Friday, May 30, 2014

One More Awful Week in the Books: The Lord Doesn't Speak Up in Palm Beach, Honor in Pakistan, and the National Sport of India

It had been a rough couple of weeks for Kimberly Dawn Lucas. NBC reports she and her partner of nearly two decades, Jacquelyn Jamason had recently separated. Jamason was the birth mother of two children who shared both their last names.

Last Sunday, Lucas, in turmoil about the situation, went to church. During the service the pastor of the Metropolitan Community Church of the Palm Beaches, Lea Brown gave a sermon which centered on the Genesis story of Abraham. That would be the one where God commands him to kill his son Isaac as a sacrifice, but at the last second tells him to stop when the Lord becomes convinced of Abraham's absolute devotion.

After Ms. Lucas drowned two year old Elliana Lucas-Jamason in the bathtub on Monday, she typed what authorities call a suicide note on a laptop computer. In part it read, "Lea's sermon really touched me yesterday, but God never told me to stop."

No, He didn't. However, while God in heaven didn't speak to her, the Palm Beach County Sheriff's department certainly did. She has been charged with first degree premeditated murder and unpremeditated murder during a felony. The second charge is because she tried to do in the 10 year old brother of Elliana with a drug overdose.

On Tuesday, 25 year old Farzana Parveen was standing outside of the Lahore, Pakistan High Court. She was there to face charges she had eloped with Muhammed Iqbal. This is a big deal in Pakistan because women aren't supposed to run off with guys they love, but marry the man their family picks out for them.

Rather than settle things legally, members of her family attacked her and over a fifteen minute period beat her to death with bricks. Her husband, Muhammed Iqbal told the media he pleaded with police, who were on the scene and watching, to help, but they refused saying, "this is not our duty."

As with many of these awful things, the story went a tad sideways when Pakistani authorities tried to downplay the vile act by saying Ms. Parveen was already married to her cousin, the good soul her parents had picked out for her. In addition, they claimed, Iqbal had in fact murdered his first wife for unspecified reasons, making him, "not a pristine character."

Ah, well that certainly excuses everything.

The only person currently in custody is Ms. Parveen's father who, according to NBC, freely admits her death was an "honor killing." Her alleged husband has been accused of taking part in the savage attack and now, despite all that honor stuff, is on the lam. NBC says last year the Pakistani press covered 869 such murders, although it is commonly known many more aren't mentioned in the local media. Farzana Parveen was three months pregnant at the time of her death.

On the same day, in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, two girls, age 14 and 15 went outside because that's where the bathroom is for most rural Indians. When they didn't return one of their fathers reported them missing, but according to him, the police  were so unintrested they dismissed his concern and didn't do anything.

The next morning the girls were found hung from a mango tree limb. Villagers reportedly gathered around the tree and refused to allow the bodies to be cut down until police arrested a suspect on Thursday. It was quickly determined both young ladies were the victims of a gang rape, an activity which appears to have become the national sport of India, before they were hung.

Police have two suspects in custody. In addition they fired two officers for not filing a missing persons report, then arrested them just for good measure.

Yes, there we have it. Another awful week is in the books.

Ladies and gentlemen, for obvious reasons, the bar is open.


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