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NEWS: Child Marriage Takes Brutal Toll

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posted on Dec, 21 2004 @ 10:07 PM
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About 50 million Ethiopian girls are subject to arranged marriages with older men. Child brides in Ethiopia and Amharaland are representing a lost generation of children who are subject to lives of isolation and trauma. Millions of girls are confined to their husband's homes, left out of school, subject to severe beatings and condemned to lives of ignorance and poverty.
 



www.thestate.com
There are, according to child-rights activists, an estimated 50 million Tihuns scattered across the world: young teen or even preteen girls whose innocence is being sacrificed to arranged marriages, often with older men.

Coerced by family and culture into lives of servility and isolation, and scarred by the trauma of too-early pregnancy, child brides represent a vast, lost generation of children.

The most brutal toll is medical: Early pregnancies are the leading cause of death for girls age 15 to 19 in the developing world, according to the United Nations. And medical relief groups believe that at least 2 million women worldwide are living with gruesome vaginal and anal ruptures, called fistulas, that result from bearing children much too young. Untreated fistulas can be fatal, and survivors are usually left incontinent for life.

Amharaland has the highest child marriage rates in the world, according to U.N. and Ethiopian statistics; in some dusty corners of the ancient highlands, almost 90 percent of the local girls are married before age 15.

And the powerful Ethiopian Orthodox Church has long played a role in early matchmaking. Church teachings traditionally encouraged marriage before age 15, declaring that this was the age of the Virgin Mary at the Immaculate Conception of Christ.

Tragically, the infection rates of child brides in Africa are pumped even higher by the spreading folk belief that sex with virgin girls can cure AIDS. In Ethiopia, according to the United Nations, 6 out of 10 new HIV cases are found in women and girls younger than 24.






Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


This is by far one of the worst stories of modern brutality I've ever read in my life. Talk about the difference between living in this country compared to other under developed countries where who knows what's happening. The facts surrounding this story are shocking: 50 million young girls subjected to horrific lives of brutality beyond any degree imaginable. It's literally nerve-wrecking information to read or hear about. I don't know which degree of brutality I would pick if I had to choose. Which one would you choose: marrying a older man at the age of seven; being confined to the home of your husband and being subject to severe beatings; being pried away from school and condemned to a life of ignorance and poverty; or being subject to early pregnancy, the risk of AIDS, and gruesome ruptures called fistulas. But millions of young Ethiopian girls are being subject to it all. These are inhumane acts being conducted and nothing is being done about it. These children are suffering in silence because they're just kids and they don't speak out. Every word this story continues to make me sick to my stomach. Especially when I read the paragraph about the Ethiopian Church where the priests actually bless early marriages. The ignorance of the Ethopian land is magnified by the fact that they believe sex with virgin girls can cure AIDS.

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[edit on 12-22-2004 by Zion Mainframe]




posted on Dec, 22 2004 @ 10:21 AM
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I think we must be careful on how we judge those people. Of course, with our way of life, these things can seem to be horrible but, this is how they have lived for a long time and we don't have the right to interfere I think...Just like if we would go on a less advanced planet and we would try to adapt them to our way of thinking...I think that it is part of their evolution as a people and that someday, things will change and they will see things differently...Just like in our past when girls were getting married at 13-14 and having kids before being 16yo...We used to have slaves here in america a few hundred years ago...It wasn't right but, we did it anyway...But things have changed...it is now a part of our history but we have grown over that...we have evolved and can now see that this was a horrible thing to do to some people...They'll do the same some day...but we must give them the time to realize it...We shouldn't interfere...We must let them evolve at their own speed although that by our mutual contact with them, they might realize quicker that some things must change...



posted on Dec, 22 2004 @ 10:28 AM
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So, let me ask you a couple of questions:

1. If the Aztecs were on the planet today, and killing thousands of captives in human sacrificial rituals, would you still respond that it's just 'their culture,' and that we have no right to judge?

2. Could the defenders at the Nuremburg trials have used the defense that slaughtering "sub-humans" was merely a part of Germanic culture?

This is what is so inhuman about the kind of relativism espoused by liberalism: it turns a blind eye to suffering, in the name of "tolerance."




posted on Dec, 22 2004 @ 10:31 AM
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Actually my grandmother was 14 when she got married and she had my mother at 15, her first husband die before my mother was born in the war, then she married at 18 again had another child, divorced marry one year later again and had two more children and became a widow again.

My mother was 15 when she married a man 12 years older that her she is still married to my father.

We in the US are against children getting married but the truth is that girls as young as 13 are getting pregnant in our neck of the woods everyday.

Sad but true.



posted on Dec, 22 2004 @ 10:54 AM
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Originally posted by dr_strangecraft

So, let me ask you a couple of questions:

1. If the Aztecs were on the planet today, and killing thousands of captives in human sacrificial rituals, would you still respond that it's just 'their culture,' and that we have no right to judge?

2. Could the defenders at the Nuremburg trials have used the defense that slaughtering "sub-humans" was merely a part of Germanic culture?

This is what is so inhuman about the kind of relativism espoused by liberalism: it turns a blind eye to suffering, in the name of "tolerance."



Those are difficult questions I admit it...And it is just like the Prime Directive in Star Trek...When is it that you can start interfering without other cultures or other races...

So, I'd be tempted to say that in the first case you mention, we wouldn't have the right to stop them although we could try to make them see how it is wrong...But then, that kind of thing no longer happen because most races on the planet have grown over that...and it was based on old beliefs of gods and stuff like that...

As for your 2nd question, I say that we must try to not interfere when it is part of the culture of one race...But when a race (or culture or way of seeing life) starts attacking another one, it's not the same thing...This is an aggression and it is our duty to intervene...But anyway, we could argue for a long time about this since it is highly ambiguous...I'm not saying that I want to close my eyes to suffering...On the contrary, I try to help as much as I can when I see people suffering...but I don't like the way that some tend to take in deciding what is good for others...The US invading Iraq is an example of this...



posted on Dec, 22 2004 @ 02:54 PM
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No, Iraq isn't an example of intervening in another culture because of its own internal brutality (regardless of what the Bush admin says.) The reason given for the invasion was because Iraq expelled weapons inspectors, violated the no-fly zone, and otherwise violated the cease-fire agreement with the coalition of 1991.

But, on to the heart of your post . . .

you wrote:




So, I'd be tempted to say that in the first case you mention, we wouldn't have the right to stop them although we could try to make them see how it is wrong


That simply amazes me. Would you say that you cannot stop a serial killer unless he agrees that his crime is wrong? What is the moral difference between murderous Aztec priests and serial killers? (Personally, I'd say there's not any)

Next you wrote:



As for your 2nd question, I say that we must try to not interfere when it is part of the culture of one race...But when a race (or culture or way of seeing life) starts attacking another one, it's not the same thing...This is an aggression and it is our duty to intervene


So, as long as you murder YOUR own race, it's basically your own business. It's only when your crime is racially motivated that outsiders have any moral authority.

This is another problem with liberalism: it shifts the point of discussion onto the motives of the perpetrator, rather than the suffering of the victim(s).

It strikes me as a bizarre system of ethics you have, where people enslaving little girls, and mutilating them (forced circumcision of the clitoris) is somehow OK, as long as they are doing it to their own (black?) people. Whereas you seem to think it would be somehow worse if they were doing to another (white?) race ????

If murder is murder, then it is always wrong. Regardless of whether you are killing Jews, Iraqis, Serbs, Croats, prepubescent Ethiopians, or "subhumans" of a race other than your own.

Funny how, if white people, Europeans or Americans, were treating girls this way, I have a feeling you'd be all over it . . .

Are you saying basically that "whatever 'those people' do to themselves is their own business?"

If so, then you have no idea just how much you sound like Archie Bunker.




posted on Dec, 22 2004 @ 03:10 PM
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Originally posted by dr_strangecraft
No, Iraq isn't an example of intervening in another culture because of its own internal brutality (regardless of what the Bush admin says.) The reason given for the invasion was because Iraq expelled weapons inspectors, violated the no-fly zone, and otherwise violated the cease-fire agreement with the coalition of 1991.


Hold on a sec. Which invasion are you talking about??? The Gulf War with Bush Sr. or the New Iraq 'Terrorism' War with Bush Jr.???

I have to ask because those reasons you just gave really don't seem to fit with our current invasion. Except for maybe that first one about the inspectors and even that is quite a stretch.



posted on Dec, 22 2004 @ 03:38 PM
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The coalition of '91 invaded to force a surrender after repulsing Iraq's invasion of Kuwait.

The US led invasion of 2003 came on the heels of a debate before the UN. The UN had censured Iraq for expelling weapons inspectors, and flying jets in the "no-fly" zones, and locking on to coalition aircraft that patrolled the no-fly zones. Locking on with telemetry is considered an agressive act according to the law of land warfare.

The UN security council agreed that Iraq was no longer in compliance with the ceasefire agreement of 1991.

UK and US, among others, claimed this as a Casus Belli for the coalition's invasion of Iraq.

Whether it was justified or not is certainly a matter of debate (particularly at ATS.)

riouxda had written:



but I don't like the way that some tend to take in deciding what is good for others...The US invading Iraq is an example of this...


I was pointing out that the US didn't claim (at that time, at least) to be invading for the sake of the Iraqi people, but to safeguard against the proliferation of WMD.

In other words, US claimed to be acting in it's own and the world's interest, and not merely Iraq's.

Anyway, I think it's a bit of a red herring as far as the original topic of this thread is concerned.



posted on Dec, 23 2004 @ 12:48 AM
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While the taking of child brides is reprehensible - I have to ask why there aren't more prosecutions here in the US for the same thing. While on a much smaller scale and limited for the most part to polygamist communities it does show that we need to clean up our own backyard.

From childpro


After Janetta’s 16th birthday, the girl had abruptly disappeared from her parents’ home. According to Suzanne, "I went up to her room and all her stuff was gone." When Suzanne inquired what had happened to Janetta, she recalls, their mother "just kind of looked at me with this blank stare and says back, ‘Well, I don’t know.’" Suzanne speculates that Janetta had been "taken as a plural wife" by Warren Jeffs, who was 47 at the time. At least two (and possibly three) of Janetta’s older sisters had already been taken as wives by Jeffs.


The Jeff's polygamist sect is currently relocating some of their more "preferred" members to a small town on the Texas Mexico border. There are two other "affiliated" sects one in Mexico and one in Canda.

Another great site is Tapestry against polygamy They provide assistance for girls who run away from their polygamist families.

So while I agree that what is happening to the Ethiopian girls is morally wrong it is not illegal. However, it is illegal here in the States, yet we do nothing to help these girls or prosecute the perpetrators.

B.



posted on Dec, 23 2004 @ 01:38 AM
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And if religion is going to be dragged into this, perhaps the terminology should be accurate:


Originally posted by Mr Knowledge

from thestate.com
And the powerful Ethiopian Orthodox Church has long played a role in early matchmaking. Church teachings traditionally encouraged marriage before age 15, declaring that this was the age of the Virgin Mary at the Immaculate Conception of Christ.


from www.catholic.com...


It’s important to understand what the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception is and what it is not. Some people think the term refers to Christ’s conception in Mary’s womb without the intervention of a human father; but that is the Virgin Birth. Others think the Immaculate Conception means Mary was conceived "by the power of the Holy Spirit," in the way Jesus was, but that, too, is incorrect. The Immaculate Conception means that Mary, whose conception was brought about the normal way, was conceived without original sin or its stain—that’s what "immaculate" means: without stain. The essence of original sin consists in the deprivation of sanctifying grace, and its stain is a corrupt nature. Mary was preserved from these defects by God’s grace; from the first instant of her existence she was in the state of sanctifying grace and was free from the corrupt nature original sin brings.







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