Archive for the ‘ Violence ’ Category

I Don’t Know What To Title This

First, I apologize for the absence. Between dealing with major life changes and preparing for more major life changes, blogging has taken a back seat. Coupled with thoughts about things I don’t even know how to begin thinking about, I’ve been reluctant to write and share.

But here I am.

We’ve all heard the statistics:

In the United States, a woman is raped every six minutes.

One in six American women has been the victim of attempted or completed rape in their lifetime. Globally, one in three women and girls has been beaten or sexually abused.

One in every four or five college aged women will experience attempted or completed rape during their college years.

The depressing statistics could go on and on, with only minor variations according to who is reporting in what year.

Until recently, none of this had ever hit close to home. Sure, I had an acquaintance in my 9th grade American History class that divulged that she had been raped. She was just a classmate though, and “it was a long time ago.”

Clearly there is a lot that could be said here about society and the culture of rape. I want to place that all aside. My question for you is: What someone reveals that they were sexually assaulted, what can you do as a supportive friend or lover? What if it was recent? What if it was in the distant past? What helps? What hurts? Personal anecdotes as well as scientific research are equally appreciated.

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Somali Woman Stoned For Adultery

According to a November 18, 2009 report (that’s today!), a Somali women was stoned for adultery.

And I quote: According to reports from a small village near the town of Wajid… the woman was taken to the public grounds where she was buried up to her waist. She was then stoned to death in front of the crowds on Tuesday afternoon.”

While both she and her boyfriend were found guilty, she, as a married woman was stoned to death. He, as an unmarried man, received 100 lashes. Under al-Shabab’s interpretation of Sharia law, as stated in the article, “anyone who has ever been married – even a divorcee – who has an affair is liable to be found guilty of adultery, punishable by stoning to death,” while “an unmarried person who has sex before marriage is liable to be given 100 lashes.”

I’m not sure if these laws are fairly applied to both men and women, so I can’t automatically call “double standard!” However, it certainly shows the cultural value of marriage within Somalian society. As an outsider, I can’t step in and call for a reevaluation of cultural expectations. However, I think it can be agreed that this article shows the downside of strict religious factions as de facto political leaders.