police. We need to expose this trend to discourage it. Every adult Kenyan needs to bear the burden of raising a normal happy child and break the cycle of silence and guilt and repeat offences.
Clear your conscience, clear your guilt, do the right thing. It does not matter if you are a witness, a neighbour, a policeman, or a judge.

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