While watching The Guardian circle the toilet bowl, paid Feminist talker Julie Bindel has added her voice to the cacophony of harridans screeching for the destruction of due process and defendants’ rights. In this episode of “Hoes Gon Be Hoes” Julie discusses why trial by jury should be done away with. But only in rape cases. Because matters of the Holy Vagina shouldn’t be entrusted to the hoi polloi.
Almost a decade ago I wrote that rape might as well be legal. I feel the same way today. In 2013-14 in England and Wales, about 16,000 rapes were recorded by police, but only a third of these cases were sent to the Crown Prosecution Service. Approximately 15% of the recorded offences resulted in a charge. The actual attrition rate – meaning from reporting to conviction – is estimated at about 6%.
By “16,000 rapes,” Julie means 16,000 “reports” or accusations of rape. The one-third sent to CPS presumably had sufficient evidence for the police to say “we think there’s enough here.” In the absence of stating a conclusion, Julie would like to assume that 16,000 women in England and Wales were raped because “why would a woman EVER lie about rape?” (Except when they do). The alternate (and better) conclusion is that those cases not forwarded to CPS and not charged were either A) false, or B) lacked sufficient evidence.
One potential solution to this worrying state of affairs is to do away with jurors in sex crime trials, and appoint a specially trained judge.
“Specially trained” by who? And trained in what capacity? Also, how did we go from statistics showing that police and prosecutors sifting through rape accusations, to an indictment of the right of trial by jury in felony cases?
The minds of feminists are peculiar indeed.
I am wholly in favour of our jury system, but even more in favour of ensuring that rapists and other sex offenders do not walk free.
Anyone who tells you they are in favor of something BUT is not actually in favor of that thing.
New Zealand could be the first country to rid sex crime cases of jurors if one key recommendation from a recently published report by its Law Commission is implemented. The commissioners have suggested that there is a case for having sexual violence trials decided by a judge, either alone or with two expert “lay assessors”.
How will these “lay assessors” be qualified as “experts”? No wait, let me guess, master’s degrees in Gender Studies and Sociology with insightful publications on “why penises are the root of all evil” (jobs for the girls).
Why do away with one of the fundamentals of a decent justice system? Is the jury system not set up in order to better ensure fairness and justice, rather than relying on a crusty old Etonian in a wig?
In response to the first question, I’m sure Julie will feed us a healthy dose of “Believe Her” non-logic. In response to the second question, no. Trial by jury (there is no “jury system”) is one of many rights recognized for the purpose of protecting the defendant against the overwhelming power of the state. Your own Magna Carta provides a wonderful list things the state was no longer permitted to do without the judgment of a jury:
Captured, Imprisoned, Disseised (deprived) of his freehold (property), Disseised of his liberty, Disseised of his free customs, Outlawed, Exiled, Destroyed, Proceeded against by force, and Proceeded against by arms.
Not in rape cases. If jurors were to receive the level of training and awareness-raising necessary to challenge the deep-rooted and highly persuasive myths about rape, the jury system would be more effective in dealing with sex crimes – but this would take more than a few words from the judge at the beginning of a trial, which is how it works at the moment. In their report, the New Zealand commissioners found that rape trials feature “powerful cultural conceptions” that are “unique to sexual violence as a form of criminal offending” and absent from, for example, a case involving a man hitting another man in the street or pub.
That’s a lot of words to say “please let me prejudice the jury before any evidence is presented.”
I have sat through a number of rape cases over the years, and, despite legislation introduced in 2001 that aimed to restrict the use of previous sexual history evidence unless there is a compelling reason for including it, the defence barrister will often find a way to bring it up. I saw one man acquitted after the defence suggested that the complainant was desperate for sex because her husband had become impotent in recent years. The defendant in this case had met the complainant at 2am in the back streets as she was walking home, totally sober. Almost all the other cases I heard involved the complainant being trashed as a reliable witness because she had been drinking (alcohol is the new short skirt).
It’s the defense lawyer’s (or barrister’s) job to present such theories as cast reasonable doubt on the state’s case. Holding it against jurors for finding the defense’s arguments credible, and against defense counsel for presenting the argument, compel the question of “why allow the defendant in a rape trial legal counsel at all?”
Claims that the complainant is lying are all the more believable because of the disproportionate media coverage of false rape allegations. Also jurors – in particular female ones – do not want to face the fact that those who commit rape include a broad cross section of men, and rarely fit the stereotype of a masked madman leaping out of a bush. Even when a judge permits expert evidence that challenges these myths, this cannot possibly compete with the bombardment of prejudice and misinformation that jurors absorb from some sections of the media on a daily basis.
Pray tell, what is the “correct” proportion of media coverage for a false rape allegation? In the best case scenario, the accuser recants before anyone’s name is splashed across the papers and the internet. Worse case, a man loses years from his life, his freedom, his sanity, and his reputation. But who cares, right? So long as all not a single rapist anywhere goes free, a couple of innocent men here and there is acceptable collateral damage.
There is also a nice bit of doublespeak buried in the middle: “[T]hose who commit rape include a broad cross section of men, and rarely fit the stereotype of a masked madman leaping out of a bush.” Given that the public has been bombarded with the theme of “acquaintance rape” for nigh-on twenty years, making it incredible that anyone in the Anglosphere holds the position of “women can only be raped by strangers.” A stereotype far more common and prevalent among jurors that I have observed is the idea that “the defendant wouldn’t be at trial if he weren’t guilty of something.”
Her refusal, or inability to identify any common traits shared between rapists, she leaves an unwary reader to draw the conclusion that ANY man could be a rapist. Julie is sort of like our Feminist Morpheus walking Neo through the training Matrix and explaining that anyone can transform into an Agent, then when Neo takes a second look at the woman in the red dress, she’s actually an Agent with a semi-automatic pointed right at his head.
Finally, if a bad juror makes it onto the jury panel, it is the fault of the lawyer for not conducting sufficient questioning during voir dire.
That’s exactly how men work in Feminist La-La Land.
Unlike jurors, judges at least get a day or two of training in sexual offences, which includes dispelling the myths and understanding why complainants do not necessarily break down in tears during evidence. My only misgiving in wholly supporting doing away with jurors in rape cases is that it might give leverage to those who wish to abolish the jury system altogether as a way to save money.
Who said complainants (thank Aqua Buddha she didn’t say “victims” again!) needed to cry on the stand? Since we are trading anecdotes, I saw a man convicted of rape on the testimony of an accuser who testified against him and was absolutely stone-faced through direct and cross-examination.
I’m glad to see that Julie concerned that the state doesn’t cut any money as opposed to, oh, the defendant’s rights. But to a feminist, defendants have no rights where the Holy Vagina should be concerned.
If we are serious about ensuring that those guilty of rape are convicted, public education of the type that will robustly challenge the lies and misinformation about rape has to be given priority. It is the public who become jurors and ultimately decide on such cases. The way that men who commit sex crimes are excused, and the women and men experiencing them are blamed, leaves me with no confidence in non-expert citizens delivering justice in rape cases.
“Public education” = “Spend more tax money indoctrinating potential jurors in the Gospel of BELIEVE HER-ism!”
Feminists truly are the handmaidens of tyranny.