The Smith verdict

Around noontime news rooms got wind of the verdict: American serviceman Daniel Smith would be convicted while the rest of the accused would be acquitted. The news broke a short time ago.

Tonight, the House of Representatives is scheduled to amend its rules and do a Smith to the Constitution. See the proposed rules and the actual constitutional amendments to be initially proposed:
Rules Of Constituent Assembly

They contain what the legal fight will be about in the weeks to come, the first major case that will confront the next Chief Justice. Whether they will manage it tonight remains to be seen -but this week promises to be eventful, anyway. I’ve been told that in the past, the highest attendance accomplished by the House leadership was along the lines of 165 representatives. They will need 190++ tonight. There’s some sniffing around the President’s proclamation of a state of national calamity, based on the suspicion that it permits the useful juggling of funds to inspire a positive outcome, though this suspicion can’t be stated too boldly, for obvious reasons.
My column for today is Frustrated idealists.

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Manuel L. Quezon III.

71 thoughts on “The Smith verdict

  1. UPn Student (at 11:42pm), true but i would not hold Pakistan (or Afghanistan) as a benchmark when it comes to these matters, would you? That our culture is less misogynistic than these countries is nothing to be proud of as Philippine culture still has a long way to go in terms of respect for women and open-mindedness about their sex lives. I prefer we use the Swedes or the Dutch as role models instead.

  2. Google-search for “Norway rape cases” and “Netherlands rape cases” will show that these two societies are experiencing a huge upsurge in sexual crimes (which many are attributing to the large influx of Muslim immigrants).
    … Rape/sexual assault is a huge enough problem in the Philippines, but much worse is the fact that the Philippines is always mentioned (along with Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam) when the topic of countries popular to child-sex tourists. A sad statistic is that the Philippines is either number 5 or number 6 in the ranking of countries with the most number of child-prostitutes. As in rape where the assault is usually perpetrated by a relative or a close friend, so also with child-prostitution. A report by ECPAT — ‘End Child Prostitution, Child Pornography and Trafficking of Children for Sexual Purposes’ — estimates the Philippines has about t 60,000 child prostitutes. (Phil govt estimates put the figure at about 40,000 while it may be as high as 100,000.)
    According to the report, recruiters often justify getting children into the sex trade by saying that they are “helping” them and their families. For Anjanette Saguisag, ECPAT co-ordinator, recruiters can “be immediate family members [or] people known to family and friends”.

  3. UPn Student, i did some googling and you’re right. Sweden has its own problem with rape as report by Amnesty International:

    Men’s violence against women in intimate relations is highly underreported in Sweden. Only 15-25% of the women subjected to violence report the crimes to the police. The vast majority of the reported cases are closed down and do not lead to trial or other legal proceedings.

    For example: official statistics show that the police registered 22,400 cases of abuse of women in 2003. In almost 17,000 cases, the perpetrator was an acquaintance of the woman and an estimated 11,000 of these cases involved a present or former intimate partner to the woman.

    [Source – Sweden: System fails as violence against women increases 06/01/2004]

  4. Ricelander, what has my heterosexuality got to do with justifying pruriency? The kind of bravado you bandy is immaterial. If you are man enough–and I presume we can accord those in uniform greater responsibility, foreigner at that–you should be able to tame the beast in you. The red light district does not even give the green light to wield your tool at your urging. cvj has answered your reaction for me.

    For your satisfaction, I always ask first.

  5. Asterisk,
    Feel offended? I have no idea if you are male or female or your sexual orientation with your cute name so I had to make an assumption because then my argument would sound presumptous. No intention to offend but sorry nonetheless.

  6. correction:
    I have no idea you are male or female or of your sexual orientation with your cute name so I had to make an assumption because without it my argument would sound presumptous.

  7. The day will come when the male specie would, before going to bed with the female kind, the following: her certification she is willing, where and when, duly signed; a doctor’s certification she is not drunk; a psychiatrist’s certification she is psychologically ready; a few witnesses to watch. That will be the day when a woman’s inviting smile would terrify not arouse a man’s instinct. That will be when he would rather be with a doll instead of a with a real warm bodied human female.

  8. ricelander, apology accepted. Nonetheless, the reference remains immaterial.

    The day will come when we will just learn to behave. Down boy!

    Nick: Is criminal solicitation a crime? Just wondering if by cheering, those other 3 could have been nailed on this basis.

  9. cvj: all those statistics seem to hold true in all countries, e.g. that a small fraction (15% to 20%) of rapes and sexual assaults get reported to the police. I don’t know if “Nicole” met Smith thru one of her friends, but it appears they hardly knew each other. The more typical rape/assault cases — almost four out of five rapes are committed by attackers who knew or recognized their victims (US statistics reported by National Center for Victims of Crime & Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center).
    Here are other items worth knowing to understand the rape-phenomenon better so that completed or non-completed rapes become less and less a phenomenon.
    (a) ALCOHOL is often involved. One study found that 75% of the males and 50% of the females involved in acquaintance rapes had been drinking when the sexual assault occurred (Bohmer & Parrot, 1993). Another study of students who had been victims of some type of sexual aggression while in college – from rape to intimidation and illegal restraint – the women surveyed reported that 68 percent of their male assailants had been drinking at the time of the attack. Many males believe that alcohol increases sexual arousal; that women who have two or more drinks are more interested than other women in having sex. Women’s attitudes are “her body/her consent” and “she will invite only when she wants to”. Many men believe that they “can read the woman’s non-verbal signals”; also that alcohol-consumption legitimates nonconsensual aggression.
    (b) Victim and assailant being alone in a room (or a car) is ill-advised. Only a minority (of college males) said “no, they won’t” when asked if they would likely commit acquaintance rape if they could be assured that no one else would find out and they will not be punished. Majority (60% or higher) of college/young-working-adults said they may be likely to rape a woman if given the opportunity described.
    (c) Females should not over-estimate their abilities to tell their date that “NO is NO is NO”. Men and women are from different planets with regards Verbal and nonverbal cues of sexual intent, more often with men overestimating women’s interest in them as sexual partners based on characteristics such as friendliness, attractiveness, and clothing.
    At a certain point (and it happens often when alcohol is in play) the perpetrator misinterprets the no’s and resistance of the victim as play-acting”/”playing hard to get”. Violence and anger — “she really is asking for this!!” can also become a factor.
    ..Though misinterpretation is an important factor, most acquaintance rapes are planned ahead of time by perpetrators. A typical scenario is for a perpetrator to pressure his date to drink heavily so that she will be less capable of resisting an assault.
    (d) Victims of acquaintance rape frequently blame themselves for a violent crime over which they had no control. [To repeat — a crime over which the rape victim had no control.] Because the assailants are previously known to them, many victims hold themselves accountable for not having better judged the character of their perpetrators, or for allowing themselves to be in the situation in which the rape occurred.

  10. in this case, UPn, people are holding nicole “accountable for not having better judged the character of their perpetrators, or for allowing themselves to be in the situation in which the rape occurred.”

    what sickens me are the memes around the blogosphere defending smith by saying that “nicole was asking for it” and others analoguous.

  11. I will not deal with the correctness of the decision, but what I am thankful is that because of the decision I am hoping that “arrogance” like that incident would stop. There will be those who will be thinking twice now before doing such stupid acts, whether it is being asked for by the victim or not.

  12. Non-consensual sex between husband and wife is rape (according to the laws of the US, Canada, other European countries). This is among the cases where rape-victims must be rending their garments to shreds for having allowed themselves to be in the situation in which rape occurred, and the bitterness of the situation made worse with the potential lack of understanding from relatives, friends or their church or temple.
    …And the worst of the worst — rape of dependent minors.

  13. “Property rights” extends to one’s own body. Spouses are not properties; children are not properties; significant-others are not properties.

  14. this case makes me think: a man and a woman have rough and consensual sex. a few days later, for one reason or another, the woman suddenly decides to accuse the man of rape. what could the man do to prove that he didn’t rape her?

  15. testing: try making her sign a consent and waiver before doing it. Or else issue her a check and write on the memo: “payment for sexual services”.

  16. bencard: thanks. apart from these, and bringing out a camera phone and actually recording the words of consent by the woman, what else can be done?

  17. bencard: thanks. apart from those, and bringing out a camera phone and actually recording the words of consent by the woman, what else can be done?

  18. testing: in the U.S., oftentimes a jury would give the accused the benefit of reasonable doubt. I doubt if Nicole’s attorneys could overcome that hurdle in a U.S. court, given the quality of the evidence that was presented and admitted. But then again, this is Philippines. I could sense the politics factor, with all those mass actions and demos by militant groups aided by a number of religious activists nd grandstanding politicos. Perhaps, one could try a bigger crowd
    to influence the outcome of the case for the accused.

  19. testing : to remember that the accuseD is “innocent until proven guilty”, so the burden is on the accuseR. The “Pozon”-judgment already showed a particular detail — it works FOR the accuser if date-rape drugs or enough alcohol-consumption got her into a level of stupor that she can claim “totally unable to resist”. And of course, the “rough sex” must not be so rough that the accused’s teeth have been bashed in or that the violence on her body prevented her from reporting for work for several days.
    ..It works AGAINST the accuser if she takes several days before submitting a police-report (unless she was hospitalized). It especially works against accuser if she has NOT complained to anyone (not to friends nor to relatives nor to any other confidant) about the assault. It works against the accuser if accused/accuser have met several times after the alleged assault and accuser did not not show signs of anger against the accused. It works against accuser if the days after the alleged assault, accused and accuser appeared to remain “the best of friends… even better than friends”.
    … It works against the Accuser if several witnesses can corroborate that accused and accuser have been intimate in previous occasions. It works against the accuser if witnesses can corroborate that the accuseR appeared calm and collected and in control (and hence in a position to give or deny consent) during the hours before the alleged assault.

  20. but it damn better be that the accuser is not under the age of 16!!!! Remember that Jalosjos-case… jailed for rape even when the victim (menor-de-edad) was an alleged sex-worker.

  21. it works against the accuseD if the accuser is his daughter or niece, or where there is serious discrepancy in power,
    e.g. accuseR is household help.

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