A Powerful Chilean Feminist Street Protest is Rocking The World

By WAF Editors

Organized by the feminist collective Las Tesis, female activists in Chile flooded the streets to protest violence against women on Monday November 25, in conjunction with the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

Wearing black blindfolds, the hundred-plus women performed a choreographed chant repeating the chorus “the rapist is you.” In it they singled out the country’s patriarchal culture for fomenting gender-based violence and blamed Chile’s police, judicial system, and even its president for failing to prosecute the men who commit it. The event was quickly uploaded to the Internet, and since then, flash mobs in cities throughout Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Mexico, the United States, Germany, the United Kingdom, France, Spain, and Australia have replicated it.

Latin America has a long history of macho culture and boasts the highest rate of femicide in the world. Experts estimate that at least 12 women a day are murdered, often by partners. According to a recent Human Rights Watch report, during the first 30 days of protests in Chile against extreme levels of inequality, 442 complaints were logged, 71 of which were reports of sexual abuse. 

 

The chant reads in English as follows:

Patriarchy is a judge

That judges us for being born

And our punishment

Is the violence you see

Femicide

Impunity for my killer

Rape

And the blame wasn’t mine

Or where I was

Or how I dressed (4)

The rapist is you (2)

They are, the cops

The judges

The state

The president

The oppressive state is a rapist macho (2)

The rapist is you (2)

 

 


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