WHEN I think of the word ‘corrective’, I think of surgery, action; what people do to make something better- to correct it. So I think you’ll share my shock when I was sent an online news story by a friend on the topic of correctional rape. Yes, you read correctly.
So let me get this straight. Rape, as in the inexcusable and despicable sexual crime against men and women, can be known as a correctional action? Brilliant.
The story in particular that I read was in The Independent, and headlined “Crisis in South Africa: The shocking practice of ‘corrective rape’ – aimed at ‘curing’ lesbians.” CURING lesbians? I must be missing something because I’m not sure being gay is a problem, let alone one with a criminal cure.
But we all know that homosexuality isn’t accepted worldwide, especially in less developed, and I suppose Western countries. First used in the early 2000s, ‘correctional rape’ was first recognised in South Africa by charity workers, recognising the increase in such crimes.
The story is based around the shots taken by photographer Clare Carter, who spent time in South Africa meeting victims of this crime and gaining their trust; learning their stories. With severity only increasing, the current global recognition clearly isn’t enough. The shocking stories in the article need to be read, I don’t feel I can even repeat them to do them justice.
Not only does this incorporate the increase of homophobia, but the violence and hate in response to homosexuality. Everyone has their own opinion. Right, so mine is that you’re pretty incapable of accepting if you think this correctional rape is the answer. In fact, what is it the answer to exactly? Homosexuality? Newsflash- it isn’t a problem that needs to be solved. It’s how people are. Just like some are black, some are white. You don’t choose those sorts of things. They happen.
Please have a read of these stories, if not just to educate yourself a bit. There may not be anything you can do about it right now, but these shocking stories deserve attention and global recognition. More than they currently have.