“All limits are self imposed.”
The tale of Icarus and his father Daedalus is a well worn Greek tragedy in which a father, Daedulus, devices a way to escape his captivity in Crete (I am truncating this myth and but you can check it out here). They escaped when Daedalus fashioned wings for him and his son made of feathers and wax. Icarus in his hubris wanted to touch the face of Apollo (the Achaean sun god) and his wings came undone (wax melts) and he plummeted to his death.
Owaah is a Twitter handle whose operator I do not know nor have I ever bothered with his opinions outside the realm of their articles. From his use of pronouns, I will assume he is a man. One thing no one can accuse him of is being vacuous. He is an intelligent man with an amazing analytical mind. He has a way with words that makes the most mundane topics into rivetting reads rich with historical facts.
This week he decided to use his immense clout to discuss a touchy subject, sexual harassment and abuse.
This thread is specifically for ladies in the room, and sexual abuse in the workplace (hii Nairobi ni one big sexual harassment case).
First, you need to look your abuser in the eye and calmly tell him (or her) that you refuse him.
— M. (@Owaahh) October 15, 2018
This lit a fire under the tinderbox that is KOT. And trust that Kenyan feminazis from every corner of the internets emerged to register their displeasure at what he was saying.
It’s not incumbent upon a person to say no in the face of abuse what kind of nonsense is this? a calm ‘no’ is an appropriate response to a respectful inquiry. period
— Shaun Hensley (@ShaunHensleyCA) October 15, 2018
Some men, however, came out in support of Owaah so I guess it wasn’t all just one long
shit storm he had to endure:
Well… that escalated quickly. Owaah is now an abusive piece of shit hell-bent on inflicting violence on women with his tweets. Sigh! pic.twitter.com/IlRQA8uYov
— МОСКОУИЦ 🍂 (@iFortknox) October 15, 2018
That is the extent of my reportage. From here on out, I am going to share my personal opinion –everyone has a right to an opinion afterall: mine!
Men and women communicate in different ways and for different reasons; men to convey action, women for social cohesion. What women say is primarily for social cohesion, men communicate what they will do. This underlies a difference in thought patterns, namely that men look for solutions.
That is why while I do take exception to what Owaah said, I feel he had the best of intentions. Then again, the road to hell is paved with good intentions.
Don’t be defensive about this..you had no right as a man to tell women how we should react when we are harassed…I’m so irked by that thread… https://t.co/5ADSUXlR8r
— Vionna (@Kurlycheeks) October 15, 2018
That said, Owaah approached an issue everyone will agree is a problem the way any man would; by looking for a logical solution. While his solution falls short, it isn’t reason enough for the lynch mob to go after him.
First, he was using his platform to address a sensitive issue. One I haven’t seen many other men tackle. That was either very brave of him or very foolish. I tend to think it was foolish. This man is a male feminist and he learnt the hard way what my uncle has been telling me: feminists do not appreciate their “male allies”. Rather than bash him, think of how many would have been reached had the feminists sheathed their feels long enough to educate everyone tuned in to the conversation. Of logic and feels.
Now that we have dispensed with the feel-good platitudes, let me tell you why I think what Owaah did was foolish. Hubris.
He believes he was not wrong in attempting to give women advice on a narrative they know only too intimately and even when he was informed he was wrong, he still kept at it. As anarchist Mikhail Bakunin said,
In the matter of boots, I refer to the authority of the bootmaker.
And there is nothing wrong with being wrong, but one must learn to accept when they are wrong. Hubris only leads to destruction. And when talking to women about something involving the feminine narrative, one must remember that solutions aren’t always welcome. That is why a woman will want to simply talk about her problems to vent; solely for the sake of venting.
The next time you have to comment on such matters, it is safer to say, “It is a crime that should be punished to the fullest extent of the law”. Otherwise, you risk coming up short and being crucified for being a bleeding heart. Also, committing social media suicide is a bitch move.
Now lemme go through his immensely captivating catalog of articles on his blog.