Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Point To Ponder : Prostitute Or Destitute ?

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • #31
    Hi Caz.

    I have no beef—just making conversation. I also have unusually thick skin, so even if Rubenhold's supporters are calling me (and you!) voyeurs and a creeps, I’d still like to understand what is egging them on.

    Do you think it is possible for someone to be technically wrong, but still be “emotionally” right?

    Isn’t this why people tend to argue even if they can’t logically defend their position? Or why they might cheat on the “facts”?

    I concede that Rubenhold is technically wrong about a lot of things, but I still get a sneaking feeling that she is emotionally right about one important element.

    I think her message is this (even if she doesn’t quite appreciate it herself): ‘Jack’ is not killing prostitutes; he is killing those that society deems are prostitutes.

    Splitting hairs? Maybe, but I think the distinction is important and she instinctively realizes something that is eluding many ‘Ripperologists’---that the Jacks and the Sutcliffes of the world are victimizing those that society labels as immoral, degenerate, filthy, etc.

    And that’s why I’m giving you a fair bit of resistance, because you don’t seem to believe it.

    I don’t think these are crimes of “convenience,” and I don’t think the murderer’s need is “personal.” There is nothing convenient about killing strangers again and again at the very real risk of getting caught and sent to the gallows. Nor is the murderer obtaining oxygen or food or water from his crimes. Whoever Jack was, he obviously thought so strongly about his actions that he was willing to be captured or killed. He’s a reprobate, yes, but his crimes ‘mattered’ to him in a very intense way.

    More on this some other time.

    Meanwhile, the way I look at it, Rubenhold is taking on the persona of a hostage negotiator. And what do these negotiators tell us? That if we “humanize” or stress the individuality of the hostage, they are less likely to be shot in the back of the head.

    Often it doesn’t work. The abductor is too far gone, and he kills his hostage anyway. But the impulse is understandable; it is why at the news conference the cops bring out the parents to face the camera, showing snapshots of happier days, with mom telling the public (and the abductor) how Katie or Jill is a watercolor painter who rides her bicycle to school, writes poetry, etc. The family and the police are hoping to hell the abductor will have enough humanity to see his hostage as a human being.

    Same impulse with Rubenhold. She wants to give Polly, Kate, and Liz their humanity. I agree that she took it too far, but she couldn’t bring herself to call these women prostitutes. She obviously feels that by using that label, it makes it easier for the Peter Sutcliffes of the world to kill them. Is she wrong about that? I don’t think so. And this must be why her supporters get emotional and ask, “Why is it SO IMPORTANT to “Ripperologists” that the women be prostitutes?” In their mind, such ‘accusations’ only encourage the Jacks and the Sutcliffes—whether those accusations are “true” or not. She's not so much 'sanitizing' the murders, so much as she is attempting to 'sanitize' the victims.

    Of course, it wasn’t a lecture that you, Gary, etc. needed to hear. You already knew the women were sisters, daughters, wives, etc. And you suspected, reasonably enough, that at least some of the women WERE soliciting.

    But you see, Jack pushed on all right buttons. He posed a very ugly, visceral question, and how we answer it, divides us. That’s what terrorists do.

    Comment


    • #32
      Originally posted by R. J. Palmer View Post
      Hi Caz.

      I have no beef—just making conversation. I also have unusually thick skin, so even if Rubenhold's supporters are calling me (and you!) voyeurs and a creeps, I’d still like to understand what is egging them on.

      Do you think it is possible for someone to be technically wrong, but still be “emotionally” right?

      Isn’t this why people tend to argue even if they can’t logically defend their position? Or why they might cheat on the “facts”?

      I concede that Rubenhold is technically wrong about a lot of things, but I still get a sneaking feeling that she is emotionally right about one important element.

      I think her message is this (even if she doesn’t quite appreciate it herself): ‘Jack’ is not killing prostitutes; he is killing those that society deems are prostitutes.

      Splitting hairs? Maybe, but I think the distinction is important and she instinctively realizes something that is eluding many ‘Ripperologists’---that the Jacks and the Sutcliffes of the world are victimizing those that society labels as immoral, degenerate, filthy, etc.

      And that’s why I’m giving you a fair bit of resistance, because you don’t seem to believe it.
      I don't disbelieve it, R.J. But I think we need to let Hallie decide what her message is! She doesn't seem to want to dwell on the killer at all, or his motivation, so I'm not sure how you can read her mind and come to a different conclusion, or suggest she is confused about the message she seeks to give her readers.

      For me, it's all about the evidence, and if the evidence is that the victims encountered their killer while walking the streets, for whatever reason, and were not attacked while they were snoring on the pavement, then what does Hallie think she is doing by suggesting otherwise? Changing or omitting evidence is a rather good way of sending out the wrong message, so your words damn her with faint praise.

      Of course, it wasn’t a lecture that you, Gary, etc. needed to hear. You already knew the women were sisters, daughters, wives, etc. And you suspected, reasonably enough, that at least some of the women WERE soliciting.
      Well thanks for your understanding on that issue, at least. But we all, in the UK, had that lecture way back in the late 70s/early 80s in the wake of Sutcliffe's many random attacks on both prostitutes and non-prostitutes. The victims should never have been treated any differently by society, according to whether or not they had struggled to survive and sold sex to make a miserable existence slightly less miserable. And yet it was obvious that Sutcliffe himself made no such distinction. Any woman out alone became fair game as far as he was concerned. Nobody got a brownie point from him for being a 'good girl'.

      If Hallie sees a need to repeat the lesson in the 21st century, on behalf of just five of the Whitechapel victims, fair enough. She may be right. Society may not have learned to treat all victims of male violence with equal sympathy. But her cause is not helped by twisting the evidence out of true. And is she not in fact pandering to that very prejudice by suggesting some of the victims were not prostitutes and therefore deserved more sympathy from society than they got? Is that not going back to the 1970s and differentiating between women who had to sell themselves and women who didn't?

      Love,

      Caz
      X
      I wish I were two puppies then I could play together - Storm Petersen

      Comment


      • #33
        Elizabeth Short/ Black Dahlia lived an irregular life for the times and she was horribly murdered. Many efforts have portrayed her as a prostitute but probably she was not. A police investigator on the case said she was a tease, luring men but not following through. Aspects of the murder, IMO, show that as a motive.

        Fast forward to the 1970's and we had Ted Bundy who preyed on college girls. That caused instant outrage and no one dared insinuate those girls were prostitutes. There have been plenty of U.S. serial killers who killed prostitutes but Bundy is an especially noticed SK who avoided prostitutes as victims. Maybe this example helps weaken the old stereotype that women who get attacked 'did something wrong.'

        Otherwise, since the internet can drive writing styles, it looks like true crime subjects are recorded in a new way. I have noticed if I want to do a quick search, say Wikipedia, about a certain killer, an entry on the CRIME comes up, not an article about the killer. The CRIME entry focuses on the victims and in lesser known cases it is hard to find a quick overview of the perpetrators. Expect in future that JtR won't have his own article but he will be an addition to a sociological study of the Whitechapel murders, autumn 1888.
        The wickedness of the world is the dream of the plague.~~Voynich Manuscript

        Comment

        Working...
        X