January 28, 2011

Times of India

Similar crime, varying verdicts in apex court - Despite Precedent, Spares Rapist-Killer Noose

New Delhi: The Supreme Court overcame a precedent in Dhananjoy Chatterjee, an apartment security guard sentenced to death for raping and killing a school girl, to reject capital punishment for a Gujarat watchman convicted in an identical case. 

   In 1994, the court had awarded the death penalty to Chatterjee, a 27-year-old married man, for the rape and murder of 18-year-old Hetal Parekh in her flat when her parents were away. The court rejected his mercy plea 10 years later and he was hanged in 2004.

   Employed as a watchman at Sanudip Apartments in Surat, 28-year-old Ramesh Bhai Chandubhai Rathod was also married when he raped and murdered a 10-year-old class IV school girl when her parents were away on December 17, 1999. His conviction was upheld by the Supreme Court.

   But, on punishment—life or death sentence—a bench of two judges was split. The issue was placed before a three-judge bench, which on Monday decided against death penalt and Rathod was given lifeand ordered that Rathod be lodged in jail for the rest of his life.

   Was Rathod’s case any different than Chatterjee’s? If it was not and the crime appeared to be more brutal than the Kolkata one, why the difference in the sentence?

   The bench of Justices H S Bedi, P Sathasivam and Chandramauli Kumar Prasad considered these questions and said: “We notice that there is a very thin line on facts which separates the award of a capital sentence from a life sentence in the case of rape and murder of a young child by a young man and the subjective opinion of individual judges as to the morality, efficacy or otherwise of a death sentence cannot entirely be ruled out.”

   On Rathod’s sentence, the bench said: “We commute the death sentence awarded to him to life but direct that the life sentence must extend to the full life of the appellant subject to any remission or commutation at the instance of the government for good and sufficient reasons.”

January 23, 2011

Times of India

Delhi again country’s rape capital

With 182 Rapes In 09,Mumbai 2nd On List

New Delhi: Delhi has never been very safe for women, and this is not just a perception.The crime figures for the national capital as compared to other cities in India for 2009 reveal that almost one-fourth of the rapes were reported from Delhi.Similarly,over one-third of kidnappings\abductions of women happened in Delhi,15% of dowry deaths and 14% of molestation cases.

The figures released by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) of the home ministry on Thursday,show among 35 mega cities in India, Delhi reported 404 out of 1,696 rapes;1,379 out of total 3,544 of kidnapping and abduction of women,104 out of 684 of dowry deaths and 491 out of 3,477 of molestation during the period.

Among the states,the dubious distinction of the rape state has gone to Madhya Pradesh which had reported the highest number of rape cases (2,998),accounting for 14% of total such case reported in the country.

But if one looks at the figures of Incest Rape (that is rape by someone in the family),Chhattisgarh reported the highest number in all,107.

Incest rape cases have increased by 30.7%from 309 cases in 2008 to 404 cases in 2009 as compared to 0.3% decrease in overall rape cases.Crime experts say the highest number of rapes in the country is incest rapes,although they are often not reported.

Besides Delhi,the other cities which reported rapes in bigger number are Mumbai (182),Bhopal (117),Jabalpur (76),Jaipur (69) and Pune (67).Incidentally,most of the rapes were committed by those offenders who knew the victims.Overall,21,21,345 of the IPC cases (which include violent crimes like murder,attempt to murder,rape,culpable homicide not amounting to murder etc.) were reported in the country in 2009 as compared to 20,93,379 cases in 2008a marginal increase.

Among the cities,Delhi,Bangalore and Mumbai have accounted for 13.2%,9.4% and 9.1% respectively of the total crimesover one-third of the total crimes reported from 35 mega cities.

January 18, 2011


Top Mumbai police admits to crime spurt: 140 minors, 55 women raped

The Mumbai police on Monday said that cases of rapes of minor girls and other crimes against women are on the rise.

The statistics available with the Mumbai police show that 140 cases of rapes of minor girls were registered last year, whereas 128 were registered in 2009. Also, 469 cases of molestation were registered last year, compared to 395 in 2009.

“It has been seen that in 92% rape cases, the accused is known to the victim. While the cases of rape have increased, the detection rate has also gone up,” said Mumbai police commissioner Sanjeev Dayal.
Interestingly, statistics reveal that rape cases in which the accused was a relative, parent or close family member are few. In most, the victim is either abused by the neighbour or friends.

Citing a few important rape cases like the one involving senior police inspector Arun Borude and the Nehru Nagar serial rape case, Dayal said, “We are sensitive about a police official’s involvement in rape cases.

“The department acted quickly by dismissing Borude from service as soon as his name figured in the case. Also, in the Nehru Nagar rape cases, one case was solved with the arrest of one person. We are working on detecting the remaining two cases.
“We have come across information about people who left the city after the incident came to light.
“Efforts are on to trace them and get their DNA analysed. We have collected over 810 DNA samples.”

Suggesting a disturbing trend, the statistics show that there was a rise in the number of dowry death cases last year, as compared to 2009. However, dowry-related suicide cases and cases of mental and physical harassment for dowry came down last year, as compared to 2009.

The statistics also reveal that 46 brothels were closed down last year in the city. This is the highest number in the past five years.
The number of women rescued from the brothels was 370, including 15 minors.
“We have been taking the help of non-governmental organisations in rehabilitating the women rescued from brothels and prostitution rackets,” the police commissioner said.

January 15, 2011


Times of India

Victim takes up child trafficking cause

MUMBAI: Stolen from home and robbed of a childhood more than 30 years ago, Rani Tong, a victim of child trafficking, launched a battle against human trafficking through her NGO, Tronie Foundation, one that she set up with her husband Tron in 2006.

While Rani was trafficked from south India, Tron was a victim of trafficking in Vietnam. They now live in the US, a country where they were both carted to as children. On Thursday evening, Rani shared her story at a discussion on women,s empowerment at the American Centre, Mumbai.

Rani was born into an impoverished family in a village in Kerala. At seven, a woman in the village approached her mother and promised to look after Rani and provide her with the best education. With the assurance that she would be able to see her daughter every day, her mother agreed to hand over her daughter to the woman, who turned out to be a trafficker. Rani was stolen and taken to Tamil Nadu, a state whose language she did not know. "I was scared and alone. I was tortured, starved and beaten by my master, who wanted me to submit to his will," she says. "My body and mind shut down after the abuse. At the age of eight, I was totally broken," says Rani, who was on the verge of death at the time.

By then, her trafficker had little use for her, and sold her to an international adoption agency, where she was first transported to Canada, and from there to the US.

She credits her adoptive mother for helping her heal from the trauma.

"As a child slave, my captors said I had no voice. And now, so many people want to listen to what I have to say," says Rani, who has even been felicitated by the United Nations for her campaign against human trafficking.

Rani has travelled extensively through India, tracing the source of human trafficking, as well as the route taken to smuggle human beings from one state to the next. She has interviewed several victims of exploitation, who have joined her in her fight against human trafficking.

Over a decade ago, she even traced her roots to the village in Kerala where she once lived. It,s here that she was re-united with her family in 1999.

January 13, 2011


Sodomised boy traced, sister disappears

By: Atul Krishan Date: 2010-12-21 Place: Delhi

The thirteen-year-old boy - one of the three siblings from central Delhi's Prasad Nagar, who were drugged and sodomised over 18 months, allegedly by their school cab driver and four other juveniles - was traced on Monday, after he went missing three days ago. But now his fourteen-year-old sister has gone missing.

Delhi police personnel are befuddled and plan to lodge a case of kidnapping. The boy had gone missing a day after Crime Branch, which is now looking into the matter, filed a chargesheet with a city court regarding the case. Police had also filed a kidnapping case regarding the boy who says he was abducted by one of the accused.

The sexual abuse was reported on September 17, when the kids' mother Rajkumari (name changed) informed one of her neighbours that her daughter and two sons were raped and sodomised by their cab driver Lalit Ratawal (32) and four juveniles for several months.
Though the mother came to know about it seven months later, she was threatened with dire consequences when she confronted the accused. She kept silent for a week before reporting the matter to police.

Times of India, Delhi
Dec 21st

Prasad Nagar victim found, says he was kidnapped

NEW DELHI: Seventy-two hours after he disappeared on Friday , the 13-year-old boy , who is one of the three victims in the shocking Prasad Nagar sexual abuse case , was found on Deshbandhu Gupta Road in central Delhi on Sunday evening . The boy was found while he was serving tea to a lady in a garment shop .

Neeta Khullar , the owner of the shop in Durga Chambers , explained , "The boy came to me serving tea around 4pm. Since he was well-dressed and didn't appear to be destitute, I asked him why he was working at such a young age . At first , he appeared scared and pretended that he had no family . But later I managed to cajole him into giving me his mother's number who I then called . I informed her that her child was safe and in my shop ."

Khullar , who runs an NGO said , "I was not aware that the child was linked to the Prasad Nagar case . It was only after I spoke to the mother that I realised what the situation was ." The victim claimed that he had been drugged , kidnapped and taken to a dark room . "I was beaten up and a CD with videos of our sexual abuse was snatched from me . I was threatened not to return to my residence or else they would harm my family . Then I was dropped off on Pusa Road on Saturday evening where a tea shop owner gave me refuge . I did not want to go back home because I was scared ," the boy said .

Subhash Nagar , a neighbour of the family and a social worker , said , "The boy told us that one of the accused , who is yet to be caught , allegedly drugged and kidnapped him while he was unconscious from outside his Taekwondo teacher's residence in Patel Nagar ."

Deputy commissioner of police (central ) Vivek Kishore confirmed that the boy had been recovered . "The boy is currently in our possession . As our investigations are going on , we cannot reveal anything further ," said DCP Kishore .

Hindustan Times, Delhi

Sexual abuse victims face mom’s wrath

In a new twist to the case of three Delhi siblings exploited sexually by their school cab driver for over a year, a city court has found their woes were compounded with the mother subjecting them to severe physical violence. “All the three child victims appear to have been physically assaulted
repeatedly while in the custody of their mother,” said additional sessions judge Santosh Snehi Mann in her order dismissing the bail plea of cab driver Lalit Ratawal.
Disturbed by the worsening plight of the children, the judge wanted the state to intervene in the matter to ensure chidlren's welfare.
The court made the "shocking and disturbing" findings in the medical reports of the three children examined on three different dates after the arrest of the accused on September 17 last year and when they were in the custody of their own mother. “The children, who are the victims of sexual assault, were constantly physically abused and appear to have been treated with utmost cruelty while in the custody of their mother.” PTI

January 10, 2011



Leaves behind stunning note telling of childhood sexual abuse
January 08, 2011

PRINCETON, MASS.) --Bill Zeller, a 27-year old fifth-year graduate student in the computer science department at Princeton University died Wednesday night as a result of injuries and complications sustained in a suicide attempt.

What left his family, friends, fellow students and teachers in shock was what caused him to try to commit suicide.

Zeller left behind a 4,000 page suicide note describing how he had never been a fully functioning human being after being repeatedly raped as a small child.

If anyone wants to understand the effects that childhood sexual abuse can have on an individual for the rest of his or her life, tap into Zeller’s 4,000-word note describing the torment that has been his life since he was a young boy.

In the note Zeller described how repeated sexual abuse as a young child haunted him for the rest of his life, causing regular nightmares and limiting his ability to connect with other human beings.

Zeller's words are a heart-wrenching testament to just how much a child rapist steals from the child that is abused. In Zeller’s case, what was taken from him was the rest of his life. He had no joy, no hope, no peace, no future but the darkness that followed him everywhere.

Zeller did not name in the note who had raped him repeatedly as a child. It was not immediately known if the rapist had been caught and prosecuted years ago or if the rapist remained unknown to the police and/or Zeller’s parents.

The Princeton University campus newspaper The Princetonian ran an article about Zeller’s death and the note he left behind here

I have the urge to declare my sanity and justify my actions, but I
assume I'll never be able to convince anyone that this was the right
decision. Maybe it's true that anyone who does this is insane by
definition, but I can at least explain my reasoning. I considered not
writing any of this because of how personal it is, but I like tying up
loose ends and don't want people to wonder why I did this. Since I've
never spoken to anyone about what happened to me, people would likely
draw the wrong conclusions.

My first memories as a child are of being raped, repeatedly. This has
affected every aspect of my life. This darkness, which is the only way I
can describe it, has followed me like a fog, but at times intensified
and overwhelmed me, usually triggered by a distinct situation. In
kindergarten I couldn't use the bathroom and would stand petrified
whenever I needed to, which started a trend of awkward and unexplained
social behavior. The damage that was done to my body still prevents me
from using the bathroom normally, but now it's less of a physical
impediment than a daily reminder of what was done to me.

This darkness followed me as I grew up. I remember spending hours
playing with legos, having my world consist of me and a box of cold,
plastic blocks. Just waiting for everything to end. It's the same thing
I do now, but instead of legos it's surfing the web or reading or
listening to a baseball game. Most of my life has been spent feeling
dead inside, waiting for my body to catch up.

At times growing up I would feel inconsolable rage, but I never
connected this to what happened until puberty. I was able to keep the
darkness at bay for a few hours at a time by doing things that required
intense concentration, but it would always come back. Programming
appealed to me for this reason. I was never particularly fond of
computers or mathematically inclined, but the temporary peace it would
provide was like a drug. But the darkness always returned and built up
something like a tolerance, because programming has become less and less
of a refuge.

The darkness is with me nearly every time I wake up. I feel like a grime
is covering me. I feel like I'm trapped in a contimated body that no
amount of washing will clean. Whenever I think about what happened I
feel manic and itchy and can't concentrate on anything else. It
manifests itself in hours of eating or staying up for days at a time or
sleeping for sixteen hours straight or week long programming binges or
constantly going to the gym. I'm exhausted from feeling like this every
hour of every day.

Three to four nights a week I have nightmares about what happened. It
makes me avoid sleep and constantly tired, because sleeping with what
feels like hours of nightmares is not restful. I wake up sweaty and
furious. I'm reminded every morning of what was done to me and the
control it has over my life.

I've never been able to stop thinking about what happened to me and this
hampered my social interactions. I would be angry and lost in thought
and then be interrupted by someone saying "Hi" or making small talk,
unable to understand why I seemed cold and distant. I walked around,
viewing the outside world from a distant portal behind my eyes, unable
to perform normal human niceties. I wondered what it would be like to
take to other people without what happened constantly on my mind, and I
wondered if other people had similar experiences that they were better
able to mask.

Alcohol was also something that let me escape the darkness. It would
always find me later, though, and it was always angry that I managed to
escape and it made me pay. Many of the irresponsible things I did were
the result of the darkness. Obviously I'm responsible for every decision
and action, including this one, but there are reasons why things happen
the way they do.

Alcohol and other drugs provided a way to ignore the realities of my
situation. It was easy to spend the night drinking and forget that I had
no future to look forward to. I never liked what alcohol did to me, but
it was better than facing my existence honestly. I haven't touched
alcohol or any other drug in over seven months (and no drugs or alcohol
will be involved when I do this) and this has forced me to evaluate my
life in an honest and clear way. There's no future here. The darkness
will always be with me.

I used to think if I solved some problem or achieved some goal, maybe he
would leave. It was comforting to identify tangible issues as the source
of my problems instead of something that I'll never be able to change. I
thought that if I got into to a good college, or a good grad school, or
lost weight, or went to the gym nearly every day for a year, or created
programs that millions of people used, or spent a summer or California
or New York or published papers that I was proud of, then maybe I would
feel some peace and not be constantly haunted and unhappy. But nothing I
did made a dent in how depressed I was on a daily basis and nothing was
in any way fulfilling. I'm not sure why I ever thought that would change

I didn't realize how deep a hold he had on me and my life until my
first relationship. I stupidly assumed that no matter how the darkness
affected me personally, my romantic relationships would somehow be
separated and protected. Growing up I viewed my future relationships as
a possible escape from this thing that haunts me every day, but I began
to realize how entangled it was with every aspect of my life and how it
is never going to release me. Instead of being an escape, relationships
and romantic contact with other people only intensified everything about
him that I couldn't stand. I will never be able to have a relationship
in which he is not the focus, affecting every aspect of my romantic

Relationships always started out fine and I'd be able to ignore him for
a few weeks. But as we got closer emotionally the darkness would return
and every night it'd be me, her and the darkness in a black and gruesome
threesome. He would surround me and penetrate me and the more we did the
more intense it became. It made me hate being touched, because as long
as we were separated I could view her like an outsider viewing something
good and kind and untainted. Once we touched, the darkness would
envelope her too and take her over and the evil inside me would surround
her. I always felt like I was infecting anyone I was with.

Relationships didn't work. No one I dated was the right match, and I
thought that maybe if I found the right person it would overwhelm him.
Part of me knew that finding the right person wouldn't help, so I became
interested in girls who obviously had no interest in me. For a while I
thought I was gay. I convinced myself that it wasn't the darkness at
all, but rather my orientation, because this would give me control over
why things didn't feel "right". The fact that the darkness affected
sexual matters most intensely made this idea make some sense and I
convinced myself of this for a number of years, starting in college
after my first relationship ended. I told people I was gay (at Trinity,
not at Princeton), even though I wasn't attracted to men and kept
finding myself interested in girls. Because if being gay wasn't the
answer, then what was? People thought I was avoiding my orientation, but
I was actually avoiding the truth, which is that while I'm straight, I
will never be content with anyone. I know now that the darkness will
never leave.

Last spring I met someone who was unlike anyone else I'd ever met.
Someone who showed me just how well two people could get along and how
much I could care about another human being. Someone I know I could be
with and love for the rest of my life, if I weren't so fucked up.
Amazingly, she liked me. She liked the shell of the man the darkness had
left behind. But it didn't matter because I couldn't be alone with her.
It was never just the two of us, it was always the three of us: her, me
and the darkness. The closer we got, the more intensely I'd feel the
darkness, like some evil mirror of my emotions. All the closeness we had
and I loved was complemented by agony that I couldn't stand, from him. I
realized that I would never be able to give her, or anyone, all of me or
only me. She could never have me without the darkness and evil inside
me. I could never have just her, without the darkness being a part of
all of our interactions. I will never be able to be at peace or content
or in a healthy relationship. I realized the futility of the romantic
part of my life. If I had never met her, I would have realized this as
soon as I met someone else who I meshed similarly well with. It's likely
that things wouldn't have worked out with her and we would have broken
up (with our relationship ending, like the majority of relationships do)
even if I didn't have this problem, since we only dated for a short
time. But I will face exactly the same problems with the darkness with
anyone else. Despite my hopes, love and compatability is not enough.
Nothing is enough. There's no way I can fix this or even push the
darkness down far enough to make a relationship or any type of intimacy

So I watched as things fell apart between us. I had put an explicit time
limit on our relationship, since I knew it couldn't last because of the
darkness and didn't want to hold her back, and this caused a variety of
problems. She was put in an unnatural situation that she never should
have been a part of. It must have been very hard for her, not knowing
what was actually going on with me, but this is not something I've ever
been able to talk about with anyone. Losing her was very hard for me as
well. Not because of her (I got over our relationship relatively
quickly), but because of the realization that I would never have another
relationship and because it signified the last true, exclusive personal
connection I could ever have. This wasn't apparent to other people,
because I could never talk about the real reasons for my sadness. I was
very sad in the summer and fall, but it was not because of her, it was
because I will never escape the darkness with anyone. She was so loving
and kind to me and gave me everything I could have asked for under the
circumstances. I'll never forget how much happiness she brought me in
those briefs moments when I could ignore the darkness. I had originally
planned to kill myself last winter but never got around to it. (Parts of
this letter were written over a year ago, other parts days before doing
this.) It was wrong of me to involve myself in her life if this were a
possibility and I should have just left her alone, even though we only
dated for a few months and things ended a long time ago. She's just one
more person in a long list of people I've hurt.

I could spend pages talking about the other relationships I've had that
were ruined because of my problems and my confusion related to the
darkness. I've hurt so many great people because of who I am and my
inability to experience what needs to be experienced. All I can say is
that I tried to be honest with people about what I thought was true.

I've spent my life hurting people. Today will be the last time.

I've told different people a lot of things, but I've never told anyone
about what happened to me, ever, for obvious reasons. It took me a while
to realize that no matter how close you are to someone or how much they
claim to love you, people simply cannot keep secrets. I learned this a
few years ago when I thought I was gay and told people. The more harmful
the secret, the juicier the gossip and the more likely you are to be
betrayed. People don't care about their word or what they've promised,
they just do whatever the fuck they want and justify it later. It feels
incredibly lonely to realize you can never share something with someone
and have it be between just the two of you. I don't blame anyone in
particular, I guess it's just how people are. Even if I felt like this
is something I could have shared, I have no interest in being part of a
friendship or relationship where the other person views me as the
damaged and contaminated person that I am. So even if I were able to
trust someone, I probably would not have told them about what happened
to me. At this point I simply don't care who knows.

I feel an evil inside me. An evil that makes me want to end life. I need
to stop this. I need to make sure I don't kill someone, which is not
something that can be easily undone. I don't know if this is related to
what happened to me or something different. I recognize the irony of
killing myself to prevent myself from killing someone else, but this
decision should indicate what I'm capable of.

So I've realized I will never escape the darkness or misery associated
with it and I have a responsibility to stop myself from physically
harming others.

I'm just a broken, miserable shell of a human being. Being molested has
defined me as a person and shaped me as a human being and it has made me
the monster I am and there's nothing I can do to escape it. I don't know
any other existence. I don't know what life feels like where I'm apart
from any of this. I actively despise the person I am. I just feel
fundamentally broken, almost non-human. I feel like an animal that woke
up one day in a human body, trying to make sense of a foreign world,
living among creatures it doesn't understand and can't connect with.

I have accepted that the darkness will never allow me to be in a
relationship. I will never go to sleep with someone in my arms, feeling
the comfort of their hands around me. I will never know what
uncontimated intimacy is like. I will never have an exclusive bond with
someone, someone who can be the recipient of all the love I have to
give. I will never have children, and I wanted to be a father so badly.
I think I would have made a good dad. And even if I had fought through
the darkness and married and had children all while being unable to feel
intimacy, I could have never done that if suicide were a possibility. I
did try to minimize pain, although I know that this decision will hurt
many of you. If this hurts you, I hope that you can at least forget
about me quickly.

There's no point in identifying who molested me, so I'm just going to
leave it at that. I doubt the word of a dead guy with no evidence about
something that happened over twenty years ago would have much sway.

You may wonder why I didn't just talk to a professional about this. I've
seen a number of doctors since I was a teenager to talk about other
issues and I'm positive that another doctor would not have helped. I was
never given one piece of actionable advice, ever. More than a few spent
a large part of the session reading their notes to remember who I was.
And I have no interest in talking about being raped as a child, both
because I know it wouldn't help and because I have no confidence it
would remain secret. I know the legal and practical limits of
doctor/patient confidentiality, growing up in a house where we'd hear
stories about the various mental illnesses of famous people, stories
that were passed down through generations. All it takes is one doctor
who thinks my story is interesting enough to share or a doctor who
thinks it's her right or responsibility to contact the authorities and
have me identify the molestor (justifying her decision by telling
herself that someone else might be in danger). All it takes is a single
doctor who violates my trust, just like the "friends" who I told I was
gay did, and everything would be made public and I'd be forced to live
in a world where people would know how fucked up I am. And yes, I
realize this indicates that I have severe trust issues, but they're
based on a large number of experiences with people who have shown a
profound disrepect for their word and the privacy of others.

People say suicide is selfish. I think it's selfish to ask people to
continue living painful and miserable lives, just so you possibly won't
feel sad for a week or two. Suicide may be a permanent solution to a
temporary problem, but it's also a permanent solution to a ~23 year-old
problem that grows more intense and overwhelming every day.

Some people are just dealt bad hands in this life. I know many people
have it worse than I do, and maybe I'm just not a strong person, but I
really did try to deal with this. I've tried to deal with this every day
for the last 23 years and I just can't fucking take it anymore.

I often wonder what life must be like for other people. People who
can feel the love from others and give it back unadulterated, people who
can experience sex as an intimate and joyous experience, people who can
experience the colors and happenings of this world without constant
misery. I wonder who I'd be if things had been different or if I were a
stronger person. It sounds pretty great.

I'm prepared for death. I'm prepared for the pain and I am ready to no
longer exist. Thanks to the strictness of New Jersey gun laws this will
probably be much more painful than it needs to be, but what can you do.
My only fear at this point is messing something up and surviving.


I'd also like to address my family, if you can call them that. I despise
everything they stand for and I truly hate them, in a non-emotional,
dispassionate and what I believe is a healthy way. The world will be a
better place when they're dead--one with less hatred and intolerance.

If you're unfamiliar with the situation, my parents are fundamentalist
Christians who kicked me out of their house and cut me off financially
when I was 19 because I refused to attend seven hours of church a week.

They live in a black and white reality they've constructed for
themselves. They partition the world into good and evil and survive
by hating everything they fear or misunderstand and calling it love.
They don't understand that good and decent people exist all around us,
"saved" or not, and that evil and cruel people occupy a large percentage
of their church. They take advantage of people looking for hope by
teaching them to practice the same hatred they practice.

A random example:

"I am personally convinced that if a Muslim truly believes and obeys the
Koran, he will be a terrorist." - George Zeller, August 24, 2010.

If you choose to follow a religion where, for example, devout Catholics
who are trying to be good people are all going to Hell but child
molestors go to Heaven (as long as they were "saved" at some point),
that's your choice, but it's fucked up. Maybe a God who operates by
those rules does exist. If so, fuck Him.

Their church was always more important than the members of their family
and they happily sacrificed whatever necessary in order to satisfy
their contrived beliefs about who they should be.

I grew up in a house where love was proxied through a God I could never
believe in. A house where the love of music with any sort of a beat was
literally beaten out of me. A house full of hatred and intolerance, run
by two people who were experts at appearing kind and warm when others
were around. Parents who tell an eight year old that his grandmother is
going to Hell because she's Catholic. Parents who claim not to be racist
but then talk about the horrors of miscegenation. I could list hundreds
of other examples, but it's tiring.

Since being kicked out, I've interacted with them in relatively normal
ways. I talk to them on the phone like nothing happened. I'm not sure
why. Maybe because I like pretending I have a family. Maybe I like
having people I can talk to about what's been going on in my life.
Whatever the reason, it's not real and it feels like a sham. I should
have never allowed this reconnection to happen.

I wrote the above a while ago, and I do feel like that much of the time.
At other times, though, I feel less hateful. I know my parents honestly
believe the crap they believe in. I know that my mom, at least, loved me
very much and tried her best. One reason I put this off for so long is
because I know how much pain it will cause her. She has been sad since
she found out I wasn't "saved", since she believes I'm going to Hell,
which is not a sadness for which I am responsible. That was never going
to change, and presumably she believes the state of my physical body is
much less important than the state of my soul. Still, I cannot
intellectually justify this decision, knowing how much it will hurt her.
Maybe my ability to take my own life, knowing how much pain it will
cause, shows that I am a monster who doesn't deserve to live. All I know
is that I can't deal with this pain any longer and I'm am truly sorry I
couldn't wait until my family and everyone I knew died so this could be
done without hurting anyone. For years I've wished that I'd be hit by a
bus or die while saving a baby from drowning so my death might be more
acceptable, but I was never so lucky.


To those of you who have shown me love, thank you for putting up with
all my shittiness and moodiness and arbitrariness. I was never the
person I wanted to be. Maybe without the darkness I would have been a
better person, maybe not. I did try to be a good person, but I realize I
never got very far.

I'm sorry for the pain this causes. I really do wish I had another
option. I hope this letter explains why I needed to do this. If you
can't understand this decision, I hope you can at least forgive me.

Bill Zeller


Please save this letter and repost it if gets deleted. I don't want
people to wonder why I did this. I disseminated it more widely than I
might have otherwise because I'm worried that my family might try to
restrict access to it. I don't mind if this letter is made public. In
fact, I'd prefer it be made public to people being unable to read it and
drawing their own conclusions.

Feel free to republish this letter, but only if it is reproduced in its


January 1, 2011


When Indian women cry rape, it is likely to be genuine: HC

When a girl or woman in India alleges rape, there is a “built-in assurance” that the charge is genuine, observed the Bombay high court while dismissing the appeal of a father who repeatedly raped his 15-year-old daughter for nearly a year with the result that she delivered a child.

A division bench of justices DD Sinha and VK Tahilramani was hearing the appeal of Patrick Nathan, challenging the September 16, 2004, order of the additional sessions judge, Nashik, convicting him under section 376 (rape) of the Indian Penal Code and sentencing him to rigorous imprisonment for life.

The judges said corroboration of the testimony of a victim of sexual offence may be considered essential against the backdrop of the Western world’s social ecology. “But it is unnecessary to import the said concept and to transplant it on Indian soil regardless of the different atmosphere, attitudes, mores, responses of the Indian society and its profile,” they added. “Rarely will a girl or a woman in India make false allegations of sexual assault due to various psycho-social factors.”
According to the prosecution, Reena (name changed), an only child, resided with her father at Wagle Estate, Thane. Seven years prior to the incident, her mother left home and her whereabouts were unknown. Nathan worked in a liquor den and daily returned home drunk. In April 2002, he raped Reena. When she objected, he paid no heed and told her not to disclose it to anyone. He raped her on many occasions thereafter.

When she complained of stomach pain, a neighbour took her to a doctor who said she was pregnant. Reena said it was because of her father. Reena delivered a male child on June 7, 2003.

Nathan pleaded not guilty, saying he was implicated by his estranged wife. Neighbours testified that his wife left the house due to harassment. The first time she took Reena along, but Nathan traced her and brought them home.

The second time, she left alone and there was no news of her. They testified that they often heard Reena weeping and crying: “Father, leave me.” Reena told them that Nathan threatened to throw acid on her face. He stored it at home for throwing on his wife.