By Brenton Smith

The issues confronting women in our society has propelled me to lend my voice on these matters. Women play a pivotal role in the of our social, political, religious, and economic landscape, especially in small developing states and as the world celebrated International Women’s’ Day on March 8, 2018, it is disheartening to see that our women are, seemingly, backed into a corner to be silenced. Today, our women, even those in St Vincent and the , are still living in fear, they are being raped, sexually exploited and are forced to trade their dignity in exchange for jobs. It appears that the honour that was once bestowed to our women is long gone and they are now seen as mere objects for pleasure.

Further, it appears that there are not enough strong groups to help protect our women or create an avenue where they are comfortable in reporting these ills. We must never forget our dear sister Rosa Parks who decided that enough is enough, took a stance and single-handedly created a change, our own sister Luzette King, a woman with tremendous strength, continues to champion the cause for women. Women should never allow those efforts to slumber. Professor Dr. Kristina Hinds, at the University of the West Indies Cave Hill Campus, Barbados recently demonstrated that women’s voices need to be heard. The she lead was small in numbers yet forceful and highlighted a greater call for all women to take a more active role in dealing with the issues that confront them and to send a strong message to men, especially those with political power, to rethink their approach when dealing with women within our Caribbean civilisation. She refused to remain quiet even when some thought she should have. Many young women should look to Dr. Hinds for guidance and seek to emulate her courage and strength like our own.

There are some who said they have fought in the past for people to be liberated yet are calling for her to be fired. These self-proclaimed liberators who silently oppress our women and girls should hang their heads in shame. Even our very own Prime Minister led a protest of students, on Oct. 16, 1968 at the University of the West Indies, Jamaica, fighting for what he deemed injustice and abuse of power by the Jamaican Government on Professor Walter Rodney. (The making of the Comrade 2010). This was welcomed and very much accepted by many and was never deemed “not the right place and time”.

One can only assume that perhaps the leaders of the student protest might have been motivated by the astonishing pandemonium of youth-led movements in , the United States Mexico, Prague and Paris. This shows that standing up for a cause is nothing new nor uncommon. Whereas the issues are different, the principle of fighting for what you believe in remains the same. The recent march to celebrate International Women’s’ Day in and the Grenadines, where approximately three dozen women showed up, demonstrates the fear, the weakness and the fragility of our women, compared to our neighbouring counterparts where hundreds marched, held concerts and showed their strength as women.

Women, I urge you to search deep within and find that strength and resilience. Stand up for what is right, even if you stand alone.

The views expressed herein are those of the writer and do not necessarily represent the opinions or editorial position of iWitness News. Opinion pieces can be submitted to news.iwitness@gmail.com.

The views expressed herein are those of the writer and do not necessarily represent the opinions or editorial position of iWitness News. Opinion pieces can be submitted to news.iwitness@gmail.com.

9 replies on “The issue of women in our society”

  1. Everything sounded great until you said only three dozen women showed up because of fear… Smfh

    Why not say maybe because lack of knowledge, pride, leadership, self empowerment, organization within the organizers????
    I can speculate why that statement was made but sometimes it’s good to lead by examples.

    1. C. ben-David says:

      The low turnout is because most of our women are doing just fine: strong, resilient, motivated, and empowered, even when they are dirt poor.

  2. Vincy Lawyer says:

    How about considering another view that some women see behind the facade of some of these leaders of groups and organisations who claim they are all about THE RIGHTS OF WOMEN.

    For one, I have been quite vocal that Ms. Beverly Richards of the Women’s Counsil should offer a public apology foe her clear bias in an interview after the court hearing of Ms. Yugge, where she clearly didn’t realise, void of political beliefs, this was a court matter between TWO WOMEN. Nope, instead we have someone who should know better, with the appearance of bias.

    All these activists need to step back, introspect and ask themselves if their personal beliefs and objectives are in line with the groups they are chosen to lead.

      1. Totally agree….. A great deal can’t separate the political bias when handling certain sensitive social matters.
        But generally speaking we understand the fact that women in a whole especially in the Caribbean need more support and empowerment along with education of the laws that ARE already in place but not taking advantage of to protect their rights.

    1. The proverbial wool was removed from the eyes of many for example the tactless remarks by Mrs. Nailah John-Prince which basically encouraged prostitution in my opinion. THERE WAS SIMPLY NO JUSTIFICATION FOR HER UTTERANCES. It highlighted, at least for me possible hidden agendas of many of these groups and organizations. I for one though flabbergasted was not surprised. I saw through LOVNSVG a long time ago.

      As a woman, I can think independently but I am sorry for the many women who look up to some of these so called woman advocate leaders. Ask the majority of their followers, why they believe in the group’s mandate and they will tell you no more than its because xyz said so.

      This is why I am of firm belief that those who know better should do better. Mr. Smith’s excuse for the poor turn out is POOR (pun intended). Thankfully, more women are become more self aware day by day and will not be easily led. I pray for a complete independent revolution for ALL WOMEN!

  3. Low turnout because this vincy not America , we believe in Moral standards not immoral standards , women was created as help for men not taking men’s positions, that’s how it always was and that’s how it will always be, anything besides this is immorality not what God want. That’s why there’s so many problems in relationships because morality is changing and when people embrace immorality and hates morality they only making things worse, you can never go on in life doing something wrong and having peace or being happy because the wages of sin is death. Morality is of God and immorality is of santan.

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