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Impunity

March 6, 2013

She is married to a French diplomat, pregnant with their third child, and living in India. Her 3 year old daughter complains of pain in her genital area. She takes her to the doctor and the doctor tells her that her daughter has been raped. She finds out it is her husband. She discovers later that it started when she was 2.

She goes to the police to register her husband. No response. She presses them until they finally register the complaint. He is in jail, but pays off the police and is released. He is a diplomat and the French authorities protect him.

She is trying to have him convicted, to get justice for her daughter. This story is long, involved, and painful to listen to.

The father is Pascal Mazurier. Some articles cover the story as a diplomatic immunity legal issue, rather than taking the view that this is a horrific crime and the perpetrator should be in jail. In fact, the president of France has met with the lawyers of the husband but not for the wife and daughter. Do they not matter?

Read more at: http://news.oneindia.in/2013/02/14/mazurier-case-french-president-bows-to-suja-jones-1150285.html

Impunity for sexual violence against women is the norm. It is now in the courts, only because of the brave persistence of this woman trying to get justice. And with the help and support of various organizations such as the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women. CATW

Impunity for sexual violence is embedded in all cultures. We have it here. Elliot Spitzer. No Federal law against buying sex, but selling sex is a crime.

Lisa Williams relayed a story that a 10 year old girl in shackles was arrested for prostitution. Really? Are we that barbaric?

When I was younger and first understood what prostitution was, I naively assumed that buying sex was as much of a crime as selling sex. It was really beyond my comprehension that only the woman would be the criminal. How can that even make sense?

In a session yesterday, one speaker talked about the revolutionary idea, called the Nordic model whereby the buyer of sex – lets not soften the language here – the buyer of another person is a crime. It surprised me that she used the word revolutionary. Isn’t it obvious that the buyer should be a criminal?

From the CATW web site on Norway.

NORWAY
The Women’s Front is an independent women’s organization in Norway, founded in 1972. It is a radical feminist organization, working against all forms of oppression experienced by women and girls in a society dominated by men: economical, social, political, legal and cultural oppression. The organization has been active in the struggle against prostitution for thirty years. In 2009, Norway joined Sweden in passing ground- breaking legislation, the world’s first law to recognize prostitution as violence against women and a violation of human rights. The Nordic Model criminalizes the purchase of commercial sex and offers women and children an exit strategy.

Can we change our laws here? I believe California does have laws on the books for criminalizing the buyer, but are they enforced? Are they severe enough to deter it?

CATW said that making buying a crime severely curtails prostitution and trafficking. Is that the case for California?

What about the bucolic Poconos? Here is an article of some developments there. Keep in mind that where you see red neon signs advertising “massage,” trafficked women or children (most likely girls) are there.

article here

The speakers at CSW yesterday did not mince words: it is a war on women.

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