Acid Attacks Essay Research Paper Acid Attacks

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Acid Attacks Essay, Research Paper Acid Attacks and the Male Domination In America, we are used to the free, predominantly equal lifestyles that we lead. We are protected by a Government that feels that all should receive justice, protection and freedom under one law. For many Americans, we are in a bubble that blinds us from the world outside of the streets that we live in, the state where we preside, and the country that makes us free. According to Jane Fonda, in the world s most densely populated country, Bangladesh, there is a completely different economic and legal system. (Fonda) Bangledeshi Women still live under the standards of fixed marriages and dowries. They are almost completely ignored by the Bangladesh legal system, so when they are brutally attacked, the

government simply looks the other way and pretends that they have not seen a terribly disfigured woman standing at their doorstep begging for help. This horrible disfigurement comes from acid attacks. The skin melts away, the muscle disappears and what is left is simply bone. They lose their faces, noses and eyelids. Many lose their sight and their hearing. Some women even die. The culprit of these horrible realities is sulfuric acid. Woman are typically attacked by the acid at night when they are least expecting it. They are attacked because they dared to say no. Girls as young as thirteen years old are attacked because they reject the advances of significantly older men. Other woman are attacked because of a dispute over the dowry, in other words, the payment received by the

man s family from the woman s family for the marriage of the daughter. The attack is often just an assault on the girl s father. The daughter is viewed as property of the family. If the dowry is rejected by the Carmichael 2 father of the woman, the man who has given the proposal is often times angered. The suitor attacks the woman with the mind-set that if I can t have her, nobody can . They throw sulfuric acid on the girl in order to make them damaged goods, so to speak. A disfigured woman will not get a dowry. They are terribly disfigured and will probably not be married at all. Women who are usually involved in the attacks are poor and their families depend on a good marriage so that the woman is no longer dependent upon her birth parents for support. A woman who is a victim

of an acid attack is a financial burden on a family that has little money to begin with and with no hope of marrying her off, they are stuck with a member of the family who is most likely uneducated and not wanted in the community. A woman who has been attacked is often looked at as a social pariah, or outcast, and sometimes is blamed for the attack, as if it were her fault that acid was thrown on her face in order to disfigure it. According to Chung, there is only one hospital in Bangladesh that has a burn unit. (Chung) Dhaka Medical College Hospital, has only a few beds for women and there are not nearly enough to hold all of the burn victims that come in everyday. There is surgery that can be done to repair the damage done by the sulfuric acid, but it is much too expensive for

many of the families to afford. Chung says that an average surgery is between four and five hours and usually the women requires several surgeries for any improvement to be made. Surgery is approximately $100 an hour, and this is expected to be paid by families whose average income is about $25 a month (Chung). There are several organizations that are reaching out to these burn victims who have no money to spend on surgery. The Asian Center for the Progress of Peoples, a human rights association that is based out of Hong Kong, has been leading a world-wide quest to urge legislation to make immediate arrangements for improved care of acid burns and rehabilitation for women in Bangladesh. People involved with the Woman and Child Repression Control Act, have Carmichael 3 been