Local model Reyn Du Preez was blasted on social media this past week after video footage surfaced showing the model groping and making unwanted sexual advances towards Sarah-Belgarion van Niekerk, a waitress whom had been serving him and a group friends.
After the video had surfaced hundreds of angry women took to social media to call out Reyn and his actions. He has since been fired by his modelling agencies and took to Instagram to apologize for his actions, blaming it on his alcohol consumption and bad judgement.
Too often we make excuses not only for ourselves but the men in our lives and their behavior. Given the current GBV and rape crisis we are currently facing here in South Africa, you would expect men to be on their best behavior but this doesn’t seem to be the case. As a man who has been surrounded by women most of my life as well as growing up in a martiarchal household I’ve heard all the stories of sexual abuse, cat-calling etc from my mother and my sisters and I have to say that all the men in South Africa are currently failing our female counterparts. We are failing our mothers, our sisters, our friends and our relatives. For too long we have made excuses for a family member or friends behavior and often overlook some of our own transgressions but there is no excuse for this.
It is estimated that over 40% of South African women will be raped in their lifetime and that only 1 in 9 rapes are reported. It is also estimated that 14% of perpetrators of rape are convicted in South Africa.
That is a scary statistic we are facing here in South Africa and we seriously need to bring about change. It is not up to the women to effect this change alone but it is up to us men to take it upon ourselves to not only educate ourselves but to unlearn all the toxic behavior and toxic mindset that have been instilled in us since our youth. We need to rally together and show the women in South Africa that we will not stand for this. My question is when will the men in South Africa decide to march to Parliament, when will the men in South Africa stand in solidarity with women and when will men in South Africa finally open their eyes to the problem we alone are causing?
The Fair Digest extends a heartfelt apology to not only Sarah but all the other victims of sexual assault in South Africa. Our thoughts are with you all.