What if the Victims were white…

I go back to Harron Monis Man , our wannabe terrorist – The Martin Place Siege –  who succeeded in only exposing himself as a psychopathic misogynist. What does misogyny have to do with this you ask? The Sydney Morning Herald reported that Monis “was before the courts on two separate and serious matters: more than 40 sexual assault charges involving seven alleged victims; and as an accessory to the murder of his former wife.”

This manipulator of nine women, one of whom is a murdered wife and the other a complicit suspected murdering girlfriend was let out on bail, into the public, because our judicial system allowed him to be out and about until proven guilty. Forty sexual charges and the murder of a wife later, things looked dire for Harron and the siege was his desperate attempt to sidetrack the issue.

Now, how different would the story had been if this man had been remanded in custody.

Another hypothetical: how different would it have been if the victims were white…

Dangerous if not subversive line of thinking. We only need to remember the Skaff brothers and the gang rae to remember the hysteria that ensued from that case, and rightly so. Where was the hysteria for these 40 victims though?

Speaking to a family friend of mine who is a superintendent police officer in one of Sydney’s busy police stations, Officer Harrison (not his real name) voiced my very concern; how different would it all have been if the women were not of an ethnic minority? He also shared his frustration at how the judicial system continues to derail and complicate police investigations when it comes to violence against women.

“It should be a matter of, you beat a woman up, you go to jail!” He almost shouted this at our group of dinners, “But they let the f@#$ker out so he can rape and kill more people.” Officer Harrison was a very angry cop that night.

In many cases, when things get out of control – as they did with Harron Monis- they cause a whole number of new and sometime dangerous complications, like a siege, an odd number of hostages and two dead.

From the word Rape to Sexual Assault

If the victim and perpetrator of the crime are of the same ethnicity it is not report worthy. Our judicial system has created all sort of judicial complications that have ensured that criminals and violent offenders of any ethnicity, like Harron Monis Man walk out on bail even after his third assault, his fifth “sexual assault”. Even after being accused of accessory to his wife’s murder. Even after his seventh victim? We’ve even allowed our judicial system to change the word rape into its apathetic counterpart, sexual assault. It is easier on the judges ear and in the change of one word society has made the violent experience of rape a clinical legal jargon that communicates nothing of the harrowing ordeal any woman experiences during and after rape.

As such, our judicial system remains complicit in regards to crimes committed against women and the count is reset every year.  Quentin Bryce spoke out on the subject of violence against women, which brought to the fore what many government bodies and the police have been crying out for year.

My concern – as I’ve mentioned before – is one for my gender regardless of colour, religion, headscarf or political ideology or socioeconomic. There is this unspoken rule about violence against women, whether it’s sexual assault/rape, domestic violence against loved ones in the name of “love”, continued verbal and physical attacks on women who choose to wear a scarf or niqab or bikini or nothing. The violent murder of more than 60 women in Australia in 2016. We have managed to accept violence against women in our free society. We sweep it under the carpet and I believe that it is time that we re-examine a society that silently watches as some go out and violate women’s right to walk safely in her own city and be at peace in her own home, amongst her children.

Who Says Violence Against Woman is OK?

If as an individual we can’t make a change, then my question to our collective Australia, who made it fair game; which gutless wounder thinks it’s OK to threaten or attack, rape or bash a women for whatever reason? Time to rethink our masculine construct and perhaps start tearing some of it down. For the masculine is the domain of the feminine and when you think about it, it is women – mothers- who teach our men behaviours and attitudes towards other women. Does that mean that it is possible to teach future generation of men that it is not OK to be violent against women.

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