I have written this a hundred times in my head and a dozen times on paper but I haven’t shared it because I am bad at writing and was worried that I only care because my privilege has sheltered me from other, more pressing, issues at UCT.
But the sexism, rape culture, heteronormativity and patriarchy present in the UCT residences is absolutely awful and something needs to be done. So, SRC candidates, UCT: Rhodes Must Fall Student Housing- this is what is happening.
Kopano’s “official” song explicitly suggests raping a women till she is dead and then continuing till she is rotten.
Sub-wardens come into my room in Tugwell at 2am to check for empty alcohol bottles but Marquad has a pub and nearly all of the male residences have a drinking themed event. (Update: the names of the pubs are the Puss n Pint. Verge-in and Cock pit)
My mentees are too scared to walk to their own front door when Marquad gets drunk and antagonistic in the area between the residences.
Girls in female residences are told that they can’t have overnight guests or else people will think the residence is full of sluts. While heterosexual relations are aggressively encouraged in male residences, in female residences can only have female overnight guests and only if we apply 48 hours in advance.
At interrogations, women voicing concerns over misogyny in residences get their microphone turned off.
People in male residences often make jokes about having single beds so they can’t sleep with fat chicks.
And this just scrapes the surface of the institutionalised sexism in our residence system.
Let’s be better than this? “Boys will be boys” is not an excuse.
- A facebook status by Emma Gates Pottinger (9/09/2015)