Weekly Round-Up and Open Thread #2

by Philippa Willitts // 9 August 2010, 10:29

Tags: Weekly round-up

Each week there are things which we would love to blog about, but which pass us by. So, here is a weekly round-up of things we wanted to share. If there are things you want to add, consider this an open thread to add items of interest or chat with other feminists.


So, what else did we miss?

Comments From You

sianushka // Posted 09 August 2010 at 11:05

that 18 month sentence is unbelievable. 18 months! i cannot believe what the judge said. there was no evidence of violence? just murder then.
i don't give a fuck if he was successful, well heeled gentleman with a good career. he killed his wife, over the roast.

sometimes it all feels so hopeless.

Josie // Posted 09 August 2010 at 11:29

Sianushka, I completely agree. I could not believe my eyes last week, reading the judge's words in the newspaper. 18 months for a woman's life is completely indefensible.
The judge's words and attitude remind me of what Sean Connery is alleged to have said to George Best after Best was accused of being violent to his partner - along the lines of 'don't worry mate, we all give the wife a few slaps now and then'. It really feels like we're living in a great big boy's club sometimes. So depressing. I shudder to think what that poor woman must have been through in all the years she was living with the sort of monster who would punch someone out over a ****ing roast dinner

angercanbepower // Posted 09 August 2010 at 13:16

My god:

The judge added: “It is an important feature of this case that the argument arose very quickly and in your own home.

Words fail me.

Laurel Dearing // Posted 09 August 2010 at 15:57

did you HAVE to show that telegraph article? the comments were painful at best

Katy // Posted 09 August 2010 at 16:54

So if I snuffed a misogynist I'd only get 18 months? Wahoo.

Oh wait... Women deserve it. If I did the same it'd be, 'irrational insane woman lashed out over ironic sexist sentence - led to great man's terrible death. Recieves life.'

This was clearly violence against a woman turned into murder

What angers me is how no one actually stands up against this. No one fights against the pathetic boys club even in this great age of communication. Just mumblings on a blog, great.

Sarah Learmonth // Posted 09 August 2010 at 17:21

This is a Coventry story and I'm writing to the local papers to express our feelings as a Rape Crisis Centre working in the city on what message this sends out to the population.

I've got to get the copy in by tomorrow morning. Anything specifically you think I should say? unfortunately no swearing.

Katy // Posted 09 August 2010 at 19:03

'It really feels like we're living in a great big boy's club sometimes.'

I feel uncomfortable around this 'boys club' saying because it's not harsh enough and adds comedic to describe things - where a woman is murdered and her male murderer gets 18 months. That isn't a boys club it's a patriarchy at its most tragic. Women genuinely seen as annoying pieces of meat, fun and excusable to kill.

This woman now has no life because of her husband getting angry over a roast! And the judge laughs. barbaric...

Men will think it's worse to do heroine than kill the wife if she's annoying. One is more socially acceptable ( killing the wife). The message it sends is that women deserve murder and this sentence will encourage more men to kill women. They get away with murdering us in this woman hating country, like in other woman hating countries in the middle east, as well as raping and beating us.

DE // Posted 09 August 2010 at 22:59

Even from the brief account of this case given in the blog, the Jury did not find this man guilty of murder, so it must have been a conviction of manslaughter.

The blow is described as 'moderate' - although it is not known from the piece, how the Jury came to believe and accept this. But this must have been crucial in the trial, as the law is that if you hit a person with the intent to wound or cause 'grevious bodily harm' AND that person dies, then that is murder.

At the end of the day - you weren't there to hear the evidence, the Judge & the jury were.

Katy // Posted 09 August 2010 at 23:43

How can a blow be 'moderate' when it kills her? Hahaha. The blow caused death... and there wasn't mention of any prelying brain damage.

Also, using 'at the end of the day' kinda invalidates your comment. 'At the end of the day, life is life, nothing is gonna change (like my misogyny) so get used to it.' hate that idiotic saying.

Katherine // Posted 10 August 2010 at 01:42

"At the end of the day - you weren't there to hear the evidence, the Judge & the jury were."

He self confessedly *hit his wife* (and hard enough that it would, even under more favourable circumstances, have caused a bruise) because of a trivial argument over her burning his dinner. That doesn't sound like the act of a loving, respectable and formerly non-abusive man to me. The judge's view of what constitutes respectability clearly has more to do with what class/age someone is (none of that "yobbish" public violence like what those nasty young hoodies do) than their actions. I am tempted to launch into a lengthy discourse on the 'privatisation' of various forms of violence against women - rape is always caused by a misunderstanding or a freakish, aberrent monster leaping out at some silly young girl walking home in a miniskirt, domestic violence happens because women have low self-esteem/ enjoy abuse and individual men just lose their rag,- but sometimes, reading about these things just knocks the will out of me.

sianushka // Posted 10 August 2010 at 09:03

DE - even if the blow was 'moderate' (and we don't know what moderate means...) it still is unacceptable to hit someone over the head for any reason. lets not get into the semantics. whether he meant to kill her or not, he still hit her. he still committed a violent act, and an 18 month sentence is not good enough. the charge was obviously manslaughter, but the judge's comments 'excuse' it as being domestic and private. from his comments, we are led to understand a harsher sentence may have been handed down if it was outside against a stranger!

your comment is really disrespectful. he should never have hit her, moderately or whatever. when you hit someone on the head, you risk them dying. when you hit someone anywhere, you are breaking the law.

Katy - a lot of people are doing more than 'mumbling on a blog' to tackle violence against women. and mumbling on a blog is a powerful stand in itself - it's showing that we are not taking this shit lying down, we are speaking out, being heard. we are getting a story publicity that wasn't in the news. it really annoys me when people write 'no one is doing anything about it because they are on a blog' - the two are not mutually exclusive!

Josie // Posted 10 August 2010 at 09:38

Katy, I made the 'boys club' comment and I stand by it - I did not intend it in any way to be comedic and I feel I made that clear in my following comments.
'...mumbling on a blog is a powerful stand in itself - it shows we are not taking this shit lying down...' - well said Sianushka

cim // Posted 10 August 2010 at 12:22

This BBC article describes a case where someone gets 6 years for manslaughter in a similar "one punch" case, with the questioning of the sentence being from the "is this too lenient" end (and notes that Ridley's decision to plead guilty probably reduced his sentence to the 6 years given).
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-10852764

Certainly consideration of mitigating and aggravating circumstances should be done, but I find it hard to believe - since a defence of self-defence was rejected by the jury - that there were sufficient mitigating circumstances in this case to remove 3/4 of the sentence.

Katy // Posted 10 August 2010 at 14:59

I was talking about the way I'd used the term too josie- we should consider these things (maybe even breathe) before jumping on each others bones.

Talk about hostility over my feminist comments from other feminists! No one solves anything by shouting from a corner. It's not the fact it's just a blog we're shouting from - but if we can't be respectful towards each other, than my points just as relevant.

I refuse to be part of a movement where the women involved have a thinly veiled hatred of feminists and themselves.
People can't look to justice without getting ideas from a warped society.

This is a general comment for the thread :We can't model feminism on any other left movement. Because left movements are modelled on hatred of women. They're modelled on prioritising women last. The only thing we can model feminism on is 'heart', 'head' and being ourselves.

Josie // Posted 10 August 2010 at 18:33

Katy - you used a quote from my comment at the top of yours, so it's hardly unreasonable for me to assume that your comments were directed at me. I don't see anything disrespectful in my response, I was merely defending my use of language. There's nothing unfeminist about that, so please don't play the 'bad feminist' card. And the only 'thinly veiled hatred' I see on here is directed towards the judge in the domestic violence murder story.

Philippa Willitts // Posted 10 August 2010 at 18:37

I'm not going to publish any more comments discussing this hostility.

Lindsey // Posted 11 August 2010 at 15:03

Really awesome collection of links :)

Elmo // Posted 11 August 2010 at 18:48

Hey, that cycling blog is amazing, love it! Especially photo of pepetrator-women should not feel scared to do this. Well done dawn!

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