Sunday, July 10, 2016

"Treat Rape Like Every Other Crime"

Megan McArdleThe most surprising thing about the UVA case was not that a single reporter got rooked, but that her editors let the story go ahead, and a Columbia Journalism School professor defended them for publishing the story without making a serious effort to get a response from the accused.

I understand completely the humanitarian impulse behind this. Being raped is incredibly traumatic; being treated with suspicion afterward adds insult to terrible injury. But this is not, as is often implied, a problem that is unique to rape cases. If your spouse is murdered, or simply dies under suspicious circumstances, it is quite likely that soon afterward you will find yourself subjected to interviews with police who think you were involved. You have just lost the person most important to you in the world, and now you are also being tacitly accused of having committed a crime. You are possibly facing jail or execution. It is horrible. Police don’t like having to take someone who’s grieving and make them sit through hours of interviews. But investigations are the only tool they have; they don’t know any other way to keep bad people from murdering their spouses.

And in the long run, the “I believe women” standard is not only bad for people who are accused (most of whom are men), but also bad for rape victims (most of whom are women). The Jackie debacle was an enormous setback for campus rape activists. I don’t blame the activists for having listened to Jackie without interrogating her claims too closely; a support group is not the place for rigorous investigations. But that’s why the journalists who tell their stories to a wider public are supposed to vet them carefully. (please read the whole thing)

23 comments:

edutcher said...

The “I believe women” standard is just another of the "I hate men" gimmicks of the feminuts.

The old days weren't any better, as lawyers routinely brought up a woman's sexual history to convince a gullible jury she was asking for it.

Then again, rape was a capital crime in them thar days and few people shed trears at the execution of a rapist.

for a brief period, the feminuts had a couple of good ideas on the subject, like just because she was walking through a bad neighborhood didn't mean she was asking for it. They always shouted down the "What was she thinking, what did she expect?" angle (The Blonde did some Red Cross volunteering on this and some of the women really didn't think), but they were trying to get past the idea all women were fair game except somebody's wife, daughter, mother, sister, etc.

I guess it's time to get politics out of it, but that's going to take some effort.

Methadras said...

Wait wut? You mean that a crime should be treated like a crime instead of a distinct attack against an entire gender? NOES!!!

Sixty Grit said...

I believe women. Women like Crystal Gail Mangum would never tell a lie. Sure, she might murder her boyfriend, but lie? Never...

Trooper York said...

I believe Ruby Bates and Vivtoria Price.......oh......err......wrong meme..... Never mind.

Trooper York said...

I believe Juanita Broderick....err....wait.....that is kinda inconvenient.....never mind.

Evi L. Bloggerlady said...

Meghan might not sound the same about it if she had to fend off Slick Willie.

Rape is NOT like other crimes. The victims live with it forever. The only crime worse is Murder or perhaps very serious assault depending on the circumstances. I don't disagree that former Stanford student did get some severe punishment (even if he managed to dodge serious jail time), but what else is new. If you are poor you do longer jail time. There is also a difference between taking advantage of a drunk co-ed and other forms of rape.

Rhythm and Balls said...

I think McArdles sometimes goes overboard with that "false balance" thing that guys like Tim Russert perfected so well. But she's got a point; sooner or later this is going to have to be looked at more closely as well.

I have no doubt that college guys occasionally get way too aggressive and encouraged to do the wrong thing. And they should be punished.

I also have no doubt that young women who are turned on by the most assertive guy in the room (which are most of them) unintentionally are a part of a never-ending bad signaling game.

I think the infantilized college settings are no place for properly navigating and learning how to deal with these issues. I also think the reliance on alcohol to overcome a silly, unnecessary social prudishness is a recipe for mischief and problems. And people need to grow up and learn that sexual regret is normal, natural and totally not the same thing as violation.

Rhythm and Balls said...

Rape is the second worst crime after murder. But there is a lack of clear communication that contributes to the problems these kids are getting themselves into. Is it a crime for one partner to rub herself/himself a bit too inconsiderately against the other while not recognizing how out-of-the mood they are? Remember, some rape is "date rape". There are nuances.

As for the wrongness of rape, it's a violation... of the worst sort. And of the creepiest sort. I think that a guy who goes up to a woman and commits that should, ideally speaking, be castrated - root berries and everything. And even if they were talking and things just got out of hand, any procession despite clear pleas to the contrary to an act like that should be dealt with exactly the same way.

Rape is also a huge crime because of property issues. Nowadays a rapist's seed need not continue the disreputable family line (if not name), but back in the day uncertain or I guess you could say "wrongful" paternity brought with it huge issues in terms of paying for some criminal's posterity. So did adultery, but obviously this was way worse.

Just wrong wrong wrong. Wrong on so many levels wrong.

edutcher said...

Evi L. Bloggerlady said...

Meghan might not sound the same about it if she had to fend off Slick Willie.

Rape is NOT like other crimes. The victims live with it forever. The only crime worse is Murder or perhaps very serious assault depending on the circumstances.


On that, I have to disagree. Any criminal act can haunt someone. The Blonde's youngest brother was held up where he works and he's still traumatized about it. He's on Zoloft and has gotten a CCP, so anything like that affects people.

Rhythm and Balls said...

"Rape is NOT like other crimes."

On that, I have to disagree. Any criminal act can haunt someone.


Geez ed, I never knew you were raped. What was that like? Does your asshole still hurt?

You have my sympathy.

Evi L. Bloggerlady said...

R&B, did you know ed was Ned Beatty's character in Deliverance?

There is no arguing with ed anymore, he is so frazzled by April giving him shit about Trump, he just has to take the contrarian position just to be contrarian.

I am pretty sure ed would be far more devastated if a member of his family was raped vs. a member of his family robbed. That is not to say all crimes are a violation, they are. But there is a huge difference (generally) when someone is sexually assaulted.

Evi L. Bloggerlady said...

ed, I have complete sympathy to your brother in law. No doubt that was traumatic. I am not suggesting that type of crime should be in the least way accepted or tolerated. But I am pretty sure it would have been worse if they sexually assaulted him.

edutcher said...
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edutcher said...
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edutcher said...

Thanks for pulling back.

All I'm saying is that different people react differently, but crime in itself is a violation of any individual's life.

FWIW, I had a co-worker at the IRS who was a rape victim and she brushed it off, had no trouble bringing it up. Some people are tougher.

Rhythm and Balls said...

I was confused. I thought "the blonde" was a reference to Althouse.

Sorry, ed.

Rhythm and Balls said...

Toughness though should have nothing to do with the wrongness of foreign DNA being violently entered into your body.

Anyone can be made to do something under the threat of a gun. But to mess around with someone's insides and perhaps even change them permanently through that act (STDs, etc.) sounds worse to me.

I guess rape was just common enough in humanity's history for other people to figure it's not really that much more incriminating a factor.

There I go again. Me and my whole bodily integrity thing.

edutcher said...

Rit, we all make mistakes, but I thought sure you would be the first to get that.

As I say, the woman was strong. OTOH, people like Connie Francis and Kelly McGillis were destroyed by being raped. They couldn't continue their careers.

Nobody's the same.

Rhythm and Balls said...

Nobody's the same.

I don't think that has anything to do with "strength." It has to do with what we value and bodily integrity is rightly very highly valued by many if not most people. For good reason. Rape used to result in a lifetime of investment in a criminal's seed. How would you feel about that?

The science of overcoming trauma is still in its infancy but regardless of how people move past things I find that very act to be about as repulsive a thing as one human being can do to another and will always feel that way no matter whom it happens to or doesn't happen to, personally or abstractly.

To see a person reacting in personal struggle and violent intimate protest as you commit an act of gratification and possibly even love is about the most disgusting and abominable thing I can imagine. To find worse examples of sadism and perversion I think you'd have to look to the Nazis.

Rhythm and Balls said...

Ugh. Enough of this topic.

I'm off to walk about in what ed calls my "gated community" and interact with all the other bums as they gather groceries at the market, buy some cheap handcrafts, hobnob with the locals, feed pigeons, and engage in every other sort of polo and country club activity.

Lem said...

Treat "extreme carelessness" with classified material like any other crime.

Evi L. Bloggerlady said...

lem, if you mean actually prosecuting it, yes indeed!

ndspinelli said...

I interviewed too many rape victims, from 4 year old children to older women. Anyone who diminishes the plight of TRUE victims of rape is an ignorant asshole.