In April, a campaign called “I Support Law 779″ was launched on social networks to demand that a law protecting the physical, psychological and moral integrity of women be respected. The campaign consisted of writing a supportive phrase, taking a photo with the phrase, and uploading it with the tag #yoapoyolaley779 [es] (#ISupportLaw779).
Law 779, or the Integral Law Against Violence Towards Women [es], was approved in Nicaragua on January 26, 2012, and went into effect in June of the same year.
The law prohibits mediation between victims and aggressors, independent of the type of aggression. Starting in March, this aspect of the law has provoked religious leaders and members of the Supreme Court of Justice (CSJ) to promote reforms to the law, claiming that mediation can exist in cases where the sentence is less than five years.
The first people to gather in protest to reject said reform, by considering it unconstitutional, were the members of the Democratic Association of Lawyers in Nicaragua (Adanic), who called together their unionizers and citizenry in general to demand that the Supreme Court of Justice (CSJ) resolve the appeals against Law 779.Carlos Lucas [es] writes about the law on his blog:
No es perfecta y ni siquiera revolucionaria y aunque llega algo tarde, tomando en cuenta el enorme daño físico, vidas, estado sicológico de las mujeres y sus familias, que había venido provocando su vacío, pero la puesta en marcha de la Ley 779 o Ley Integral contra la Violencia hacia las Mujeres de Nicaragua, comienza a sacudir- y más si se si aplica firmemente- nuestra forma de pensar y conceptos sobre familia, matrimonio, unión de pareja, hogar, felicidad, armonía familiar, amor, etc.
Tan es así, que sobre esta Ley 779, apenas dictada en el 2012, ya hay en Nicaragua, toda una reaccionaria conspiración contra algunos de esos avances en el tema de la violencia contra la mujer.
It is not perfect and would not even revolutionize anything and although it has arrived a bit late, taking into account the enormous physical harm, the lives, the psychological state of women and their families, which had come provoking its void, the start up of Law 779 or the Integral Law Against Violence Towards Women in Nicaragua, is beginning to shake up – and more so if applied firmly – our way of thinking and concepts of family, marriage, civil union, home, happiness, familial harmony, love, etc.
It is so much so that, with regards to Law 779, which was only enacted in 2012, there is already an entire reactionary conspiracy in Nicaragua against some of the advances in the field of violence against women.
At the start of May, Bishop Abelardo Mata made statements to the media comparing Law 779 with the Anti-Christ, adding that this new law is separating families by not permitting mediation between the aggressor and the victim. The bishop's declarations provoked reaction from the public on social networks once again.
Feminist group La Corriente [es] created a video dedicated to Bishop Mata, where four activists from the feminist movement are featured doing a parody of Yuri's song “Maldita Primavera”:
Additionally, activists on social networks began the campaign “Watch out, #BishopMata!” Rodrigo Rodriguez [es] writes the following on his blog:
¿Es la ley 779 REALMENTE tan grave para el sistema de justicia -pensemos por un momento que nuestro sistema de justicia es bien aplicado, sólo para ejemplificar esto- y el ejercicio de los derechos humanos en nuestro país, como para compararla con el significado del anticristo, entendido desde una visión cristiano-católica como un adversario decisivo del hijo de Dios (ese ser invisible, omnipresente, todopoderoso que controla y decide nuestro destino)?
En serio… ¿en realidad es tan grave?
Is Law 779 REALLY that serious for the justice system — let's think for a moment that our justice system is well implemented, just to exemplify this — and the exercise of human rights in our country, to compare it to the meaning of the antichrist, understood from a Christian-Catholic vision as a decisive adversary of the son of God (this invisible, omnipresent, all-powerful being that controls and decides our destiny)?
Really… is it that serious in reality?
Blog 24 Pieces of Craziness published another video [es] made by the group Youths for Law 779, where they sing the same song that La Corriente dedicated to Bishop Mata:
According to the document “Why do I defend Law 779?” [es], elaborated upon by the Catholics for the Right to Choose movement:
En Nicaragua las cifras de Violencia Intrafamiliar y Sexual registradas en las Comisarías de la Mujer,han venido incrementándose anualmente de 31759 en 2009 a 34763 en 2010. El Instituto de Medicina Legal IML refleja en el 2012, la realización de 5371 peritajes, de las cuales 4726 fueron realizados a mujeres y 642 fueron realizados a hombres (en este último caso, los agresores son hombres incluidos los agentes estatales).
In Nicaragua, numbers from Domestic and Sexual Violence registered in Police Stations for Women have been continuously increasing annually from 31,759 in 2009 to 34,763 in 2010. The Institute for Legal Medicine (IML) reflects in 2012 the completion of 5371 reports, of which 4726 came from women and 642 from men (in this last case, the aggressors are men, including state agents).
Furthermore the document adds that “every year more than 80 women in Nicaragua are murdered as a result of extreme violence that is exercised against them.”