It’s the way of the world that people everywhere view things differently. A few scraps of information change the colour of the situation drastically, for some people. This week at home a lace thong was proposed as being one of these scraps of information that cause the paradigm shift.
I was curious to explore how this rationale could work in my favour and wondered whether the suggestion was, that more encompassing underwear would discourage rape or that bigger knickers would lead to a sympathetic hearing in court. Presuming that rapists don’t flinch at the sight of a big pair of knickers and carry their intentions out regardless, I then have to presume that wearing a fuller pants will, if needs be, be viewed on more favourably should you find yourself before a jury in a court in Ireland. I wish I had known this when I stood in court in Cork, 15 years ago, holding an expired tax disc and wearing a smile up until I got a fine of 150 euro for not having tax on the car. I would plea. ‘Your honour, look at my knickers, skin coloured, full seat, 11.50 in Marks and Spencer, can’t you see I’m not the type of person to let the tax expire, on purpose’. The response, based on recent findings would be, ‘ok, I can see the type of responsible person you are by your knickers, fine lifted’. Meanwhile the guy behind me that wears a brown mack would receive a suspended sentence for parking outside a school, most likely a child molester, given the coat.
It’s certainly an area that should be explored further, what kind of jocks will get you off with a charge of tax evasion and money laundering using an off-shore account. I think a stable Dunnes pair of Y- fronts could be the answer for the one and I only hope that if you caught with a nodge of Moroccan soap that you’re wearing 2 euro boxers from Penney’s and be charged with possession because if you’re wearing a tight fitting pair of Calvin Klein’s you’re likely under these new definitive assumptions be charged as a high-end dealer.
I had a similar situation myself only this week, I’m in the park, early morning, with my three-year-old, no brown mack but I did roll up my sleeves a little to reveal my shoulders, I’m sitting on the end of the see-saw, the sun is a glorious 31c. The park is quiet, other than me there is one man there with his children, Sudanese, judging by the garb, white dress, tight white cap. As the children play, I acknowledge their father and I smile. Twenty minutes later, I’m leaving the park and I hear the thud of footsteps behind me, ‘ma’am you come here again, you are alone’, my heart pounded in my chest, stuck firmly between feeling threatened by him and feeling restricted by current environment to have a right hop of him by telling him to F off and ask him who does he think he is. Losing your temper and appearing aggressive is a crime punishable by deportation in Qatar. I scuttle off, raging at his approach and furthermore not having a platform to have my say.
In a different world, I would report this man for harassment, the jury would find him guilty and send him off with a warning about hassling women in the park and all would be well. But in Qatar, Muslim, light years behind where I thought Ireland was, a different picture would be painted, ‘a woman, inappropriately dressed, exposing haram body parts, bobbing up and down on a see saw and smiling at a man in the park’. It would read different to what it was.
Up until recently I considered Ireland a step ahead, but is it really any different, really? Yes, we’re all PC in public but behind the closed doors of a courtroom seems the inferences are less ideal. Not only does it suggest the idea that what women wear is crucial to establishing a motive, a judgement and a sentence? The fact that such surely unethical statements are entertained within a formal legal arena is the real fail.