Friday, April 29, 2005


(OK - And I know as soon as I type this I'm jinxing myself - but it would appear that QP is past its sickness. Thanks for all the advice and assistance, especially from my flatmate).

Can we agree that from now on all male judges (except perhaps Kirby J) should not be allowed to oversee any case that involves in any way women, sexual assault and/or mini-skirts?

Picture this: Exposed and raw, sitting in a cold court room after going through the nightmare of reporting your rape and the subsequent interviews (interrogations?), photographing, swabs and daily reminders your attack, the judge falls asleep and snores as you are testifying. The victim feels "destroyed and humiliated". Of course she would. Hearing a judge snoring would make you question the entire experience, and wonder if perhaps you're being unreasonable in testifying that you've been raped, as though this is a boring and frivolous waste of the court's time? Quite unimaginable.

In the same week, a Federal Magistrate rules that a Sydney gaming room attendant has no right to complain about an employer asking her to wear a short skirt at work, because she wears them socially. By that logic, a leather daddy who works at my company (and this is by no means a stretch of the hypothetical imagination) could reasonably insist I, a recent convert to leather fetish (did I mention the HYPOTHETICAL?) be required only to wear chaps and a chain dog leed in my daily editorial work, because he saw me out one night at Menacle's in such attire. Granted, this might make NSW uniform civil procedure a little more interesting, but it doesn't resolve the issue of how chilly I'd feel. If male gaming room attendants are allowed to wear shirts, vest, long pants etc and not have to resort to sleeveless numbers to arouse the female and gay boy punters, there should be no expectation that female attendants must do likewise.

Both these cases are but further examples in a long line of male judges getting it so incredibly wrong when it comes to rape or female sexuality. In SA years ago, there was Justice Bollen who notoriously claimed that, in a marital rape case, "rougher than usual" handling was acceptable and implied that rape could not in fact occur within a marriage. In Victoria, there was Justice "No Means Yes" Bland. Just when we think the misogynist old dinosaurs have finally fallen off the bench, another case comes along to remind us why so many women are reluctant to introduce their rape cases into the legal system and become victims of a new type of assault.

Justice Snoresalot should not be allowed to preside over any future rape cases. What is up with the NSW Judicial Commission claiming that his snoring is no evidence of his "unresponsiveness"? Wtf?! Yes, because I sure have my most profound, engaging and receptive two-way conversations with people in comas. Something's very rotten in the state of NSW.


At 29/4/05 11:54 am, Anonymous Zakalwe said...

He shouldnt be presiding over any cases. I know that if I fell asleep at work i'd probably be fired. Same should go for this judge.

At 29/4/05 10:56 pm, Blogger Nic White said...

"Yes, because I sure have my most profound, engaging and receptive two-way conversations with people in comas."

Watch out, Terri's parents will argue against you here!


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