May 12th, 2003

breaking bad


The Scooby Doo version of Hamlet.


This day, with poison's aid, all might have died,
And Denmark might have come to me as well
As my beloved Norway and revenge.
My scheme blinded them all, as if by fog
But for these medd'ling kids and this their dog.
breaking bad


I think it is shameful that the rape of men in prison is treated as a joke, or as a feature which helps to serve social purposes by making prison 'more of a deterrent'.

If you think I am exaggerating, see the current Virgin credit card advert (ha ha Wycliffe Jean being menaced in a prison shower). Or virtually any hard-boiled cop show ('You wanna be someone's bitch? Better start naming names.'). In the latter case I'm not saying the TV shows should stop reflecting the fact that threats like these are made. I'm saying that sexual abuse of the vulnerable should no longer be a routine feature of prison life.

I've got a few links here to a relatively new debate, which cuts across a range of weblogs, both of the right and of the left. It appears that in America there are at least a few people taking this subject seriously. Though the proposals are modest enough.

"It's hard to make a good estimate because the problem hasn't been studied extensively, but in one survey 1 in 10 male prisoners reported having been raped, and there are currently 2 million people serving time in the U.S. "

I don't think prison rape is funny, or rough justice, or a given fact of life. I would like to see this campaign flourishing in Britain too. Perhaps it would do something to address the level of suicde and self-harm among the youngest men in British prisons.

I hope nobody is offended by my posting this here, but I think it is an important subject. And I hope it doesn't need saying that this is not a comment on consensual sexual activity. I don't think rape of men by men is anything to do with loving sexual desire.