Date: 08/28/00 22:03:05
Subject: Impunity in the abuse of women and children.
The below film review discusses a film that no doubt reflects a reality.
That reality is that families and social institutions sometimes
give permission for child rape with impunity.
One web site I've found emphasizes the impunity with which human rights
abuses, including rape, are carried out in Latin America.
I have seen that attitude of impunity when fighting against men
who abuse Latina women and girls in the DC area low-wage
America last year put an Ohio Congressman in jail for 15 years because
he had a consensual sexual affair with a 15 year old campaign aid; a
local Maryland police officer faces 15 years in jail for a sexual
relationship with his 13 year old daughter; thousands of adult American
men who sexually exploit minor girls go to jail... and yet some Latino
men living in the United States have ongoing sexual encounters, via
consensual affairs or workplace pressured rape or otherwise forced
rape... and they don't get arrested; police are indoctrinated that it is
just a 'Latino cultural trait;' and young girls by the tens of thousands
are raped; exposed to AIDS; led via low self esteem and poverty into
child prostitution; and the juvenile HIV/AIDS rate explodes in the
affected Latino communities all across the United States.
Dealing with that reality while not inflaming stereotypes and while
being respectful and compassionate to the victims is going to be a tough
job. The issue has to be
faced head on.
Fortunately the U.S. and many advocates in Latin America and the UN and
NGO's are picking up the ball on this issue.
- Chuck Goolsby
Paulina [A true story]
Written by Vicky Funari and Paulina Cruz Suárez
Directed by Vicky Funari
A film review by Mark Pittillo, from:
A more explicit memory-film, Vicky Funari's ambitious non-fiction
feature Paulina tells the harrowing, but ultimately uplifting story of
Paulina Cruz Suárez, a Mexico City housekeeper whose nightmarish rural
childhood included, among other indignities, being kidnapped and raped
repeatedly by her forty-ish cacique (village boss)--with the full
support of her family--at age 13. Most of the documentary footage in the
film, which follows the now middle-aged Suarez on a trip back to her
village, is stunning--Funari unearths a terrifying (and
all-too-believable) portrait of machismo, and Suarez proves an
exceptionally wise and candid narrator. It's easy to root for the
inspiring Suarez, but whether you can fully get behind Paulina may
depend on what you think of the film's fictional scenes--arty
re-creations of her memories that, while never quite embarrassing,
practically define the word "pretentious." It was during these moments
that I, at least, wished Funari had trusted her material a bit more.