More Double Standards
An article in the Herald yesterday entitled “Teen, 16, in violent tiff with lover, 42” highlighted the gender double standards and female privilege applied by police, Courts and the media. Police treated the case as one of domestic violence by a male and charged him accordingly. If the young person had been female and the older person male we could expect a very different story. The police would have treated the situation as one of sexual abuse, avoided charging the girl and instead referred her to Women’s Refuge. The man would be facing at least domestic violence charges. The girl’s violent outburst would be understood as a reaction to being sexually exploited in a relationship under massive “power imbalance”. No way would the girl be bailed back to the man’s house! The media would never refer to the 42-year-old male as the girl’s “partner” with whom she had a “tiff”. Media would attempt to identify and expose the older male and his occupation. Louise Nicholas supporters might march to denounce him as a rapist protected by the system. Instead, this case reflected ingrained male-blaming double standards despite developmental differences causing boys generally to be less emotionally mature than girls of the same age.