This paper, in a first, is sharing the picture of a rapist convicted of a heinous crime of rape of an eight-year-old boy.
The media in Bhutan so far have refrained from printing the pictures of even convicted rapists, but this practice has to evolve with the times.
Traditionally, media in Bhutan accorded the same level of protection to a rape victim and a rapist by keeping them both anonymous.
This changed in recent years with the name of convicted rapists starting to come out.
While it makes every sense to protect the identity of the victim, it makes no sense to give the same protection to the rapist. The two cannot even be equated on the same plane.
Making the picture of a heinous rapist public will achieve several goals. An important aim is that if there are other victims it may give them the courage to come forward.
Another function is for it to serve as a deterrent for those who may commit such crimes in the future.
Rape is not a normal crime like robbery or even battery, but it destroys the very essence of a person and causes life-long damage to the victim. For example, while a victim of a robbery moves on after the financial loss, a rape victim has a life of struggle ahead and quite a few even kill themselves.
The protection of the identity of the rapist is also an indirect condoning of the the rapist’s act by offering him sympathy and dignity, which he (or even a she) does not deserve.
It is very tough for rape victims to come forward, evidenced in the fact that most rapes are not even reported to the police. Now, to have those who come forward seeing the rapist get the same privileges as them is not fair at all.
Rape is the worst of all crimes, but even with rapes the worst of all is the rape of young children. It is these category of rapists who especially should be exposed as they must not be given the chance to reoffend after being released.
Unfortunately, we spend more time teaching our daughters how to avoid becoming rape victims than teaching our sons not to become rapists. –
Amir Clayton Powell