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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
John Moulden BS: Irish Rugby players rape case (84* d) RE: IrishRugby players rape case 02 Apr 18

Only the jury heard (and saw) all the evidence being given, heard about all the unpleasant communications between the accused and had the opportunity of determining the unfairness or otherwise of the questioning of any witness. With that information the jury took an astonishingly short time to reach a UNANIMOUS verdict. They are the representatives of the people - they represent fully informed and serious public opinion. They found the accused not guilty, overwhelmingly. That is enough for the moment. They must be regarded as innocent. However, there could and should be more.

The judge's directions should be subjected to the scrutiny of the DPP to see if an appeal is justified. The rules of proceedings of courts in such cases should be changed - there should be anonymity for both complainant and accused, those accused should not be named until convicted - the public should be excluded and the press be forbidden to even hint at identities.

The way in which such trials are conducted in Northern Ireland made this a disaster for all concerned. There is little doubt that celebrity, and high profile movements, like #metoo, made this into a disaster for the principals and their families. There should never again be such an unseemly business around any such case.

There are other elements too which can be summed up in one word: respect - for others and oneself. The extent to which sex (we used to call it 'love making') has become casual - appalls me. It is not simply that men (as symbolized by 'rugby players' used as a term of contempt) are misogynistic and brutally opportunistic - depraved: it is that girls are also, in their way, depraved; using sex solely for gratification; where is 'love' in all of this? Where is love in all the shades of 'Grey'? There was love in Lady Chatterly's Lover. This forum is devoted to the love of songs; it should equally defend the ideas of love in all manifestations. The problem for me in this case, is the virtual absence of love on all sides and that is not just a personal failure, not merely a social failure; it is a human failure.

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