COLETTE BROWNE – 27 NOVEMBER 2013
If you want to know what rape culture looks like there is no more evocative image than a church full of the faithful bowing their heads and being asked to pray for the acquittal of a man charged with serious sexual offences.
As Cork’s former lord mayor, John Murray, stood trial for the sexual assault of a teenager last week, a priest celebrating a funeral Mass in another part of the city used the occasion to pray for his exoneration.
The inference was clear. An innocent elderly man, a stalwart of the community, was facing scurrilous charges from a lying, scheming woman. She should not be believed.
But the jury did believe her and returned a unanimous guilty verdict. Today Murray, who first sexually assaulted the victim when she was just 13, is in prison awaiting sentence.
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