Thursday, March 07, 2013

Good News/Bad News On Violence Against Women

Good news:  Tunisia establishes the first public domestic violence center.
Bad news:  That it is only the first one, and this:

Resistance to confronting the problem is deeply rooted in Tunisian culture, says Badi, whose hold on her post could change as the government, which has been undergoing turmoil, restructures. “Some people,” the minister says, “are afraid to see women gain autonomy; they fear it’s going to break families.”
There's the hidden nut in almost all the discussions in any country about the evil feminism has caused:  The break-up of the families.  An observer from outer space would ask why the concept of a family must be built upon the backs of women, including those women whose backs get whipped in the process.  Why not make families more democratic institutions?  That question is rhetorical, natch.

Bad news:

Amnesty International has launched a petition calling on the Maldivian government to overturn a court ruling sentencing a 15 year-old rape victim to 100 lashes for an unrelated fornication offence.

The story of the girl from Feydhoo in Shaviyani Atoll, who was convicted of premarital sex in the Juvenile Court February 26 and sentenced to 100 lashes and eight months of house arrest, has been reported by media around the world and been widely condemned by international NGOs and embassies.

'It's so horrific that it's hard to believe it's true: a 15 year old rape survivor has been sentenced to 100 lashes for 'fornication' in the Maldives,' stated Amnesty International, which has followed the case since January.

'The traumatised girl was allegedly sexually abused by her step-father for many years. He has since been charged with sexually assaulting a minor. During the investigation however, authorities came across evidence to support separate charges of fornication against the girl for pre-marital sex,' Amnesty stated, demanding the government overturn the 'disgraceful' sentence.

Good news:  The international reaction to this and the domestic critics of the sentence in the Maldives.

Good news:  The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) was reauthorized.

Bad news:  Rush Limbaugh's take on it.   VAWA addresses crimes which were not adequately addressed in earlier laws, and those crimes have predominantly female victims.  The point of  VAWA is not to argue that all women get beaten to a pulp or that women face more violence, on average, than men do.  The point of VAWA is to adequately address behaviors such as stalking which affects female victims more than male victims and which has been shown to be linked to violence, including homicide.