Since the emergence of social media, many have been using it as a vehicle for change, spotlighting issues that haven’t been given much attention in mainstream media.
An example of of this was the Black and White Challenge.
The challenge has seen many incarnations over the years. What originally started as a campaign for cancer awareness has morphed into something else.
But the origins of the new challenge presented a more complex issue many did not know about, namely femicide and gender-based violence.
The scourge of GBV has infiltrated South African society to such an extent that the government has taken it upon itself to help fight the rising numbers.
While delivering his Heritage Day message, President Cyril Ramaphosa stressed that South Africans could never regard themselves as free while the country’s women and children continued to live in fear from violence.
“So long as women are being harassed, abused, beaten, raped and murdered, we cannot say we are a civilised society. Abusing women is not our tradition, nor is it our custom. It is not, and will never be our heritage. Throughout the history of this continent, women have built and shaped our societies. They have ruled kingdoms. They have been highly respected and valued,” he said.
Unfortunately, GBV isn’t a South African issue. All around the globe, women are falling victim to the violence of intimate partners.
So when one TikTok user asked: “what would you do if there were no men on Earth for 24 hours,” the answers were overwhelmingly filled with messages of hope but also sadness.
Bored Panda even went as far as curating a list of the 18 most despairing responses.
One user commented: “I just want to walk at night without fearing for my life.”
Another said: “I want to wear the clothes I like without judgement or assault.”
See some of the responses below: