By now I’m sure you’ve heard about the horrific murder of 17 year old Masa Vukotic just a short distance from her home while walking in a park in the evening. Like everyone that heard about it, I felt absolutely sick to the stomach just thinking about it and heartbroken for her family and friends.

Then I felt a tired, familiar rage come over me as I read what the homicide squad boss Detective Inspector Hughes, from the Victorian Police, had to say. His message was that women are not safe in parks. I don’t think Detective Inspector Hughes is intentionally meaning to blame the victim here. I think he’s probably at a loss.

All too often, we hear of violent criminals committing terrible crimes and soon after it comes to light that they were on bail or had a string of offenses behind them.

Our legal system is letting us down. Our legal system is not keeping us safe. And it is from within one echelon of this system that Detective Inspector Hughes is speaking. They do find and charge criminals but they are just one part of the legal machine. They are tasked with keeping our streets safe but the revolving doors of this legal system lets them out again.

Criminals with histories of violence and sexual violence are walking the streets, free to commit more violent crimes. Look at Adrian Bayley, convicted of the rape and murder of Jill Meagher, with a long history of rape and violence behind him. The man responsible for the Lindt Cafe siege, Man Haron Monis, was on bail after being charged as an accessory to the murder of his ex wife and also had been charged with more than 40 counts of sexual assault. That’s just two examples of many.

I’m sure we all remember the massive changes implemented as a measure against king hit attacks, renamed “coward punches” by the media. These attacks have taken just over 90 lives since the year 2000. In response, there have been changes to laws including 8 year minimum mandatory sentences and huge changes to laws around licensed premises and drinking in Sydney.

Women, however, are still dying and at an increasing rate. Domestic or intimate partner violence rates are now closer to 2 women, every week being killed by a partner or former partner. Sexual assaults against Australian women by perpetrators who are not partners is almost at double the global average rate. Destroy the Joint is again counting dead women- women killed by violence-  and has 2015’s total at 24 to date. 24 women in less than three months. In 2014 that total was 84 women.  In comparison, “coward punches” claimed 91 lives in over 10 years.

When will women stop being blamed, even inadvertently, for their attacks?

Because even if he didn’t mean to, that’s what Detective Inspector Hughes has done. “Women are not safe in parks.” So a woman who dares walk through the park is placing herself in harms way? Just one of the problems with that mindset is the fact that women are statistically most at risk in their own homes from their own partners or ex partners. Which is it? Don’t go outside, you risk being attacked? Or is it Don’t stay home, you risk being attacked?

For the record, if someone assaults you, in any way, shape or form- it is not your fault. Not one fucking bit. Your clothes aren’t the cause of assault. What you drink or where you walk is not the cause of assault. None of that crap they pin on victims of violent crimes is real- it’s a smokescreen. What causes violence against women is a toxic culture around the way women are viewed and objectified and disadvantaged and dehumanised in so many aspects of our society.

 

The whole situation is utterly fucked. Our whole culture needs to shift. Our lawmakers and legal system need to be able to properly address what is already happening as a part of that cultural shift. We can help address this in the way we raise our boys but it needs to go further than that. Perpetrators of violence against women deserve stronger penalties. Protection orders need to be worth more than the paper they are written on. Governments need to do more than talk and wring their hands and reinstate (and INCREASE)  funding they have cut from refuges and legal services. Laws need to change. And good men need to get on board and be part of the conversation because saying nothing, frankly, is part of the problem.

I’m frustrated and angry at the lack of action. When Thomas Kelly was killed in a by a random punch from a stranger, his family campaigned for a change to the laws around such attacks. His mother, Kathy Kelly, was reported to have said the following after her son’s killer was initially sentenced to a minimum of 4 years in prison:

“How many boys or how many of our children have to die before somebody does something to change these laws to make people accountable for what they do?”

I don’t disagree that something had to be done about one-punch attacks. But I admit, I’m at an absolute loss as to why nothing seems to be being done about violence against women. To paraphrase Kathy Kelly’s simple yet eloquent question:

How many women have to die before somebody does something to change these laws and make people accountable for what they do?

When will violence against women be treated as the national emergency that it is?

 

 

 

Linked up with Calm to Conniption for The Ultimate Rabbit Hole

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  • Completely agree. Not sure what the answer is but just know something has got to change and soon.

  • I have no problem with telling my four daughters to stay safe and be smart. Although it would be nice to say do what you want, you should be able to… it’s not the world we live in. I don’t believe telling women to be smart when walking at night is victim blaming at all. I do believe however the conversation needs to shift towards making our streets safer and keeping violent people incarcerated. The justice system has failed so many times, both with crimes within homes and out on the streets. That is where we need to have reform. It’s long overdue. Too long.

    • Agree with you on reforms- it needs to happen to change the world we live in because we should not have to be told we can’t walk at night. Looking at the stats it feels like we aren’t safe anywhere.

  • It is a sad world we live in when we can’t walk alone late at night. It’s not only women who aren’t safe – it’s men too. A friend of our family was beaten until he was brain damaged on his way home along the Brisbane River late one night. He was hospitalised for years and then passed away. The world seems all too scary and sad for me sometimes and I worry for my children.

    • That’s right. Men are most often victims of violence at the hands of other men. I’m sorry to hear about your family friend- what a sad story, must have been so hard on all involved.

  • I know the statistics yet I get a chill every time I read them. Something has to be done but I worry that it will not be done quick enough, we will lose too many. I will lose many a night when my girls grow up and flee my nest and I feel that all I can do is to teach them to be smart, to protect themselves, to be brave for their friends.

    • I feel we have already lost far too many. What you’re teaching your girls is so important- especially being brave. We all need a brave friend. I know I have done.

  • JM Peace

    I don’t think the Govt knows where to start on this one. So they’re doing very little. Completely agree that sentencing is manifestly inadequate and it makes my stomach churn every time I find out the past history of most of these extremely violent offenders.

    • I think community forums would be a good place to start- look at what people are experiencing, what needs to change, what the community thinks and wants. Talk to survivors. And funding resources to cope with it- help women leave abusers, for starters.

  • Brilliant post. King hits were renamed coward punches – let’s rename violence against women as coward violence. Or just violence. And let’s rename domestic violence while we’re at it. Let’s call it, I don’t know, maybe just VIOLENCE.

    • It is violence. Absolutely. I do think it’s important to note the type though- only because it helps identify the patterns and the perpetrators. I think it’s part of a wider problem with the way women are viewed in society- as lesser than men- as it’s this attitude that allows men to dehumanise and therefore victimise women- because we are lesser beings.

    • Hugzilla

      We should call it “dickless wonder violence”

  • mumabulous

    It interesting (in a bad way). I have had a brief looking into this for another post and the statistics show violent crime in Australia has dropped off dramatically over the last 30 years. Random street attacks (as terrible as they are) are a statistical rarity. However domestic violence has remained pretty much steady over the same time and appears to have spiked in recent months. Sadly that’s only the reported cases. As I see it we need a multi-pronged approach to reduce the violence – 1) A influx of funding into the refuge sector – so that women and children can escape the violence and have assistance rebuilding their lives, 2) Programs that help men with anger management – there’s some evidence that these actually make a difference, 3) More serious punishment for offenders, 4) More funding for drug/alcohol rehabilitation because a large chunk of the violence is fueled by substance abuse, 5) A better police response at the coal face. Listen up politicians!

    • Agree with you on all points. The under reporting also applies to street attacks too- random groping, verbal harassment, intimidation and so on. Domestic homicide has increased and it’s really scary. Your approach is bang on- Mumabs for PM, please!

      • Hugzilla

        She got my vote.

  • It’s something that is so crazy and it goes against anything that even resembles logic, violence is violence, abuse is abuse, it doesn’t matter whether it’s inside the home or anywhere else. Bullying, men king hitting…. but women being raped and attacked it our responsibility. WTF? I don’t get it and something else I don’t get is no one does anything about it.

    Now of course I wrote about this yesterday and it’s been on my mind since the forum, yesterday I remembered a time when I was beaten by my ex in front of about 3 of his male friends, l ranging in ages… not ONE helped or even asked if I was OK. They ALL just watched a 19 year old girl be BEATEN, punched in face repeatedly and thrown from room to room. What the fuck is that???

    Great article chick, really well said xxx

    • Thanks Renee. I’d like to say I can’t believe they stood by- but actually, I can. How awful is that. I’m so sorry you experienced that and it just adds to how frustrating it is- it’s such a common experience and yet- nothing is changing.

  • You already know that I agree with every single word you’ve said here. I was disappointed too when I read the quote from the detective — what are we to do? I honestly don’t know how many more women have to die before violence against women will be taken seriously and laws change. It’s awful.

    • I don’t know. I feel kinda disempowered by it all. I don’t know how to fix it unless the govt comes to the party and fast.

  • So true Amy! A friend of mine was raped in her bed by a stranger who entered the house while she slept last year. Should women avoid their beds then? NOT her resonsibilty, and nor is it up to women to not walk in parks alone of an evening, or down busy streets in Melbourne, in the case of Jill Meagher. Adrian Bayley raped sex workers in a a little lane off my street in Elwood years ago, I was shocked to discover, and prowled the very streets that I was confidently walking home alone on every night, a bit tipsy. They were safe streets. There were unsafe men around.

    • Oh your poor friend, that is horrific, truly. That would be shocking to learn- I wouldn’t be able to help wondering how close it was to being me on those same streets.

  • I think ‘utterly fucked’ pretty much sums up the entire situation. x

  • Women should be able to walk through parks whenever they want but I know I would hesitate doing it myself because it’s not safe. It totally was not that woman’s fault she got murdered. It’s so horrific that women are being preyed on no matter what the circumstance or environment. And you are right there are so many cases where the person doing the abuse/ killing should have been put in jail years ago for previous offences. I don’t know how to stop it. There is too much evil and a lot of it against women. It’s wrong and makes me angry too.

    • It’s just so big it seems insurmountable. I think if we keep talking about it, ‘they’ will have to listen. I just hope it’s soon.

  • Natalie @ Our Parallel Connect

    It angers me, it upsets me, it worries me, it disgusts me… I had a bad dream Sunday night that I was attacked and it spooked me against running Monday morning at my usual time. I am angry I didn’t run, I am upset with myself for not running, I am worried they have got to me, and I am disgusted by what little protection the law offers me

    • That sucks. It shouldn’t hold us back but fear is a powerful thing.

  • Hugzilla

    Depressing. Fucking depressing.

  • I think the answer to your final question is when women are viewed as equals and their lives are as important as those of men. We’re not there yet. When you say our whole culture needs a shift, you’re right on the money. I recently completed a domestic violence response training and the statistics, the social attitudes, and government and legal responses really are utterly depressing.

  • I’m sad that I was a statistic, I’m sad that too many people pretended it wasn’t happening to me because “too complicated and awkward”, but mainly I’m angry because many years later, it’s still a huge issue.
    I want to be able to tell my daughter that she has the right to walk wherever she wants at any time, but sadly that is not the reality.

    • It’s a hard thing. You can’t tell them it’s safe to walk- but how do you explain that there’s a chance it’s not safe to have a boyfriend, either?

  • Lisa

    People are just awful to each other in so many ways. I am not sure that tougher laws are going to solve the problem because I think the problems are much deeper, but anything is worth a try. Thanks for keeping this on our minds and pushing for change.

    • Tougher laws are only one facet of the changes needed- it’s a starting point!

  • I think everyone needs to calm the farm about what the detective said, he wasn’t trying to blame her, he was stating a fact that it is not safe for women to go out by themselves at night. This is a sadly a fact. Just ask everyone in South Africa about personal safety, they’ll have a thing or two to say about it. I hope that by the time my daughter is my age society would have changed for the better, but sadly my hopes aren’t high 🙁

    • I agree that he wasn’t trying to blame her- the blame was definitely inadvertent and I’m very sure it wasn’t his intention. It just gets tiring to hear of how women shouldn’t do x, y or z because it’s not safe instead of addressing the reason it’s not safe. The police have their hands tied which is why I think the laws need to change.

  • Oh Amy. I have an 18 year old daughter and every time she leaves the house I cry out, “Be careful!”. But you know what? I say that to my sons as well. To me there seems a need have more awareness of mental illness in our general society. We all need to be on the lookout for people who look like they may be about to lose it and urgently need help. We need to be aware of the marginalised and do something about it before it’s too late. I saw Masa’s father on television when he discovered what had happened to his daughter and my heart broke with his. It’s frightening times for sure.

    • Yes, the poor man- that was gut wrenching to see. I tell my kids the same as you, even when dropping them at the school gate- it’s just in built, isn’t it? I agree more awareness and help are needed- it’s such an enormous problem with so many factors to take into account.

  • TeganMC

    I’m in two minds about this. On one hand I believe that we all have a responsibility for our own personal safety but that is regardless of gender. On the other hand I also believe that more needs to be focused on getting the criminals off the street instead of focusing on the victim. The court system is ridiculously over worked and I don’t think it’s one point that can be shown as the breaking point. There is failures in all of the justice system and put together they equal a dire situation for victims of crime. I’ve been charged and sentenced for what is essentially a violent crime (at least on paper). Yet I was never a risk of harm to anyone but myself, something which even was written in the victim impact statement. I spent two months in jail which I waited for my next court date at which I received bail. My bail conditions included having to check in 3 times a week, every week for 14 months. So what I cannot understand is why men who have been witnessed as physically harming their partner or another woman are allowed to have much less strict bail conditions.

    • I don’t understand how inconsistent it is. Those are strict bail conditions and you also served time- yet I know people charged with actual violent crime who get not so much as a slap on the wrist- a good behaviour bond and nothing more. Makes no sense.

  • Raf

    You’re right that something has to be done. But it’s not violence JUST against women. I’m gutted about the loss of a young 17 year old girl but please don’t make it a gender issue every time something like this happens. It’s very biased and most of people (including yourself) are cherry picking and putting only the stats about female victims. Or in your case, conveniently stats about one punch victims. Why you ask? Because it’s like comparing apples and oranges! You put ALL female victims vs. only tiny part of male victims i.e. one punch murders which skews the perspective in a massive way.

    If you are really into stats, please have a look at this: http://www.aic.gov.au/media_library/publications/facts/2013/facts13.pdf

    Just go to page 15 and have a look at Murder victimisation rates by age group and sex, 2012 (per 100,000 population of that age group and sex). Across all ages male murder victims are over-represented. For the age group 25-44, there are almost 2.5 times (yes correct!) more males killed than females per 100,000 population. Most other groups the males are 1.5 per 100,000 and females are less than 1 per 100,000.

    So unlike you, I’m not going to suggest doing something about male victims. I’m going to suggest doing something to minimize ALL victims, irrespective of age, gender, sexual preference, skin color, religion etc. etc.

    And lastly, the media was overwhelmed with Masa Vukotic’s murder. On the other hand, less than 3 weeks ago there was a murder in Port Augusta where the woman killed her husband. It was on the news for a day and then quietly swept under the rug and forgotten. I don’t think I need to tell you how wrong that is!

    • This post is specifically about violence against women hence why I did not discuss violence against men specifically. Men are not victims of domestic violence or dv related homicide homicide at anywhere near the rate that women are. That does not mean it doesn’t happen but it is not on the same scale. However, stats show that male victims of violence are most often attacked by other males. Pretending it’s not a gender based problem is senseless and does nothing but derail the real conversation.

      • Raf

        Well that is where you and many other’s are wrong. You’re trying to generalize and put all men into one basket. Just because there are some deranged individuals out there that would rape, rob and kill people, you can’t have an excuse to justify publicly attacking all other men (or the majority of them) and proposing “special” types of education that would prevent violence.

        And yes, you did discuss violence against men trying to portray women as victims of murder while saying that male victims from one punch attacks have about the same number in 10 years compared to women murdered in 1 year. So you’re being overly subjective, raising a non-existent “gender” issue when clearly judging by all the stats you have more males murdered per year than females (regardless of the gender of the perpetrator). And hence there is no real conversation because you’re putting one issue in the spotlight and disregarding the other.

        That was my point – again you are saying that the post is specifically about violence against women, you’re disregarding the other half of the population (which have it worse in terms of homicide) and then trying to portray all the men with the same brush, publicly attacking them and suggesting some measures to be taken. And not any, but to change how “we raise our boys”.

        Do you realize that most of teachers are female? Would that mean that they are to blame for male violence because they failed to teach them that? Are you aware that children from fatherless homes are more likely to be involved in crime, violence, drug abuse and many other things? So would you blame mothers for that? I personally wouldn’t. I think you should have both parents to provide a stable home and safe environment for children.

        Violence is not something you can teach people to do or not to do. Yes, you can brainwash people and coerce them into doing something they don’t want to do. But that’s not the point. The point is that it is mostly inherent, genetic. Even small children know when they’ve done something wrong. And you have the parents and education to help with the rest. I’ve never been a violent person, I’ve never hit a woman, never will and would never harm another human being intentionally. I would even extend that to animals, plants etc. And the majority of other men wouldn’t. But there are some people (men and women) that are just mentally unstable from early age and it’s not something you can fix by education. And you can’t prevent violence through legislation. Legislation is there to punish the crime, not to prevent it. Yes, you could be harsher and prevent repeat offending but it would not influence first time offenders.

        I’m not going to go through the domestic violence issue and argue because we do agree there, the stats are out that it is worse for females. But the gap narrows further because men started to report domestic abuse more and more in the past 10-20 years. I don’t think it will ever reach the same percentage but we’re not here to argue who has it worse.It’s not a competition. I hope domestic violence (physical and emotional) will decrease for the sake of everyone involved.

        And finally – I understand that Inspector Hughes could have used slightly better phrased sentence in his statement but I sitll don’t understand all that backlash. Even I as a guy am careful when walking around, especially if it’s dark place, a quiet place with not many people around (or both). The only thing he is suggesting that “people but especially women” to be more vigilant. I don’t find an issue with that. Women are physically (on average) less strong than men and if they get assaulted they are more likely unable to defend themselves. That’s a fact. Simple nature. Genetics. If I was a female I would be even more cautious than I am right now. And that’s not a bad thing.

        • I have not attempted to generalise or put all men in one basket. It’s a fact that men are more likely to perpetrate violent crime that women. Stats show this. Please don’t put words in my mouth.
          As for my saying the post was about violence against women- this is MY blog. If I choose to focus on violence against women I’m not sure who you are to tell me I should be doing otherwise. I am under no obligation to write what you think I should, I specifically wrote about women being attacked by men such as the Masa Vukotic case and focused also on domestic violence. My example of one punch laws was that laws were changed in response to a relatively small number of attacks while nothing has changed around DV laws and the rate of women dying has increased to almost 2 per week, every week.
          Your whole paragraph about teachers- I’m not sure what to do with that. You’ve brought up the topic, decided what my argument is then essentially attacked that argument.
          If you know that men are over represented in homicide victims, then you also know they are most likely to be murdered by other men. So I’m not sure what your obection is to questioning how we raise our boys. What exactly is wrong with letting boys know that sexism and violence are not ok? You go on to blame genetics and claim that violence is not something you can teach people to do or not do- I call absolute bullshit on that. By your reasoning all violent criminals shouldn’t be punished because they can’t help their genetics, right? Rubbish. That fact that you’re not violent is not “evidence” of your argument. Same goes for those with mental health issues- those people can be helped with appropriate treatment to some degree.
          As for what Det Isnp Hughes said- you’ve missed the point I was making. I don’t believe he was intentionally victim blaming. But the inference is there, as it always is in these cases- don’t go to the park, don’t walk at night, don’t wear a short skirt, don’t drink- women are told this sort of thing all the time and when something like this happens, these “factors” are bought up as if by doing x, y or z, they were asking for it

          • Raf

            Yes, it is your blog, you can write what you want. But as soon as you put it in public and allow a comment section then people are going to comment. Not everyone is going to give you a pat on the back for a job well done. I’m simply stating my views and backing them up with arguments. Nothing more nothing less.

            You try to call bullshit but it’s just doesn’t work that way. Yes I do blame genetics. We have mentally unstable people in society which is more due to their nature than nurture. And yes, most of them can’t help it. Some you can help with counselling and medication, some you can’t. Some that could be treated fall through the cracks in the system and are not detected until they do something horrible and you read about it in the news.

            I never said they shouldn’t be punished. There are trained professionals (beyond my expertise) that evaluate criminals and decide if they go to jail or mental institution. It’s their job. Crimes are punished accordingly. And I don’t think locking someone for 20 instead of 10 years and just releasing them would solve anything. If you think they can be treated then they should be monitored more closely, evaluated until they are safe to return to public. Or they never are. If you don’t help them, keeping them locked for 20 years won’t change their behaviour. Simple as that.

            And yes, your post suggests to teach ONLY boys just because majority of murderers are male. Let me try to simplify my point. There are 23 million people in Australia, about 11.3 would be male population. In 2011 there were about 300 murders, 100 female, 200 male victims. Let’s say all murderers where male (although not true). 300/11.3 million = 0.0026%. So 99.9974% of the Australian male population didn’t murder someone and yet you want to teach all the boys? And you say female murders should stop. How about the 200 males that were killed? I don’t see any facebook page for them doing head counts. I don’t see any support groups, I don’t see anything of significance in the media. I don’t see marches for males that were killed.

            So when you (not just you, speaking in general terms) consistently accuse and point finger at 99.9974% of innocent Australian male population just because of a few psychopaths and try to turn it in female issue then how do you think that we’re going to react? Aren’t we all trying to establish equality? (regardless of gender, age, sex preference etc). You say that you need support of all good men. But if you, and others continue of attacking us, good men without any reason then you can only achieve the opposite effect. Innocent until proven guilty. Even criminals get that opportunity. But we don’t?

          • I didn’t ask for a pat on the back, mate. I pointed out that I can write about what I want to write about and that you have no business telling me what I should write about.
            You blame genetics, I still call utter bullshit. There are many non-violent people in the world who have successfully become effective soldiers- you can indeed” learn” violence. While there are certainly genetic factors and predispositions, but these factors don’t remove free will. You are discounting environmental factors as well. Also, not everyone who is mentally ill is violent- and not everyone who is violent is mentally ill. If you want to claim that violence cannot be learned and that mental illness is to blame, the onus of proof for that one is on you.
            Locking someone away for 10 years vs 20? I’m not sure where those numbers are from but one thing that would achieve is one less violent person on the streets for a further 10 years. However, that’s not what I was saying. Stronger sentencing is needed because at present, men guilty of violent assault are often free to reoffend in short order. Men with strings of offenses are at liberty on bail- and they reoffend then.
            I got your point re boys- I just disagreed with it. Yes, female murders should stop. Saying that is not the same as saying male murders should continue. I didn’t say all murderers were male- I said that overwhelmingly, most are. This is fact, no matter how unpalatable you find it. Hence why teaching boys is important. However, if this is the only post of mine you’ve ever read, you may not realise that my implication is that the way boys are taught (in all areas, not just school) should be done in a way that’s conscious of the gender inequality in our society- from the gender pay gap to the rates of DV and homicide. It is a very large problem and the way we raise kids could be pivotal to a change in society that would benefit everyone. Teaching our boys that women are their equals harms no one. Teaching them that violence isn’t the answer also harms no one. I have no objection to girls being taught the same but in context- this piece is about male violence against females which is most commonly perpetrated by men. Males also over-represent in male violence against males. If early education could help at least lessen that I don’t see why you’d have a problem with it. Teaching your son that violence is not the answer is not accusing him of violence.
            I have not pointed the finger at you or 99% of the population at all- that’s a baseless accusation. “A few psychopaths”? As previously discussed, not all violent people are mentally ill. Now who is generalising?
            What is your point? That men kill men too- so it’s not sexist? Honestly, I don’t know what you’re getting at here. If you are a man that is not violent or abusive and speaks out against such behaviours, then you are NOT who I’m talking about.

          • Guest

            There are so many flaws in your logic so where do I begin:

            1. I gave a vague number of 10 vs 20 years just to make a point that just harsher sentencing doesn’t solve the initial problem and the reason why that person committed the offense. Hence, rehabilitation is needed in addition to laws. And that is even more important. People that can’t be rehabilitated should remain locked up.
            2. You miss the point again saying that the majority of murderers are male – my point is that although correct, those are people that have major issues and don’t think and act as normal people.
            3. Your put all murdered females in one group and designate them as gender based crime. If a female is murdered that doesn’t necessarily mean that she was murdered because she is a female. What if the purpose was robbery (gender is irrelevant)? What if a mentally unstable person does that because of their own unknown reasons/twisted desires and they don’t have a gender preference? It is a more complex than you portray it.
            4. I don’t feel any closeness with murderers, regardless of their gender so it’s not a matter of being palatable. It’s matter of true equality, objectiveness, being honest and able to write things based on facts, not on regurgitated factoids that frequently float on the internet and twisting facts to suit own agendas with lot of illogical reasoning.
            5. So you’re saying we don’t teach our boys not to beat girls/women but the opposite? Ha! Good one. I’ve been thought this and been aware of this for 20 something years. And things have improved so much since then. But usually the opposite is not true. Have you seen the recent video when bunch of boys are asked questions what they think of a girl and as a last question they ask them to slap her? Not a single one did it. Would be interesting to see the reverse.
            6. We need to teach our daughters too if you want to reach true equality. Just look up facts about male victims of domestic violence in the UK. Stats for 3 years show between 37-45% males being victims of domestic violence and half of those were subjected to severe force in an incident.
            7. Sexist is if you target someone (in this case murder) based on their gender, just because they are male or female. Being killed by the opposite sex does not lead to a conclusion that the murder act is sexist. If you think that makes sense then I don’t know how to argue with you anymore.

  • Brilliantly said Amy. There needs to be change and a lot of it. The detective was wrong. Women aren’t safe in parks. Women aren’t really safe anywhere. And my question is, so what is going to be done about it?

  • it seems so illogical that this is being ignored by governments. I wonder if it’s too close to home for politicians – they’re excellent at othering but not at crimes committed by someone who might be their age or background or other common factors. It’s such a complex issue, I honestly don’t even know if that’s a valid thought on this or where anyone could start to work on this. I guess I would start by asking the people who run shelters what they see as the problem – they would be the ones with the widest knowledge and immediate concerns to deal with.

  • It’s a tough topic, and tough words need to be said. Added to that, danger and violence is not always what is seen on the surface.
    I feel sad when I think back to walking home from University as a young adult, late at night, through parks and ALONE. I wasn’t being naive about my own safety, I just genuinely thought I was safe. It does make you question where you are safe, and who you are safe with. A feeling every person, women, man or child, deserves to feel.

  • I always think about the police that would work so hard on getting the culprit. So much time and effort to only watch them walk free without paying for the crimes they commit. It must be so frustrating. It’s a completely fucked system and I really don’t understand how these people keep getting released!

  • I think nothing will change until more women are in power and that in itself is a whole other post for you. Once again I admire your passion Amy keep writing the hard stuff. x