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Monday, 01 July 2013

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"they had to be absolutely sure of the defendant's guilt": certainly not!

They have to be sure "beyond reasonable doubt" - there is no need to be sure beyond unreasonable doubt.

SILENCE IN COURT!!! Now look here, DM, I'm playing the judge and I'll tell you exactly how sure you have to be. But you're right of course, I phrased it badly.

Since some claim >80% of communication is non-verbal I think I'd have to disagree with your proposal. Surely judging the authenticity of a statement requires seeing the person making that statement?

One thing you didn't mention was the make-up of the juries in question, to whit their gender. Was there some correlation? My own, apocryphal, experience is that women (almost tribally) are inclined to believe women, whilst men (protectively?) give women more emphasis. The 'facts' are often irrelevant in comparison.

I'm sure I've mentioned Dr. Helen Smiths book 'Men on Strike' before, in it she points to the fact that in the States it has gone so far that in college campuses, extralegal 'committees' are set up to 'judge' accusations against male students. They operate, instructed by both the college administration and government, on the 'principle' that the male is guilty 'if there is a greater than 50% chance he COULD have committed the crime'! What chance 'justice' in such a scenario? There are men who, found not guilty in court, even charges dismissed as patently false, who then face removal from college as 'rapists', something which is put on their permanent record, with no recourse, lives blighted. Fair?

(and to complete my 'trip to Coventry' - "the victim either reporting the rape
immediately or waiting 3 days". What about those who wait 30-40 years, until the man is either rich and/or dead?)

Until this gender bias is removed justice is a pipe dream. Whilst I tend to be 'mildly extreme' in feeling scrotal excision for rapists is acceptable (with a blunt, rusty spoon) I believe severe punishment for false rape accusations should also be the norm.

I think, Able, that we are dangerously close to that dread subject - psychobabble! I just think that only hearing a voice and not seeing the speaker *might* avoid spurious conclusion-jumping. As to the late-comers to the damages-seeking ball, there are so many of them that I guess they cover the gamut from gold-diggers to women who were and still are genuinely 'damaged goods'. How you sort them out is beyond me and, I suspect, beyond anyone.

Fascinating subject and well written, Duff. Carry on.

Thank you, Ma'am.

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