#Desired men

In life, it always does well to salute people who challenge the status quo. People whose very stances are a a threat to the livelihood of patriarchy. I have met and interacted with some of these men but I have also heard of all of them. I salute each and every one of them. They have stood up against violence against women and children and have challenged their fellow men to do the same. It is with great hope that I move forward, the tears will come, the frustrations will rise but i am more confident that they are but for a generation. There is hope that the #Desired Men are in society. All across the world, hats off to you….for the influence you wield, an influence that you are using positively to change this world. I shall share some quotes that come from these men that have served to give me hope in my heart

 

“I was not raised to be a whole man. We teach boys not be women. Sports is at the center of that. I embody and benefit from that towards other men. My masculinity defined as an athlete, was just a very very small piece of me. I teach men about the wholeness of masculinity: it is being caring, passive, supporting, vulnerable, etc. What I do is human. Its about my wholeness as a person.”

Violence against women will not end until men take a proactive role. Calling it a ‘women’s’ issue allows men to ignore it. The reality is, it’s our issue. I promise to work to show how sexism and violence hurt all of us — and to inspire men to step up and make change.    Don McPherson, former NFL quarterback

 

“I don’t tolerate in music even the insinuation of violence against women. In my position.”  Michael Bolton, multi-Grammy winning singer/songwriter (I wonder how that Sean Timba/ Bata munhu guy will think of this one…he better think real hard)
 
 
“Violence committed against 50% of the population affects 100% of the population.  Dean Peacock, Co-Director, Sonke Gender Justice South Africa
 
 
 “Part of male privilege is that, as men, we expect people to listen to what we have to say, and that’s no surprise—we’re socialized to take men’s voices seriously, to hear authority in them. And as much of a problem as that is, I can’t help but consider a few possibilities. An obvious start is for fathers to talk to their sons about consent, but there’s more.” Trevor Davies African, Fathers’ Initiative (This is one man who has rang the bell loud and clear and long, that men need to be an integral part of the revolution. I respect his tenacity. He runs AFI out of his own pocket!! Totally awed by what a humble giant the is.)

 

They say you have been given love portion, Mupfuhwira, Stay Soft, zwana mina, Sissy, Wussy, ukudliswa, …. But Still We rebel against Partriachy…. Leo Wamwanduka, self defined feminist/ pro-feminist (I am real proud of the work this man does, he is tireless and is so committed to stand against patriarchy.)

 

l am shamed to be a man,, when – cases like this are happening (reference to the case where four men were sentenced to community service for taking turns to rape a 13 year old girl in Zimbabwe’s Mvuma)…

“Engaging men in care brings them face to face with the realities of HIV and Aids and the need for change.”

“Interventions should challenge the attitudes, values and behaviours’ of men that compromise their own health and safety as well as the health and safety of women and children and having men actively involved in HIV and Aids related programmes.” Kelvin Hazangwi, he has worked extensively with Padare/Enkundleni/ Men’s Forum. (He is one man whose commitment to the eradication of all forms of violence I am in awe of. He not only talks the talk but he walks the walk.)

 

“I am already seeing a worrying trend; that ‘women’s movement’ should be composed of women. We might disagree on a few small issues regarding methodology, but there are a lot of us men who are part of the women’s movement, in our individual capacities and as part of institutions. Anyone who believes in the fair treatment of women is part of the women’s movement.”  Mgcini Nyoni, Poet, Playwright, Theatre Director, Thinker, Blogger, A ruffler of political feathers This is one brother with whom I do not always agree but he has shown that he is committed to the women’s movement’s cause. He speak his mind unapologetically and often questions what ought not to be questioned LOL

 

“I learnt one other thing in their discussion, it’s easier for me to explain gender justice if I start by mapping other forms of injustice that are commonly shared by both men and women. I have discovered in my discussion with men that we agree all the way on land misappropriation and alienation, slavery,colocialism,racism, tribalism, minority rule, nepotism, home-boyism and other ‘-isms’ and that we need to challenge such systems. But we seem to disagree when it comes to the oppression of women. I have realised that when we talk of gender justice we need not separate it from other forms of injustices and that when we achieve independence it has to be for all including women and girls. Separating it would be risky as it might end up being marginalised. Its easier to locate the struggle for gender justice as a vital component of the struggle for justice in general.”

” [I]f you don’t do something to help other men to end violence against women you are, technically speaking, an accomplice.” Nixon Nembaware,

 

I will admit that there are a lot of men who are doing good out there but these ones have touched something in my heart and it has resonated enough to get me to write a salutation. 

To all the men who value women, to all the men who have chosen and committed to ringing the bell/ sounding the alarm, to all the men who have are engaging themselves and their fellow men, to the men who believe in teaching a boy to respect women, who believe that it is never too late to unlearn violence against women and children…to the mighty men who chose the better way…

 

I salute you and thank you. May God bless each one of you.

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