Sun | Jan 21, 2018

Letter of the Day | Fifty shades of sexual violence

Published:Thursday | February 9, 2017 | 12:00 AM


Sexual violence is in the media again. This time, it is between two adult actors from Hollywood on the large screen, to which large numbers of the viewing public will be exposed for a price and of their own choosing.

Where is the 'wear something black' protest? Where is the outrage on social media, the front-page condemnation of these professionals demeaning women and the sanctity of sex?

Is sexual violence acceptable some of the time? Surely, that would make us hypocrites.

The first Fifty Shades of Grey movie came to Jamaica in 2015. It opened on Valentine's Day weekend, creating the impression that abuse and subjection is equal to romantic love. Two years on, the sequel is being brought to Jamaica again around Valentine's Day and in the midst of increasing revelations of the sexual abuse of girls and boys.

We can choose to attend the cinema or not, but I care enough to object. The consumption of graphic sexualised imagery such as pornography has been directly linked to the commission of sexual crimes, including the abuse of children. Movies such as Fifty Shades of Grey dismiss the ideas of self-control and respect for others. We need to be consistent in our condemnation of sexual violence if we expect change.

Jamaica has a severe problem with sexual violence among its citizens and most tragically, against our smallest and most vulnerable - children. By watching this movie again, we are helping to deepen this crisis, not alleviate it. There are some things that should be priceless, and the dignity of women is one of them.

Reece Briscoe