I arrived at Q Cafe as I do on nearly every work morning to begin a new day. I ordered my usual Americano, sat in the corner of the cafe, and began to read through a few of my regular blogs before my schedule really kicked in.
I read numerous articles and blogs on my RSS feed and then, came across this article entitled, "South Africa: Declare 'Corrective Rape' a Hate Crime", and ... was so heartbroken and angry.
"Corrective Rape" is a term used to describe when a male rapes a lesbian with the aim of 'turning' her heterosexual! This heinous crime is prolific in South Africa, especially in the "townships". No matter what one's beliefs and theology may be, these acts are heinous and barbaric.
After a while, I just felt overwhelmed and crushed.
My sense of hope overwhelmed and crushed.
It's not just because of this article but truth be told, sometimes, the world -- including my own personal depravity -- seems ... dare I say it ... unredeemable.
So ... utterly depraved and apparently unredeemable ... that I wonder to myself and now, out loud:
Does it really matter?
In the face of such evil and human cruelty, does getting signatures matters? In the face of nearly 900 million people not having access to clean water, does providing water to 9000 kids matter?
I know what I'm supposed to say:
"Yes, it matters ... "
But I just felt ... hopeless. Like hopeless in the sense that I just wanted to go fishing and not come back. And to be honest, I had a difficult time even praying and believing and sensing how God has, is, and will restore all things back unto Himself.
Yes, I believe. But there are days, when I wonder about the "why's" and "how's" and "where are you, God." And to be more blunt, "What the @$%*?"
I tried to pray. I read some Scripture. And I read several pages from a Martin Luther King, Jr. book that I'm currently reading again and read this quote (again):
"When our days become dreary with low hovering clouds of despair, and when our nights become darker than a thousand midnights, let us remember that there is a creative force in this universe, working to pull down the gigantic mountains of evil, a power that is able to make a way out of no way and transform dark yesterdays into bright tomorrows. Let us realize the arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice."
The painful truth is that the world is indeed utterly depraved. We are unredeemable on our own. We cannot save ourselves. We need a Savior and the good news is truly that while we were still living in rebellion, depravity, and sin, Jesus came to be our Savior.
Yes, Jesus came to be our Savior.
I believe in this good news. I live for this good news. But goodness, there are days, I just wonder and have my questions. I believe that God is still sovereign over the affairs of the universe and that of humanity. And I believe that even when I don't see or certainly feel it, I believe that God is at work to reconcile, redeem, and restore all things as God intended. I believe that "the arc of the moral universe bends towards justice ... "
God, I believe....but help me in my unbelief.
You ever feel this way?
Take a few minutes to watch this. It's very graphic and intense.
Most of the victims of corrective rape are tortured, grievously assaulted and sometimes murdered! They are also prone to getting HIV/AIDS from the assault, and many of them commit suicide as a result of the ordeal!
The South African government and justice system are failing the victims of corrective rape by letting the perpetrators out on ridiculously low bail, and taking literally years to bring the court-cases to a conclusion. In the meantime the victims have to live with seeing and being taunted and threatened by their rapists every day, as do those who help the victims!
In the last 10 years:
- 31 lesbian women have been murdered because of their sexuality
- More than 10 lesbians a week are raped or gang raped in Cape Town alone
- 150 women are raped every day in South Africa
- For every 25 men accused of rape in South Africa, 24 walk free
Despite all this, hate crimes on the basis of sexual orientation are not recognised by South African law!
We call on the South African government to declare "Corrective Rape" a Hate-Crime that is punishable by the harshest sentences!