With domestic violence rife in South Africa, what should men do when they witness a domestic violence incidence?
Should they apprehend the perpetrator and get them to stop or should they just continue living their lives as if nothing has happened?
Sello, a caller on the Eusebius McKaiser Show says he witnessed a guy slapping his woman outside a club over the weekend.
First and foremost I want to apologise to women as over the weekend I witnessed domestic violence at some club while outside the club.— Sello, caller
I was standing with a friend outside and as we were conversing, we heard a klap. The incident was behind my back and the guy who was talking to me could see exactly what had just happened.— Sello, caller
I looked and saw that he was strangling her and at that moment I froze. It is only when the guy hit her again that I told this guy to stop. Because if we sit here and do not do anything, it means we have sold out to the women struggle.— Sello, caller
I reacted and apprehended the guy. Immediately afterwards, he managed to escape with the lady following him a few moments later.— Sello, caller
Sello says he has been contemplating why he didn't react as quickly as he should have.
What was I supposed to do, was I supposed to apprehend the guy, put him in my car and driving to the police station? I then concluded in my mind that domestic violence has been so normalised and people just walk past and say they don't want to get involved.— Sello, caller
But I felt like I failed women and can we get educated as men on what do you do when you encounter domestic violence in a public space?— Sello, caller
Eusebius says it is important that Sello manned up, however, he thinks that he did fail women.
I think you failed women, I think you failed yourself, I think you failed humanity and I think you are not an outlier. I am you, you are me and we all behave in exactly that kind of manner where we turn a blind eye and we need to call ourselves out and be courageous enough about our own failings when we fall short of standards of decency and we need to call our friends out.— Eusebius McKaiser, presenter
He then asked Sello what he intended doing now.
Sello replied that he needs to get over the notion that an incident like that "is none of your business".
You need to engage and it does not matter who is wrong and who is the cause of the altercation, you need to defend the lady that is being assaulted.— Sello, caller
However, what I am struggling with is, what do I do after apprehending him? Do I beat him up and say pick on someone your own size, or do I put him in the boot of my car and drive him to the police station?— Sello, caller
Eusebius says Sello's predicament reminded him of a Tracy Chapman song.
Which is about the strife in the world called why is a woman still not safe when she is in her home? Your incident was a public incident, but it is true in all spaces.— Eusebius McKaiser, presenter
Women are not safe at work, you are not safe at home, you are not safe at a club inside or outside the club. I have to concur with you on calling the police.— Eusebius McKaiser, presenter
But it's double-edged as you don't want to be involved in an orgy of misogynistic violence yourself by performing the hyper-masculinity that you are trying to stop by beating the guy up.— Eusebius McKaiser, presenter
I am not sure whether violence as a response to violence is a way to reduce overall tendencies towards violence in our society and at the same time our police service is often a police force instead of a service, you don't know what quality service you will get if you pick up the phone.— Eusebius McKaiser, presenter
Listen below to the full exchange on domestic violence: