Thursday, July 22, 2010

Who is a rapist?

A reader sent this article to me from FireDogLake (h/t Lenin's Tomb too). An Israeli man had sex with an Israeli woman, but now he's being prosecuted as a rapist. Why? Because he is an Arab. Apparently, if an Arab Israeli man has sex with a Jewish Israeli woman, and does not tell her that he is an Arab, it's considered rape.

Now, FDL and Lenin's Tomb are couching this in terms of oppression, but that is not the entire story. The judge was following precedents. In the past, men who lied about themselves could be convicted of fraud. In 2007 or 2008, a Jewish man was convicted of rape, because he pretended to be a housing official who could help women get better housing. Instead of fraud, he was convicted of rape by deception. And that is what is happening to the Arab man in question. And that is why some jurists are concerned that these are both dangerous precedents. In the United States, no one would think twice if a man trying to pick up a woman lied about being married or his job. But that is now a jailable offense in Israel. See the Guardian article too.

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