And so it was ever thus...
...flashback to the 70s, 80s, 90s, naughties and so on, a time which saw women silenced, muted, wronged and damned to a fate that regularly, haphazardly, unapologetically overlooked a casual grope, squeeze, rub or rape. So it was ever thus, a society which shamefully allowed men to nod, grunt, groan and overlook the actions of their fellow gender. News relaying a list of violent, sexual, predatory attacks. Daily abuses carried out towards some unlucky woman who was in the wrong place at the wrong time, five past the hour of terror, wearing head to toe in 'she had it coming.'
Billions of women, girls and children - BOYS, have witnessed their sister, mother, aunt, granny suffer at the hands of a male culture. Struck with abject fear whilst walking home, we sigh gratefully for making it through the front door, unharmed.
I too, was a statistic in the system left robbed, mugged, pushed on clapham common, followed off buses, chased into the road, touched up and perved on. The stark reality is that most of us have this same story to tell.
So let's make this short and sweet, if you are a man, a man in power, a man with a voice, then this is your chance to change the rhetoric, the culture, the status quo that continues to deflect rather than protect. For your sons, mothers, sisters and daughters, there is no time left to avert your gaze, from the actions of Wayne Couzens as just another weirdo that slipped through the system.
Take to the streets in Sarah's name, call out every thought, action, causal joke and sideways glance that does not serve to protect us. In our name, you owe us. You owe your sons a different perspective. Don't you dare deflect. Get up and protect our streets, our rights, our differences. Get up and don't sit down until justice is served for Sarah. Sarah could have been any one of us. Flash-forward to 2021... And so it was ever thus, that our world changed for good, forever, without end. Thanks to the selfless determination of men everywhere to change the system, culture and times, for good, forever. A movement that finally and forever kept women and children safe, free and unharmed. And so it was ever thus that a movement was sparked to end the abhorrent, ruthless, useless violence of men and in its place created loving, respectful equality on our streets. And so it was ever thus, that Sarah made it home safely, night after night after night. Up you get.
By Deborah Thomas