Rethinking sexual assault laws in Canada

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MegB

Slumberjack wrote:

I don't care.  Right is right.  The two of you have been bullying posters for as long as I can remember.

You're being called on your shit. If that's bullying well, that's my job. Lead bully. We have rules here and you're quite welcome to ignore them but there are consequences.

ETA: Nice to see you have a delusional sense of your own convictions. How's that working for you?

Slumberjack

What shit?  Where?

Cody87

MegB wrote:

a) Alllivesmatter is racist.

b) It's off topic

I didn't bring it into the conversation. I ignored the whole post for 2-3 days because I thought this thread was going to die. Yet you object to it now, once I include it in a thorough rebuttal. I could have ignored it, but unlike most posters here I don't like to ignore arguments. It's not that it's off topic that's the problem. It's that I'm apparently arguing the wrong side. Which brings me to...

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c) You aren't aruguing from a pro-feminist point of view.

Okay, just to clarify - I know that I have to argue from specifically a pro-feminist point of view. As in, how to promote feminist ideals. I thought that's what I was doing?

To clarify my confusion: if we agree that stopping sexual violence is a feminist ideal, and I argue in favour of stopping sexual violence (as well as non-sexual violence), this, to me, seems like promoting a feminist ideal? How is it not pro-feminist to point out that any attempts to reform any aspect of the justice system will be more successful if they are inclusive of all victims, since this will attract more activists and more support to the cause?

The stated goal is to enact meaninful reform of the justice system to achieve better outcomes for female victims of sexual violence perpetrated by men. This is an admirable goal and obviously well in line with feminist ideals. A couple of posters before me, who have since wisely stepped out of this thread, pointed out that the reforms would reasonably need to be applied broadly across the legal system, absent a specific reason why they shouldn't be. In other words, implicitly revising the goal to "meaningful reform of the justice system to achieve better outcomes for victims of violence", which is still in line with feminist ideals (or so I thought?).

No one has been able to provide any reason why it isn't except, and I'm paraphrasing here: "Shut up we only care about women who are victimized by men." What about women who are victimized by women? I know we don't care about men here, but is it not recognized that men who have been victims, and their families, would be a valuable ally in pushing for reforms? United we stand?

Is the whole point to just be an echo chamber where we fantasize about "wouldn't it be perfect if we could reshape the entire world and all it's institutions exactly as we wanted it without any support, agreement, or consent from anyone else?"

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Get with the program or get out.

Has this sort of rhetoric ever won support for any cause in all of human history? Who is this going to impress?

"I disagreed with you, but now that you've told me it's your way or the highway, well, I don't know why I didn't see it your way before!"

Although again, I must reiterate that I don't see how I haven't been arguing from a feminist point of view.

Imagine a schoolyard, with 5 bullies out of 500 students. Every day, 5 students get their lunch stolen by the bullies. Some of the students have PB&J sandwiches stolen, other students have cheesesticks stolen, and some (ordinarily) really lucky students have leftover pizza stolen. Imagine the students who bring PB&J were working on special rules to combat the theft of PB&J sandwiches, but can't get enough support to make any changes. I think most people would rightly question why they wouldn't just work on new rules to combat the bullies to stop all the thefts. Arguing in favour of stopping all thefts isn't anti-PB&J, it's just common sense. But, now all the other posters are free to ignore any and all merit in everything I've said and instead attack me for comparing sexual assault to PB&J sandwiches.

Paladin1

Why is #alllivesmatter racist?

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Why is #alllivesmatter racist?

Because it ignores -- actively, it seems -- the fact that in practice, some lives (e.g. black lives) seem to matter less.

It's true, of course, that all lives matter.  Good luck finding anyone willing to rebut that.  But the fact is, some lives (e.g. white middle class ones) simply don't have as much to worry about.

It's a bit like me saying "the starving should be given food", and then someone saying "EVERYONE should be given food".  Sure, we all need food, but some of us are closer to dying from lack of it than others.  Do the rest of us really need to take up a space in line?

Paladin1

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
Why is #alllivesmatter racist?

Because it ignores -- actively, it seems -- the fact that in practice, some lives (e.g. black lives) seem to matter less.

It's true, of course, that all lives matter.  Good luck finding anyone willing to rebut that.  But the fact is, some lives (e.g. white middle class ones) simply don't have as much to worry about.

It's a bit like me saying "the starving should be given food", and then someone saying "EVERYONE should be given food".  Sure, we all need food, but some of us are closer to dying from lack of it than others.  Do the rest of us really need to take up a space in line?

 

That makes sense thanks.  I'd say at least half, if not more, of the people I see on social media using the hashtag #alllivesmatter aren't just white males crying about reverse racisim.  Is there another hash tag which brings attention to all races traditionally treated more violently by police without taking away from the black lives lost?

Cody87

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
Why is #alllivesmatter racist?

Because it ignores -- actively, it seems -- the fact that in practice, some lives (e.g. black lives) seem to matter less.

It's true, of course, that all lives matter.  Good luck finding anyone willing to rebut that.  But the fact is, some lives (e.g. white middle class ones) simply don't have as much to worry about.

It's a bit like me saying "the starving should be given food", and then someone saying "EVERYONE should be given food".  Sure, we all need food, but some of us are closer to dying from lack of it than others.  Do the rest of us really need to take up a space in line?

A more accurate comparison would be "starving black people should be given food" being reframed to "starving people should be given food." Even if (for this example) it is true that black people are more likely to be starving due to systemic inequalities - by giving starving people food, then black people will proportionately benefit to the previous inequality. There is no reason to exclude other starving people.

For clarity, if you have 50 starving black people and 20 starving white people, and give all starving people food, then this is better than giving just the 50 black people food. Obviously.

After all, the case in point with #BlackLivesMatter (which, by the way, I don't disagree with the movement I'm just pointing out the benefits of inclusion here), is that they are protesting police (generally) murdering black people. It's certainly true that, per capita, police murder more black people than white. But if you address the problem of police murdering people in the first place, it helps everyone, and since more black people are murdered by police, they will proportionately benefit.

Likewise, say 50 black people are murdered by police for every 20 white people. Isn't it better to put in protections to stop all people getting murdered?  Say that the blacklivesmatter movement succeeded in stopping the murder of black citizens. What would you say to Sammy Yatim's parents? Doesn't it make more sense to stop all police murders?

And, for the record, the same argument applies to our violence and sexual violence culture.

I'm not fully abreast of the specific people involved with #blacklivesmatter and #alllivesmatter movements. It's entirely possible and even likely, that as with most movements (especially men's rights and except feminism, of course), both camps have people within who are racist and say racist things. This doesn't make the movements or the philosophy inherently racist.

 

Edit to add:

In respect to my "starving black people" vs "starving people" comparison I referred to systemic inequalities that potentially result in more starving black people, and in my second comparison I referred to more black people being murdered by police. In both of these cases, these are the result of racism inherent in the system. I want to be crystal clear that I'm not saying that by giving black people food, this will eliminate the other inequalities in the system that also need to be addressed. But, if the issue we're looking at today is black people starving, this is solved by addressing starvation, not by addressing the racism inherent in the system.

After all, would things be better if it was only 20 black people starving along with the 20 white people starving? Would it be better if blacks were only murdered at the same rate as white people? Yes, better being a relative term they would be better. But it's still better to address starvation and police murders as a whole rather than suggesting it's only a problem faced by one group, just because it disproportionately affects that group. It's like saying the mass murder of Palenstenians doesn't matter because not as many are getting killed as Syrians. The problem in that case is genocide. It's not a contest of who has it worse. The problem is genocide.

The problem is starvation, when as a planet we produce far more food than we as a species need, but waste too much of it.

The problem is police being too quick to murder suspects.

The problem is violence being glamorized in society and our institutions not being adequate to address complaints once the physical evidence has healed.

Systemic inequalities that disadvantage (black people/women/other minority/etc) are also a problem, and also need to be addressed. But you can't fix these inequalities by patching over the symptoms. More black people getting murdered than white is a symptom of racial inequality - racial inequality being a root problem, but not one addressed by reducing police murders even if specifically targetted at black people. People getting murdered by police is a root problem. Reducing police murders of black people, while a noble goal, is confusing the two. Reducing police murders of black people won't help with any other disadvantage that black people face in today's society. If you want to fix racism, try to find a way to fix racism. If you want to fix sexism, try to find a way to fix sexism. But if you want to stop a specific problem like police murdering people, that is a change that should be much easier to track and therefore enforce, and ought to not be linked to a specific demographic because it affects all demographics. If it affects certain demographics disproportionately, that's a separate issue (systemic racism).

In fact, the #alllivesmatter movement is proof of exactly the kind of distraction you don't want when addressing an issue like police murders. Both camps want police to stop murdering people. The difference is, one group cares about Trayvon Martin and the other cares about Sammy Yatim. If those two camps would stop bickering and work together, we might be able to make a change that prevents both.

An issue that should be simple and straightforward "police stop murdering people" has devolved into a racial war, when race shouldn't have anything to do with it.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

I'm not here to tell anyone how to tweet, but I would guess that #hispaniclivesmatter might get some traction down south, and #nativelivesmatter might get some traction up here.  Just have to actually name them is all.

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Even if (for this example) it is true that black people are more likely to be starving due to systemic inequalities

That's exactly what to keep pondering.

And note, too, that it's never been a zero-sum game.  Allowing one more black life to matter doesn't imply allowing one fewer white life to matter.  As I said, the white lives, in a relative sense, do OK for themselves.  Like all lives, they're entitled to our concern, but why do they need our action?  Or, more to the point, why should they be among the first in line?

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

The argument is a variation of the old saw. Both the rich and poor are forbidden from sleeping under bridges and begging on the streets so the law is not a problem when it merely arrests people for vagrancy or begging. Its not like they are targetting poor people its just the law being applied equally to all.

Cody87

Mr. Magoo wrote:

And note, too, that it's never been a zero-sum game. 

Exactly this.

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Allowing one more black life to matter doesn't imply allowing one fewer white life to matter.  As I said, the white lives, in a relative sense, do OK for themselves.  Like all lives, they're entitled to our concern, but why do they need our action?  Or, more to the point, why should they be among the first in line?

I never said anything about priority for white people.

Why address only one race when all can be addressed concurrently? It's not like we're building homes and they take a while to go up so we need to pick who gets helped first.

If, for example, it was determined that bodycams, when configured to be always on and automatically transfer video to HQ so they can't be "broken",  reduced police murders by 40%, and harsh sentencing of police officers who murder (rather than "attempted murder" for murder) reduced murders by a further 35%, and annual education reduced murders by 10% more, then suddenly we might have an 85% reduction in police murders. What does the race of the victims have to do with that?

Way back I pointed out that violence (including sexual violence) is not a uniquely female issue. Police murders are not a uniquely black issue. Both can be addressed by addressing the root cause, which are not based on sex/race.

Mr. Magoo, on post #40, wrote:

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Maybe, but I was only thinking about sexual assault not regular assault, domestic or otherwise. I am trying to focus on changes to the sexual assault laws not other parts of the criminal code because that is way to broad a subject for me.

That can fly, with regard to a babble topic, of idle discussion.

But if we decide that in the case of alleged sexual assault, an accused CAN be coerced by the state to incriminate himself, how do you propose to answer, for example, the loved ones of a murder victim who would also very much like to see that accused have to take the stand and incriminate himself?

Surely not by saying that "being murdered is nothing like someone kissing you and then punching you!"

Any thoughts on how to keep this genie in the bottle?  Any thoughts on how to convince the general public that sexual assault trials are so fundamentally different from any and all kind of other trial that they need separate jurisprudence that can only apply to them?

I find it immensely ironic that I'm having this debate now with you, since my involvement in this thread was started because I decided to call out quizzical for sniping at this statement that you made.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Sexual assault is predominately an issue for women. The focus therefore needs to be on protecting the actual victims of sexual assault not some very small minority of victims whom are male. If you want to contribute ideas about changes that will not only help women but will also help men no one will complain. If you want to go on and on about how men are left out of the discussion without providing any positive input into the subject matter then you will continue to be regarded as a MR advocate whose focus is on MR not ending sexual assault. 

The thread was started to deal with sexual assault not all violence but specifically the violence that occurs because our society treats women differently than men and our court system is incapable of providing justice in the vast majority of sexual assault cases.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Why address only one race when all can be addressed concurrently?

Because it's not going to be one solution for all problems.  I get that "a rising tide lifts all boats", but if we drill down just a little to what puts black lives at risk and what puts white lives at risk, it's not the same thing and it won't be the same solution "for all".

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Both can be addressed by addressing the root cause, which are not based on sex/race.

I'm not convinced of that.  I'm sure that there are some factors that are "race-blind" or "sex-blind", but there are certainly others that aren't.  Even if we were to say that (for example) the root problem is macho, gung-ho cops, is it reasonable to imagine that those cops don't distinguish between a white guy in a suit and a black kid in a hoodie?

Quote:
I find it immensely ironic that I'm having this debate now with you, since my involvement in this thread was started because I decided to call out quizzical for sniping at this statement that you made.

Feel free to push me under the bus, if you feel like I've pushed you under the bus.  But otherwise, we're all just complex.  Not to seem ungrateful.

But what I said, and you defended, was a matter of the law, and for good or bad we DO need one set of laws for all.  That's not true of whatever solution we might suggest for getting fewer people -- black or white - shot by excitable cops (or "people" -- female or male -- sexually assaulted).

Cody87

kropotkin1951 wrote:

The focus therefore needs to be on protecting the actual victims of sexual assault not some very small minority of victims whom are male.

So if a man is violently beaten and raped, he is not an actual victim just because he's a small minority and male? I expect a rather large amount of bias here but what in the actual f?

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If you want to contribute ideas about changes that will not only help women but will also help men no one will complain.

I doubt that.

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If you want to go on and on about how men are left out of the discussion without providing any positive input into the subject matter then you will continue to be regarded as a MR advocate whose focus is on MR not ending sexual assault.

Well, I was also going on about women who were victimized by women, and trans persons, but let's not split hairs when we're playing the MR card.

Quote:
The thread was started to deal with sexual assault not all violence but specifically the violence that occurs because our society treats women differently than men and our court system is incapable of providing justice in the vast majority of sexual assault cases.

Again, society doesn't just downplay sexual assault against women. Society downplays sexual assault, regardless of the gender doing the assaulting and the gender being assaulted. There is no debate (at least not from me) that an average/typical women is more likely to be affected by sexual assault than an average/typical man. I also wholly agree that our court system is inadequate when it comes to providing justice in sexual assault cases.

I think what you mean to say, is the thread was meant to discuss sexual assault, not deal with it. Because if you're going to try to actually deal with it...for example, by starting a campaign to convince the majority of people that section 7 of the charter needs to be changed so an accused must take the stand in their own defense - it's not just going to happen for one specific offense.

quizzical

Cody87 wrote:
I find it immensely ironic that I'm having this debate now with you, since my involvement in this thread was started because I decided to call out quizzical for sniping at this statement that you made.

what are you talking about i never snipped about anything how about you stop lying? i made one comment of wow and you call it snipping?

and  i never wowed over anything magoo said. i was wowing over VoD post bottom page 1.

i was amazed at how quickly men can turn it into all about them. like this is some kinda wonderful 'me too' bandwagon to jump on.

Cody87

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
Why address only one race when all can be addressed concurrently?

Because it's not going to be one solution for all problems.  I get that "a rising tide lifts all boats", but if we drill down just a little to what puts black lives at risk and what puts white lives at risk, it's not the same thing and it won't be the same solution "for all".

Well, I personally believe (and this is subjective) that most police murders are a result of the police knowing they can almost certainly get away with it. If you shake that belief, they will be less likely to use unnecessary force, even if their reasons for otherwise killing might be different (racism in the case of black people, and some other factor for white).

Quote:
Both can be addressed by addressing the root cause, which are not based on sex/race.

I'm not convinced of that.  I'm sure that there are some factors that are "race-blind" or "sex-blind", but there are certainly others that aren't.  Even if we were to say that (for example) the root problem is macho, gung-ho cops, is it reasonable to imagine that those cops don't distinguish between a white guy in a suit and a black kid in a hoodie?

Well, the courts are as close to sex blind as can be reasonably hoped. Any indication of sexism and a case will be appealed. The issue in this case is that sexual assault cases do not fit very well with the evidence-based requirements of criminal court.

And regarding your example, obviously race plays a factor. But it's not the only factor, as you inadvertently point out. Would the cops be more likely to shoot a black guy in a suit, or a white kid in a hoodie? The fact that this is harder to answer - you'd actually have to stop and think for a moment and probably we would not all agree - is proof of the racism in the system - but also shows that race is not the only factor. Going back to my first point, ensuring cops actually face consequences if they pull the trigger when they shouldn't is crucial to ensuring that the effect of race is minimized. There will still be cases where a cop genuinely feels more threatened on a subconscious level because of the colour of someone's skin, but I see no solution to this, at least not legislative/procedural ones (cultural, but that takes decades...), but all of the high profile black murders I've seen in the last few years, since Trayvon Martin, have been in cold blood.

Quote:
That's not true of whatever solution we might suggest for getting fewer people -- black or white - shot by excitable cops (or "people" -- female or male -- sexually assaulted).

Maybe. I don't agree, but I suppose it's a matter of opinion. Certainly I have nothing more to say than what I've already said.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Cody87 wrote:

kropotkin1951 wrote:

If you want to contribute ideas about changes that will not only help women but will also help men no one will complain.

I doubt that.

You'll never know until you try. First try going back up to my opening post and see that it is about sexual assault and doesn't exclude anyone. You are the one who is bringing your own lens to the table.

I have said in a number of posts that my preferred system would resemble a human rights tribunal. Do you have a problem with that idea and if you do what is the problem? I also floated a change to allow the Crown to call the accused but after listening to others posters I stepped back from that idea. That is what discourse looks like. Please give it try you might just find you like it.

Paladin1

Mr. Magoo wrote:

I'm not here to tell anyone how to tweet, but I would guess that #hispaniclivesmatter might get some traction down south, and #nativelivesmatter might get some traction up here.  Just have to actually name them is all.

I've never tweeted lol Still not sure I understand the premise of twitter. Anyhow I like the idea of some kind of #nativelivesmatter. There always seems to be so much negativity and hostility towards natives on SM.  I think this almost instrisnic hostility probably contributes towards the lack of empathy for First nations victims of sexual assault?

Paladin1

kropotkin1951 wrote:

 I also floated a change to allow the Crown to call the accused but after listening to others posters I stepped back from that idea. That is what discourse looks like. Please give it try you might just find you like it.

 

So at present the accused can say no to being put on the stand?

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Paladin1 wrote:

kropotkin1951 wrote:

 I also floated a change to allow the Crown to call the accused but after listening to others posters I stepped back from that idea. That is what discourse looks like. Please give it try you might just find you like it.

So at present the accused can say no to being put on the stand?

In all criminal cases the accused has the right to remain silent and that includes the right not to take the stand as a witness.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Here is an example of why we need to change the way the justice system deals with sexual assault.

Quote:

Four University of Victoria students came forward to Saanich Police in February saying they had been sexually assaulted by a student they knew well.

Saanich Police arrested a male student and recommended five charges against him.

He was set to appear in court Thursday but Crown Counsel announced there was insufficient evidence to proceed with charges.

“We have to be satisfied that there’s a substantial likelihood of a conviction before charges can proceed,” said Dan McLaughlin, communications counsel for the B.C. Criminal Justice Branch.

And in sexual assault cases he said that means considering the defence.

“Those defences include the defence of consent and the defence of honest but mistaken belief of consent, the crown must be in a position to disprove those defences beyond a reasonable doubt,” said McLaughlin.

CHEK News spoke with a group of young women on campus to hear how they thought the outcome of this case would impact students.

“You can’t really come forward because you don’t think you’re going to be taken seriously and that’s a really dangerous mindset to have,” said first year student Lauren Maddock.

http://www.cheknews.ca/161893-161893/

Misfit Misfit's picture

Sounds like Rhetaeh Parsons mentality happening all over again.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

This isn't a spelling flame, but it's "Rehtaeh".  If you want to get it right every time, it's clearly just "Heather" spelled backward.

Misfit Misfit's picture

Thx Magoo. And would you believe that I spelled it wrong immediately after looking it up so that I would get it right?

Pondering

Even though Ghomeshi hasn't been convicted yet he does stand convicted in the court of public opinion. In the case Kropotkin cited I bet the campus is on the side of the women. Those dental students from Dalhousie suffered for their misogyny. Perhaps not enough, but enough I think to make many men think twice about how they treat the women around them. Ghomeshi is paying big time. He must be spending a small fortune on his legal defence and he is no longer earning.

I am heartened by the number of women coming forward and refusing to be shamed.

Paladin1

Left Turn wrote:

 Which is what happened in the Ghomeshi case.

 

How was lying under oath irrelevant?

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Paladin1 wrote:

Left Turn wrote:

 Which is what happened in the Ghomeshi case.

How was lying under oath irrelevant?

This thread is about how to improve our laws not a place to go over and over the Ghomeshi case. So if you want to beat that dead horse some more feel free to open a new thread and flay away in it.

Slumberjack

Cody87 wrote:
Okay, just to clarify - I know that I have to argue from specifically a pro-feminist point of view. As in, how to promote feminist ideals. I thought that's what I was doing?

Here's the deal Cody87.  As fathers, spouses, friends, neighbors, activists and what not, when we're being called rape culture supporters, misogynists, loyal subjects of the patriarchy, woman bashers, etc, by a few idiots and trolls that hold sway here [you know who you are], we're supposed to shut up about it and not complain.  Because complaining about it somehow just reinforces all of the things we're being accused of, according to the name callers.  Complaining about it will get your complaints about it called shit.  One is not going to be validated by complaining in some misguided effort to have the abuse and harassment stop, because the very act of complaining apparently makes one even more of a rape culture supporter, which is fully deserving of abuse and harassment so the logic goes.  It would take a crack team of Kafka experts to pen the rules that are being flung at us, but there it is, and they like it that way.  It's their power and they're going to wield it, and they have the support of the moderators, who enjoy it  as well.  Because complaining about harassment and abuse is a demonstration of privilege don't you know, which begats even more harassment and more abuse from the staff who work here.

MegB

Slumberjack, you are banned from the feminist forum. If you come back you will be suspended. Cody87, you are responsible for educating yourself about what a pro-feminist perspective is. No one here has to explain it to you. I strongly suggest you stop posting in this thread in particular and the feminist forum in general.

Slumberjack

As I said, I'll post where I want until I am unable to.  You don't intimidate me at all with your continuing support for harassment and abuse of posters the way it's been going on around here without let up.

MegB

Congratulations. You're unable to.

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Cody87 wrote:

There are other groups of victims that this flaw impacts, and it is not anti-feminist to suggest that a proposed solution should consider how other oppressed groups would react and that it might be better to include them, both for a greater base of support and also so families of murder victims, for example, don't start competing instead of collaborating. It wasn't even me who originally pointed this out - two or three others did before I. 

So what is the solution that you are presenting. I am still waiting to hear it. No one has said you can't talk about solutions that apply to all people. Go ahead lets hear it or do you just like to whine about how oppressed you are?

quizzical

kropotkin1951 wrote:
Cody87 wrote:
There are other groups of victims that this flaw impacts, and it is not anti-feminist to suggest that a proposed solution should consider how other oppressed groups would react and that it might be better to include them, both for a greater base of support and also so families of murder victims, for example, don't start competing instead of collaborating. It wasn't even me who originally pointed this out - two or three others did before I. 

So what is the solution that you are presenting. I am still waiting to hear it. No one has said you can't talk about solutions that apply to all people. Go ahead lets hear it or do you just like to whine about how oppressed you are?

i'm gonna go with the latter

lagatta

I'm a socialist or marxist feminist, and specifically an ecosocialist feminist.

However, I do NOT agree with this part of the statement Cody quoted (who is the quote from?)

In any case, Marxist feminism demonstrates that it is possible to seek a solution to benefit feminism without addressing the plight of women specifically. If you eliminate capitalism, it will at least reduce the oppression faced by women - by proxy, so to speak. Further, the synopsis I quoted above points out that privilege inhibits the oppressed from working together to overthrow the oppressors.

Unfortunately, many revolutions (Marxist and otherwise) draw upon women and our oppression as a motor force, along with oppressions of specific racial, religious or other human groups, and then Thermidor leaves us in the lurch. It is essential for women, racialised people, LGBT people and others facing specific oppressions to be able to organise autonomously to defend their rights. This is NOT counter-revolutionary; it is needed to ensure that the revolution fulfils its promises.

Cody87

lagatta wrote:

I'm a socialist or marxist feminist, and specifically an ecosocialist feminist.

However, I do NOT agree with this part of the statement Cody quoted (who is the quote from?)

In any case, Marxist feminism demonstrates that it is possible to seek a solution to benefit feminism without addressing the plight of women specifically. If you eliminate capitalism, it will at least reduce the oppression faced by women - by proxy, so to speak. Further, the synopsis I quoted above points out that privilege inhibits the oppressed from working together to overthrow the oppressors.

Unfortunately, many revolutions (Marxist and otherwise) draw upon women and our oppression as a motor force, along with oppressions of specific racial, religious or other human groups, and then Thermidor leaves us in the lurch. It is essential for women, racialised people, LGBT people and others facing specific oppressions to be able to organise autonomously to defend their rights. This is NOT counter-revolutionary; it is needed to ensure that the revolution fulfils its promises.

That part was my words. But, I should have been more clear that there are oppressions which are faced uniquely by women, such as institutionalized sexism. This is why I don't fully agree with Marxist feminism - some things do require a woman-centric focus. However, what I mean to say (and I will go back and edit my previous post to make this more clear), was that some of the issues facing women are not unique to women (such as the situation we have the courts right now), and for these sorts of issues a woman-centric focus is not necessary to resolve the issue, as long as the issue gets resolved.

To flip this in reverse, homelessness disproportionately affects men. (Boo hoo) But it also affects women, just not as many women. I don't advocate for ending homelessness for men, I advocate for ending homelessness. (Although, the root of the issue is poverty so you could take the battle there, too). There is no reason to exclude women. Homelessness is the issue. You don't identify an issue and then exclude all the groups who are affected by it less and only solve it for the worst-affected group.

Cody87

Double post. I was wondering how that happened.

Cody87

Marxist feminists are feminists who ally themselves with the philosophical and economic theories of Karl Marx, who discovered the economic laws underlying capitalism and wrote about them in his masterpiece, Capital. In this and other works, Marx and his lifelong collaborator Frederick Engels laid the foundations of Marxist economics, the philosophical concept of dialectical materialism, and the method of social analysis known as historical materialism.

Marx showed how the working class is exploited for profit by capitalists, who gain wealth by paying workers a bare minimum of the value they produce. Marxist feminists view the capitalist drive for profits as responsible for women's second-class status and other forms of oppression such as racism and homophobia. Prejudice and privilege also aid the ruling class by inhibiting workers from organizing together. Women workers are exploited at a higher level than males, with women of color suffering the highest degree of exploitation because of gender and race discrimination....

Marxist feminism is essentially the same as socialist feminism and materialist feminism, though some academics have defined the terms in ways that construe differences.

(emphasis mine)

There is an entire branch of feminism (marxist/socialist/materialist) which believes that the oppression of women (and other oppressed groups) can only be eliminated if you tackle the root cause. Marxist feminism believes that in order to eliminate the oppression of women, the battle must actually be taken to capitalism because, the theory goes, capitalism is the root cause of the power systems that cause the oppression.

A common refrain I've seen is that "women were oppressed before capitalism." My response to that is: Because of religion.

In any case, Marxist feminism demonstrates that it is possible to seek a solution to benefit feminism without addressing the plight of women specifically. If you eliminate capitalism, it will at least reduce the oppression faced by women - by proxy, so to speak. Further, the synopsis I quoted above points out that privilege inhibits the oppressed from working together to overthrow the oppressors.

ETA:

lagatta wrote:

I'm a socialist or marxist feminist, and specifically an ecosocialist feminist.

However, I do NOT agree with this part of the statement [by Cody]

In any case, Marxist feminism demonstrates that it is possible to seek a solution to benefit feminism without addressing the plight of women specifically.

(snip)

I should have been more clear that there are oppressions which are faced uniquely by women, such as institutionalized sexism. This is why I don't fully agree with Marxist feminism - some things do require a woman-centric focus. However, what I mean to say was that some of the issues facing women are not unique to women (such as the situation we have the courts right now), and for these sorts of issues a woman-centric focus is not necessary to resolve the issue, as long as the issue gets resolved.

To flip this in reverse, homelessness disproportionately affects men. (Boo hoo) But it also affects women, just not as many women. I don't advocate for ending homelessness for men, I advocate for ending homelessness. (Although, the root of the issue is poverty so you could take the battle there, too). There is no reason to exclude women. Homelessness is the issue. You don't identify an issue and then exclude all the groups who are affected by it less and only solve it for the worst-affected group. (End Edit.)

In the same line of thinking, it is not anti-feminist to suggest that even if feminists only care about sexual assault of men against women, the best course of action to actually effect change would be to work with the other groups who are oppressed in a similar way to fix the underlying issues.

If the relevance isn't obvious by now, this thread was started to address the issue of the courts not being well suited to meet the burden of proof required for a convinction in cases where the only evidence is witness testimonies, like sexual assault. There are other groups of victims that this flaw impacts, and it is not anti-feminist to suggest that a proposed solution should consider how other oppressed groups would react and that it might be better to include them, both for a greater base of support and also so families of murder victims, for example, don't start competing instead of collaborating. It wasn't even me who originally pointed this out - two or three others did before I. 

Babble's version of feminism: "Helping our particular preferred type of victim, and not one person more." What a joke.

I'm done posting here. Enjoy your echo chamber, and may never a new idea disrupt the peace.

Cody87

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Cody87 wrote:

There are other groups of victims that this flaw impacts, and it is not anti-feminist to suggest that a proposed solution should consider how other oppressed groups would react and that it might be better to include them, both for a greater base of support and also so families of murder victims, for example, don't start competing instead of collaborating. It wasn't even me who originally pointed this out - two or three others did before I. 

So what is the solution that you are presenting. I am still waiting to hear it. No one has said you can't talk about solutions that apply to all people. Go ahead lets hear it or do you just like to whine about how oppressed you are?

MegB wrote:

c) You aren't aruguing from a pro-feminist point of view. Get with the program or get out.

MegB wrote:

Cody87, you are responsible for educating yourself about what a pro-feminist perspective is. No one here has to explain it to you. I strongly suggest you stop posting in this thread in particular and the feminist forum in general.

Actually, not only are you wrong, but I have specifically been told I can't by a mod.

pookie

You have strange approach to flouncing, Cody87.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

pookie wrote:

You have strange approach to flouncing, Cody87.

He is doing the flip flopping flounce. Its a very a common dance on babble. Strangely he still has not provided a single idea to fix the system he continues to only whine, "what about men."  Whining what about men is not feminist discourse providing actual ideas that apply to everyone can be. That is the point I keep trying to make with him. Neither my ill considered change to allow the calling of the defendant as a witness nor my human rights proposal necessarily exclude male victims so I know that it is acceptable discourse.

oldgoat

I haven't read all the above posts, and of those I have read some I'd be happy if i hadn't but anyway...    i'll preface this by saying that as a male victim/survivor, I would not pretend for a second that this was anything other than a feminist issue.  As patriarchy and the sense of entitlement which perpetrators have is destroyed the world becomes better for all.

Now, I had a couple of thoughts regarding what I think may be the original spirit of the thread.  There exist specialized courts, specifically mental health courts and addictions courts, which while recognizing that there has been a crime, there are unique features to the case which require certain accomodations, procedural modifications and training of judges, crown and defending lawyers.  These are held by pretty much all involved to lead to better outcomes.

I think sexual assault cases pass the test of being sufficiently unique in how evidence is presented and understood, and the unique position of the accused vis the defendant would merit certain accomodations and modifications. So basically I'm suggesting specialised courts.  I do not mean to suggest we abandon the principle of presumption of innocence btw.  How traumatization affects the victim, who is also often the only witness needs to be much more clearly understood in order to get any worthwhile testimony. this may involve special training by all involved as well as modifications to how the victim is treated in this adversarial process. Otherwise we have the status quo where the defendant usually walks, and more often the system is a huge disincentive to reporting in the first place.

This is a bit of a work in progress in my head, but I thought I'd throw it out there

 

mark_alfred
Unionist

Probably doesn't belong here, but the main Ghomeshi thread was closed:

[url=http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2016/04/18/why-jian-ghomeshi-accuser-wan... Jian Ghomeshi accuser wants you to know her name[/url]

Quote:

After Justice William B. Horkins delivered his verdict, pronouncing Jian Ghomeshi not guilty on all counts, Linda Christina Redgrave rushed to the witness assistance room and screamed in rage.

She was livid — not that Ghomeshi had been acquitted, but at how the judge had torn into her and the other two witnesses as inconsistent, unreliable and “careless with the truth.”

Redgrave had been “exposed” during cross-examination, he said, “as a witness willing to withhold relevant information from the police, from the Crown and from the Court.”

“He indirectly called us liars, like ‘You naughty girls, what were you thinking? Go back to your rooms. You wasted our time,’” she said during an interview at a coffee shop recently. “How dare he be so condescending. He could have come to the ‘not guilty’ in a much more respectful way to women. He’s not just talking to us, he’s talking to all survivors of sexual abuse.”

It hardened her resolve to campaign to change the legal system for sexual assault victims. To do that, she decided to get the publication ban on her name lifted, which Horkins did in court.

quizzical

Quote:
Jian Ghomeshi may not face second trial 

Sources say that after much discussion between both sides it is likely to be resolved by way of a section 810 peace bond, meaning that Ghomeshi will have no criminal record but he will have to follow certain conditions, including staying away from the complainant, sources say.

Peace bonds typically last one year.

Sources say that on Wednesday at Old City Hall courthouse, Crown attorney Michael Callaghan will read out the allegations related to the charge laid by Toronto police. Following that, Ghomeshi will make a statement to court.

 

6079_Smith_W

Off topic, but I guess we don't need a new "Ghomeshi Trial" thread for this:

http://www.vice.com/en_ca/read/jian-ghomeshi-apologizes-to-former-collea...

 

Quote:

Outside the courthouse, Borel told dozens of reporters she thought a peace bond with an apology "seemed like the clearest path to the truth."

Note that she did not say "justice", but "the truth". He is on record admitting what he did. As to whether that is better than taking the gamble of going to court and see him possibly walk with no admission, who can say?

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

I listened to her this morning and she changed my mind over whether it was a good thing or not. I now think that her decision was likely the best outcome available to her.  It has now been proven that Ghomeshi sexually assaulted this woman. It feels really good to be able to say he sexually assaulted this woman and not have any misogynist claiming he said it didn't happen so you can't say that until it is proven.

If this asshole had any money his apoogy and admission would help in a civil suit by either her or other women who were assaulted by him. She was a CBC employee and depending on when the corp knew about his sexual assaults of women in relation to when he assaulted her it could mean she has a case against the CBC as well.

Unionist

Speaking of assholes - the Crown in this case was the same Callaghan who blew the other cases all to hell - whether out of incompetence, or lack of resources, or just plain not giving a shit. My opinion: All three.

In case there's any remaining doubt on that score, read the shameless ignorant statement made by Callaghan to the court. And, if you like, compare it to the public statement of the victim in this case.

Besides looking for broader means of resolution and justice for sexual harassment and assault cases, we as a society should be instructing our prosecutorial services to treat victims (I mean "complainants") with respect, with assistance, with support, and with an aim to getting the perps convicted as charged.

 

Misfit Misfit's picture

I know that there are gender sensitivity training and sexual assault training seminars for judges and crown prosecutors, but are they compulsory? And if not, then why not?

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

If anyone thought that Christie Blatchford had any credibility left this should dispel them of this ridiculous notion.

Quote:

You wrote "I’m guessing (and only guessing) your interview with Borel may have had something to do with the Crown agreeing to withdraw the charge against Ghomeshi."

You were guessing wrong. As has been reported elsewhere, it was Marie Henein who came to the Crown peddling an apology from Jian Ghomeshi.

I've heard that this offer followed an earlier overture from Henein to Borel. It seems Ghomeshi was willing to pay Borel to drop the charges. Borel refused.

In other words, it was Henein who had the witness with a credibility problem (there was after all witness to the alleged abuse) and it's a fact that it was Henein who pushed the apology deal.

I would have gladly provided you this context if you'd taken me up on my offer to speak off the record. Much of your reporting on this story has relied on off-the-record sourcing, so it's curious to me that you wouldn't even hear the information I had for you. You were willing to report information from others.

If we had spoken, you might have thought twice about running a piece with this speculative headline:

"Is Ghomeshi complaint being dropped over credibility issues?"

The answer is no.

http://canadalandshow.com/article/open-response-christie-blatchfords-req...

 

Misfit Misfit's picture

Highly Recommended!!! Please read the entire Canadaland piece in post #148. Including Christie Blatchford's disgusting article impulsively submitted in the National Post. Wow!!! Thank you Krop.

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