"If you accuse a person of a criminal offence, which could result in his imprisonment, you should expect to come to court and be questioned about your account, in public," says the vicious Barbara Hewson in this article in the Independent.
Ms Hewson believes that victims should be denied anonymity and any consideration to mitigate their further humiliation and degradation by the courts.
Depressingly, at the opposite end of the political spectrum, we have recently heard academic and cultural commentator Germaine Greer, of whom one might expect better, asserting that victims should be denied anonymity and be comfortable with the humiliation of the courts.
What they both miss, spectacularly, is that no victim ever chose to be in this situation, never made a choice to be saddled with the necessity of dealing with this situation.
Furthermore, most particularly in the case of children, they may well not have been the person to make a complaint. A child tells someone about abuse to get it stopped.
The police and the CPS then make decisions to prosecute. It is in no way the fault of the child, or indeed of the adult victim that they find themselves in this situation and a child has no choice whatsoever.
To imply that they are responsible for the horrible mess that brings them to court, that THEY have chosen to 'accuse' someone rather than having the situation imposed upon them by the abuser is unforgiveable, and to imply that they should be content to put up with any amount of secondary abuse by the system as a consequence of their 'choice' to report abuse is beyond anything that a civilised society should be willing to tolerate.
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