Feb 07 2006

Patriarchy: King Of All Archys In Botswana

Kaone Ramotihwa: murdered by asshole fiancé

“Passion killings” is what they’re calling it in Botswana when some fucktard whacks his fiancée for dumping him. Come on. They’re really just “jilted asshole killings.” There were 70 of them in Botswana in 2005.

The article alludes to urbanizing economic forces which have resulted in the implementation of the isolated nuclear family model as a replacement for the ag-based extended family. “People end up committing murders because there is no one to talk to.” See what I mean when I say the nuclear family breeds neurosis?

[thanks again, Laughingmuse]


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  1. meret

    Speaking of isolated…. have you heard about this going on in Japan – Maids… and Dolls

    By Naomi Tajitsu

    TOKYO (Reuters) – “Welcome home, Master,” says the maid as she bows deeply, hands clasped in front of a starched pinafore worn over a short pink dress.

    This maid serves not some aristocrat but a string of pop-culture-mad customers at a “Maid Cafe” in Tokyo’s Akihabara district, long known as a Mecca for electronics buffs but now also the centre of the capital’s “nerd culture”.

    “When they address you as ‘Master’, the feeling you get is like a high,” says Koji Abei, a 20-year-old student having coffee with a friend at the Royal Milk Cafe and Aromacare.

    “I’ve never felt that way before.”

    Maid cafes dot Akihabara, which has become a second home for Tokyo’s “otaku” — roughly translated as “geeks”. They’re known for their devotion to comics and computer games and can easily be identified by their standard outfit of track suit, knapsack and spectacles.

    In the cafes, girls dressed in frilly frocks inspired by comic-book heroines wait hand and foot on customers, mostly male, who might have once been obsessed with naughty schoolgirls and nurses.

    At one cafe, maids get down on their knees to stir the cream and sugar into the customer’s coffee….



    Japan’s burgeoning `otaku culture’ moves into the mainstream — almost

    YOKOHAMA — Masa puts his arm affectionately around Konoha’s sloping shoulders on the couch in his apartment and gently brushes her hair from her bright blue eyes. Iris stands behind them, decked out in a frilly dress.

    Masa speaks warmly to Kohona and Iris, greeting them brightly each morning and when he returns home from work, but they never speak back. That’s no surprise — Masa’s two companions are life-sized dolls.

    “She doesn’t have to talk, because I enjoy her as a doll, not as a substitute for a person,” Masa, a 32-year-old computer engineer who asked to be identified only by a shortening of his first name, said of Konoha, his favorite…


  2. Jay Woolsrake

    I have always recoiled at the term “passion killing” or “crime of passion.” It sounds so media driven and derivative of “bodice-ripper” fiction. The “passion” implied would seem to be that of love or jealousy or sexual attraction “gone mad” and that the killer is so out of his mind with these emotions that we should somehow let him off the hook. But I can’t imagine any of these emotions are involved when one is murdering. The same atrocious passions are at work here as they are in any other killings. It all breaks my heart.

  3. kcb

    The story of her murder is sad enough without the gut-punch at the end: “Kaone’s murderer is still walking the streets.” Why? They know who did it and they’ve had three years to go get him. Oh, wait, I know, why.

  4. debby

    UGH! So we can’t have “hate crime” legislation because it “legislates how people think,” and anyway we claim that a crime is a crime is a crime. BUT, when it’s a “passion killing,” we should feel bad for the poor jilted lovers who don’t know what to do with their grief?


    I blame the patriarchy.

  5. Sharoni

    I’m confused. I have the impression (and I am uneducated here, so it IS only an impression) that Africa is one of those places where women are still culturally widely perceived as being merely chattel? How could she have jilted him? I mean . . . the families had visited and all. I don’t often indulge in sarcasm, but this seems to me to be the only response. Some godbag, self-entitled, self-puffing, self-imposing dumbbell got his feelings hurt because a woman HE wanted didn’t want him? PUHLEEEEEZE! He needs to be put away where he can’t harm others or himself, not walking the streets! I fear, however, that it will take centuries to get through to the culture that is Africa. His mother raised him that way. She probably told him he deserved this woman.

  6. W. Lotus

    Articles like this one are why I am finally learning how to appreciate being unattached to a guy. Hence a recent entry in my blog:

    “I think I have had such a difficult time seeing and accepting reality, because the exception [a mutually rewarding, healthy relationship with a man] was always presented to me as the rule. I was never told the odds were so slim, that I would probably never meet a man who would treat me well, given the horrible way most men treat women all around the world. I was always presented a vision of the future that included marriage and children and being treated well by my husband, so long as *I* was ‘good enough’. Now I’m beginning to see that in light of the way most women are treated by men, I actually have an ideal life and am one of the lucky ones.”

    Thanks goodness for facing reality.

  7. Amelia

    I lived in Botswana in 2003 when these murders were first starting to explode onto the popular conciousness there. One happened in the dorm at the University of Botswana in Gaborone next to mine – one of the ugly patriarchal underbellies that was exposed in extensive campus-wide debate about the issue, was that these murders frequently happen in the context of a relationship where there are gifts of significant financial value have been given prior to the murder from the murderer to the victim. And many of my other-wise normal appearing male colleagues at the university felt that gifts without some sort of ‘payback’ (ie a long-term relationship) provided **justification** for these murders. Patriarchy kills.

  8. Twisty

    Holy cow. What a story, Amelia. It’s just sickening.

    I’m gonna have to turn off the blog for the day. I can’t think about this crap anymore.

  9. Donna

    Amelia, that’s horrific. And unfortunately, that mentality exists to a large extent everywhere. Here in the US surveys have indicated that people are less sympathetic toward rape victims when the perpetrator spent money on her on a date. Also, remember OJ? After the murder I recall male acquaintances making comments about how much support he paid her and how she shouldn’t have been banging that young waiter dude. Chris Rock cracked jokes about how OJ shouldn’t have done it but in light of what he was paying her: “I understand!”

    I guess in places like Botswana the idea that women are property is so codified that any gift to her or her family is literally a down payment.

  10. The Fat Lady Sings

    India, anyone? Women there are constantly been killed for financial reasons – it’s quite the cottage industry. They are called ‘Bride Killings’ – and it has reached epidemic proportions. Children as young as 10 are having their throats slit or being set on fire so their ‘fiancé’ can collect their bride price and move on to kill some other poor unfortunate. They are rarely if ever prosecuted. It is an international disgrace – but no matter how many human rights groups protest – the Indian and Pakastani governments ignore the problem. So now it’s in Africa. I’m not at all surprised.

  11. sunny in texas

    i’ve known about this crap for a long time. but i don’t know what i can do about it all.

    who do i support? i can’t go there and be of use myself, but i want to help end these things.

    hell, i can’t even guarantee that my own daughters will have a better life than i.

  12. BadBeliever

    From the article:

    “For some of those emotionally bruised by the killings like Gladys Ramotlhwa, religious faith remains the sole source of hope and strength as justice appears to have failed her.

    ‘It is better to focus on the Lord than on the loss, because forgiveness is the way to deal with the loss.’

    Kaone’s murderer is still walking the streets.”

    BadBeliever’s Comment:

    I’m just glad Gladys Ramotlhwa has a male saviour to help her focus… Maybe the Lord can help her deal with her loss of her prince who was supposed to save her from a lonely existence–but, because it was HE that was REALLY lonely, he killed her instead. The best thing to do is to forgive, let the Killer live, get it?

    I get it! It all makes sense now, thank the good despot.

  13. BadBeliever

    The hardest part about reading ALL of these comments is the mote discovered in all of our Anglo-Centric eyes! Blehck, there’s nothing uglier than “we’re number ONE!” — white don’t make right any more than a “developing” world don’t make a developed world. Femicide ain’t continent-specific, people! Pahhleez!

  14. Thebe

    Well, I’m on of those people concerned about the alarming rates of passion killings in Africa, especially in Botswana.

    I believe getting facts all mixed up won’t help towards combatting the situation; what we need to do is to delve deeper to the roots of passion killings. Yes, I agree that patriarchy plays a part in passion killings but let’s not forget that blaming wont help! Let us exhaust all the facts about passion killings, see the wrong turns which some victims & perpetrators of passion killings have taken & work on that.

    As a concerned citizen of Botswana, I gladly took passion killings as my topic of research through a research course I’m doing now; the research will go on till august & I hope I’ll share my findings with you.

  15. Twisty

    Thebe, I would be extremely interested in reading your research paper. I hope you will not have forgotten about us come August.

  16. littlem

    I’m with BadBeliever. What, you all don’t think this type of thing goes on (albeit less publicized) here in the good ol’ States? It’s one of the reasons there are manslaughter statutes in addition to those ones on murder. Ask Zuzu if you don’t believe me.

  17. Twisty

    You are so right, littlem. It’s funny how these things squeak past you when you live right next to’em your whole life.

  18. olido

    Patriachy is the cause of each and every problem which sets females as the victims.Patriarchy gives men control and dominance over women.You know,the way we are socialised, a man speaks and a woman obeys without question otherwise you will be labelled as beig disobedient.So when it comes to love affairs,because a man approached you and proposed he believes he should be the one who can say IT IS NOW OVER and you have to accept that but when it turns that a woman wants it to end,a man will become angry and feel that a woman is undermining his authority,therefore passion killing becomes the answer to prove his power.

  19. olido

    yeah.patriachy is the cause of all the sadness and sorrow in all faces of poor women.What is really special about men which makes them better than women.

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