How we as humans look at, view, and treat one another is not something that you may think about everyday. However, It is something that we may need to be brought to everyone’s attention in the current state of our country. The novel Baho! by Roland Rugero takes a very philosophical approach on humans’ perspectives on one another and how it affects our actions.
Throughout the news recently and constantly more and more women have spoken out about the sexual misconducts and assaults that in the past they were unwilling to bring to light. As more and more women speak out about their story and more and more men are forced to apologize, it makes a person wonder how all this could have been happening in the past, has it really even stopped in the present and do the men who are responsible for hurting these women genuinely mean their apologies and intend to never repeat their transgressions?
In the society in the novel Baho!, the men do not feel bad or any sort of remorse whenever there are misdoings or harms upon the women in their society. The only point in which they take action is when the women have been or are threatened to be raped but that is only because they see their property or possessions as being “sullied,” “desecrated” or losing value. They feel that it is natural to treat women badly and even state that, to one man, throwing a bottle at his wife’s head when he gets home is “the most natural way [he] could find to wish her good evening.” Obviously the men do not feel the need to treat the women with any sort of respect or care, A large reason why that is, is because it has become what is normal in this society. No man would get in trouble for treat a woman or specifically his wife in this way. Because of the lack of policing of this mistreatment, men do not feel that they are actually doing something “wrong.” The idea of what wrong actually is and means is called into question by Rugero and left for the reader to interpret.
On the other hand, the society that we live in today does have a similar problem in that women are not being treated with respect in many instances and the men are going years or forever without any persecution for their actions. However, our society does have a real judicial and prosecuting system that men are and should be afraid when it comes to committing crimes against women if they already lack the ability to see why it is wrong in the first place. One can only assume that either the men are extremely clever and sneaky in their way of conducting these disrespectful and inappropriate acts, or any time in which there is opportunity for them to be exposed or policed in some form, nobody is taking action. It would seem that those who know that certain men do commit such actions are either unwilling or afraid to go to the police for whatever reasons.
While the men in the society in the novel Baho! may have a warped interpretation of what is right and wrong, I believe many of the men in our society who commit these acts of disrespect towards women understand what is right and wrong and the consequences. However, I believe that they do not think they will have to face severe consequences or any consequences at all past an apology. We can only hope that those who know of misconduct report and attempt to stop it and that all members of society continue to work towards seeing one another as equals.
Rugero, Roland, and Christopher Schaefer. Baho!: a Novel. Phoneme Media, 2016.