By now, anyone remotely interested in hearing the Mel Gibson à la cuckoo bird taped phone conversations has gotten an earful of a crazy, abusive rant. The details, I'll spare you, but many people find it shocking (I saw a severed finger once, so not a lot shocks me). And, irrespective if the punching in the face part is true, this kind of thing could land a guy in jail in France. Shocking Percentage Of Women Think Abuse Is OK
While I have no idea what's admissible in court, I'm pretty sure some of the things said in those tapes may constitute threats; but even if they didn't, the French don't take kindly to emotional abuse. According to the BBC, the French Parliament (not a new cigarette) has criminalized what it calls mental violence, so it goes: "repeated acts which could be constituted by words or other machinations, to degrade one's quality of life and cause a change to one's mental or physical state." Thus invalidating the old chestnut about sticks and stones. Are Apologies Enough After Domestic Abuse?
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A man or woman who repeatedly uses words or texts or letters to belittle or push around their significant other could be fined up to $96,000 and spend three years in the slammer like MC Hammer*. Frankly, French jail is supposed to be really awful, so this thing has teeth. Evidently, the goal is to nip any danger in the bud before things get physical as 20% of the murks in France arise from domestic situations. Why Do Victims Of Domestic Violence Stay?
Critics think it will be hard to prove unless we all start recording everything, which we're probably only, like, a week away from doing anyway.
Off-topic, can we please rename criminal mischief? It makes me think of a pantsless guy wearing a Nixon mask vandalizing lawns after slamming a twelver of Mickey's.
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Do you think this law will work? Should they try this in the US of America?
*Note: MC Hammer never went to jail. He went bankrupt.