On Tuesday Jan 1st, a hundred or so people gathered in Harvard Square for a vigil to protest the Dec 16th rape in Delhi, and violence against women in general. It was a night of reflection with speakers, poetry, spoken word art, and a silent theatrical performance.
One of the most thought-provoking moments of the evening came from a pledge brought by Saheli Boston:
We condemn all violence against women. It must never be accepted, never excused, and never tolerated.
Women must be respected, valued and protected, and Saheli’s mission and vision is to end violence, empower women to lead safe and healthy lives. Please join us in this pledge:
- We will personally treat all women at home and elsewhere with respect and demand the same from others.
- We will not practice discrimination against women at home and in the workplace, and will fight it wherever we see it.
- We will intervene in whatever way we can when we see a woman being harassed whether verbally or by deeds.
- We will not support public officials who treat women with disrespect.
- We will work to end violence against women.
This pledge is worth taking. It shouldn’t take a tragic rape for people to treat women with dignity and respect.