This brave new world where we are all surveyed from remote cameras is taking longer to arrive than many thought it would. The reason should be obvious enough. We humans are intensely interested in being able to recognise other humans beings. Maybe they’re someone about to attack us, maybe they’re about to offer us food, or sex, or summat. We’re really very interested indeed and we’re descended from hundreds of thousands of years worth of those who were also very interested.…See More
Nor is our rape trial problem because we inhabit a patriarchy, nor even because the underlying problem is purely about consent to an entirely legal activity. It is, obviously enough, legal to have sex – we don’t go around jailing mothers purely on the grounds that they must have bumped uglies at some point. The defining line between rape and not rape is that issue of consent. Yes, of course, non-consent should be a crime, is a crime and will continue to be one.…See More
The police are now being instructed to ask for access to mobile phones and social media history when processing a claim of rape or sexual assault. This is, obviously enough, so that they can trawl through such records for evidence of how the complainant and the accused interacted – if they did at all – before and or after the alleged offence.
Note that it is not required to hand over such. Only that it will be asked for and used if given.…See More
If only we had a conservative government, eh, one that would be able to knock on the head such absurd ideas as having rape trials without a jury. For such would be to railroad the accused in a manner entirely inconsistent with any useful version of civil rights.
Scrapping jury trials for rapes and tougher rules on consent could be considered in a major review announced today by Government into the way sexual violence against women is investigated and prosecuted.
That Cardinal Pell has been convicted of child abuse we now all know. We didn’t know that he had been convicted in December as there was a gag order on the reporting of that trial until a second, later, trial was completed. All of which is so far so normal – you can’t report on one in a chain of trials until they’re all done for fear of prejudicing the later trials.
This gets a little more complex when we start to talk about a gag order applying in one legal jurisdiction and yet we’ve the global media reporting on it.…See More
This is distinctly shocking, Betsy DeVos is pushing through rules that will have actual justice, civil liberty, involved with the investigation of sexual allegations on campus. This wasn’t the point at all of all that work done so diligently over the decades. If actual evidence must be presented, if examination of it and witnesses is permissible, then how can political judgements be delivered? Won’t we have to start deciding things upon facts again?
On Friday, following months of anticipation, DeVos released her proposal for how cases of sexual assault and misconduct should be handled, noting that “every survivor of sexual violence must be taken seriously, and every student accused of sexual misconduct must know that guilt is not predetermined.”
While a 60-day public comment period is now in effect before the plan can be finalized, advocates for sexual assault survivors say they’re worried that the guidelines would actually make campuses more dangerous, deter victims from coming forward and put them in traumatizing scenarios.…See More