A reader writes:
You are so quick to pick up any stick to beat Israel with that you may not realize that the concept of rape by deception has found its way into U.S. law, and other Western countries as well. I have a job that does not allow me to spend more that the 30 seconds it took me to find these articles: the first talks about a 2008 proposed Massachusetts statute that would criminalize obtaining consent to sex through by deception, and makes reference to the fact that "rape by deception" is illegal in California and Tennessee; the second article discusses the two cases that served as the impetus for the proposed statue; a third covers a case in the UK. I'm sure there are many more.
Whether we should criminalize the lying of men to seduce women is open to debate, and no doubt you have already concluded that an Israeli court would never have convicted a Jewish man who claimed to be Muslim to seduce Muslim women. But even if that were true (and other than your reflexive antipathy for the Jewish state, there is no reason to think it is; Israeli courts do in fact convict Jews of crimes against Arabs), there are stories every day about unequal application of criminal law in the U.S. based on race. For instance, blacks who kill whites are much more likely to be sentenced to death than whites who kill blacks. That makes the U.S. system deeply flawed but still Western. As is Israel, with all its flaws.
I am truly sick of being accused of "reflexive antipathy" to the Jewish state. It's a lie. I desperately want Israel to survive as a Jewish state (just Google my record, will you, for decades) but believe it has gone deeply astray in the last decade, and the occupation is killing its soul and future. As for my reader's other points, I am unaware of any law in the West that treats racial or religious deception as the equivalent of rape that requires incarceration. I am unaware of any prosecution of Israeli Jews for rape posing as Arabs in order to get laid (if someone has such evidence, please let me know). As for the other Western cases cited, they are about doctors using their practice to sexually abuse women, a man somehow passing himself off as his own brother to have sex with his brother's girlfriend, and another bizarre story about a man posing as a doctor, citing intercourse as a form of treatment for vaginal infection!
This is not the same as suddenly realizing your lover is, say, a Mormon and thereby accusing him of rape-by-deception, or, say, a light-skinned black man being convicted of rape because he told his partner he was white. This is racial and religious bigotry, a form of Jim Crow-style racism, upheld by the Israeli courts. I notice my reader does not defend it. Who could? And I was careful in my post to assert that Israel is indeed far more Western than its neighbors. Just weirdly different at times - in this case, repulsively so.
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