Protect left-behind-girls

Updated: 2014-01-14 08:02

(China Daily)

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After finding his daughter had been sexually assaulted by several middle-aged and elderly men for two years, the angry father of a left-behind girl in a village in Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region reported it to the police. Ten men were later sentenced to prison. It is shocking that the villagers, instead of expressing their sympathy, have blamed the girl and her family for the men's crime, says an article on Excerpts:

The law has finally given justice to the girl, but the sentence seems a little late because the damage has already been done to the girl physically and mentally, as well as her family even though the law has protected justice and fairness. And what the law cannot fix is more than this.

It has much to do with the moral decline of some villagers that the girl has been sexually assaulted for two years. Moreover, after the sex offenders were captured and sentenced, some villagers unexpectedly showed sympathy to them and hostility to the victim and her relatives. If not the prevailing moral decline, it is the villagers' indifference to the protection of the teenage girl's rights that has led to such a tragic situation. The villagers' view of shame and morals cannot be altered by just laws.

It is beyond doubt that the absence of institutional rights exists in many Chinese villages. Statistics show that among the more than 60 million left-behind children, 30 million girls are at risk. These children, who have stayed in the villages without the care of their parents, do not even have the most basic right to enjoy their parents' protection.

Laws cannot guarantee rural children will grow up healthy without enduring hurts of all kinds from the outside world and the rights regulated in relevant laws need a supporting system. The tragedy is not only the shame of the village, and proof of the moral collapse of some villagers, it also demonstrates a serious lack of moral guidance and cultural education.