Who cries for the three-year old rape victim?

A three year old girl died this week after being brutally gang-raped by rebel fighters in the DR Congo. Somehow, the last 7 words in that sentence seem to make the rest disappear. A three-year old rape victim dying in North America would be the cover of every news story in the country. A massive campaign would be launched to prevent it from happening in the future and a thorough investigation into how it happened in the first place would be ordered. The public would have no less. They would take every effort to ensure this type of crime never occurred again.

Why is it any different when it happens in the Congo? Why do we suddenly feel it is ok to ignore this problem? Is it because it is happening in a place that is already so violent? Does that somehow make it ok? The child would have probably faced violence her entire life anyway, right?

Is it because we feel disconnected from the violence there? This is interesting, since, as electronics loving Canadians, we are probably more connected to this crime than we might think. We could do something about it. We could protest. We could stop buying things that could help contribute to the crimes (and that list includes most of the electronics and metal products that we use every single day). We could write our government. But most of us never will. We won’t do this because it isn’t easy. Because it would involve some sort of sacrifice on our part.

Ask yourself this: If this rape victim were in North America, and the crime was partially committed by some company whose product you used every day– would you stop using it? Would you write the company a letter to express your outrage? Or would you sit there and do nothing? Why does this victim deserve any less?

Lately, violence in this region seems to be on the rise again. And we are still oblivious. Human rights campaigners and journalists trying to get the truth out are being silenced. Rape is again on the rise. The metal industries (and many many others) are making profit from these crimes. They are supplying massively violent warlords with weapons and money, and sometimes even logistical supplies to commit massacres. When will we stand up against them and say, no more?


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4 comments

  1. Good morning,
    I am a mother of 3 daugters aged 7 months,5yrs,8yrs curently visiting my husband who are working on ruashi mining,we stay in a geusthouse in lubumbashi,coming from south africa.
    We have been told not to exit the premises to explore the unknown citi of africa,due to the fact that we are in real danger of being kidnaped and raped!!we have to stay indoors while my husband is at work wich is almost all the time,so it makes us prisoners!i think the crime rate is rediculously high especially against woman and children here,my heart aches for that little girl the horror and pain she had to go through the last seconds of her short life,something must be done it be a bigger sin not to do anything about her pain an injustice!its time to stand up and say no more,to punish the criminals no matter what there job title or rank or bank balance!!!i pray that she rest in peace,and for the rebel to live in absulute hell both here on earth and beyond.if there is anything i con do….

  2. The crimes being committed are terrible, and it really must stop. I wish you and your family safety for the rest of your time in the Congo. Please keep us updated as to the situation. We would love to hear anything you can share with us your experience there.

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