It’s not sex it’s rape: strategic remorse edition

it's not sex, it's rapeWhat would you call it when a step-father repeatedly rapes a girl, starting when she’s 13, and this goes on for three years before he’s caught?

Rape?
Sexual assault?
Molestation?
Pedophilia?
Sexual abuse?
Child abuse?

Not according to Andrew Korner of the Queensland Times. Today the QT described the constant rapes thus:

…sex with step-daughter …

…maintained a sexual relationship with his step-daughter …

…had sex with the girl regularly…

…the pair entered into a full sexual relationship…

…the unprotected sexual encounters took place…

…the relationship…

The nastiest word he stooped to use was “offending”.

And the Crown Prosecutor Ron Swanwick?

…sexual intercourse up to four or five times per week…

The strongest words quoted from the Prosecutor:

...a serious breach of trust…

Even Judge Richards called it

…unprotected sex…

This child rapist will be eligible for parole in two years. Despite there being, what? 600-750 individual rapes here, according to the information given.

Oh, but he’s remorseful, he says, because he now has young daughters of his own. I guess he realises just how terrible it would be for him if someone else raped them.

*insert hulksmash here*



Categories: gender & feminism, language, law & order, violence

Tags: , , , , , , ,

25 replies

  1. Oh god not again – I really really don’t get why these vicious and destructive criminal acts are couched in a way that make it sound like a bit of hanky panky that got out of hand.
    Encounters? Relationship? Those words make out that it was mutual.
    Paedophiles and abusers just love these kinds of justifications.

  2. *facepalm*
    And, on a semi related note, watch this: http://www.livenews.com.au/entertainment/tv/gruen-transfer-panelist-under-fire-for-conflict-of-interest/2009/4/20/203507 Not only is that ad unfunny, embarrassing and offensive but they also substitute “rape” for “sex.” And the man who slams it as being the insensitive rubbish that it *is* is accused of a conflict of interest. Whateva.

  3. I hear you, Morgaine – and it’s not a terribly compelling potential COI either, from what I’ve read. We have an ASCA ad thread running here (followups here and here)

  4. Well isn’t this interesting –a woman can be reported in the media as a raping a child.
    http://www.smh.com.au/world/teacher-33-guilty-of-raping-boy-10-20090421-aday.html?page=-1
    Or maybe it is because in this case has been reported as such overseas first they can use the word “rape” in Australian media
    Like to know what the difference is………

  5. I know my letter writing to journalists is a drop in the ocean but I’m doing it anyway, if anyone else wants to you can contact Andrew at andrew.korner@qt.com.au
    And contacts for the Queensland Time, editor, manager etc… can be found here – http://www.qt.com.au/contactus/
    It’s just not ok to report a child’s molestation as a ‘relationship’ 😦

  6. I don’t get it.
    A person under a certain age can not consent to sex.
    When someone forces it upon them, even if they say yes, they are too young to give informed consent.
    That equals rape.
    If you didn’t/couldn’t consent, it’s rape.
    See? Not that hard, media!
    Excuse me, I have to go sob for humanity now.
    Brandann’s last blog post..Vampires, Souls and the Silent Treatment as Abuse…

  7. Disgusting, appalling, revolting…gosh there aren’t enough words for how wrong this is. When will people see this criminal act for what it is?

  8. it’s shit like this where you realize the whole “your child is your property, do what you want with ‘em, no really pretty much -anything-” mentality isn’t archaic at all.

  9. in this case, of course, all the more so because y’know, girl child, and not -technically- incest, so, y’know. Tsk tsk. Well, they’ve all read (and misunderstood) “Lolita,” nudge nudge…

  10. Another really disturbing case of the public de-sensitising of rape. By continually using terms like ‘relationship’ to describe this crime 13 yr old girls are thoroughly sexualised in the viewer’s eyes and the story becomes little more than titillation.

  11. Just read that article again to write a letter 😦
    Judge Richards says “you are extremely lucky she did not fall pregnant”
    Really? I would have thought it was her, you know the one who would have to deal with a teen pregnancy as the result of her step-father raping her, that is ‘lucky’ she did not fall pregnant.

  12. the pair entered into a full sexual relationship
    The PAIR? No. Just no.

  13. Does it make them feel better or something? Does it help them to sleep at night to think “well, she agreed, right?” Does it make it all okay? Do they really look at a child and think “Oh yeah, she agreed, that’s the face of an agreeable child!”
    I just do not understand.

  14. omg.

    this hits home. hard. someone i care about very much went throuh the *exact* same thing (starting a year or so younger). exact. i can only imagine the rampage i would go on if the case was prosecuted and this is how it ended up. my blood is boiling.

  15. I got a reply from Andrew –

    I have no choice in this matter. The charge is called “maintaining a sexual relationship with a child under 16.”
    The sex was deemed as consensual. The man was not charged with rape. To use the term rape would have been legally incorrect.
    If you have a problem with this, you are addressing the wrong person.

    😦 Looks like he cares.

  16. Dear Andrew
    She was 13. It was rape.
    The “victim made an official complaint to Yamanto police”. It was rape.
    The perpetrator admitted in court “I was in a position of trust and I abused it”. It was rape.
    No Love
    Kate

  17. Does Queensland still have a crime on the books called “rape”, or have they, like most other jurisdictions in Australia, updated their Crimes Act to include a range of charges relating to sexual abuse/assault/violence?
    Because, if there is no longer a crime statute for “rape”, then it becomes a general descriptor. I’m pretty sure there’s no crime statute for “pickpocketing” – it all comes under the various Theft statutes – but would he hesitate to describe someone in his newspaper who was charged with theft from someone’s person without them noticing it as “a pickpocket” to distinguish them from “a mugger” (pretty sure there’s no Mugging Statute either)?
    If he would not hesitate to call a thief a pickpocket if it matched the facts of the case, then why hesitate to call a sexual offender a rapist if it matches the facts of the case?

  18. To use the term rape would have been legally incorrect.
    It would still have been factually and morally correct.

  19. @ Y:

    Queensland does still have ‘rape’ on the books.

    That does make the newspaper’s legal situation difficult then. There should still have been other ways to describe the sexual offence other than “relationship”. That’s just lazy buck-passing.
    how about “manipulative exploitation of a minor”?

  20. They couldn’t do what everyone else does and put “rape” in scarequotes?

  21. I think that the scarequotes are meant to imply “alleged”, so that probably wouldn’t work in this instance. But regardless, as Tigtog pointed out, and as Lauredhel also pointed out in the OP, there are a LOT of other terms that could have been used that conveyed the seriousness of the crime, but do not carry legal ramifications.

  22. Horrifying to read.
    The stupid excuse about ‘can’t call it rape if the judge didn’t’ is why I like to use old-fashioned terms like “forced himself on her”. Gets the meaning across without reference to incorrect court decisions.

  23. I’m happy to say that my second letter had some effect and Andrew would like to be put in touch with a victim support group so that future reports on child sexual abuse are more sensitive.
    If anyone knows of an agency or contact in the Ipswich area could you let Andrew know?
    🙂 letter writing succeeds!

  24. The man in question:
    forced himself on her
    took advantage of her
    imposed sexually on her
    manipulated her into repeated sex
    abused his position as a parent/guardian
    ignored common social mores
    NOW WASN’T THAT EASY? Not so much of the ~racy~ ~scandal~, but that would be actual journalism for you.

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