James McPherson's Media & Politics Blog

Observations of a patriotic progressive historian, media critic & former journalist


  • By the author of The Conservative Resurgence and the Press: The Media’s Role in the Rise of the Right and of Journalism at the End of the American Century, 1965-Present. A former journalist with a Ph.D. in journalism, history and political science, McPherson is a past president of the American Journalism Historians Association, a board member for the Northwest Alliance for Responsible Media, and a professor of communication studies at Whitworth University.

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Blind “love,” blind justice, and Bush’s shoe bomber

Posted by James McPherson on December 14, 2008

As far as we still have to go in this country in terms of equal rights for women and criminal justice, CNN today offers another reminder that things are worse elsewhere.

An Iranian stalker blinded his love object with acid, then “offered” to marry her after he disfigured her. The victim has now convinced an Islamic court that her attacker should face truth “eye-for-an-eye” justice, being blinded with acid himself.

Of all the troubling things about this particular case, perhaps the most disturbing is this line from the victim, recalling her thoughts when she realized that she was about to be attacked: “At that moment, I saw in my mind the face of two sisters who years ago had the same thing happen to them. I thought, ‘Oh, my God–acid.'”

The story also notes that Iran is one of only two countries in the world where “eye-gouging” is considered appropriate punishment. The other is the birthplace of most of the 9/11 World Trade Center attackers, and perhaps the world largest funder of Islamic terrorism–and our biggest ally in the region–Saudi Arabia.

After literally holding hands with the Saudis (some of whom have plenty of reasons for being upset, themselves), George W. Bush is fortunate that people (a journalist, interestingly) are throwing only shoes at him.

Thursday update: Bush obviously isn’t the only one beholden to the Saudis–CNN reports that Bill Clinton is, too, to the tune of perhaps $25 million.

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6 Responses to “Blind “love,” blind justice, and Bush’s shoe bomber”

  1. dr faust said

    have you ever seen this girl before and after the “Acid accident”? a disfigured face with blind eyes just because she said no to a maniac. I think this barbaric punishment is necessary so the other maniacs would think twice before doing such thing again.
    I just hope this blind justice won’t do it again. a lifetime prison is enough.

  2. CMS said

    I have only one concern – because I spent part of the 1990’s teaching Iranian immigrants and so I know something of their culture. If this man is blinded, then most likely a close female relative – probably an unmarried sister or cousin – will be assigned to be his lifelong caregiver. Her family will force this, and she will have no choice. She will not be allowed to marry or pursue an education or a career, but instead, she will have to spend every day and night of her life fulfilling all of the non-sexual duties of a spouse for this man. If his being blinded would cause another woman’s life to be ruined, it may be better justice if he dies.

  3. Dr. Pepper said

    CMS raises the specter of even another woman’s life being destroyed by Bahrami (the nutcase perpetrator).

    Indeed. If this is the case, then he should be terminated. Or a best-of-both scenario – blinded with acid and suffering for 6 months, THEN execution.

    It is unfortunate our laws do not include some eye-for-an-eye punishments.

    But then there are punishments as in Texas. My friend had a tail light out and was stopped. Officer asked to see her proof of insurance. She had her expired card with her, but not her new card.

    Now, every year in January, over a total of 3 years, she receives a bill from the state for $360 or so as a supplemental fine. A total of over $1000 for not carrying a valid proof of insurance card!

    Texans should be ashamed of their lawmakers. Texans should REPLACE their lawmakers.

  4. andeeroo said

    Consider the alternatives al-Zaidi passed up

    http://andeeroo.wordpress.com/?p=89&preview=true

  5. […] feel the same way, of course, to the point that Time magazine writes that the recent Bush “shoe bombing” will have an effect on that nation’s upcoming elections. In the meantime, retailers […]

  6. […] on the part of American presidents. Despite our long series of misadventures in Iraq, the eye-gouging nation of Saudi Arabia also was the home country of 15 of the hijackers who killed 3,000 Americans on […]

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