Thursday, May 03, 2012

The Cliff House Strangler

The word homeless was not mentioned in The Cliff House Strangler written by Shirley Tallman. There were mentions of vagrants, drunks and derelicts.

The murder mystery novel is sett in 1881 San Francisco, California. The story is told through the eyes of female attorney, Sarah Woolson. Choice of career, opening her own law firm, opting to remain single and childless in that era was an oddity.

Sarah filed for divorce on behalf of a woman who was being physically abused by her husband. Women were considered property of their husband's with no rights of their own. Sarah reflects on the unfairness of laws that affected women adversely, yet they could not hope to change the laws of men because they were not allowed to vote along side them.

As the Virginia Slims ads used to say: We've come a long way, baby.

It seems Republican men are trying their best to put females back in their place. Sad to me, are the women who support the men who would deny a female with an ectopic pregnancy the right to seek medical help for the problem. If such a pregnancy is not terminated, the woman would likely die. How any female can support a politician that would consign a woman to death is beyond me.

Something that is as true now as it was in 1881: "Perhaps even more damaging than the physical blows were the wounds he'd inflicted by attacking her self-respect and value as a person." So true. Unless, of course, the violence leads to the woman's death.

Interesting: "When it comes to drunks and vagrants, I don't think they search too carefully. Mainly, they look for bottles and weapons, I should imagine." That said in response to how it would be possible for a prisoner or their visitor to bring a knife or other weapon into jail cells.

That is, of course, something that has changed drastically from those days.

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