College is a place where everyone is allowed to be who they are. It embraces diversity in its various forms. Thus students are left with an array of choices to make, ample time to do whatever they want as long as they deliver their end of the bargain, i.e, passing their classes.
By Praise Mutyakurewa
During all that time of social indulgence, that is when the indecent and morally unacceptable deeds are done.
For the past five years the rate at which sex tapes have been released to the public is worryingly increasing.
A recent story that has been trending on social media is about the woman who was thought to have committed suicide because her boyfriend had posted their sex tape on social media platforms to shame her.
This has pushed Female Student Network Trust (FSNT), an organisation that deals with female students in tertiary education institutions, to take a closer look at the factors that push female students to be involved in such acts of indecency.
Taking a closer look at the surge of these tapes from university institutions, FSNT identified some push factors of this phenomenon.
Sex has become common at colleges so much that almost one in two students is sexually active.
However, how they convince each other to record the whole act is still unknown.
Assumptions are they both agree on recording for their private use, but when things turn sour the other party releases the videos to the public.
As seen in most of the issues regarding sex tapes and nude pictures, the consequences always fall on the female.
People have rarely asked why the male counterpart is embarrassing himself but rather why the girl is not ashamed of herself.
Why should females be subjected to a higher standard of morality than males?
Our morals have degenerated when it comes to our children in college as we see that they are no longer ashamed to admit that they are sexually active and on top of that they send each other profane texts and pictures.
What has our society come to? Is there something lacking in our institutions to keep the students in line?
Looking at it, it seems like tertiary education institutions are producing career-driven professionals who are morally tainted with Eurocentric culture and oblivious to the negative impact of that to the development of society.
Our society is based on the spirit of Ubuntu, which can be seen as an expression of humanity towards others.
Why should acts done in private be released to the public without the other person’s consent?
Despite the tensions and misunderstandings, where is the humanity in that?
The most disappointing aspect is that the sex tapes or nude pictures that circulate clearly show the female student, not the male, which is quite disturbing as our girls consensually agree to recording oblivious to the consequences of such actions and most of the times the boy keeps the tape as leverage on the girl.
Cyber harassment comes into play here as the sex tapes or nude pictures tarnish the girl’s image and her future plans maybe hindered or disturbed because of that exposure.
Although it is a choice to record the act, the responsibility part is important as well.
This has long-lasting effects on the parties involved, because society demands chastity of women, not for men, the girl involved feels the pressure of the consequences on her.
She faces the disapproval of the parents, stigmatisation by friends and is denied a chance of a normal relationship ever again as she is tagged for life.
Thus, students should beware of the consequences that follow after deciding to record their sexual acts because society is always going to champion boys for the sexual conquest and the girl is always going to be shamed for that.
Hence, there is need for our female students to exercise their rights with caution and responsibility.
Let us shun the over-mystification of sex as this has resulted in a culture of silence over these issues.
FSNT’s goal is to create a safe learning environment that is a haven for female students from all forms of inequalities, thus it is its priority to make female students play an active role against all shaming that pose risks to their education and wellbeing.
Girls should advocate for safe sex, which does not only include protection, but also recording of the act as well as it is a hurtful and morally unacceptable.
Everyone is responsible for creating a safe environment that is free from sex tapes and nude pictures as it affects everyone regardless of gender.
l Praise Mutyakurewa is a University of Zimbabwe student and part of the UZ Female Student #SmartGirls!