Violence Against Women in Developing Countries There are many issues that penetrate the news daily about third world countries but, one topic that is swept under the rug is violence against women. There are many different forms of violence against women in third world countries. Some of the forms are childhood marriages; rape, domestic violence, human trafficking, incest and even female circumcision are everyday occurrences in some of those countries. Discussing these issues is almost forbidden. Women are not able to freely go to the police and tell them of any of these things.
It is baffling to me that just mentioning any of these topics to the police could make their own family disown them (which is one of the reasons why it is kept silent). It has been said that some females are subjected to violence before they are born. They even choose to abort their unborn daughters, hoping for sons instead. Some girls are even made to undergo horrible and almost inhumane traditional practices as circumcision, which leave them injured and traumatized. In other instances, they are forced to marry at an early age, before they are physically, mentally or emotionally mature. Rape Against Women
In the United States along with other countries rape is a very serious crime. It takes innocence from children and confidence from adults. Even though rape is a crime that both women and men are subjected to, 91% of the victims are women. The statistics are that rapes are convicted by: •Someone with whom the respondent was in love: 46% •Someone that the respondent knew well: 22% •Acquaintance: 19% •Spouse: 9% •Stranger: 4% These same statistics read true for most third world countries. Being taken advantage of by someone that you love (or was once in love with) can really make a person feel betrayed.
That betrayal could lead to a women feeling like they could never love or trust again. The same would be true if the assailant where your spouse. The different types of rape are a very sad fact but it truly exists. There are some areas where women and even young girls find themselves in refugee camps where they are very vulnerable to rape and physical abuse. In these types of situations the inmates’ are abused sexually by guards, other male refuges and even military soldiers. In most of these situations the younger girls began to feel worthless and unimportant then will most times turn to prostitution to live and support their family.
Human Trafficking Trafficking is another form of abuse that many countries tend to keep silent. Trafficking is definitely modern day slavery. In most cases traffickers kidnap or lure young women (or girls) by offering them a job or money and then in turn use them for sexual acts, mail-order brides, or sometimes even servants. Statistics read that over one billion women and young girls are trafficked yearly around the world. In some cases even visitors of some of these countries such as American and European women are taken and sold to traffickers. Domestic Violence
Domestic violence is another crime committed to women that would go completely without punishment especially in third world areas of the world. I read an article recently where a woman from a third world country took the blame for her spouse’s abuse. Her statement made the hairs on my neck stand up but, I understood. Not the violence but, the fact that her thought process is different and in the country where she was raised that is what she was taught. It is still very sickening in my eyes but, if I was raised to think that way it would be the only thing I knew.
Nevertheless, domestic violence is a major issue in most developing worlds and I have seen that some organizations (even here in the US) are striving everyday to change this kind of violence. One organization the Commission on Human Rights came up with resolution 1994/45 of 4 March 1994, in which it decided to appoint the Special Rapporteur on violence against women, including its reasons and consequences. The Special Rapporteur has the authorization to collect and analyze data and to recommend measures aimed at eradicating domestic violence at the international, and even the national and regional levels.
Female Genitalia Mutilation There is one kind of domestic violence that seems to (as most) brutal and inhumane that would be female circumcision. In some countries especially in some parts of Africa and Asia this is considered a ritual. It is defined as a procedure that involves partial or total removal of the external female genitalia, or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons. This unorthodox ritual is done to women for different reasons in different areas of Asia and Africa. There are 4 different types of female genital mutilation and they all consist of a form of abuse.
Some believe it is a way to keep young women purified until marriage or even eliminate their sexual desire. These countries tend to feel as if they are protecting their young women by performing these brutal acts to them most before they are even able to walk. They do not realize the harm it can cost some of these women later on down the line in their life. On a very positive note most countries have considered this act heinous and illegal. There are groups and organizations that fight everyday to keep female genitalia mutilation illegal. Family Incest One of the last forms of violence against women that I made mention of was incest.
This in my opinion is the worst type of abuse against women to date. Incest is very prominent not only against women of the third world countries but, in just about every country in the world. Incest is considered a sexual act with a family member. It comes in many different ways it could be a parent, sibling, uncle, or even a cousin. Even though some forms of incest could be consensual it does not make it legal or moral. Most first world countries and most religions frown on this type of act. Incest is prohibited in Christianity, Hindi, Catholics, and the Islamic faiths.
The problem with the incest in most developing worlds is that it is way too common and the laws should be enforced in these countries to eliminate violence towards young girls and women. In conclusion, because most third world countries have different cultures than the Americans I think we tend to judge them differently. However, violence is something that should never be a silent situation. There are too many women that are killed or physically abused due to violence. Just because a countries values, morals, religious beliefs, or culture is different does not mean that a women should fall victim to abuse.
Even though the types of abuse seem to differ in certain situations does not mean that it should be ignored. Women groups and organizations work daily to change the abuse and disrespect to women in these developing countries and the law makers should as well. The worst part of being an abused woman is if a she has to keep the abuse to their self and not even tell family members or even the authorities without being criticized or frowned upon. I feel that violence is not acceptable in any situation and violators should be prosecuted to the fullest of the law.