Monday, April 11, 2011

Susanna, the falsely accused.


The tradition of blaming the victim.
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The old men were highly regarded Jewish elders, judges in Babylon, who lusted after Susanna, the wife of Joakim.  They attempted to seduce her, and when she refused, they made a case against her, accusing her of having an affair with a younger man.  The young prophet Daniel defended Susanna, revealing the lies the men had forged against her because she refused their advances.
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Likewise, in the Gospel, the scribes and Pharisees brought before Jesus the woman caught in adultery, calling for her to be stoned to death, in accord with the Law.
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Such injustice is perpetrated against women even in our own day.  The public is now very much aware that women caught in adultery can be stoned to death, and in cases of rape, severely punished in Islamic countries.  In Pakistan and India women who have been raped can be flogged or can face a worse punishment, such as honor killing.  Likewise in the West, it is not uncommon to hear claims that women ask to be raped because of how they dress, or how they behave.  Frequently women who report sexual assault, harassment, or abuse are accused of lying with the hope of enriching themselves, either through a lawsuit or a legal settlement.       
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Art: Susanna - Artemisia Gentileschi

7 comments:

  1. It's always the first assumption, the woman's guilt, isn't it? That Eve's got a lot to answer for, setting precedent's in people's minds, the way she has!

    But if it stops any mucky stuff sticking to powerful business tycoon's reputations, well, what company employee would hold back from issuing statements defending their boss ( and therefore their own career).
    You see it happening all over the place. In places you never expected............I know (as Terry would say)!

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  2. The story of Susanna is not a good analogy for your purpose here, Mr. Nelson.

    She did not accuse anyone of rape, assault, harassment, or abuse. She doesn't seem to have even told her husband about the incident in the garden. Her one public statement was a protestation of her innocence.

    Her accusers, however, bore false witness against her for revenge.

    And, I don't know, maybe Susanna was holier-than-thou or bombastic or too wealthy or was always charging people for the produce from her garden instead of letting them in for free to help themselves... but a simple accusation by two men, and everyone (gleefully) picks up a stone.

    Unlike the blogosphere, though, Susanna's crowd hadn't started throwing the stones before guilt or innocence was established.

    (Shadowlands - I did not sign over my probity when I contracted for a job, and I resent your sweeping accusation that all employees will lie to protect their paychecks. Please don't do that again.)

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  3. Mrs Rudd

    you said:

    "I resent your sweeping accusation that all employees will lie to protect their paychecks."

    I said

    "what company employee would hold back from issuing statements defending their boss ( and therefore their own career)."

    I didn't say anyone lied. (Please don't say that again). The reasons a person would choose to hold/not hold back information to the public or press about a person was the point I was trying to make. There must be a personal reason for people to give out info, surely? Why do it, otherwise? Not for the sake of the person being talked about, that's for sure.

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  4. Mrs. Rudd seems to be indignant.

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  5. Fortunately most places of employment have policies regarding sexual harassment in the workplace.About ten years ago myself and a fellow female coworker were subject to rather demeaning comments. After speaking to the individual produced no results we went to our HR director who basically said "You work in a predominately male environment--get used to it" Well I took it to Corporate--the other girl was too scared, afraid thgat she would lose her job--who promptly launched an investigation resulting in the individual being fired and the HR director "encouraged" to take an early retirement. And my coworker and myself received a rather handsome monetary settlement from the company, as a form of apology, from the company president himself. I'm sure they would have much rather gone that route than go to court.

    Ladies--you don't have to put up with crap in the workplace, just report it, be truthful, and elevate it until someone listens.

    Sara

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  6. The two Judges wanted to have sex with Susanna because of her beauty.

    They testified against her when she refused to be bullied by two sexual perverts (the Judges) into having sex on their terms.

    She refused to participate in their sin and was put on trial for her fidelity to both her husband and the Lord.

    Twelve year old Daniel stood up and spoke with authority; he had be well catechized in the Law and Scripture.

    He put the Judges to the test, and they failed, much the same as modern day perverts fail when held against the Truth.

    It should be noted that Daniel was not indignant.

    His demeanor was authoritative because he knew Truth.

    *

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