I just came across this sickening story of an especially sadistic sexual assault that occurred in Ireland. What struck me was the statement made by the local MP in response to the incident.
Michael Ferguson, a Sinn Féin Assembly member for West Belfast said: "This is the second sexual attack in the general area in a week. I would urge local women not to travel home alone and for God's sake to be vigilant."I understand the well-intentioned nature of Ferguson's words, and I've no doubt he places 100% of the blame for this incident on the two rapists themselves.
No matter. Here's what he should have said:
"Women of Belfast, go out walking. All of you. I want each and every one of you to walk right out the door tonight and go for a bit of a stroll. We're going to send a message to the twisted excrescence who think they can determine our bedtime. We are going to show them that we are not afraid of them. That, indeed, we will catch them and throw them in jail where they will remain for the rest of your lives. People who perpetrate crimes such as this are not fit to inhabit the same earth as we do. When someone breaks the public trust in such a way, they have permanently forfeited the right to a free existence. We will do everything in our power to catch these monsters. We will try them, convict them, and publicize their names and the places they called home, so that everyone may know what sort of atmosphere has produced such utter worthlessness. Time and again, women and families of women are shamed into keeping an incident like this to themselves out of fear of being labeled less than virtuous. Perhaps some of that shame can be extended to the scum who raise their boys to consider women as mere objects of pleasure. It would warm my heart like nothing else to see the shroud of shame, for once, descend upon the actual actor in this horrid crime, instead of upon the victim. Rapists of Belfast, we are coming for you. We will hunt you down and we shall not cease until you are stamped out of Ireland like the vile filth that you are."
I'm thinking if he said that, there's a chance it might have made the paper.