As the CBC reports, Afghanistan's proposed law to legalize spousal rape, or to put it in other terms “make it illegal for women to refuse their husbands sex”, has rightly been widely condemned.
However, we would be wrong to characterize this as some sort of Islamic barbarism foreign to western civilizations.
Indeed, as the Globe and Mail reports, the same provision existed in Canadian law up until 1983.
Indeed, the concept has had a long history in the jurisprudence of the United Kingdom, Commonwealth countries, Canada and the United States, as the following articles record:
Historical Development of the Offence of_Rape (Bruce A. MacFarlane, Q.C. Deputy Minister of Justice Deputy Attorney General for the Province of Manitoba)It took a long time to banish from the law books of the west, It should not be allowed to be put on the law books of Afghanistan at a time when Canadian soldiers are dying there, supposedly in the name of women's rights and human rights.
Making Marital Rape A Crime: A Long Road Traveled, A Long Way to Go (Lynn Hecht Schafran, Director, National Judicial Education Program; Stefanie Lopez-Boy, Program Associate, National Judicial Education Program; Mary Rothwell Davis)