How dare she go to the toilet at night. Some might say she’s asked for it.
To nip out in the dead of night – surely one of the main risks would be being brutally shot four times through a locked door. Surely one of the obvious outcomes is death.
#hernameisreevasteenkamp has been trending on Twitter because, collectively, the above is not a truth we want to bear. Yet, amidst the media frenzy of a case driven by publicity and fame the undertone is, quietly, just this.
Pistorius has not been subjected to the full force of his actions – simply replacing guilt with a sense of entitlement and this is what has turned my stomach. For God’s sake, who in their right minds ploughs four bullets through a locked door without shouting out first? But she wasn’t where she was supposed to be.
And yet, this action seems to have been accepted, maybe not as reasonable, as he has been found guilty of culpable homicide, but as somehow understandable. A distasteful sense of pity for this man, rich with power and money, and a manipulation of Reeva’s actions into something somehow ‘wrong’.
Simon Jenkins wrote in The Guardian this week that Pistorius’ life had been ruined and, in a wider context, to look at prison and reform. He referred to Reeva, not once, by name, simply ‘girlfriend’. Preferring to focus on the impact this will have on him and countless other men’s lives.
Each week two women die in the UK as a result of domestic violence.
I suspect after his short and expertly planned prison stay, Pistorius will write a book and become an after dinner speaker – maybe he’ll even return to the track. Let’s not pretend he’ll be treated the same as other prisoners.
Reform can only happen when the true extent of your actions are faced, head on in all their bloody brutal truth. Without reform we are left with punishment and why on earth should he escape that.