Are Women Even Safe: Addressing Sexual Harassment In Kenya

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A few days ago during a work retreat I was hanging out with some of my male colleagues. There was this particular guy who kept throwing his arm around my shoulder every few minutes. At first it felt friendly and innocent but as the evening progressed into night, the arm hold intensified and it all started feeling a bit too weird and uncomfortable. Eventually I had to call out on his behavior but then I was accused of being too uptight. Big surprise!What’s the problem with Kenyan men, especially those who think they are hot? They behave like they are some kind of gift from heaven and expect women to fall in line waiting kiss their feet.

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These are the same people who believe they can get away with anything. After all, aren’t they too hot to get any woman they want, how come then should you mere mortal accuse them of sexual harassment? Shouldn’t you be jubilating when they “accidentally” give you a boob graze or grab your unmentionables? Shame! Mine is not an isolated case. Many women out there are suffering under the hands of men they are conversant with. It could be that coworker who keeps complimenting one’s taut buns, it could be that male neighbor who helps out with the electric issue then refuses to leave the house, heck it could even be that distant cousin who for some reason sniffs your hair every time you are gathered home for Christmas. Men need to understand that these behaviors are unacceptable. If you decide to give a female colleague a lift home then try to respect her boundaries. That is not an opportunity for you to use the gear stick way too much till the poor girl gets home with a sore right thigh. And don’t invite yourself in when you are not wanted; just walk away with tail politely tucked between your legs and hope for better luck next time. By all means don’t behave like a horny pervert. I just don’t understand those men who feel the need to complement a part of the body that has two or more layers of clothing masking it. You would think that alone provided clue enough that it’s a lane they should not tread. You don’t see women moving around telling you guys “hey Ben, nice erection”, do you? How hard can being civil be to men?

Now I think the problem is that most women fail to extinguish these problems as soon as they start because they are scared of being too rude. And in return these men just don’t know when to stop. You give them an inch they’ll take a mile. If you fail to protest the hand circled around your waist, next moment it crawls down to the butt. You want to give them a friendly hug but there he is squeezing the black out of your areolas. It feels like guys nowadays learn their manners from the back of a condom box. And this is what ails the young male generation. They are sick. And no I don’t mean physically or psychologically, I think I should call it socially sick. We tend to overlook some of these minor behaviors which then eventually see these guys bloom into fully fledged sexual pests. They get away with so much and have no respect for personal space. These behaviors are just wrong and unacceptable; they need to be pruned and wiped out forever. Any guy who goes where they are not wanted and does unwarranted doesn’t deserve to be called a man.

29 April 2020

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