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Wed Jan 30, 2013, 09:50 AM

Here's why rape happens every 20 minutes in India

by Avaaz Team - posted 23 January 2013 16:15

Nirbhaya (which means fearless in Hindi) was studying physiotherapy and worked long overnight hours at a call centre just to afford school. She was from a poor family, but always hoped to make something better of her life. She was described as one of the brightest students in her classes.

Dangerously out of touch

Under pressure from street protesters and global interest in this case, the government moved to set up a judicial commission to look into tougher laws to protect women from sexual harassment and rape – this is an important first step. But the horrible truth is that what happened to Nirbhaya will happen again. And again. And again. Why? Because too many people in authority continue to blame the victim. Until there's a more fundamental shift in these attitudes, Nirbhaya's story will simply repeat. Here are just a few of the worst examples:

Manohar Lal Sharma, the lawyer representing three of the accused, suggested that Nirbhaya wouldn't have been raped if she were more virtuous:

"Even an underworld don would not like to touch a girl with respect." ..........


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Reply Here's why rape happens every 20 minutes in India (Original post)
polly7 Jan 2013 OP
d_r Jan 2013 #1
polly7 Jan 2013 #2
kdmorris Jan 2013 #6
no_hypocrisy Jan 2013 #3
polly7 Jan 2013 #4
sinkingfeeling Jan 2013 #5

Response to polly7 (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 10:20 AM

1. my God

those comments are horrifying and disgusting. I'm so depressed about the stupidity of our species.

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Response to d_r (Reply #1)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 10:33 AM

2. and the worst comment seems to have come from a woman:

Dr Anita Shukla, a scientist at the Rajmata Vijayaraje Scindia Krishi Vishwa Vidyalaya, blamed Nirbhaya for fighting back when she spoke at a women's empowerment seminar:

"When a group of men intend to rape, they will do it … Had the girl simply surrendered (and not resisted) when surrounded by six men, she would not have lost her intestine.

It doesn't get any more ignorant and backward than that.

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Response to polly7 (Reply #2)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 12:17 PM

6. OMG

Submit to rape to avoid being hurt... then everyone blames you because you "didn't fight back".

This world needs to do some work on attitudes of men AND women concerning sexual assault and rape.

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Response to polly7 (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 10:47 AM

3. Would the pronounced imbalance or ratio of men to women have anything to do with this?

I don't have the numbers, but I'm familiar with the demographics of India where female fetae and infants are eliminated because of their social status and more importantly, their financial burden on their families. The latter is based upon the unlawful but perpetuated custom of paying an exorbitant dowry when/if they marry. (Not that surviving birth, infancy, and marriage is success. Widows have been known to have been pushed into the funeral pyres of their dead husbands by their inlaws who don't want them as . . . wait for it . . . financial burdens.)

With the dominance of males, pervasive misogyny, and frankly, not enough women for men to marry, the society has marginalized women into objects. The government may have laws and lip service, but no policies that end this madness. When women accept their lot like Manohar Lal Sharma (the lawyer), it's survival not unlike that of battered women. They don't dare dream of their nightmare ending. They just pray not to be noticed.

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Response to no_hypocrisy (Reply #3)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 11:05 AM

4. That makes a lot of sense.

I'd never heard that about the widows .... god, how horrible. I guess while it's shocking to read the comments from the lawyer and scientist, it's more understandable considering they too are surviving in such a culture. Almost impossible to even imagine though.

This is from an article I'd read a while ago with an explanation by Vandana Shiva:

And Economic systems influence culture and social values. An economics of commodification creates a culture of commodification, where everything has a price, and nothing has value… The growing culture of rape is a social externality of economic reforms. We need to institutionalize social audits of the neo-liberal policies, which are a central instrument of patriarchy in our times.

There is also an archaic feudalist system; there is the disgraceful caste system, there is religious lunacy: all having a detrimental effect on shaping both social values, and culture.

There is also ignorance, the result of a chronic lack of learning and education, as India is home to the greatest number of illiterate people anywhere on earth.

And there is sexual oppression, associated elsewhere with the 19th century, or much earlier days; there are feudal sexual master-slave relations, extreme prohibitions on sexuality, medieval guilt that religions attach to sexuality, unnatural men to women ratios (result of aborting female fetuses and killing baby-girls); all that adding fuel to already unstable, explosive conditions in the society.

The primary victims of this state of affairs are, of course, Indian women.


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Response to polly7 (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2013, 11:41 AM

5. So why is there a rape in the US every 1.3 minutes?

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