Manuela Riedo was a 17 year-old Swiss girl who walked alone along a lonely pedestrian path across Lough Atalia from Galway railway station to Renmore late one night in October 2007.
While walking that path, she was brutally murdered by an evil predator.
“But is there no blame now to the person who puts themselves in danger?” asked George Hook, in relation to the alleged victim at the centre of the rape trial in the UK.
Perhaps George would care to answer that same question in relation to the Manuela Riedo case?
It’s an entirely logical and necessary follow through to ask such a question of Hook in regard to that horrific murder.
Perhaps he might also answer the same question in relation to the murder of Marilyn Rynn, a civil servant who was a work colleague of my father’s at the Department of the Environment, who was raped and murdered whole walking home alone after getting off a Nitelink bus in Blanchardstown a few nights before Christmas in 1995.
Or 15 year-old Melanie Gleeson, who was one class below me in primary school and was murdered by her 18 year-old boyfriend in the grounds of a school one night in October 1995.
Or Jo Jo Dollard or Deirdre Jacob or Annie McCarrick and countless others.
Rape and murder are both horrific crimes.
When one blames the victim of a rape merely because she “put herself in danger” (a disgusting implication), as Hook did, one cannot then disavow that opinion about murders which were perpetrated on a lonely, eerie path, especially at night. or about murders which took place in not dissimilar situations.
Again I return to Hook’s verbatim rhetorical question: “But is there no blame now to the person who puts themselves in danger?”
One cannot get away from this rhetorical question.
By Hook’s reckoning, Manuela Riedo put herself in danger.
And by Hook’s reckoning, she did carry blame for her own murder.
The abhorrent implications at the heart of this sort of rant before you think opinion on national radio are frightening.
A person who can utter such incredibly damaging, misogynistic, victim blaming rhetoric is simply not fit to broadcast on a national radio station.