Sexism in Television
I just watched what I think was the first episode of “I am Innocent” (TV1 18/03/15), that I recorded some weeks ago. Interesting that it focused on three female teenagers unfairly convicted and jailed for a sadistic mob attack on another young female teenager. I guess the show’s management team realised that they could only attract public sympathy from the outset by focusing initially on unfair treatment of females even though this is a relatively rare event. The episode also gave some indication of how much more humanely women prisoners are treated than men. For example, the young women although convicted of extremely violent offending were allowed to have their own television sets and to wear their own comfortable night attire.
I also just watched an episode of ‘Fair Go’ from some weeks ago. It involved someone getting a ticket for driving offences based entirely on allegations from a member of the public claiming to see the offending actions. The Fair Go team and some others they interviewed were appalled that police would ticket and prosecute based simply on one person’s accusations in the absence of any other evidence. They must not be aware that for sexual allegations men are routinely prosecuted and that juries are allowed to convict on exactly that basis. For other offences carrying significant penalties, police do not prosecute and depositions hearings do not allow cases to proceed in the absence of good corroborating evidence. Unfortunately for men, sexist stereotyping will have more influence on a jury considering uncorroborated sexual allegations than on the judge who will rule on this man’s uncorroborated ticket.