The kidnap and murder of 33-year-old British marketing executive Sarah Everard by Metropolitan Police officer Wayne Couzens has sparked conversations in the UK — just not productive ones.
Sarah Everard’s Tragic Murder
Sarah Everard was reported missing March 3 after leaving a friend’s house in Clapham, south London at 9pm. Her disappearance was investigated, and on the following Tuesday, the Metropolitan Police announced that a police officer had been arrested in connection with her disappearance, sparking outrage and shock among members of the British public. A woman was also arrested on suspicion of assisting the officer.
A week after Everard’s disappearance, it was announced that human remains had been found, and shortly thereafter police confirmed through identification procedures that it was Everard’s body. It was also later confirmed by police that the officer suspected of murdering Everard was accused of exposing himself twice at a south London fast food restaurant three days before her disappearance.
On March 13, 48-year-old Wayne Couzens was brought before Westminster Magistrates Court and charged with the kidnap and murder of Sarah Everard.
The Events That Followed
Mass outrage followed Sarah’s murder, and quite rightly too. Such evil deeds are expected to be condemned at large. Many news outlets covered the story across the UK. Politicians and media personalities spoke out.
A public vigil, arranged for people to pay their respects, was attended by members of the public, and even Royal Family members such as the Duchess of Cambridge. It seemed that the vigil would be a day of memorial and peace.
Unfortunately, that was not the case.
Further into the night, with hundreds gathered in London, officers clashed with the crowds, making several arrests, along with using force against some women attending the vigil. (“COVID restrictions” were named as the root cause of the arrests.) This sparked further anger from the public.
Metropolitan Police used force and made arrests during the vigil for Sarah Everard.
Police in the UK have already gained themselves a negative reputation for abusing their powers, especially in the last year: disrupting funerals, kneeling for BLM protests, and arresting innocent streetwalkers. And with one of their own being the guilty figure in Sarah Everard’s murder, UK Police could not be viewed in a worse state than they are at the present.
Following the night’s events, conversations have started, but not regarding the role of police officers’ actions in the UK. Instead, the focus is on men’s place in society.
The Continuing War on Men
Since the story dominated mainstream news, it seems the demand to “teach men not to be predatorial” has grown in large numbers, and a man’s “place in society” has become an acceptable topic of conversation for people in government (and not just outraged feminists claiming that men are the issue).
One “solution” recently suggested by politicians was for “male curfews” to “make women feel safer on the streets at night” – quite possibly the most ridiculous and idiotic idea imaginable. A curfew would only punish good, law-abiding men; criminals will continue to commit crimes regardless of laws. By placing a curfew on men, women are only left to face increased levels of danger with even fewer options for aid. Such brainless suggestions should only be laughed at, but coming from people who hold positions of power, it stands to be something of deep concern.
One “solution” was for “male curfews” to “make women feel safer on the streets at night.”
It must be noted that a lot of the people posting online and protesting in the streets have been eager to shut down opposing arguments too. Reminding people of the sobering realities only appears to spark anger, but they are things that need to be said. Evil people exist in a small minority, they exist, but they’re not common – to treat men as though they’re the only perpetrators of bad deeds is mindless.
Men are raped and abused too and, too often, stating this has similar effects as adding gasoline to a burning fire. But it’s true, and yet it’s often ignored by mainstream media outlets. The biggest and most recent example of this is the Reynard Sinaga case.
Though male rape is often undermined in the UK, and much of Western society, Reynard Sinaga currently stands as the most prolific rapist in British legal history; he sexually assaulted at least 195 victims since 2005. Sinaga’s victims were men he had offered shelter to while they were lost or intoxicated. He would later go on to drug, rape, and film them in his home. Facts about his case were released in January 2020, which wasn’t covered or condemned nearly as much as it should’ve been. Few conversations were had following the news release, Sinaga being another tale quickly swept under the rug.
Murders perpetrated by women seem to go heavily ignored too. In March 2020, seven-year-old Emily Jones was brutally murdered in Manchester while riding her bike through a park. Stabbed by a 30-year-old Albanian woman, Eltiona Skana, Emily’s brutal and disgusting murder was barely touched by mainstream news for a day. There were no protests in the streets, no calls for law alterations, no viral social media threads by the youth to bring it into public discourse – nothing.
Selective Outrage and the Exploitation of Tragedy
It’s important to keep a close eye on what progressives seem to focus on in current discourse. Far too often tragedies are exploited to aid certain narratives.
Habitually, the youth will pick and choose atrocities to focus on for the sake of “hashtag activism,” a term coined after waves of online social action became something of the norm. These are events that often progress into public outcry due to massive amounts of online traction.
The most saddening part of current protests is the lack of empathy towards Sarah’s friends and family. At such a sensitive and delicate time, mourning privately and peacefully should be a right given to any family. Yet despite Sarah’s close friends coming out to ask people not to politicize her death, as that was “not what she would have wanted,” her name and memory have, over the past week, been hijacked by protesters taking to the streets of London.
Though her friends have said Sarah was “incredibly unlucky” and that her murder “was not a symptom of a sexist, dangerous society,” activists have continued to politicize her death and use it for their own agendas. Many are taking this awful tragedy as a shining opportunity to demonize men, vandalize public spaces, or even call for the police to be defunded.
Sarah’s tragic death has been hijacked and politicized by activists.
With role reversal with similar cases such as Emily Jones’ murder, or Reynard Sinaga’s treacherous attacks, public outrage remains at a low. Progressive activists can’t use them to suit their narratives, so they simply don’t acknowledge them at all. It’s a vile and sobering reality of the shallow society we currently endure. These teens and twenty-somethings taking to the streets for the sake of “social justice” don’t care for justice at all; through the crowds of never-ending protesters, you see placards and mobile phones, further proving the brutal realities of what modern activism has become: a vanity project.
These same youths weren’t demanding to “defund the police” when they were covering up grooming gang scandals from “fear of sparking racial tensions.” They use the atrocities that suit them, even when they’re asked not to – they don’t listen, they don’t care. It’s all about image, and everything they do exists solely for aesthetic.
Self-Defense and UK Law
Protesters and those in government have gone the completely wrong way following Sarah’s murder. If there’s one vitally important conversation that needs to be had (and one that can actually be taken seriously in wider world), it’s on self-defense in the UK.
Women have very few legal ways to defend themselves in the event of an attack. Often they’re taught little tips and tricks on ways to hold their keys or advice on how to move once in grip – but this is simply not enough.
Pepper spray has long been illegal in the United Kingdom. The law states it’s prohibited as a “weapon of whatever description designed or adapted for the discharge of any noxious liquid, gas or other thing” – in other words, it carries the same legal penalties as carrying a gun.
It’s illegal for women to carry pepper spray in the UK.
Though some have tried to raise the argument of its legalization, it has gone ignored. It seems those in power would much rather blame men as an entire demographic and go to the extremes, rather than give women better ways to defend themselves in the event of an attack. Women are weaker than men, to deny this is to be foolish. We must make sure we give women ways to defend themselves.
Many do not wish to have this conversation, some because they think it’s infuriating that we need to have it in the first place, stating firmly that “we shouldn’t have to teach women to protect themselves.” And they’re right, we shouldn’t. But unfortunately, the world is an imperfect place, often plagued with disgusting people, and if laws can’t stop them, then posters, placards, and classes for “educating” men won’t stop them either. Though it’s unfortunate that we live in a world where not everyone can follow a basic moral compass, we can’t simply teach right and wrong and expect everyone to follow.
Sarah Everard’s murder was a shocking and vile act, and its condemnation is more than justified, but the actions that have taken place in the week following has been anything but. Both men and the police live in the UK in large numbers, and they can’t be blamed for the actions of one very sick and twisted individual.
There are conversations to be had, of course, but Sarah’s family should be left to mourn privately and on their own terms. Her friends and family shouldn’t have to grieve while watching her name be tarnished nationally and used for political gain. Over the past week, we’ve seen this terrible atrocity hijacked by people to use for their social agendas, striking further division in a country already so warped by it. Men are not the problem, evil people are, and they come in all shapes, all sizes, and in countless forms. Evil has no identity.
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