International

Women Fight A Greater Battle Than Most Think

With The Recent Death Of Sarah Everard, Protests Spark In London 

By: Kylie Hapuarachchi

KH Issue #12 Politics

Many come to mourn the loss of Sarah Everard in London. Credit: Axios

The story of Sarah Everard is a story that is eerily similar to many women that have gone missing or have been murdered. 

Everard was a 33-year-old woman walking home from a friend’s home. She was doing everything she was told to do; to wear bright clothes and to allow someone to know where you were.

Even with all she had done, she still did not make it safely home. On March 4th, her boyfriend had alerted the authorities to make a missing person case. 

Her body was recovered on March 12th, around the same time they had taken 48-year-old Wayne Couzens into custody. He was an officer for the London Metropolitan Police. A plea trial is set for July 9th with the trial that will begin in October. 

Women from all over are enraged and have created a place for themselves to speak out about their own experiences. Whether it was being catcalled, sexually assaulted, harassed, etc. Women have felt uncomfortable just living.

The death of Sarah Everard has even men thinking about their privileges. The ability to walk alone without feeling like they will be endangered.

There has been a spark in protests over the death of Everard in the UK. Women are angered over the fact that Everard had done everything right. She stayed in bright areas, wore bright clothes, and let someone know her location. 

The death of Everard led to the disdain of the London Metropolitan Police. When a group of women went to the vigil at Clapham Common, the park where Everard was last seen. They protested against the injustice that women have to face including Everard’s fate. 

Instead of calmly disbanding the protestors, the police met the protestors with brute force making them even angrier. They felt that their voices were not being heard. 

The protests are not only about Everard, but it is also allowing other women to speak up about their own personal experiences. While other women are sharing tips on how to survive being a woman.

Some tips include holding their keys between their knuckles and using their personal phones as an alarm.

Companies such as Apple, have designed techniques so that when a button is repeatedly pressed, it will emit a loud noise and alert one’s emergency contacts and emergency services. 

Other small businesses have sold pepper spray, and different tools that are meant to protect women. 

All these precautions are so that one does not have to worry about surviving. Not only murder is a factor, but rape and abuse are also factors that weigh on a woman’s mind. 

According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, nearly 1 in 5 women have been raped, through “—completed forced penetration, attempted forced penetration, or alcohol/drug-facilitated completed penetration”. 

1 in 16 of those women lose their virginity due to rape.

While this also does happen to men, and suffering is still the very same, it is more frequent to occur with women. 

There is an average that 1 in 71 men have been raped in their lifetime. The likelihood for a woman to be attacked versus a man is immense. There are also cases in the US, that includes murder or abuse, such as Shanann Watts, Laci Peterson, Alleah Taylor, and many more.

It is more than being an alliance to women, it is to have to understand what it means to be a woman. How every action and decision you make can help or harm you. 

The simple decision to take the elevator rather than the stairs is because there are cameras on an elevator. The decision a woman makes to walk home without headphones on so that they can be ready just in case. 

Women have been taught to be strong so that the world can not tear them apart. We need more men who will also support women and will make them feel safer in this dark and in this dangerous world. We need an alliance.

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