Saturday, 17 November 2007

Stupidly Stupid Hypocrisy

An article from Thursday it is about a punishment for a crime.

The location is Saudi Arabia.

The punishment is 200 lashes and 6 months in prison.

The crime, breach of sexual segregation laws.

The offender, a 19 year old gang rape victim.

She was found in the car of a man who wasn't related to her. Now not knowing the full story it is a bit hard to determine why she was in this car.

Was it the car of someone who stopped to help her? Or was it the car of one of the people who raped her 14 times?

Either way she was sentenced to 90 lashes, and then when she tried to appeal it was increased to the punishment I mentioned above.

So you know, the seven men who raped her initially received a punishment of between 1-5 years, which was doubled, so I guess that would be a range of 2-10 years.

Her lawyer claims that the sentence is unjust and violates Islamic law.

He is facing a disciplinary hearing now for being a lawyer.

The view that the BBC presents is that the courts stepped outside their boundaries in sentencing her, and should not have treated her as the culprit.

There are a few things that have pissed me off about all this.

Firstly, why is it that the rapists seem to get off so lightly for such a terrible crime? Rape is probably far worse then murder, because a rape victim is still able to relive the horrible event while a murder victim cannot for obvious reasons. Why is it that the courts don't sentence them to death (although personally I would think up far more cruel punishments for them).

Secondly why is it that the courts seem to be treating her far worse then her rapists? The courts seem to be saying that even if you are raped you can still be punished for breaking the segregation law. I'm certain that works wonders right? A real boost for women standing up and confronting their rapist.

Finally why is it that for some reason the various discussion boards seem to be portraying this whole thing as a rape victim being punished for being raped? It wasn't, she broke a different law.

And in what could be seen as hypocrisy on my part I have to say that I can see where the courts were going with this. *Technically* she did break the law, and most likely has to face the consequences (again, please note that this is based on what I have gleaned here, not knowing all the facts means that I can't form a firm opinion on the matter), however it is as clear as day that the courts have failed in this case.

They have failed to take into consideration her circumstances. If this was almost immediately after the rape then they should have taken that into consideration, of course she would have been in an unrelated person's car, because she wasn't raped by her family.

Then to increase the punishment because they believe that she was using the media to influence the courts? I honestly think that says more about the court system then the girl. Perhaps it did work a bit better now, because they did double the sentences of the rapists. Although maybe the executioner should have sharpened up his sword/axe/beheading instrument for these men...

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