Monday, February 11, 2008

Bloody Insomnia comes a calling again.

I must be interconnected to Sam-who is also suffering from insomnia of late-or something. Here we go again, was I asleep was I awake? Who can say. All I know is I have a monster week ahead of me in terms of work so naturally by body decides I can do this on little or no quality sleep.
Does anyone know how much sleep the human body actually requires to function? Is it four hours? SIx?

It should be an interesting day today, Archbishop of Dublin, Cardinal Desmond Connell, is due before the High Court again and it appears many parish priests here in Dublin are deeply unhappy with his decision to contest files on child abuse being made available to the courts. But does Connell have a right to with hold the files? Is it right and proper that he must retain the right to confidentiality in sex abuse files? Is it even legal? Does his view trump the law?
Across the water Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, is being roasted for suggesting that the establishment of Sharia Law might be unavoidable, but I wonder how incorrect he is. It does seem the laws of the land are only secondary to the law of cultures and spiritual groups. Another flouting of the law is being acted out in this country at the moment, witness the case of a 13 year old Roma girl, abducted and raped by her 16 year old 'groom' in an effort to make her family honor an agreement to marriage. 13, a child, yet her case appears to be outside the remit of Irish law.
From to day's independent.

The Irish Independent...' has learned that the girl's 16-year-old-rapist, who had been selected to become her husband, and her abductors may never face prosecution as her parents have accepted a €10,000 payment after an independent mediator brokered a deal between the two families.

In a case that highlights the complexities of applying Irish laws to those with different customs and traditions, the Roma family -- who arranged their daughter's marriage when she was just eight -- no longer regard the incident as a rape despite the fact that the child's husband-to-be has admitted to gardai that he had sex with the girl.

Details of the hush-money payment emerged one month after a coroner ruled that a British teenager who opposed her parents plan for an arranged marriage died after she was strangled or smothered. The 17-year-old had previously been admitted to hospital after drinking bleach when she was introduced to her suitor and no one has been charged in relation to her killing.

It was believed that once the Roma girl's "husband" had sex with her, regardless of her consent, she and her family would have to accept and honour the original arranged marriage agreement.

A file has been sent to the Director of Public prosecutions and several people have been questioned in connection with the kidnapping, but the row between the two families has been resolved by the €10,000 payment.

The case may prove difficult to bring to court as the families came to a new agreement following intervention by a mediator who recently travelled from England to Ireland to broker a deal. Other youths employed to kidnap the girl have also been compensated for their role in the abduction.

"Some Roma have their own customs when dealing these type of issues," said a senior gardai who is involved in the ongoing investigation."

So culture trumps law and religion trumps law. Makes a body wonder what the point in having laws if they are so easily over looked.
Yep, 10,000, that's the cost of dignity. The cost of family 'honor'. Seems cheap at half the price.

UPdate: Cardinal Connell has withdrawn his high court action.



Anonymous Shebah said...

Regardless of what money has changed hands, the police should still pursue this case and prosecute the rapist. Rape is a vicious crime, and even more so in this case when it involves an underage child. The law of the land should take precedence to any gypsy laws and apply equally to all, and the punishment should be merciless in the case of rape of children.

10:54 a.m.  
Blogger Conan Drumm said...

Unbelieveable quote from the Garda. That means, I suppose, if there's some other internal dispute within the Roma that is resolved by a killing, that that'll be fine?

Btw... where do the Roma come by €10,000? I take it that it's entirely legitimate after-tax income?

11:38 a.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

I know, it's unreal, kidnap, assault, unlawful detention, and rape of a minor, how much more illegal can a case get?

11:44 a.m.  
Anonymous nonny said...

That is absolutely terrible, nobody gives a shit about children when money is concerned. I’m all for respecting other peoples culture and religion but when what you choose to believe starts to infringe of the free will or human rights of another it becomes nothing more than a power struggle or money making racket. I do not believe for a moment that a 16 year old raped a child because that carry on is part of his culture, he raped her because he is an evil little bastard, nothing more. To think a modern, developed, democratic country such as ours is going to let him away with it, an absolute disgrace.

As for the sleepy, I think you need 7 dude, I would rarely wake up but, I can never get to sleep, did you try going to bed and waking up at the same time each night? Failing that they you should not lie in bed, that you should do something constructive, make himself “entertain” you. I sympathise with you, there is nothing worse, when I get like that I best resemble Pob, my face goes puffy.

12:10 p.m.  
Blogger Manuel said...

maybe he went of being a dick for lent......

12:13 p.m.  
Anonymous Sam, Problemchildbride said...

If I could have staggered back in recognition as I lie here in my bed at 4.50am, wide awake for an hour now, I would have. Come 11am I will be no use to man not beast but I won't be able to nap for fear I'll be in exactly this situation at 4.50am tomorrow. Which will happen anyway, no matter what I do.

But I won't sleep again tonight, not after reading that. That poor Roma girl. To be valued so cheaply, to be chattel for a barbaric - and seemingly state-sanctioned - practice.

I don't give a fuck about whether, as a housewife, I "should" be known as a Domestic engineer - that is not the kind of political correctness that infuriates me - this is. I am having a really hard time accepting that this has been allowed to happen. As far as I can see, it is a small-scale humanitarian crisis to force anyone to live under such circumstances. These people are criminals, her family too. They ought to be in the jail. This is truly horrific.

12:58 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

I"m not sure I understand the mentality behind this at all. This boy organised the child's abduction. He organised her rape. How can her family place a monetary value on her ordeal? Why are the Gardai in this country seemingly washing their hands of her case?
IS the law not the law?

2:11 p.m.  
Blogger Dr. James McInerney said...

Less than the price of a 2003 Ford focus. That's sad.

2:38 p.m.  
Anonymous Shebah said...

I hope there is a public outcry about this and the police are forced to take action.

Molto congratulations on making the blog awards shortlists! Well deserved.

2:48 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Thanks, I just saw that there now. Off to read who else is up. Then back to horrible work. Bleah.

2:52 p.m.  
Blogger Medbh said...

First, try taking some Valerian root capsules to help you sleep. It works and you won't wake up feeling groggy.

It's funny how respectful of other cultures/religions Western leaders want to be when it comes to abusing women. You can bet that if muslims or Roma started chopping off dicks that someone would intervene and put a stop to it.
People agitated for Sharia law here in Canada recently. They were reminded that everyone is protected under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and that no commitment to multiculturalism could trump women's rights.

3:21 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Where does a society draw the line in what it allows and doesn't allow? It is illegal to preform FGM, yet people do. Polygamy is illegal, yet the UK has just allowed welfare payments for men with more than one wife, child abduction and rape is illegal in Ireland yet this case is exactly that. Begging and truancy is supposed to be against the book here, yet you see itinerant and Roma children on Dublin streets in all weather, begging and busking.
It's almost like we're so afraid of being seen to be intolerant we go too far in the other direction.
Each country has its own set of law governing that country, if you are a citizen of that country you should follow their laws. Right?

3:51 p.m.  
Blogger Lou said...

In London it's getting mental, so many concessions are being made for different faiths/cultures. I'm all for being open-minded, but I'm Irish working in England. I don't demand any special rights or privileges because of my nationality or (lack of) religion, my feeling is that I'm a guest worker in this country, so I'll abide by the rules. That means obeying the laws here, paying my taxes, etc. What gets me is that so many people arrive in a foreign country and suddenly expect special treatment. Everyone should be treated the same.

So that little scut of a 16 year old who thinks he can get away with kidnap and rape of a CHILD deserves to be punished for it. And any and all of the adults involved. Including the "mediator".

4:09 p.m.  
Blogger Lou said...

Oh and FMC, try to read 'Atonement'. Knocks me out before I've read half a page!

4:10 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Thanks for reminding me, Lou, I have it upstairs. It is dull isn't it? So many long descriptive pages with nothing happening. I actually started it before and found it too boring for words, so I put it away for another time, now might just be perfect.

4:15 p.m.  
Blogger Lou said...

I am on page 75 and on page 75 I will stay. I truly don't care enough about it to finish it, and putting Keira Knightley in the film was the icing on the cake. Ugh. She drives me TWEAKY.

4:18 p.m.  
Anonymous Sam, Problemchildbride said...

Well done on making the short lists, darling! Splendid news and richly deserved.

4:55 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Terrific. How you feeling missus? Both eyes still open?

4:58 p.m.  
Anonymous Sam, Problemchildbride said...

I look like a panda living rough on the streets of Shanghai but I'm feeling OK, oddly enough. Artificial stimulants rock.

You're on the shortlist though, catters, you have to come to the awards now! Say you can! It'll be fab!

5:41 p.m.  
Blogger Andraste said...

Oooooh....I LOVED Atonement, and now McEwan has become one of my favorite writers! I read that in one afternoon on my couch with a constantly refilling mimosa. Not much interest in the movie, since it's probably been turned into an insipid little romance.

5:53 p.m.  
Blogger PI said...

I think the amount of sleep required varies from person to person. Maggie Thatcher survived on 5 max I think. What I do know is that - just as you can train your body, you can train your mind to NOT start thinking about ANYTHING but pleasant things when you are trying to sleep. You have to start switching off at least an hour before bed-time and if all you can manage is to rest comfortably on your bed do that.
Sleep tight!

6:35 p.m.  
Anonymous Sam, Problemchildbride said...

I liked Atonement too, Andraste. I've read all Ian McEwan's stuff and I liked it the best of all. I'm ambivalent about seeing the film cos I don't want it wrecked in my head. Still, although I haven't heard how it compares to the book, I hear it's a good film.

7:14 p.m.  
Blogger Medbh said...

I thought McEwan's "Enduring Love" was okay but I'll pass on "Atonement."

And a hearty congratulations on your shortlistings, FMC!

7:44 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Back at you miss pop culture!

Sam and Andraste, I believe the movie supposed to be lovely, and although I'm not normally a big fan of Keira, she's supposed to be rather terrific in it. Plus I COVET that green gown she wears.

Pat- lovely new photo. I remember reading that about Maggie, but I doubt I could manage. I'm working on about four hours sleep today and I"m really struggling.

8:19 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

about the child rape of the roma girl, i think its the factthat she is a romanian.had she been an irish girl it would have been different. Same discrimination applies to traveller children, asylum seekers children and ethnic or non national- they are second class citizens and dont matter. Culture and diversity is used as an excuse to justify the injustice rooted in the irish institutional discrimination. The laws of the land should apply equally to all people in ireland regardless.

9:19 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Agreed Anonymous. It's particularly disheartening to read the garda comment, as if such a vicious crime is almost nothing to do with them.

10:29 p.m.  
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