Friday, 28 September 2012
Abduction, Rape and Murder
Abduction, rape and murder are our worst fears. Jill Meagher's murder will leave many women feeling our streets are inherently unsafe. Jill's murder is a tragedy. It is an unbelievable disaster for her husband, family, friends and collegues and leaves the wider community bewildered. But this was an opportunistic brutal crime. Women should not live in fear of stranger assaults. We should be aware of our circumstances - walking down dark lanes, where we park our car, looking out for friends when they drink too much - but we should not start believing this is an escalation in violence against women. Once we retreat from public spaces in fear the violent men win. The Australian Institute of Criminology 2009-2010 figures show 279 homicides in Australia. Of the 95 female murders in that number 12 were by strangers. The real danger still lies at home with people known to us or with acquaintances met on a night out who offer us a lift home and come in for coffee.