The life of a Form 4 boy hangs in the balance now after receiving a thorough beating from a girl’s father he was allegedly dating. I stumbled upon this heartrending info from a vernacular radio station’s news. And the news in vernacular can be quite entertaining however serious it is. In this instance, the newscaster reported that the father ‘fell on’ (to mean attacked) and ‘fixed him properly’ (beat him seriously) when he found him ‘creeping’ on her daughter. He had allegedly gone for a ‘night job’ and was let in by the girl through a ‘side door’ when the father discovered the unusual occurrence and promptly set on the boy.
The story so far, the boy’s future looks bleak as his chances of sitting his KCSE are very thin. Even if he did, he is likely to spend considerable time in the hospital and hence miss out on the crucial revision he so needs. There are a number of questions raised here and one is whether the father was right to take the law into his own hands. Of course, he was protecting the interests of his daughter but was that the right way? If it had been rape, it would have been a different story. However, in this case, the two parties were consenting; the girl even let the boy in! If it is a beating they deserve, then both of them should have been beaten.
A more pertinent issue this raises is the whole matter of fornication among the youth, if we can assume it got to that. It is perhaps the said father’s incompetence or bad breeding that makes his daughter behave as she did. If he had a talked to her and advised her appropriately on proper sexual activities and timing, she probably wouldn’t be in the news, or would she? The image we get is that of a violent dad who resorts to beating and thoroughly at that) his way out of problems. In the village setting where this took place, the community structure is still strong and getting the two youths together and talking to them about the incident would probably have been more effective. Besides, if they are hell-bent on doing it, nothing will stop them. In fact, the lady will feel she owes him a favour after the trouble he went through. They’ll probably be back at it soon as he’s out of that damn hospital. And that’s just how it is.
In the meantime, police have arrested five suspects who are helping with ‘investigations’ into the matter. Somebody give me a break here. Here’s how I see it: the father is having a sleepless night so he decides to take a late-night stroll around the compound. And lo and behold, the neighbour’s son and his own daughter walking away at three in the morning hand in hand! He must be dreaming so he clears his eyes and for sure its true. What happened next is common knowldege.
What would you do if you were the thoroughly incensed father?