What’s the measurement of who deserves a slap? If there was one, I could have already slapped a lot of people, from makangas along my route unnecessarily overcharging matatu fare and other motorists hooting pointlessly at me. I guess there are lots of people who deserve to be slapped, but we don’t just go slapping them, at least just to respect the rule of law. That brings me to the thunderous Governor Kidero Slap, which landed on Women’s Rep Rachel Shebesh last Friday, after an altercation regarding City Council’s ‘ghost’ workers.
The slap has been widely rebuked while celebrated all the same, with most parties agreeing that it’s outright wrong for a man to hit a woman, then comes 1,000 BUTs. I will respond step by step to all the excuses and reasons why most people are trying to justify Shebesh being slapped:
- Trying to rubbish the call (especially by women) for Kidero to step down because of events from the recent past, like Sonko hurling insults at Caroline Mutoko and the Subukia MP beating a woman cop didn’t get as much an uproar is wrong, because:
- Two wrongs don’t make a right.
- The uproar of hearing a man verbally insult a woman and that of a man slapping a woman is obviously different to large extents. What you see has more power over what you hear. And that’s why the defense that she hit Kidero below the belt shouldn’t be as sensational as it’s suddenly become. We all know that’s a highly probably lie, because if she did—he wouldn’t have first feigned forgetfulness, like he did and the law of reflex action says that he wouldn’t have reacted the way he did by slapping her, he might have had to bend over first.
- It’s suddenly a big deal because Kidero is a big deal. He is the Governor of Nairobi, that’s not just a lay man or any other politician so am sorry— this is a high-profile case and will be dealt with like one.
- Trying to justify how Shebesh had it coming because of her attitude is the shit that will have men hitting women in the society.
- No matter how bad an attitude a man or a woman carries, they don’t deserve to be hit. Kidero’s defense will most probably be self-defense (that’s laughable btw), used together with Shebesh’s past “Slap Demeanour’ (how many people are alleged to have slapped her again?) to further prove her aggressive personality and reason why he might have slapped her.
What Kidero did was wrong and should not be taken lightly for whatever case. For all the people calling Shebesh a busy body to have been drumming her support for the City Council workers and not have done the same for say, the teachers during their recent strike—I have only one question for you, why are you desperately trying to cover for Kidero? She’s the Women’s Rep and can drum support for whatever she deems important, when she wishes. I don’t deny that the way that she has handled herself in the past is questionable, but so have many other politicians. Big Deal.
For this to go down well for Kidero, he must settle the matter with Shebesh aside from whatever court verdict; it’s clear that the nation is divided otherwise because:
- We are living in a man’s society.
It’s okay for a man to slap a woman, especially if she’s been slapped before or comes screaming in your office. This is the behavior of any unruly person, and quite frankly, the usual on goings at City Council. Anyhoo, such a person should be escorted out by security or have the door slammed at them— NOT SLAPPED, and especially by a ‘respectable’ Dr. Kidero. Would we all react the same if she was hit by Kidero’s security OR if she was the Governor and was hit by a man?
- We don’t like her—yes, but that’s Gross Misconduct
Even I don’t like Shebesh but she is the Women’s Rep. And we must remember that we are living in a civil society, where we don’t go slapping/beating people we don’t like or disagree with, especially in work places. That will guarantee you a 99.99% chance of getting fired. Kindly note that this will also be politicized, don’t forget that Kidero is from CORD and they (Jubilee) might want to ensure he vacates that seat for one of their own.
If we (Kenyan society) keep making excuses for Kidero, even using past examples of how other cases were handled and subsequently forget about this, that doesn’t show how smart we are but how prone to impunity and mediocrity we’ve become. Any past mistakes, lawful or not, should never be repeated OR seem fit to be used as a case study.
If we don’t take the above into account, we are shouting—Slap unruly women! What are we telling our children? That there are some instances when a girl/woman can be slapped? No. That’s not right and never will be.