Danish teen fought off her attacker - now she'll face fine
A 17-year-old girl who was physically and sexually attacked in Sønderborg will herself face charges for using pepper spray to fend off her assailant.
The teenager told police that she was attacked in central Sønderborg on Wednesday at around 10pm by an English-speaking man in dark clothing. She said the man knocked her to the ground and then unbuttoned her pants and attempted to undress her.
The girl was able to save herself from further assault by using pepper spray on the attacker, but now she may be the one who ends up in legal trouble.
It is illegal to possess and use pepper spray, so she will likely be charged for that, local police spokesman Knud Kirsten told TV Syd.
Unjust laws ought to be disobeyed.
It says she can't carry pepper spray. In this instance it helped, but if it was legal then what about the other instances where people carried it to use in assaults or robberies?
I am just amazed at the things I see posted on DU sometimes.
Laws that enforce inequalities are not just laws.
In this case, the law is flat-out misogynistic.
being raped or murdered. Of course, Europe being the way it is, if they caught the would be rapist and he was a migrant, he would probably get off with a slap on the wrist because they don't want to appear "racist".
He might not be a migrant, but I wouldn't be against it. Women everywhere are always at some risk against these attacks, but stick a bunch of misogynist men in your town, and the risk goes up.
I'll give you a free hint -- not hers.
To carry weapons that allow them to level the playing field in any hypothetical combat against any other attacker? What if there are multiple attackers? Should packing an uzi be legal?
There is no moral obligation to remain defenseless in obedience to words on paper.
I can't support that. Society should be finding new ways to increase public safety, not just giving people a free rein to carry weapons.
Meanwhile the predators in society have been not stopped from preying on the innocent.
Stop the predators first, then maybe I'll entertain your concerns.
And then explain how forbidding the innocent from defending themselves prevents crime.
If they have the weapon, that is the crime. It works, there is vastly less weapon crime.
She had a weapon but was committing no crime accept the one the authorities unjustly imposed upon her along the way to failing to protect her.
Please don't try and impose your beliefs onto theirs.
And you say this speaking on behalf of the Danes, do you? Is yours an elected position? How about the Danes engaged in what the article describes as a "backlash"?
It gets more blurry when it comes to home defense, but even then their views are vastly more constrained than America. The expectation in Europe is that society is kept safe by thorough and competent law enforcement, not by citizens having to defend themselves against the possibility of random attack.
ipso facto not so as a teenaged girl felt a need to acquire and carry pepper spray due to a lack of confidence in the authorities and her fears proved to be justified.
Unfortunately, the reason she had her fears in the first place is because of all the other rapes the authorities -- not being thorough and apparently incompetent -- failed to prevent or prosecute.
Deal with the rapists and the pepper spray would be a non-issue. Deal with the rapists and she probably never would have bothered to spend the time or money buying pepper spray.
Just saying 'well everyone can have weapons until they do' isn't a solution anyone there will accept.
some of them are choosing to defend themselves and others are staging a backlash against the authorities.
What is the nature of your appeal, anyways? That, somehow per argumentum ad populum, if 50.1% or more of the population disagrees with someone exercising a basic human right that right is somehow abrogated?
Congratulations, you just won a lifetime supply of Jim Crowe.
Your solution to arm everyone is like throwing fuel on a fire and insisting it's the only option that will work.
I know they are discussing increasing it.
You maximize predation by penalizing it very lightly and forbidding potential victims to defend themselves. Nor has law enforcement been very vigilant about pursuing rape reports.
In Denmark, they've got the wacky imam who chased a woman in a park with his penis out giving speeches to student groups. He maintains that a woman who does not cover deserves it.
Denmark is, right now, a very, very misogynistic society. That's the truth. The law structure that may have been justified earlier (note I said "may" is not justified now.
I absolutely believe you are telling the truth, which is what makes it so vile.
2 years -- that is all the soul of a woman is worth?
What's the average sentence and average time served?
And then, if you would, tell us how long does the victim have to live with the terror? How many years is that average sentence?
Have you stopped for more than a second to consider that perhaps all of us hate that vile and abhorrent crime and would love nothing more than to stamp it out? Perhaps if you stop attacking for a moment and actually have a conversation you might discover that we share more opinions than you think.
I don't know why you'd call them morally bankrupt, as a country they are much happier and safer than America.
that even elected governments can be morally bankrupt.
And much of his methodology revolved around not obeying unjust laws.
We're done here.
It subordinates a person's right to self-defense to violent predators. You chose the law but that does little more than protect the violent sexual predator.
If I hadn't seen that post with my own eyes, I might not have believed it.
How completely disgusting.
It's making me cynical at an early age.
The arguments I've seen in this thread are thoroughly disgusting.
They amount to "sorry there was a rape, but the conditions that make it harder to defend against rape are for the greater good".
Yes, thoroughly disgusting indeed.
Rape conviction rates have been plummeting as rape rates rise, and it is forbidden to discuss why.
Denmark, most first offenders get under two years:
The maximum is eight. So you could be a serial rapist and get 8 years on your fourth rape, although the chance of being convicted for multiple rapes is so low in Denmark that it's almost unthinkable. The chance of being convicted on a simple rape charge is incredibly low. If you beat your victim into a pulp the police will usually try to investigate, but that's about it.
Sometimes first offenders get parole.
Many women in Denmark don't even report a rape - unless the victim is badly injured, the police are unlikely to pursue it:
Ulla Thornemand, the head of womans group Dansk Kvindesamfund, believes the conviction rate is far too low.
Too few are being convicted of rape, Thornemand told Metroxpress. Over 98 percent of all rapists are never convicted. There is virtually no risk if you rape a woman.
By badly injured I don't mean all bruised up, either.
There are virtues to the US system. We do not have this problem mostly because women wouldn't stand for it, and in many states, if a rape wave started, offenders would promptly start getting their 'nads blown off, which would deal with the problem.
The situation is not all that different in Germany. There is currently a Russian/German diplomatic scuffle. A 13 year-old German resident girl of Russian extraction disappeared for more than a day. She had been in sexual contact with at least two men. The police did nothing, saying that her story had discrepancies and that the contact was "consensual". In fact, the police first said it didn't happen at all when the story broke on social media in Germany.
The Russians got into the fray and retained the girl's family a lawyer, and now police are investigating the crime, because it is a crime in Germany. Even in Germany, 13 year-olds can't legally consent to group sex with adult men. But the police were doing nothing before Lavrov raised Cain except they put out a statement saying it never happened.
This is the best English-language story I can find on BBC, but FAZ has had more detailed coverage. The German police were doing exactly nothing until the Russian Foreign Minister got involved and they did deny to the press that any rape did happen:
Note that reporter who wrote about the story and got the Russians involved is having charges laid against him in Germany for "incitement"!
But that's how seriously rape is taken in many countries. Admittedly, the cultural ethos in those countries has been strongly against rape. Then import a large group of men from cultures in which rape or sexual assault against "bad" women is not culturally disfavored, and you have the perfect storm. Then add social pressures not to say anything that might cause anger or distaste against this group, and you have the perfect burqa hurricane.
And I speak of cultures like this:
For decades - since I was in college - I have had good Muslim friends. It is not really a problem with Muslim culture, but with cultures with very misogynistic social structures. Islam probably actually teaches against this, but there has a been a warping of those teachings, and it is probably strongest in some Muslim enclaves in Europe and some Muslim enclaves in the midEast and in Africa. It also exists in some countries in Africa that are more Christian, and in rural areas in India, Pakistan and south Asia.
Women in the US have forgotten how fragile our current situation is, and how unique. If the position of women in our culture is not vigilantly defended, we will find out just how real the monster under the bed is.
And would anyone really disagree that a huge number of rapes in America also go unreported?
one who did not report was raped while drunk by a BATF agent who she had known for years and trusted. Obviously I can't prove this story, but I believe the woman who told me. She had an abortion. It wasn't provable, obviously.
Read the links I provided. Think about what they reveal.
won't pursue it.
Are you going to deny the recent incident in Copenhagen? The police realized they had at least one violent rapist on the loose. They put out a call for information. They promptly got reports of nearly a hundred more assaults.
Scandinavian crime statistics as a whole are way low, because in many cases the police don't investigate. Especially property crime - people will report to get a police report if they are going to make an insurance claim, but otherwise, there is no point really in many areas.
Yes, they have unreported rapes, but so do every other country. Its a horrific problem that no-one has yet found an adequate way to solve.
The idea that Scandinavia is some hotbed of crime that doesn't get reported though is just complete fantasy, and I say that as someone who lived there for a year. The Scandinavian countries are some of the safest, most prosperous and liberal places on the planet.
You have got to be kidding me? That's an outrage! Their prisons are probably cushier than where the migrants are staying now. That's practically an incentive.
Rape destroys people's lives. It should be a minimum of at least 25 years.
In cases like rape that can be extremely hard to accept, but the result is that they have far lower prison populations and recidivism.
wandering the streets of Copenhagen, the police would be dealing with that.
But the police cannot deal with men just walking the streets. Yes, women who are under credible threat of rape should be allowed to carry defensive weaponry, especially when that weaponry is as non-lethal as pepper spray.
To maintain anything else is to show an absolute disregard of a woman's right to use the public spaces, which is in fact the issue here.
Of course no woman would find the threat of a fine more intimidating than the prospect of being violently raped. The net effect of this law is to fine this woman for the right to defend herself, which is inherently bad on two ground:
1) Every human being has the right to basic freedom, which cannot exist if that human being doesn't have the right of self-defense.
2) Fines are higher penalties to the poor, and no penalty at all to the criminal. Thus the law imposes a vicious class structure.
3) Those who can't understand points 1 and 2 are not on the side of virtue, human rights and basic decency.
Saying women should have the legal right to carry weapons but men shouldn't is completely unacceptable. You're branding all women as vulnerable but trustworthy and all men as strong but untrustworthy.
The argument is -- women cannot compete with men on a strength and body weight level, ergo disarming women favors men.
Which women? How do you define credible thread? Are men who also consider themselves under credible threat of assault or rape also offered the same rights?
Also what you said is untrue. Men as a group have a higher strength/body weight average, but this is by no means true on an individual basis. There are countless numbers of men who suffer physical domestic abuse from women much larger and stronger. Trying to solve any of these problems purely by drawing gender lines is doomed to failure.
But at the same time I can understand why that law is in place, and the fact that breaking that law has in this extremely rare example led to a good outcome doesn't make the law a bad one.
Women in Denmark are far less at risk of rape than in America, yet they have stricter weapon laws.
It's a stupid law.
This woman should not be fined.
And people should be able to carry pepper spray (it's not mace!) to defend themselves.
and has already gotten to the point of unbuttoning my pants, if an Uzi happens to be at my disposal, the would-be rapist would be full of holes.
If I were in that country with the issues they are having, I would carry a can of wasp and hornet spray. Claim you bought it for your home, fill an attackers face full of it. You just happened to be bringing it home from the store.
Wasp and hornet spray is highly effective at killing wasps, yellow jackets, hornets and convincing muggers, rapists and murderers that you are not the target they are looking for.
Most men don't need a weapon to attack a woman -- they just use their greater size & strength.... When a group, on average, is 3 inches shorter and 60 lbs lighter thsn their attackers, they need something (like pepper spray) to offset the imbalance.
Women should be able to use it to stop a rape. Pepper spray is not a gun.
It's also banned in various American states for that same reason.
Last edited Wed Jan 27, 2016, 05:38 PM - Edit history (1)
to allow people to carry guns or knives but not pepper spray.
ON EDIT: It turns out you're wrong about that. With various restrictions based on quantity and strength, pepper spray is legal for defensive purposes in all 50 states.
mace with pepper spray.
I believe pepper spray is legal in most states.
No guns, no knives, no pepper spray...
What do you recommend a rape victim use to defend herself? A stern tone of voice or should she pee herself?
most places even in the US require one to over 18 to possess pepper although laws vary by state
That should be all that is required to exempt her from prosecution. If the law cannot account for that simple fact then the law is unworthy of obedience.
it on a victim? also pepper spray is serious stuff it can blind and potentially kill if sprayed into the nose/mouteta even in most places where pepper spray is legal to carry it's restricted to those over 18, which this girl was not
Certainly not the law.
that even in most places where pepper spray is legal the sale and use is restricted to people over 18, this girl was 17
If she had been attacked by a gun wielding assailant but managed to wrest the gun from him and send him running would you have her charged for being a minor in possession of a firearm?
She felt the need to defend herself because sexual assaults in her area have increased with no relief from the authorities. Her prudence was obviously justified. Had they not shown themselves to be such failures she never would have been carrying the pepper spray in the first place.
If the law and order crowd is so damned concerned about law and order they should do something about the rapists before charging a girl for having the temerity to embarrass them in public over their failures to protect the citizenry.
and the rest of you know this as a fact? you think teenagers should be running around with potentially lethal weapons-just in case? I pointed the facts surrounding pepper spray, nothing else, now you try to make me out as some sort of cop booster?, nothing could be further from the truth
Had she been caught committing a crime while possessing pepper spray or any other weapon then I would not protest the law coming down on her but all she did -- all she ever intended to do -- was defend herself. The fact she had to defend herself should exempt her from prosecution.
defend themselves from the civil authorities who failed to protect them in the first place. Governments are not self-existing, people institute governments for protection. The government is supposed to protect/facilitate the protection of the people not prosecute the people for daring to protect themselves.
When the government fails in its duty, or worse, becomes a threat itself it loses its claim to the obedience of the people.
Pepper spray is a pretty non-lethal choice, and pretty effective. It's a reasonable option in such an instance.
The Danes have knives in their kitchens. If a predator wants a weapon, they are all over. Outlawing pepper spray hurts the defenders more than the predators.
That said, she shouldn't have to pay any fines for defending herself.
Danish women's groups should band together and pay the fine, and announce that they will do so in all such future cases.
Because this is not law, but organized, legal injustice.
That's total bullshit! I can't believe what people are posting. What the hell is she supposed to do?
Any society that bans this tool is misogynistic, preferring to leave women defenseless against a stronger male attacker.
Do you really believe they banned pepper spray because they hate women? A quick check shows many countries around the world ban them. Oddly enough Saudi Arabia and India, two rather misogynistic countries don't ban pepper spray.
checkout the list of places where pepper spray is legal for anyone to carry
pepper spray and other forms of defense, including firearms, may indeed be both appropriate and necessary, particularly in countries like Sweden and Denmark, to say nothing of the effects of increased fears and worsening crime resulting from the influx of migrants.
Women are under very high threat and defenseless in those countries.
This should get interesting.
country? I hope I am misunderstanding your post.
Is crime against migrants, especially sexual crimes, unheard of in Europe? Do migrants even have a voice to be heard? Which is the most vulnerable population in your estimation? How many crimes against migrants go unreported? Do you have no curiosity for the migrants side of the story?
Do you just want to blame it on the "others"?
I can't speak for the person who wrote it. However, I can put my thoughts out there.
The police in those countries are saying there has been a marked upswing in reported sexual assaults since the migrants came. That's just a fact. Now the exact cause of that can be debated and discussed tell everyone is blue in the face, but that doesn't change the fact that there has been an increase in sexual assaults. Whether this is because the migrants are committing the assaults, or something like the natives of those countries are taking advantage of the situation to go out and assault women thinking it would get blamed on migrants, is irrelevant to the topic at hand. Which is that women in these countries are facing higher chances of sexual assault at this time.
Watch a Von Trier movie some time.
And that doesn't even get into the under-reporting.
Otherwise, it's "we just don't give a flying fuck about you," which IS actually the case in Denmark.
People in this thread are actually arguing she should have not possessed pepper spray. So what, better to be raped than break a stupid law?
Fuck that. This thread is embarrassing.
Are you for real? You don't acknowledge that laws can be unjust? You've never hears of civil disobedience? You really think unjust laws must be obeyed until they are changed? Do you not realize that disobeying an unjust law is usually what it takes to change them? Does Rosa Parks ring a bell? Are you in the right place here? If a woman cannot defend herself with pepper spray, what's left? She should carry a legal weapon such as a gun or a knife instead?
Pepper spray is one of the best non-lethal defenses a woman can use against an attacker. It is widely used for this purpose. A person has the absolute right to defend themself, and if they aren't able to do so physically then they should have some options. That's why it's an unjust law.
It absolutely disgusts me how little they care about how awful the threat of rape is for a woman.
Their societies are not structured around the idea that people need to defend themselves every minute of the day and night. The idea of carrying a weapon everywhere you go is complete anathema to most Europeans, which is one of the reasons they have so much lower murder rates.
the laws vary greatly by state
US: 27.3 per 100,000 (ranked 14th)
Denmark: 6.4 per 100,000 (ranked 54th)
in such an odd way.
Europe includes dozens of countries, hundreds of millions of people, and a wide range of cultures, governmental structures, and opinions about society.
In several posts on this thread, you talk about how Europe is and how Europeans are and what Europeans think as though it is one massive monolith of homogeneity. It's just not the case.
I wanted to stay out of this thread but I just can't help but point this out. Others are doing a great job debating the details with you but the way you romanticize it is driving me crazy.
When I talk about Europe, I'm talking about the attitudes of the major western democracies like France, Germany and the UK along with countries like the Scandinavian and Benelux countries. They each have their own differences obviously, but there are shared values that are very different from America. There are people across Europe who make the same arguments as some of the people in this thread with regards to self defense, yet those arguments disappear very quickly over here when reports of the levels of violence in America hit the news.
I'm also not romancing it. There are positives and negatives to all of this, but what is annoying me was the initial false narrative that Denmark (one of the safest and most gender equal countries in the world) was some backwards throwback where women don't have any rights.
"Women should appeal" because apparently this is a woman's problem, exclusively; which is just a shade from it being her fault.
"Women should appeal"
Should women appeal before or after they're violently raped?
Assuming they're not murdered during the assault, that is; she should appeal but she shouldn't fight with whatever means are at her disposal. Maybe she should just lie back and try to relax until it is over.
Then, after being prodded and swabbed at the hospital for a kit that will probably never be tested she should wipe-off, shower-off and wait for the swelling to go down. Then, at some time between therapy sessions she can see if Parliament is having a committee meeting about the matter so as to not inconvenience them and she can put on a pretty dress to look her best for the men she'll stand in front of and demurely say, "Please, sirs, can we not be charged as criminals for fighting off our attackers?"
Asif it should have ever had to have been asked in the first place.
Sorry to have interrupted your frat party with my petty concerns.
A girl has to be on guard for these sorts of things, you know.
Judging from your posting history your concern for what is or isn't legal in a country is rather selective. If only the safety of women rated with you as highly as a good Thai stick does. Do the munchies give you a craving for rolling donuts?
If you take a hundred random women and you take a hundred random women and pair them off randomly, the male will be able to physically subdue the female at least 80% of the time. Thus a law like this is fundamentally patriarchal.
Laws that facilitate might making right are inherently unjust to the weak. There will always be strong predators.
Misuse of a defensive weapon such as pepper spray should be illegal - it's assault, and it probably already is in Denmark. Misuse should be prosecuted.
It is not the inherent function of law to forbid the weak innocents from defending themselves effectively against the strong predators. It is the inherent function of the law to defend the innocent, and most especially the weak innocent who are naturally more likely to be victims.
the US came 20th..
just bet she feels all kinds of fucking equal.
But she has exactly the same rights as any other Dane. That's what equality means.
like anyone else.
What a bunch of drivel. Sounds like an analysis out of Evilhair's campaign.
Danes are happier, safer and live longer healthier lives than Americans.
Danes other than the victim in this case.
But I'm sure if she sees your post, she'll find comfort in it.
Because last time I checked the mass shootings were happening weekly. At that point its not a single outlier.
Did I really think I had a point? Do you people even listen to yourself? All I'm seeing here is the typical arrogance about how bad other countries are at doing things, completely ignoring the statistical evidence that they are safer, more happy, more healthy and have more gender and social equality.
Oh but those foreigners must be doing it wrong, because 'Murica.
See every noteworthy shooting.
BS. A mass shooting is by definition in a nation of 300 million people and 300 million firearms and 80 million gun owners, 99.9 percent of which do not shoot anyone ever, A STATISTICAL OUTLIER. Which some people seem only too happy use as justification to regulate.
Do you believe some statistical outliers are more equal than others?
That's a nice misrepresentation. I never said "how bad" anything.
And another misrepresentation.
When you have to stoop to misrepresenting what others have said or the sentiments they have expressed, you've clearly lost the debate.
Are just the most visible signs of a problem that kills 30,000 people a year. It's not just the mass shootings and it never was.
The reason the Danes don't want people carrying weapons is because they don't want the same kind of armed, confrontational society that America has. Yes they occasionally have terrible stories where a weapon would have helped someone, but on the flip side they don't have huge numbers of their citizens trying to hurt and kill each other.
That's utter nonsense. Sandy hook is no sign of suicides, which take 20,000 of the 30,000 people you refer to.
So its a case of "I'm alright jack..."
10 thousand is not "huge" in a nation of 300 million people. And, nothing you've said, refutes in any way, anything I've said.
It's a murder rate that no Western European country would tolerate for a second. Which is why they don't tolerate people filling their houses with personal damn arsenals.
Lets drop this, we aren't going to come to any kind of agreement or understanding.
In your own words, a statistical OUTLIER. But thanks for proving that in your view, some outliers are more equal than others.
Our murder rate by firearms has been going down for 20 years, in spite of tens of millions of more guns sold. Kinda hard to blame the gun, unless you hate them and they are all you can see.
You're right. We aren't. Particularly when the best argument in this thread from those on the other side of this threads topic is "its too bad she was raped, but not allowing x for her to defend hersef with is for the greater good.
A national disgrace. As for the rest, every law is for the public good. Trying to twist this poor woman's story to try and score cheap points is revolting. Go spin with someone else.
10,000 mostly individual incidents in a nation of 300,000,000 is the textbook definition of 'statistical outliers'.
You believe Citizens United is for the public good? Really?
You believe that laws that allow open carry are for the public good? Surely not.
You believe laws that allow concealed carry are for the public good? I very much doubt it.
You believe laws that outlaw abortion like those being proposed in FL are for the public good? Suuureee you do.
You believe that The Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act is for the public good? uh huh.
You believe the Heller decision on amendment 2 is for the public good? Sure you do.
Will this lead to some clarification on your part, that amounts to "laws I agree with are for the public good"?
That's not spin. That's you twisting in the wind, hoist on your own petard, though I can understand your confusion.
I'm not the one taking the position that 'its for the greater good' when a woman is raped, and charged with having pepper spray. And that position, is the ONLY thing that could be accurately described as 'cheap', in this thread.
Now that's funny.
The concept of having laws in the first place is intended to provide for the common good. Our entire justice system is built on the principle of seperating the individual instance from the system because if you allow emotion into the judicial system you get stupid and badly thought out results. A bit like here where a group of people are unable to see the long term dangers to society of allowing people to carry dangerous weapons, because they are too emotionally caught up in the detail of a single case.
Of course the easy thing to do would be to sit and spout meaningless platitudes and accuse anyone who has a differing opinion of not caring about the victim, but I see you already have that lazy position staked out so I'll leave you to it.
Enjoy defending the right to carry weapons, and I'm sure next time someone is pepper sprayed and raped that you'll be along to scream about how appalling it is that people are allowed to just carry that stuff around.
You've demonstrated quite exhaustively that you subordinate the safety of people, even would be rape victims to Duh Rulz. Innocent people are just collateral damage, apparently.
The greatest social and political awakenings in history were born from civil disobedience, the refusal to obey bad law, the refusal to obey law simply because it was law. We stand with the Underground Railroad, the draft dodgers, the civil rights protesters, Stonewall rioters, miners illegally striking and all the others.
You stand with whom, exactly? Those who opposed them whether from personal ambition or timid obedience? Do you think they will take care of you? They can't even protect a 17-year old girl walking down her own streets.
There is no duty to be raped to satisfy words on paper written by politicians.
Despite all the evidence showing their society to be safer. So yes, you're emotionally caught up in this.
2. Design and effect can often completely different things, as this case demonstrates
3. Innocent people defending themselves does nothing to degrade public safety
4. Allowing criminals to prey upon a helpless populace does improve public safety
5. No person is obligated to be a helpless victim. Any law that leads to that effect is unjust.
Are you kidding?
This thread is not a rehash of our American gun debate. For heaven's sake, we are only talking about the right to carry totally non-lethal, non-damaging pepper spray!
In any event, the reason why this story is newsworthy is because this girl responsibly used a totally non-lethal product to fend-off an actual rape (and to add insult to injury, her attacker has not yet been apprehended), yet she is the one being prosecuted. It matters not at all that she likely only faces a small fine. She should be congratulated on her quick thinking and reflexes and offered therapy, and most certainly no re-victimized by the state.
If this was the USA, even in ultra-liberal jurisdiction like San Francisco, if a prosecutor did not exercise his or her discretion and merely suggested criminal charges, it would be the end of their political career.
Anyone should be allowed an effective means to defend themselves from serious harm, no less young women in bad areas employing products that yield no significant or permanent damage to their assailants. Most would argue it's a human right. This is even without any consideration of the current political and practical problems concerning increased violent crime committed by refugees (the woman's attacker was described as "dark skinned" in Denmark).
Ironically, it's attitudes like yours and others that effectively mandate victimhood and defenseless that fuel the right wing, discredit liberals, particularly on matters concerning criminal justice and immigration, and in the USA, ensure gun control is a losing issue for Democrats. As an American matter, that's why claims by people like President Obama and Hillary Clinton that they purportedly support gun rights and don't want to disarm anyone ring quite hollow. When people on our side defend not just policies against firearms, but everything relating to self-defense, good-faith is shattered. As I indicated earlier, if we are the ones highlighting the war on women, why should we expected them to fight this war literally unarmed. Issues like pay equity and other feminist causes are meaningless if women cannot even feel safe walking in the own neighborhoods.
Except it can kill people and even when used as intended and non-lethally 'can involve pain, discomfort, temporary blindness and respiratory issues'.
Pepper spray is not some harmless toy, its potentially extremely harmful and should only be used by trained professionals as an alternative to otherwise lethal methods.
Ignoring all this because in this instance breaking the law helped an innocent person is just ignoring the entire reason we have laws. If this story was about someone who had pepper sprayed a girl and then raped her, how many of you would still be lining up to cheerlead for the public carrying of pepper spray?
will involve some pain, discomfort and/or means to disable an attacker. That's precisely the point! Your don't stop an violent attacker with feathers, skittles and happy thoughts.
You can also dispense with the ridiculous straw man arguments. Neither I nor anyone else here suggested pepper spray was a "harmless toy." It is a tool, nothing more, nothing less. Most importantly, pepper spray is at least minimally effective at its designated task, and highly unlikely to cause permanent or lethal injuries (although I personally care not one iota if an actual rapist suffers serious or debilitating injuries while in the commission of the crime, an opinion shared by the vast majority of people liberal and otherwise, and I further support far more effective, and generally lethal, self-defense tools).
I also believe you're really missing the point in much of this discussion. Even a relatively average healthy young man can easily overpower and sexually assault most women. It sadly happens every day. Rapists and other violent criminals don't need pepper spray to employ their violence, but for most women, the sick and elderly, etc., it's one of the only tools available that gives them any fighting chance at all, no less without much risk to others (as the story of the girl in the OP amply demonstrates). Your perspective is little more than demanding we apply law of the jungle, the strong prey on the weak, and it is most decidedly illiberal and unprogressive.
Lastly, you totally failed to address my point about prosecutorial discretion. Even you concede this girl should not face any penalties under the circumstances. Nevertheless, you appear to support prosecution to ensure women, at least in Denmark, don't even consider any proper means to protect themselves. The women (and anyone else) subject to violent assaults are simply unfortunate faceless statistical anomalies in you entirely mythical question quest for a human society free of all violence.
Ironically, all that demanding victimhood and defenseless in the face of increasing risks to public and personal safety will do is ensure that liberal candidates lose more and more elections, both here and overseas. This is the very reason for the overwhelming shock, disgust and anger in response to the OP's story, as demonstrated by the reactions in numerous other media outlets and here on DU by a very liberal membership.
You're supporting a discretionary reading of law where a police officer gets to decide whether a law should apply in one case but not another. It's a terribly flawed way to run a legal system and certainly not one that stands up to any kind of scrutiny.
Do you even know what the heck you're talking about?
First, the state prosecutor (or Danish equivalent), not the police, decide whether to pursue criminal charges. Even if a law is broken, the state need not prosecute. This prosecutorial discretion underpins and is essential to virtually all advanced western legal systems. By way of reference, it is exactly the same power that President Obama is attempting to use to prevent the deportation of hundreds of thousands of undocumented migrants in the USA or that local prosecutors use daily both in the USA and Europe to not charge various protesters, usually concerning liberal causes, despite many technical and minor violations of the law. If prosecutors were actually required to pursue every criminal legal violation, every modern criminal justice system would grind to an immediate halt.
YOU want this case prosecuted, but it is not a legally required. Considering the public outcry and the fact that the rape victim is a danger to no one, I wouldn't be surprised if the Danish authorities quickly decide to drop it entirely lest they face the anger of their electorate, particularly since those same authorities haven't yet actually managed to apprehend the rapist.
Lastly, I note once again that you conspicuously avoid responding to my actual arguments and instead offer straw men claims and now a clearly demonstrated lack of understanding about western criminal legal systems.
There's a definite chance that a stronger attacker will turn that weapon against her. Horrible but unfortunately true.
I stopped more than one would-be rapist.
Women are not always the weaker ones in conflicts higher up the thread. The poor was just that if a woman feels she needs a weapon because she's worried about being overpowered, having a weapon can sometimes hurt more than help.
and letting shit happen to you. I happen to like my Smith & Wesson.
I'd like to see someone try to take it from me!
'pain, discomfort, temporary blindness and respiratory issues' if it happens to rapists. That's the point. It causes pain to get someone to get away from you. It causes blindness so they can't see you to retaliate against it. It causes problems with the attacker's breathing so they want to get that part fixed first before hurting you. That allows you to get away from them and get to safety. You want to avoid that kind of thing in the future? Stop attempting to rape women.
If there were a self defense weapon that caused uncontrollable euphoria that incapacitated someone with hugs and puppies, would you be ok with that?
That was just about how dangerous it can be when people use it to assault people, which you'd see a lot more of if it was legal to carry it.
fend off an attacker? Harsh language?
I guess the occasional fine is just the price you have to pay for living in a country that care more about compliance than it cares about the safety of the individual citizen.
They can't really catch you unless you have to use it. Then it's just a small fine as opposed to years of therapy and everything that comes after an attack.
just what? "Sucks to be you."
How about rewording the law as "it's illegal to carry, but a victim of a crime will not be prosecuted."
Right there you have coverage to prosecute the bad guys, while leaving the good people protected. Everyone wins. Except for the attempted rapist, clawing his eyes out before going to prison for 15 years.
Pretending other people are defending rape when they simply refuse to join your little chorus of poorly thought out and reactionary shouting is despicable and I want no part in it or you.
Victims are subordinate to your authoritarianism.
Feel free to call out the post number where you made any statement coming close to assert the victim's right o defend herself as higher importance than obeying the law.
On the off chance that you might be one of the extremely small number of people who ever have to face that kind of attack. It doesn't, because otherwise you have to legalize the carrying of those weapons to everyone. You can't have a law that says women can carry pepper spray but men can't because it would fly in the face of equality and be shot down immediately by any kind of constitutional checks and balances. If you allow everyone to carry pepper spray, then you massively increase the number of people using pepper spray for illegal purposes and create a situation where the police have to actually catch people after the fact, rather than be able to reduce crime overall by possession itself being an offence.
Basically you're supporting a vigilante approach to justice which only America in the western democracies thinks is ok. It's also one of the key reasons why America has many more murders than other western nations because the same stupid logic is applied to gun possession.
We all feel emotion when it comes to terrible crimes, but there's a damn good reason why emotive appeals should have no place in lawmaking.
Warn people before you say something like that!
Emotive appeals are the core of anti-self defense proponents. It is the first rule in the manual.
A society may indeed limit access to weapons. Yet when every means of self defense is proscribed then the importance of the individual has lost meaning and victimhood is simply the cost an individual pays for the good of society.
Your lack of reply to my question above about what means of self defense should be legal speaks loudly.
But what always gets overlooked in these discussions is that the society is a collection of individuals. The vast majority of rapes are committed by people known to the victim, and carrying a weapon in public will not help in most of those situations. Women being raped in public by a total stranger is (thankfully) extremely rare, and carrying a weapon can just as often result in that weapon being turned against the victim as it does actually help. So you have a situation where the equation (and sadly it really is an equation) comes down to either a largely imaginary feeling of increased safety vs the actual safety of a much, much larger number of people.
In American society it isn't quite that simple. Individuals enjoy much closer to equal footing here with 'society', and a great many of us prefer it that way.
'Can'. And yet, here in the states where people can and do carry defensive tools, it doesn't seem to be happening quite to the extent you'd have everyone believe. I doubt very much it would manifest itself on your side of the pond in any significant way, unless your society is more violent than ours, which we know not to be the case. In any event, the "outcome" is something we individuals would prefer to have say so in ourselves at the point of contact, rather having it decided for us. Theres nothing wrong in any way with that, morally or ethically, regardless of what nation one lives in.
First, Its not an equation. Its a belief. A strongly held belief, but a belief nonetheless. Nothing more.
Second, the situation as you describe it is based on a belief of what WILL happen, not of what 'can' happen. You jumped right from 'can' to 'will' without ever using those words or skipping a beat. Cute.
Its not a matter of 'comes down to', its a matter of you side with the collective over the individual, based on nothing more than 'belief', even when the individual is a rape victim. As you have the entire thread. What you're attempting to do, and poorly I might add, is dress your arguments up with misleading terminology and subtle fear mongering, thinking nobody will notice that you're doing it. There was nothing 'imaginary' about the increased safety that the victim in the OP was provided, and it did not effect the safety of "a much, much larger number of people".
While ignoring the statistics that show your position to be completely wrong. That's ok, I expected nothing less. Have a nice life in the echo chamber.
How can there be statistics when it isn't allowed in the first place? What are the statistics for pepper spray use in Denmark? They don't allow it? Then how in the fuck can there be statistics on it then, eh?
Furthermore, I can't ignore what you haven't presented to prop up your argument.
When you provide nothing, how can you expect anything more?
Hah. What you want, is an echo chamber. A society where the individual gets plowed under in the name of society, is nothing BUT an echo chamber.
Yeah it's all about the right of an individual to protect themselves. The same argument that has millions of guns pouring across the nation year on year. Except you don't want to own that do you, you want this to be about a single case of a girl who managed to fight off a rapists. Fuck the societal implications of what you're supporting, fuck the evidence of a society that doesn't follow your bullshit and which as a result is far safer and happier. No, you have your point to prove, and you're going to fight it to the end, and anyone who calls you on that must be a rape apologist.
And people act surprised when nothing ever changes..
You've been implying all along that allowing pepper-spray use will somehow damage Danish society.
Which brings a question to mind:
What are the societal implications of demanding that a victim of attempted rape
'take one for the team'?
Not once have you provided anything to back up your assertions during your exchange with me. Not a single time.
Free hint: "bullshit" doesn't qualify.
Any society which does not allow its citizens reasonable tools to protect themselves, is as sick as the thinking that leads to such a society, which is to say disturbingly, disgustingly sick.
I own that competely. I support private individual gun ownership. It happens to be a right in this country, not a privilege or a boon granted by authority. As it should be. Your nation (IIRC) and what is now mine had a little disagreement about such philosophical differences a couple hundred years ago. You are, I expect, aware of how that turned out.
The OP is about a girl who managed to fight off a rapist. You're trying to make this about guns.
You've provided no such evidence. You simply assert that it exists, and we should take your word that it exists and indicates what you insinuate it does. That's not how debate works, at least on this side of the pond.
And you know what else? As far as I'm concerned, FUCK any society which does not allow its citizens reasonable tools for self defense. Is that perfectly crystal clear enough for you?
The rape victim in the OP would not have been safer or happier with out the pepper spray, and you know what, you can't refute that. Its not debatable. The best you can do, is continue to post factual devoid substance free irrelevant diatribes claiming that society is more important, as you have. Pretty much everyone in this thread sees it too.
Not quite. Not even close. The point has already been proven. You can ignore that, and pretend to your hearts content that such isn't the case, but your denial can't make the facts disappear.
Also, I have to question your attempt to put your words into my mouth. I never used the words "rape apologist". I simply said that when it comes to the individual vs society, you side with society, even when the individual is a rape victim. That's not an opinion, that's a fact. All it takes is a brief perusal of this thread, which everyone is entirely free to do for themselves, to see it. It sticks out like a sore thumb. That it makes you uncomfortable when people point it out, would make a thinking person re-examine their beliefs. But not you, you're a true believer. If you're hearing the words "rape apologist" where those words aren't used, its possible however unlikely, that your conscience is talking to you, but I expect its just you trying to defend the indefensible.
Finally, you present zero evidence to support your claims assertions and insinuations. You refuse to address anything others say to you. Basically you just keep posting non-sequiturs strawmen and misrepresentations. Maybe that constitutes debate in your circles, but it doesn't on DU.
As for evidence, I posted multiple links up thread to things like stats showing the Danes having far lower levels of rape than America. But of course they're the ones with the 'disgustingly sick' society. Less rapes, less murders higher on the indexes for happiness and health, but very few guns so 'fuck their society' right?
You couldn't make this shit up, seriously.
Oh, I completely believe that. What you don't seem to understand, is that your clear conscience indicates much about your position, none of it good. Or maybe you're completely aware of how it makes you look, and just don't care. The reader can decide for themselves, but either way, it paints quite an unflattering picture.
I don't doubt that you did, however, such stats are meaningless to this debate. The rape victim in the Op is not a number, and I'd be very interested in seeing the look on her face if she saw you reducing her to one. Frankly, it doesn't matter if the stats you quote show that theres only 1 rape per year. Denying people reasonable tools of self defense is wrong, and theres simply no legitimate justification for it. The best you can do, amounts to "individuals must take one for the team", which is unethical immoral, and anything BUT liberal. Its indefensible, and everyone in this thread gets it, except you.
If they deny their individual citizens effective tools of self defense, yes. Yes they are. If I were made aware of a society where one was not allowed a fire extinguisher, where the old, the infirm, and the physically weak/vulnerable could only rely on the fire department to put out fires for ANY reason, I'd call it sick too and so would everyone else. And We'd all be right, just like we are now.
Less rapes? SO what This isn't about how many there are, this is about what options potential victims are allowed by 'society', at the point of contact. Less murders? Non-sequitur. This isn't about the degree to which a society has problems. That's not the metric being used here. Higher on the indexes for happiness and health? Non-sequitur. Again, this isn't about the degree to which a society has problems. That's not the metric being used here. But very few guns? You're still trying to make this about guns? Hello? Haven't you been paying attention? This is about PEPPER SPRAY. I find your attempts to make this about guns to be parochial, sophomoric, and pathetic. And I'm only being that charitable to stay within posting rules here. You are incapable of creating that rabbit hole and enticing me into going down it. That you continue to try, smacks of desperation. Grasping at straws. And strawmen.
Yup. Fuck that society. It may not have occurred to you, but the rape victim in the OP said "fuck this society" the moment she bought pepper spray. It only makes sense, that your ire is as great toward her for saying it through action, as it is toward me for uttering the words. You should think about that for a minute. Really hard. Would you feel the same way if your mother had been the victim?
"Denying people reasonable tools of self defense is wrong, and theres simply no legitimate justification"
In other words, you're so deeply entrenched in your ideology that no amount of scientific evidence showing that your position leads to more violence will sway you. You'd rather turn this into an emotional issue based around a single case, and ignore the bulk of evidence that shows that what you propose would cause more violence and pain to victims not less.
I have no time to waste on people who have closed minds and have no interest in the larger picture. Have a nice day.
Yes, you would. I think you refusing to address anything that I've said in this exchange says it all. Particularly since I address essentially everything you say, and refute it point by point, time and time again, during the entire back and forth with you.
You've provided precisely ZERO evidence that allowing women to carry pepper spray leads to more violence. The only proof we have that lends any credibility to that otherwise nonsensical notion, is that some asshole scumbag rapist took some pepper spray in the face while trying to rape an innocent woman. If that's what you call "more violence", then your position is even more ethically and morally bankrupt that it first appeared.
I say this to my interlocutor on occasion, when it applies, and it definitely applies now: You aren't very good at this. Again, you've provided zero evidence about pepper spray use, yet you assert without providing that evidence, that allowing it would cause more violence. Because criminals and other bad actors are just itching for it to be legal, and wont misuse it until then, right? RIGHT? What part of "the only people stopped by its legal status are those who give a shit about this ridiculous law" don't you understand?
That's a broken bolt extractor. More commonly known as an "easy out". Your last sentence is pretty much an attempt at an "easy out". For a person with no time to waste, you sure seem to have spent a lot of it, defending the indefensible.
Me, I think it's just simpleminded projection. An admission. A confession. Your ONLY interest is in the larger picture, and "fuck any individuals who get plowed under in the name of it". Right?
Except that they do ban it amongst a long list of other things as as a result they have a safer society. But that doesn't count because it doesn't fit into your narrative.
Correct. No evidence.
Oh look, you're trying to make it ambiguous now by tieing it together with a list of other things. Too cute by half. As if they're inseparable. Careful now, you might accidentally imply that this society you refer to can't tell the difference between pepper spray and other things.
Except that you have provided NO EVIDENCE that society would be LESS SAFE if they had not banned it. You've asserted it, you've implied it, you've insinuated it, you've claimed it, but you have provided exactly ZERO PROOF that what you claim is actually the case. Without that proof, you haven't actually proven it, you see, because proof is actually required to...prove things. Furthermore, without proof, it is nothing more than a belief on your part. And I must say, the belief is strong in you. People suffer for your belief. How does that fit in your big picture, eh?
Congratulations, you've graduated to diversionary tactics.
I'll ask again:
It may not have occurred to you, but the rape victim in the OP said "fuck this society" the moment she bought pepper spray. It only makes sense, that your ire is as great toward her for saying it through action, as it is toward me for uttering the words, since it didn't fit her narrative either. You should think about that for a minute. Really hard. Would you feel the same way if your mother or sister or wife or daughter had been the victim?
Will you address it this time?
Their society is safer. You're just now falling back on 'prove it was because of this one weapon being banned rather than all the weapons they ban being banned'. Which is something that can't really be proved because you can't get statistics for why something didn't happen.
You've also conveniently skipped the part where this stuff is banned in a number of states too, because it's understood to be dangerous.
As for your supposed question, all you're doing is trying to make it an emotional appeal and I have absolutely no need to justify myself to you. You can try and set yourself up as the only one who cares about rape victims if it makes you feel special, but it's pretty childish quite honestly. Every damn person here would do anything they could to stop that horrific crime, but trying to stop people even discussing the issues by setting up some ideological purity test is really vile.
That's an unproven, unsupported, unsubstantiated assertion. Nothing more.
Nobody in THIS discussion is talking about ALL weapons. Just pepper spray. Do you have a reading problem?
Oh, but that doesn't stop you from claiming something that by your own words you've now admitted, can not be proven.
Except it CAN be proven that the victim in the OP was made safer by carrying pepper spray. That's not debatable, because its a fact. Quick check: It has been proven that the victim was safer carrying pepper spray. And yet you will ignore that proof in favor of your big picture. Meanwhile, you've proven...nothing.
Its not banned anywhere because its 'understood' to be dangerous 'Believed' to be dangerous, at best.
There IS a difference.
It seems the word 'anything' has certain hidden qualifiers when you use it, since supporting potential victims ability to lawfully carry pepper spray doesn't seem to be included. Is there anything else that 'anything' doesn't include when you use the term?
Just answer the question:
It may not have occurred to you, but the rape victim in the OP said "fuck this society" the moment she bought pepper spray. It only makes sense, that your ire is as great toward her for saying it through action, as it is toward me for uttering the words, since it didn't fit her narrative either. You should think about that for a minute. Really hard. Would you feel the same way if your mother or sister or wife or daughter had been the victim?
Will you address it this time?
P.S. I guess you found some time to waste.
and is widely available, including online. Mace is restricted in some areas, as are stun guns.
Thats not 'babbling crap', its a spot on assessment of the position you've taken.
I don't think we will talk any more.
I have no desire to continue talking to you if you're that dishonest.
Here, maybe this will make it a little clearer.
Your link discusses ECONOMIC equality between the sexes. It's presented by the World Economic Forum. And that's a wonderful thing, to have economic equality between the sexes. It also has absolutely nothing to do with the OP at hand.
The fact that women and men make the same pay at work means nothing when a guy who's got 50 lb more muscle than a woman is dragging her to into a dark corner.
by stronger men with nothing to fear, because the police are inept, and self defense is illegal.
Yay, I guess.
Completely stop vile people committing terrible crimes. They have a lot less of them though, and I think that's a pretty good sign they're heading in the right direction.
authorities use her prosecution to bring in the rapist. Announce that charges are going to be dropped unless her victim (the scumbag) presses charges. If he's stupid enough to come forward, he's arrested, and put in prison for 10 years. All charges against her are dropped. She goes on vacation with the money she gets from suing him for everything he has.
What's actually going to happen is that she's going to pay her fine and live in fear of another attack. He's going to get away with it. He'll be emboldened, actually finish raping the next woman he sees. If she's lucky, she'll get away with her life.
Horray for an enlightened society.
This would suggest he was not a Dane.
With 86% of Danes being able to speak it.
I hope Denmark has a good jury system and this clear self defense gets nullified.
You ain't seen nothin' yet.
Welcome to DU.
I'm gobsmacked at some of the responses in this thread, and now that? Ick.
That particular poster has been on my radar for years. But that, even for them, is plain vile.
Actually, a prosecutor will either refuse to bring charges or they'll plea to some minor violation, recommend a 50 dollar fine and the judge will waive the fine.
Given the overall circumstances, i don't see her actually paying any penalty for carrying pepper spray in what is clearly a self-defense case.
I am a strong supporter of gun control laws, but if people are not allowed to defend themselves with any less than lethal means, it just makes it harder to restrict guns. And by the way, I have never read a story about a civilian going crazy and pepper spraying random people in a public setting. Has anyone else?
I think this girl acted prudently. If you live in a dangerous area or have to go through one routinely, it makes sense to have some form of self-protection. She saved herself from a terrible experience that could have caused long lasting psychological damage to feeling of security and her ability to have healthy sexual relationships even if the physical injury was not severe or permanent.
Where is the compassion for the victim? Too many threads seem to think her feelings count for nothing.
I didn't know so many DUers were against women defending themselves against rapists.
and you'll see how many DU members are not particularly keen on self-defense, armed or otherwise, or at least very selective as to who should have the right and when.
Also keep in mind that we're only now discussing non-lethal pepper spray.
These are the moments when I truly dread defending Democrats' and liberals' "soft on crime" reputation with my more conservative friends and colleagues. There is indeed a war on women, and sadly many liberals want women to remain unarmed, both literally and figuratively.
one to carry pepper spray and the idea women need something for self defense.
Seems a technicality and hopefully she just pays a small fine while he gets jail time.
it will be just one more thing that causes a rise in popularity for the RW nationalists.
RW Nationalists are becoming increasingly attractive to voters all over Europe.
I suppose surely guns must be too, then.
What do they recommend for self defense then?
less attractive to the rapist is the usual standby from them.
Never mind that rape is less about sex or attractiveness than it is about wanting to exercise control over another person. It's just about violence, pure and simple.
"Rape is about sex, just like being hit in the head with a frying pan is about cooking."
There have been a couple cases of people illegally defending themselves
It worked, thank goodness. That's what is important.
Travel size hair spray for personal protection. Still legal to carry last I looked. And quite a bit harder on the eyes. I always have it handy.
I always cringe when the internet tells people to use anything other than pepper spray (like bee poison, for example) because it might get them killed. If you have nothing else, these might be a good last-ditch effort, but as an alternative they're terrible.
"It'll blind the fucker longer, harder and you'll get away."
No it has not been rated. But it's not illegal to carry in most of the world.
Self defense people out on this one. I wish I could say I am surprised about "progressives" believing she should go bare handed against her attacker. I fear if that happened and she injured him in the fight they would say she should pay his medical bills.
Question- if a rape victim can be fined for illegal self defense, how big of a leap is it to having the victim pay for the rape kit?
Both Gandhi and King warned against confusing the strategy of non-violence with the right -- nay, obligation -- to defend one's self, family, property and religion. One may choose to defend in various ways in accordance with the dictates of conscience and religion, but defense nevertheless is a DUTY.
Gandhi chose "ahimsa," a moral practice of personal defense which obligated the victim to prevent an attack without hurting the attacker, even to the point of the victim's death. But he considered the person who used violence, to the point of "despatching" (killing) the attacker, a good citizen.
I think too many folks continue to confuse these notions of SD with some broader, social strategy. Gandhi considered complete passivity when attacked as "cowardice."
if they were the ones being attacked it would be quite another story.
Who tells others- just take it and get on with life.
It is only people who have not been victims, and often have their own bodyguards, that are telling folks to be victims.
Exactly. Well said.