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Keep Rapist Tom Strange Away from Bristol

This petition had 333 supporters

On the 13th of March, the Bristol Festival of Ideas is going to host an event called Thordis Elva and Tom Stranger, South of Forgiveness.
I am requesting the cancellation of this event. 
Many years ago, Stranger raped his then-girlfriend Elva. After the rape they both went separate ways, but reunited (not as a couple) and decided to write a book about forgiveness (on her part) and reconciliation.
I am requesting the cancellation of this event for the following reasons:

  • I find the idea of giving this rapist a speaking platform obscene. He is a criminal, after all
  • I think it shows total lack of consideration towards victims of sexual abuse, and can bring painful triggers
  • In the context in which we live, many rapes go unreported, and according to statistics, in England and Wales only 5.7% of those which are reported result in a conviction. The narrative of forgiving a rapist will further discourage reporting of rapes and will put additional suffering and burden on the victim. 

We women live in a culture of rape; not only rapes are prevalent and victims often are blamed, but that now even rapists are enabled to walk free and go on book tours. In this context, I think that the Festival of Ideas event is complicit with rape culture; it is part of the problem, and this role is inexcusable. I am requesting that this event, happening right after Women's International Day be cancelled. 

I will collect the signatures and are obtained and forward to Ms Zoe Steadman-Milne, Project Manager at the Bristol Festival of Ideas. I will also send them to Andrew Kelly, Director of the Bristol Festival of Ideas.

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