This is the land of "corrective rape". Despite South Africa having one of the most enlightened constitutions in the world, traditional views about sexuality still run deep. In many quarters, especially male ones, lesbians are resented, perhaps even feared. And to some young men the remedy is simple: rape.With a 4% conviction rate and a trial that is likely another assault, I guess I can understand why so few get reported. (Or, are the cops really your friends? Maybe not.)
Each year, ActionAid estimates, 500,000 women are raped in South Africa, with lesbians a particular target. The warped logic is that the assault will "cure" them. As a result, says ActionAid, 86 per cent of black lesbians live in fear of rape. Their anxiety is understandable: only a minority of rapes are reported to the police and, of these, only one in five ends up in court, with a meagre 4 per cent of them ending in a conviction.
And of course rape sometimes spills over into murder. People kill the objects of their hate with all too much regularity.