There’s a reason we use juries in trials. It is to make sure that there’s a group of people involved who use the common sense and basic values of the society in general in deciding guilt or not.
Oh, sure, that’s not what we’re all told it’s about but the true aim really is jury nullification. Which is just the posh name for the blokess in the street saying “But that’s not criminal!”
Historically it’s simply amazing the number of people convicted of theft up to the value of four shillings and 11 pence. For theft over the value of five shillings carried a death sentence and it was the jury who decided upon the value of the goods stolen. Peeps were going yeah, sure, bang to rights, but not worth hanging them for it. You know, whatever the actual facts.
In more modern times we have differing definitions of what is rape. No, let’s not go there with what they are – accept that there are some campaigners whose view of what constitutes that crime is rather more expansive than that of the society in general. It’s juries who get to decide what it actually is though – thus the insistence by some of those campaigners that we should no longer use juries in rape trials. To make sure that the elite definition prevails, not the commonplace one.
Which brings us to the rough sex defence:
Senior lawyers and women’s organisations have condemned the increasing use of “rough sex gone wrong” as a courtroom defence to the murder of women and called for a change to the law in the UK.
The thing is, do sex games ever go wrong? We can prove they do, yes, all those terribly amusing cases of men hanging themselves, sometimes with an orange stuck in their gob. So, sex games do sometimes go wrong – the defence must be available. Who gets to decide? The jury:
According to the campaign group We Can’t Consent to This, in the past decade 30 women and girls have been killed in what was claimed to have been consensual violent sexual activity in the UK.
Of those, 17 resulted in men being convicted of murder, nine led to manslaughter convictions and two ended in acquittals.
They seem to be doing a pretty good job of it too.
The real thing that’s being complained about here is that the common people are getting to decide whether the defence is valid or not, by those standards of those common people. This just doesn’t match up with the insistences of those who would rule us. But then that’s also the very point of the system itself. We get to decide, in the end, what is actually a crime, not them.