At what point does culture and religion become child abuse?

Jon Brooks (@JonBrooks) 7 years, 2 months ago

Richard Dawkins recently shared a story on his Twitter about a forced marriage between a 30-year-old man and a 14-year-old girl. In Dawkins’ Twitter status he sarcastically said, “How dare they be so racist and Islamophobic as to jail her father? Show some respect for cultural diversity, please.” 
I know there is no right answer here, but where do we draw the line between cultural and religious norms and abuse? 
Would love to hear your thoughts! You can read the full article here. Below is an excerpt:
A schoolgirl was woken in her bed on her 14th birthday and forced to marry a man aged in his 30s in the lounge of her family home.

Her father has now been jailed after he admitted child cruelty.

The girl’s husband, now in Bangladesh, went on to sexually assault her.

She had no idea what was going on during the ceremony, which was performed by an Imam, or the language being spoken, but was ‘pinched’ by a relative at certain points to indicate that she should speak, a court was told.

A judge said she had been ‘betrayed’ by her father and exposed to the risk of ‘long-lasting harm’.

The ceremony, conducted in Bengali, took place at the family home in Longsight in 2013. Her siblings were told to go to school.

Manchester Crown Court was told that relatives came up to her bedroom and dressed her in ‘wedding finery and jewellery’.

Elizabeth Nichols, prosecuting, said there were ‘cultural pressures’ forced on the girl’s father by others and he was ‘not alone’ in facilitating the marriage, but said he was ‘uniquely placed’ to protect her.

The MEN isn’t naming the girl or her father despite his conviction and sentence for legal reasons.

The case came to light when the girl ran away from home and flagged down a passing police car.

July 2, 2015 at 12:53 pm
chicheerz (1) (@yoga) 7 years, 2 months ago ago

Pointless isn’t it..
 in what sense we humans(?) realize that existence doesn’t make any sense with its possibilities except its very own pseudo sense as being us as always ?
lets keep on regulating red or green to respectives over earth(?) that never has any objections with its blue carpet on to welcome much more senseless out of it :)

Jon Brooks (4,512)A (@JonBrooks) 7 years, 2 months ago ago

Not 100% sure what you mean Chicheerz. Could you explain further? 

Anonymous (2) (@) 7 years, 2 months ago ago

Yea.. The line was crossed a long time ago. There has never been a line between cultural ethics and abuse except during revolution.  People sell their daughters into slavery and worse situations than this girl would have been in all the time. When you let the culture establish a code of “ethics” to base your decisions on , you’re giving up responsibility for true morality found in inward attunement. If you need to be told what is right then you’re ignoring your heart. 

Jon Brooks (4,512)A (@JonBrooks) 7 years, 2 months ago ago

Interesting Anejelica. I’m with you there. I agree that we have a built-in moral compass, even if we don’t have the emotions that align with it, we always know when we’re walking off course. 

Suanne Zimmerman (1) (@suanne) 7 years, 2 months ago ago


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