Another Mulkirigala demon painting. The temple is near Tangalle.
People complain about Game Of Thrones being rapey. They should check out the Tangalle Pradeshiya Sabha. Since the case of a 13 year old being held as a sex slave there and lots of news about child abuse and rape, the pressure is on the government. Why the government? Because in many cases local government politicians have been involved, especially in Tangalle, the President’s home turf. In response Mahinda has issued one of the sadder statements ever, that alleged rapists will be suspended from the party.
I can find this statement in the Daily Mirror print only, so I’ll reproduce it here:
Alleged rapists will be suspended from party — President
President Mahinda Rajapaksa said, at an SLFP Central Committee meeting held at Temple Trees last night, that all members of the SLFP who had been accused of rape and child abuse would be suspended from the party and not allowed to contest any elections.
He added that if any members were found guilty of such crimes in a court of law they would be expelled from the party.
While it’s good that he’s doing something, this is kinda dubious if/then coding. If any party member is accused of rape they’ll be suspended and won’t be able to contest elections. Hence, I could accuse any SLFPer of rape before any election and they couldn’t run. Not really going to work.
Honestly, Mahinda shouldn’t even have to get up and say this. A lot of politics and party politics in particular works based on decency and shame. Prime Ministers dissolve governments if they lose ceremonial no confidence votes. Party leaders resign if they lose elections or face scandal. Ministers step down if there’s even a whiff of scandal around them. Sri Lankan politics isn’t like that – people keep their positions until you pry them out of their hands. No one is worse than the Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe, having lost over a dozen elections and faced mutiny and national shame, yet still clinging to his post. Sadly, many politicos are like him, because people allow them to get away with it.
If there is a serious rape allegation then a politician should step down because A) they have shame B) the party has shame and C) the people make them feel ashamed. Sri Lanka right now has zero out of three, which – as Meatloaf would say – is bad. Hence the President has to get up and declare a rapist policy, because all parties lack the decency to regulate themselves on this basic level. And because people have let politicians get away with murder and rape for years. With all the pressure, however, I pray this is starting to change.