Wednesday, January 09, 2013

There Be Monsters

(Editorial cartoon by Jeff Parker for Florida Today and featured 1/4/13 at Cagle Post.  Click on image to enlarge and then return.)

I've held up this post for a little over a week now because I was so angry and so disgusted that I could feel my blood pressure rising just thinking about it.  I've waited long enough.

One thing I've noticed is all the tut-tutting and tsk-tsking done by Americans in response to some pretty horrific crimes committed against women in other nations.  We sneered at the Taliban's shooting of Malala Yousafzai, the teenaged Pakistani woman who advocated for education for her and for all Pakistani women.  Malala has since been released from a British hospital, but the Taliban still have her targeted so she and her family will remain in England.

And we've frowned with disgust at the reports of the gang-rape and murder of a woman in India who made the mistake of getting on the wrong bus. 

"Savages!  What deplorable behavior"  were the cries from the oh-so-smug Americans in response to these events.

To which I say, "Oh, yeah?  Read the news lately?"

Like about  the two Los Angeles Police officers who pressured women into sex after pulling them over?

Two Los Angeles Police Department officers are under investigation for allegedly preying on women over a period of five years, luring them into an unmarked car and forcing them to perform sex acts, according to court records.

Detectives from the LAPD's internal affairs unit suspect that Officers Luis Valenzuela and James Nichols targeted at least four women whom they had arrested previously or who worked for them as informants, according to a search warrant reviewed by The Times.

Or about the guy who doused a homeless woman sleeping on a bus stop bench with a flammable liquid and then set her on fire?

A homeless woman was doused in a flammable liquid and set ablaze in Van Nuys on Thursday in what police called a random "horrific" attack.

She was whisked to a hospital, where she remains in critical condition. The seemingly random attack even shocked LAPD veterans, who said they were trying to make sense of it.

LAPD Deputy Chief Kirk Albanese said it was unclear whether the suspect, Dennis Petillo, 24, even talked to the woman before he allegedly set her ablaze.

Or about the guy who raped his buddy's sister and got away with it because she wasn't married and there's a strange loophole in California law that allowed for the judicial dismissal of the case against him?

A man enters the darkened bedroom of a woman after seeing her boyfriend leave late at night. He pretends to be her boyfriend. Before she’s aware of what’s happening, he’s having sex with her.

Was she raped? The equally horrifying answer: no.

In a conviction reversal that might inspire some California lawmaker to take up this mantle and change the state’s penal code, a Los Angeles man’s rape conviction was overturned this week on that simple fact; the man pretended to be the woman’s boyfriend, not her husband. If she had been married, his conviction would have been upheld.

And, lest you think the depravity only exists in California, there is also the news out of Steubenville, Ohio of a gang rape of a drunken girl who was transported from party to party, where on-lookers watched as she was violated sexually and urinated on.  I'm reasonably certain that I could read other local papers from other states and come up with equally as vile stories.

Monsters?  Yes, and not in just the rest of the world.  And what is our response to this barbaric behavior?  Well, let's see ...

The 112th Congress ended its session without renewing the Violence Against Women Act

First of all, the initial act should never have had a sunset clause.  Violence against women should be outlawed.  Period.  Full stop.  Second, the version which expired was a watered-down version of the original insofar as it excluded Native American women.  But the House Republicans wouldn't even bring it up for a vote. 

What War Against Women?

And where do I go to sign up on our side.

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Blogger ms fahrenheit said...

What she said.

I find myself reading and then needing a few days to calm down every time I learn more of the Steubenville case.

2:21 PM  

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