Incumbent Roger Rivard (R), lost his Congressional seat to Steven Smith (D). Rivard was the chap who told passed on his father’s wisdom that “some girls rape easy.”
Todd Akin (R) failed to take what should have been a winnable senate seat for the Republicans. Akin was the chap who told us that if a rape was “legitimate”, then a woman could not get pregnant because her body would shut conception down.
Tea Party backed candidate Richard Mourdock couldn’t win what should have been a wide open race, giving the Democrats one more seat in the Senate. Mourdock was the chap who told us that pregnancy resulting from rape was something that God intended.
But why should we care, here in New Zealand, an ocean away from the United States?
Here’s why. We should care because the anti-women rhetoric coming from conservatives in the US travels down here swiftly. Rape culture is alive and flourishing in New Zealand, and concepts like “legitimate rape” and “can’t get pregnant from rape” and “some girls rape easy” and “God meant for you to be raped” play into it, and sustain it.
I am so very glad that voters in the United States rejected these men who endorsed rape. It’s a push back, a small step towards dismantling the narrative of hatred and contempt for women.
I could write an extended post about victim blaming, and who is being held responsible for women being raped (hint: it’s not the rapist), and who has to change their behaviour in order to reduce the chances of a rape occurring (hint: it’s not the rapist), but you know what, I’ve done that before. Right here: Because the victim is responsible for not being raped.
One day, some police officer somewhere is going to talk about someone who is preying on women who are out jogging or walking, and NOT tell them that they ought to be careful. Instead, she or he will tell the perp that he or she must stop doing this horrible thing.
But alas, that day has not yet come.
Rape culture, ladies and gentlemen. You’re soaking in it.
People that the Vatican thinks should be disciplined and silenced: nuns who work on poverty and social justice issues.
CHICAGO — A prominent U.S. Catholic nuns group said Thursday that it was “stunned” that the Vatican reprimanded it for spending too much time on poverty and social-justice concerns and not enough on condemning abortion and gay marriage.
In a stinging report on Wednesday, the Vatican said the Leadership Conference of Women Religious had been “silent on the right to life” and had failed to make the “Biblical view of family life and human sexuality” a central plank in its agenda.
It also reprimanded American nuns for expressing positions on political issues that differed, at times, from views held by U.S. bishops. Public disagreement with the bishops — “who are the church’s authentic teachers of faith and morals” — is unacceptable, the report said.
People the Vatican promotes and places in positions of authority: priests who actively lie and cover up for other priests who rape children.
The Catholic primate of all-Ireland has said that he will not resign as Church leader despite revelations in the BBC’s This World programme.
It found Cardinal Sean Brady had names and addresses of those being abused by paedophile priest Brendan Smyth.
However, he did not pass on those details to police or parents.
Not only did he not pass on the details to police or children, but he actively coerced the children into staying silent. And he has LIED about the support the children were given.
Sean Brady’s role in the affair became clear in 2010, when it became known that he had been present when the abused boy was questioned.
He claimed, however, that the boy’s father had accompanied him, and described his own role as that of a note-taker.
However, the BBC This World investigation has uncovered the notes Cardinal Brady took while the boy was questioned.
The child’s father was not allowed in the room, and the child was immediately sworn to secrecy.
The story about Sean Brady will make you sick. And he’s still making excuses. He says that he wasn’t the only one who knew. In other words, it was someone else’s responsibility. And he claims that he had no power to do anything in any case.
“The commentary in the programme and much of the coverage of my role in this inquiry gives the impression that I was the only person who knew of the allegations against Brendan Smyth at that time and that because of the office I hold in the Church today I somehow had the power to stop Brendan Smyth in 1975.
“I had absolutely no authority over Brendan Smyth. Even my Bishop had limited authority over him. The only people who had authority within the Church to stop Brendan Smyth from having contact with children were his Abbot in the Monastery in Kilnacrott and his Religious Superiors in the Norbertine Order.
He is completely wrong about that. He always had the ability to go to the police, instead of participating in covering up a crime, and enabling a rapist to carry on raping children.
And he is now a Cardinal in the Catholic church.
So on the one hand, all those wretched women who dare to spend their time and effort working on issues of social justice are dangerously out of line and need to be reprimanded and controlled, and on the other, a man who participated in covering up the rape of children and is still making excuses for his behaviour, is given a position of high authority in the church. He is an “authentic teacher of faith and morals.”
I do not think that phrase means what the Catholic hierarchy church thinks it means.
Previous posts on the Catholic church and its protection of men who rape children:
Out of touch
Can the Pope be impeached?
They could always turn themselves in
Chanting the script from Rome
Sez it all.
Police say they are frustrated at having to repeatedly warn teens and parents about sexual predators after the identity of a man who faces a raft of charges for sexually exploiting children has been revealed.
Guess who is at fault for police having to issue repeated warnings?
Is it the sexual predators, who seek out children and teenagers to abuse?
Is it the police, who are unable to get sexual predators to stop?
Is it the teenagers and children that sexual predators target?
Yes! Of course it is! It’s the victims’ fault.
After Laurence’s appearance, the leader of [the Wellington-based Online Child Exploitation Across New Zealand Unit], Detective Senior Sergeant John Michael, said police were frustrated at having to repeatedly warn teenagers and parents about sexual predators who trawled the internet looking for their next victim.
“The warning is valid but people continue to ignore it. What does it take to get the message through? [Some teenagers] think they’re 10-foot tall and bulletproof until something bad happens.”
As well as indulging in victim blaming, Sergeant Michael has forgotten some of the basic facts of life. Teenagers grow up. They cease being teenagers. But they are replaced by an entirely new set of teenagers who will not have heard Sergeant Michael’s warnings. He will need to issue those warnings again and again and again, because each year, there are new teenagers.
I’d be really worried if Sergeant Michael’s approach was applied in other areas of policing. Imagine teaching road safety. “Right then, that’s these five year olds taught how to use pedestrian crossings. Good. We won’t need to do that again. From now on, all five year olds will know how to cross the road.”
It’s part of the job, repeating the same message over and over and over again. And if the police really want sexual predation to stop, they need to address the whole huge issue of rape and consent in our culture. But as ever, it’s much easier to just blame the victims.
TRIGGER warning: this post discusses rape.
“Women should not be walking home alone in hours of darkness. You just have such vulnerability then.”
Source: Attack prompts police warning
So how, pray tell, is a woman to get home then? By teleporting?
The woman who was assaulted had just walked a friend home, and had only a short distance to go. The place where she was attacked is a well lit residential street in Palmerston North. Yet the warning is going out to women: don’t even think about being independent, about assuming the right to move about your own town freely. Remember always that you personally are responsible for making sure that some assailant doesn’t attack you. Lock yourself up, constrain your movements, live in fear.
This is a real lose:lose for women. I’ve been told by some people who have larger, stronger bodies than mine, that I should just get over my concern about walking alone at night, and go ahead and do it, because it’s silly to worry all the time. Yet when women do just that, when they do avail themselves of the freedoms that citizens in our society are supposed to enjoy, then if they are assaulted, they are blamed for it. They shouldn’t have been out walking in the dark.
There’s not a word of blame placed on the assailant in the story about this assault. Elsewhere in the paper there is a story about people vandalising street signs, but no one has suggested that it’s the city council’s fault for having street signs in the first place. Instead, the city council is asking the public to intervene, and promising that they will crack down on offenders.
The public has to be prepared to be more vigilant and step in and say ‘Hey, we’ve had enough of this; let’s ring the police and get the police in on the job and catch these people in the act’.”
Mr Cuff said the only answer to the problem would be to “prosecute them, and prosecute them hard”.