Cardin takes a heroic stand

February 20, 2010

Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin is a Hero.

The senator says that he has been co-sponsoring the international Violence against Women Act and condemns rape, domestic violence, honor killings, etc. ("Violence against women demands action," Feb. 19). He is committed to greatly reduce violence against women worldwide and particularly in instances in which rape and sexual abuse of women is used as a tool of war. This is exactly what is going on in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo, in Africa. I am glad that the senator even cites this particular example because I am a citizen of Congo and I grew up in Bukavu, Eastern Congo, the very place which is now known as the world capital of rape.

Indeed, sexual violence has devastated the lives of millions of women and girls, and it really demands action from each and every one, especially in developed countries such as the U.S. because pressure and lobbying is needed so that the perpetrators and those benefiting from this unfortunate and disastrous situation could be exposed.

The Eastern Congo's conflict is unique because of the systematic and massive rape of women and children (girls), and I strongly believe that Senator Cardin's work is indispensable and his worldwide effort to reduce violence against women is simply heroic. Good leadership is the real and long lasting remedy to this epidemic.

Rev. Guy Msafiri Kagere, Baltimore

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