Wednesday, September 6, 2006

Random thoughts of the day

A moral and practical solution?

I agree philosophically with Michelle Manchir's column on rape prevention, but I do not think she takes a broad enough view of the subject. I do not believe that efforts to encourage women to be safe are "blaming the victim" in a rape case. I do not think BPD Sgt. David Drake was saying the victim was at fault for what happened to her; he was trying to give people advice on how to stay safe.

No one would complain about "blaming the victim" had the intruder went through an unlocked sliding glass door and stole a television or a stereo and left the woman alone. No, a property crime cannot be compared to rape in the scale of severity. Material things can be replaced and do not approach the violation of human rights and dignity that come from a rape.

I think we can strike a balance here. Morally speaking, the message can be sent loud and clear that rape is never the "fault" of the victim, and that the perpetrator always bears complete moral responsibility. I would like to see harsher criminal penalties for rape, up to and including capital punishment. In college campuses, more education programs can be put into place to make sure men realize the seriousness of the crime. Because we live in a fallen, sin-dominated society that (barring a major spiritual revival) is not going to get any better, lessons of personal safety must continue to be a major part of rape prevention.

Was Baron Hill trying to buy votes last week?

Baron Hill's campaign is denying that the gas-buying stunt last week amounted to buying votes because anyone was able to get gas at the "discounted" price, including supporters of Hill's opponent who showed up to drain Hill's finances and take advantage of the stunt.

The stunt was aimed at the mushy middle who don't follow politics and are undecided. Does Baron Hill expect us to believe that every single voter came away with the event thinking about the issues surrounding high gas prices? Does Baron Hill expect us to believe that no one went away thinking "That nice man helped pay for my gasoline. I think I'll vote for him"? Whether Hill's campaign stunt was illegal or not will (hopefully) be determined after a proper investigation, but what he did was clearly unethical.

Al-Qaida's allies in American universities

Mike Adams brings us another disturbing story about free speech on university campuses. Dennis Hefner has been more effective in his efforts to destroy freedom than his allies in al Qaida have been in the five years since the September 11 terrorist attacks. If we do not shut down these enemies of freedom, we are going to lose the War on Terror. It's just that simple.