Even in these grim times, people want to talk about below-the-waist matters -- and nothing else. Few care to discuss the "Dreyfus" treatment handed out to poor Bradley Manning, whose only crime was attempting to expose a Pentagon lie. The hot topic is the "rape" (well, rape-ish
) allegation against Julian Assange.
All males are penis-monsters, or so we are told by some denizens of blogistan left. Therefore, on some cosmic level, Bradley Manning deserves everything now happening to him. Of course, he is also gay, which means that lefties will grant him a few sympathy points forever denied to one so monsterific as (say) my unforgivably hetero self.
Julian Assange is very, very monsterific indeed. He's male and...(cue the old-time radio music)...he likes to fuck!
He likes to fuck women that he has no intention of marrying or even dating on a long-term basis!
As one of my fellow (male) bloggers put it, apparently expecting agreement, Assange "can't keep it zipped." That, it seems, is his true crime. The rape accusations are presumed to be true, because the accuser is female, and women are genetically incapable of lying
Under our new cultural rules, a woman who sleeps with an entire army division is simply expressing her individuality and empowerment and growthfulness and all of that uplifting stuff. But any man who wants to fuck a woman is an abusive bastard. We remain haunted by the words of Marilyn French: All men are rapists
This argument is eerily reminiscent of 2008, when the Obama cultists screamed racism at anyone who did not favor their candidate, because there could be no
other reason for standing against the Lightbringer. Similarly, anyone who criticizes Israel's ghastly actions in Gaza and Lebanon must
be an anti-Semite.
Welcome to the world of identity politics. No more of that messy, frustrating searching-for-truth stuff: Nowadays, everything comes down to group solidarity. Shirts versus skins. Life is simpler that way.
In a private communication, a reader expressed the situation thus:
I'm literally being told "STFU". And this is even despite that fact that I've articulated that I think Assange was a jerk and committed major boundary violations.
One thing I’m told: “questioning the veracity of a victim's actions, regardless of your own circumstances or experience, is rape apologia.”
Note the wording: The accuser is not an accuser -- she is a victim
I was under the impression that her "victim" status was the very issue at question. It seems, however, that this issue has already been settled before trial, before the presentation of facts -- settled by the mere act of accusation
. Even at trial, cross-examination is not permissible. In our brave new world, cross-examination equals rape apologia.Petitio principii
. Begging the question. It's the most insidious of all logical fallacies -- and it's the ideologist's favorite weapon.
"What's this, Cannon? Are you arguing for a return to the bad old days, when a rape victim could expect to have her entire sexual history held up to public scrutiny?"
In answer to that question (which must have popped into the noggins of a few of you), let's look at a famed courtroom case that first made the public skeptical of an accuser's unsupported testimony. The last century gave us many "trials of the century," and this was one of them.Alexander Pantages.
Do you recognize the name? He built what was once my favorite old-time movie palace, now a legit theater near Hollywood and Vine.
In 1929, he owned a large number of major theaters in big cities across the nation. This operation came under the envious eye of one Joseph P. Kennedy, who was then trying to establish himself in film production and distribution. Although Kennedy made a generous offer, Pantages refused to sell his theaters. Kennedy vowed to have them one way or another.
That's when a 17 year-old vaudeville dancer named Eunice Pringle brought a rape accusation against Pantages.
If you think that journalists covering rape trials used to favor males and condemn females, you're wrong. Look up the contemporary coverage
of the Pantages case. She was pictured as a mere schoolgirl, a virginal blossom sullied by a fat, greasy foreigner in his 50s.
(Interestingly, the newspapers showed far more sympathy toward Pantages' wife Lois, who, that same year, was found guilty of vehicular manslaughter.)
The newspapers made no inquiries into Pringle's sexual history, yet they published an avalanche of sordid allegations
about Pantages -- even though they were irrelevant to the matter at hand. Eventually, these allegations resulted in a secondary trial
People did not complain when a male's
sexual history was placed under public scrutiny. As then, so later: How many so-called liberals objected when Bill Clinton was asked irrelevant questions about his private life during the Paula Jones deposition?
Pantages was found guilty. He hired a couple of sharp up-and-coming young lawyers, who successful engineered a new trial -- precisely on the grounds that the judge on the first trial has disallowed any examination of Pringle's history.
I can guess what you're thinking:What? They let the jurors hear about her private life, just as they had heard about the private life of the accused? Outrageous!
Outrageous or no, that testimony was heard -- and guess what? Pantages was acquitted.
For good reason.
The record demonstrated that Pringle, a trained actress, had always repeated her story word for word, never changing a syllable -- indicative of coaching. This young lady also had a short but notable history as a con artist. Moreover, she had a rep for sexual promiscuity -- and yes, that news was
relevant: A promiscuous 17 year old is more likely than a virgin to allow herself to be used as bait in a honeytrap.
Lawyers reconstructed the crime (which allegedly took place in a broom closet) and proved that Pringle's description of events was physically impossible. The jury then heard evidence that Pringle's manager had made a demand for hush money.
I first read of the Pantages rape case in a book which asserted without qualification that Joseph Kennedy had engineered the Pringle accusation. More cautious writers insist that no hard evidence links the Kennedy paterfamilias to Pringle. Still, most historians familiar with the case believe that the whole thing was a set-up.
No-one can dispute that the scandal ruined Pantages. He lost two years of his life and was forced to sell his theater chain at far less than its value -- to Joe Kennedy.
In the 1970s, many feminists asked why the accuser in rape trials had to undergo so much unfair and obtrusive questioning about past habits. The reason can be summed up in a name: Eunice Pringle. She changed the way American jurisprudence -- and American journalism -- regarded rape accusations.
Is it really the case that anyone who views an accuser suspiciously is a "rape apologist" produced by a "rape culture"?
Consider the Tawana Brawley case. I never condemned Al Sharpton for championing her cause. When women turn on the tears, they wield a weapon more powerful than C4.
Consider Crystal Gail Mangum
Consider Danmell Ndonye
, who withdrew a false accusation of rape after video evidence surfaced demonstrating that the sex had been consensual.
Consider television weather forecaster Heidi Jones
Consider Paula Jones, who at first told friends that Clinton was "sweet, very sweet"
-- and then changed her story, making herself out to be the victim of sexual harassment. Remember?
In late 1997, Judge Susan Webber Wright ruled Jones was "entitled to information regarding any individuals with whom President Clinton had sexual relations or proposed to or sought to have sexual relations and who were, during the relevant time frame, state or federal employees."
Fishing expeditions are permissible when males are targeted.
Ann Coulter considered Paula a "good Christian girl who had suffered sexual harassment." Then she -- Paula -- posed nude for a very hefty sum of money. Labor deserves payment.
Consider Gennifer Flowers, whose story kept growing like topsy. She also got the Penthouse
pay-off. Bob Somerby
Do famous accusers say things which aren’t true? Yes, they sometimes do—although the mainstream press, and the liberal world, worked quite hard to bury that fact during the Clinton jihad. One example: It seems abundantly clear that Gennifer Flowers made up a whole lot of crap about Clinton. (She raked in a whole lot of dough for her trouble.) But so what? By 1998, a jihad was on, with all the fools chasing Clinton around, determined to prove he was vile. As a result, the fools all stood in line to vouch for Flowers’ moral grandeur.
Lucre is not the sole motive. More often than not, accusers are prompted by something other than money.
There are a number of individuals -- male and female -- who wander through life in a haze, unable to determine the difference between reality and fantasy. These people can seem very convincing. I know this from personal experience.
Time to make a confession: I spent quite a lot of time in the 1990s researching a book which would have dealt, in substantial part, with the then-raging controversy over Satanic Ritual Abuse allegations. In that era, there were quite a few women leveling charges at a bizarre occultist named Michael Aquino
. I talked to some of these women. Although they had made no formal complaints to the police (at least, not to my knowledge), they eagerly told Aquino-raped-me tales to various writers.
Unknown to these claimants, I had also conferred with a woman named Linda B., who had had a brief (consensual) romantic liaison with Aquino some years before the media discovered him. Linda -- who had parted with Aquino on less-than-amicable terms -- gave me a physical description.
None of the women making "satanic rape" accusations could describe the man accurately. One woman even pretended to faint when I asked for a description! In fact, the accusers didn't even know the correct way to pronounce his name.
I've had more experience with fantasists of this sort than you can possibly guess. They demand victimization status. They crave sympathy the way an addict craves an armful. They can shoot enough moisture out of their eyes to fill the California aqueduct.
(There are also plenty of male fantasists out there. They don't blubber as readily, although they do get weirdly angry
over their imaginary abuses.)
For a perfect example of the breed, read the tale of Lauren Stratford, alleged rape victim
, Satanic abuse victim and Holocaust survivor
. Nothing she said was true. Not one word. Yet some people still believe her -- and some of the believers are motivated by feminist mythology.
I never met Lauren, but I've met women like her -- more of them than you can ever guess. They lied and lied, right to my face. When I finally admitted that I could not believe their allegations, they started making up lies about me
To this day, I shake with outrage at the memory. In a sense, they
So don't you fucking DARE try to tell me that women can't lie.Here's the truth
In a study that span nine years, sociologist Eugene J. Kanin’s findings were that in the United States, 41% of rape allegations are false. Kanin discovered that most of the false accusers were motivated by a need for an alibi or seeking revenge. Kanin was once popular and highly praised by the feminist movement for his groundbreaking research on male sexual aggression. His studies on false rape accusations have received very little interest.
Some people have criticized Kanin's methodology. But when Barry Scheck and Peter Neufeld of the Innocence Project studied the FBI's testing of semen samples, they found that DNA had exonerated the accused "rapists" in a quarter of all cases
. Keep in mind that semen samples are not obtained from many rape accusers. Keep in mind, too, that a false accuser would have to be pretty damned bold to maintain the charge even after physical evidence has been placed on a microscope slide.
Should accusers be investigated and cross-examined? Damned right.
They should be grilled about everything relevant, including, in certain instances, their sexual history. If men have to go through that kind of humiliation, then women should not be exempt. All arguments in favor of double standards are casuistry.
Each case must be judged on its merits; each case demands an individualized approach to investigation. Too often, when objective evidence (such as a video tape) is absent, the only way to get closer to the truth is to allow jurors to learn as much as possible about both accused and accuser.
Yes, that process can be grim, unpleasant and unfair. But what choice is there? The only alternative is to give the Lauren Stratfords of this world free reign to rewrite reality.
No, I am not saying that every female is a Lauren Stratford. That's no more true than is the idea that we live in a "rape culture." But I believe that there are thousands
of Laurens out there.
Anyone who respects our legal traditions should never tolerate any question-beggers who automatically refer to accusers as "victims" before the airing of evidence.
In the Assange case, we have a woman who cried rape even though she threw a party for the guy after
the incident, even though she slept with him after
the incident, and even though she complained to her fellow upper-class activist hipsterettes that he was the world's worst screw. She was not some traumatized, battered Iowa housewife with nowhere to go, and I am infuriated by the scoundrels who have attempted to frame her story in those terms. She belongs to the Swedish equivalent of the "Whole Food Nation." I am never going to believe that someone like that would throw a party for a guy who took her without consent.This piece
has it (mostly) right:
What this unappetising spectacle of feminists telling us that everything with a dick is capable of rape really represents is an attempt to assert one longstanding liberal orthodoxy – that rape is rife – over another, newer liberal orthodoxy – that Assange is an untouchable, saintly speaker of truth to power. This is a competition of victimhoods, with the feminist set within the liberal elite feeling aggrieved that their favoured victims – women, everywhere, at all times – have seemingly been elbowed aside by a new pet victim: Assange and political hackers. There is no meaningful principle at stake here; rather we’re witnessing a clash of miserabilist, conspiratorial outlooks, with one side insisting that all women are at potential risk from ‘rape culture’ and the other side arguing that Assange is at risk from the military-industrial complex’s ‘power culture’.