You will not shame me.

I have gotten email upon threatening email to rescind what I said last year about the Duke Women’s Lacrosse Team and their uninformed support for the accused rapists in the Duke rape case. The case that was mishandled, manipulated and finally dropped on Wednesday.
I usually ignore emails that intend to *put me in my place* but I think we owe it to our supportive readers to say something outside of “black strippers are lying whores” and the “we won” mentality that seems to have overtaken the public imagination with the dreaded interplay of rape and race.
I just want to say first and foremost, I still stand by what I say and have said. It does look bad for people to support accused rapists, at that point we didn’t know the facts either way. Furthermore, women of color are in fact OFTEN sexually assaulted and usually the criminal justice system and/or the media either overlook it or mishandle it. Women of color often have a higher burden of proof that they are not lying about rape. Case in point (as Amanda and others stated ): when the lack of DNA evidence was announced — before we even knew whether the players were innocent or not — people were quite quick to accuse the accuser of being guilty of lying. So be it.
The charges were dropped. Does this mean that they are innocent? None of us actually know what happened that night. Sorry, unless you were there, you don’t know what happened. Now for the rest of you that have such a die hard belief in the criminal justice system and evidence, well quite frankly I pity you. This is a system that arrests a disproportionate number of people of color, subjecting them to unfair trials, inadequate representation and longer sentences (in a prison system that resembles slavery) SORRY, I don’t trust the courts. When you’re a woman of color who’s a sexworker, up against white kids with money that can afford *good* lawyers, the outcome is not looking so good.


They were not found to be innocent, the charges were dropped from lack of evidence. Moreover, innocent until proven guilty only applies to certain people. Ideally, it would apply to everyone but *a lot* of people are guilty at arrest, just for being who they are and where they are. We are not operating in a vacuum, but within a long history of corruption and injustice in the supposed justice system. So, if these guys were in fact falsely accused, they got a taste of how black men are treated EVERY DAY by the criminal justice system.
And what is the outcome of all of this? The general public now believes that black strippers ARE in fact lying whores and the worst thing that could happen to a strapping Duke lacrosse player is that his lily white reputation is marred by false accusations. Beyond this being a terrible precedent set for women that bring up rape accusations (still something underreported) to never ever report rape again, the racist and sexist reaction from the media and public have been to say the least profound.
I have gotten emails reminding me about not only the details of this case (because you know I can’t read), but how the possibility that this black woman lied shows us that blacks, in general, are liars who play the race card. And strippers are also liars who deserve to be raped.
Why do I say all this? Because the details of the ACTUAL case are only tangentially relevant here. What is relevant is that certain folks are very quick to jump on the offensive when there is a little bit of evidence that perhaps a black woman lied about a rape. You know because people NEVER accuse (random) black people of crimes that they did not commit. I mean, seriously.
So what is the moral of the story? That much of the American public does in fact hold very racist and sexist beliefs and when given the opportunity to air these sentiments, goes ahead full force. It is this same culture of racism and objectification of people of color in most sectors of our society that would create a situation where a black woman would potentially lie about a rape (which we don’t know if she did). And the same culture that would allow for the subsequent manipulation of her story for political gain.
So predictable.

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441 Comments

  1. atrope
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

    “You’re the one wanting to send her to prison though. Even if she lied because she was trying to get money or something, I think the power difference between this woman and the lacrosse boys is huge, and I think the witchhunt after this woman is sick”
    AMAZING. simply amazing. first of all the term “witchhunt” is falsely applied here. witchhunts are when somebody who is INNOCENT is gone after. the WITCHHUNT here was against the three boys. it’s not a witchhunt against here when the evidence is overwhelming that she is completely full of it. it should be investigated, and if it can be proven that she knowingly lied (vs. being mentally ill and believing her false claims), then she SHOULD face prison time
    i find the power argument laughable on its face. these three boys were vilified, called nazis, the subject of suspension, arrest, indictment, numerous scathing editorials, etc. and this woman made (obviously) bogus claims, her name was protected, she was enabled by this scumbag nifong and it is the boys who had the “power” here cause of race/class?
    absolutely absurd.
    the WITCHHUNT was conducted by nifong, and was aided and abetted by numerous people here, and by numerous editorials etc. who prefer to see victim/guilty party merely because of the race/class/gender of the person, and not the case facts.
    salon, to their credit, did an EXCELLENT expose many months ago about how this case was incredibly weak, and how the NYT etc. had a rush to judgment.
    \

  2. atrope
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

    “with any other crime one false accusation doesn’t generally have widespread affects on the way those cases are handled.”
    it most certainly does. wanna talk about the rampart scandal,

  3. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

    Nina, first of all, I find it a little crass that you think you should counsel me on how I, as a rape survivor, should view this case.
    I very strongly feel that a famous false allegation like this one hurts rape victims, both past and future ones. As someone (Tom? Mark?) pointed out above, if ten highly publicized rape cases turn out to be false, what wil people think of the 11th case? Well, this is case 1, as far as I’m concerned. And I’m not happy about it.
    But, frankly, there’s more to it than that. As a woman who’s survived a rape, I find it insulting when another woman tries to don that mantle for personal gain. As an analogy, if I were a holocaust survivor and someone falsely claimed to be another holocaust survivor in order to make sweet money off of a book deal, I’d be equally irate.
    Atrope, thank you very much for pointing out the “witchhunt” hypocrisy. Going after someone who is guilty is not a “witchhunt”. It’s justice.

  4. noname
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

    “I mentioned that I know someone who went to a small high school with the some of the lacrosse boys, so yes, I do have a source for believing that they are people who hold misogynistic attitudes and have been known to act in bullying ways.” – Ninapendamaishi
    “Some� of the lacrosse boys? Which ones? Was it the accused? Was it anyone from last year’s team? When you say “some� instead of “these�, it forces me to believe that you are using a bit of guilt by association.
    “Also, I believe there was some indication from the trial of them having yelled racial epithats earlier that day or something.” – Ninapendamaishi
    There was no trial. The allegations of racial epithets come from various sources:
    1. Bissey, the neighbor, reported the cotton shirt remark, said by one of the guys at the party (not identified as the accused) as the women drove away. Neither Kim nor the accuser reported hearing it.
    2. Kim says that some slurs were used after the dance (in the driveway, I belive), by a few guys (she says none of the accused) and herself (I believe she called one a little dick white boy).
    3. The accuser says that the accused used slurs while they raped her, or didn’t rape her, or used a broom stick, or groped her, or… you get the idea.
    4. Cash Michaels reported a possible epitaph during the dance. KC Johnson says it best,
    “Cash Michaels has just posted an article asserting that he:
    • was told by Karla Holloway,
    • who overheard a call to John Burness,
    • who was told by a Duke police officer,
    • who overheard a Durham Police Officer
    • say that a Mystery Witness told him or her . . .
    that one of the lacrosse players used ugly racial epithets at the start of the party.�

    No one, save the false accuser, has even alleged that the accused players made any racist comments (not that it really matters anyway as far as the case goes.

  5. noname
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 8:06 pm | Permalink

    FYI, the Cash Michaels report was substantiated by niether Kim nor the accusor.

  6. Paul G. Brown
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 8:13 pm | Permalink

    Things I have learnt in this epic thread and this fine blog.
    1. Feminism means never having to say “Sorry”.
    2. Being a sex-worker? Good. Hiring a sex-worker? Bad.
    3. This bad thing doesn’t matter because of all these other bad things.
    4. Rumour > Evidence.
    We call what happened at Duke and in Carolina ‘a cluster-fuck’. I’m sure there are frat boys raping women of all shapes / sizes / colors / career backgrounds all the time. I’m sure there are women bent on revenge against their ex-partners who accuse them of all kinds of crimes. Nothing about this case says much about the other, more pervasive problem.
    But the moment you abandon your commitment to being ‘reality based’, you might as well just slip on the pearls and join the Republican Party.

  7. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 8:19 pm | Permalink

    Paul, you forgot these two:
    5. Having sex with 5 men in 1 day does not make you a slut. Having sex with 5 men in 1 day makes you mentally ill.
    6. Having less money or power than someone else entitles you to false accusations of rape against them without consequence to yourself.
    All joking aside, you’re spot on about the pearls and the Republicans.

  8. atrope
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 8:24 pm | Permalink

    to paul and EJ
    a HEARTY (golf-clap)
    isn’t there a term about joining the “reality based community?”
    i welcome all to this wonderful place, where false claims of rape are bad, not all alleged rape victims are telling the truth, and where miscarriages of justice are BAD no matter the race/gender of the falsely accused.

  9. Richard Aubrey
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 8:25 pm | Permalink

    As some earlier posters have said, a valid claim of rape may well have no supporting physical evidence, not witnesses, nothing. It would look identical to a false claim of rape.
    The comparison with most other crimes is not entirely apt.
    You can claim murder all day long and, without a body, there’s going to be trouble.
    I can claim somebody broke into my house but if nothing’s broken, I’m out of luck.
    I can claim I was assaulted but if there are no witnesses and I have no injuries–nor does the accused–then I am not going to get very far.
    I can claim I was defrauded, but if I can’t show money going out from me, and going in to him, I’m not going to get very far.
    Rape is the only crime I can think of where we’re suppposed to treat it as having happened based solely on a statement, and even go to trial with nothing but.
    In that case, credibility is everything. Enabling false accusers is not helping women.

  10. atrope
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 8:27 pm | Permalink

    to paul and EJ
    a HEARTY (golf-clap)
    isn’t there a term about joining the “reality based community?”
    i welcome all to this wonderful place, where false claims of rape are bad, not all alleged rape victims are telling the truth, and where miscarriages of justice are BAD no matter the race/gender of the falsely accused.
    i think brown’s last point is SPOT ON. the idea that one side (not that there are only two sides – just ask the libertarian) has the monopoly on being reality based is nowhere better disproved than this thread.
    evidence and reality were completely irrelevant to people here in this case. she HAD to be telling the truth. evidence be damned.

  11. atrope
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

    “As some earlier posters have said, a valid claim of rape may well have no supporting physical evidence, not witnesses, nothing. It would look identical to a false claim of rape.”
    absolutely, but the defining difference is this.
    in this case, not only was there little or no supporting evidence, but there was IMMENSE contradictory (exculpatory) evidence.
    also, one would expect that if a rape victim came forward a week later, that we wouldn’t have DNA. i have personally testified in rape cases where a conviction was returned, WITHOUT DNA. cause there was valid reason for no DNA to be present.
    in this case, not only was there no DNA, but there CLEARLY should have been, based on her OWN description of the rape, and the fact that a rape kit was done very soon after the incident.
    furthermore, and this is key, not only did the duke boys VOLUNTEER for a DNA test, but their attorney claimed BEFORE the DNA returned, that it would exonerate his clients.
    clearly, he KNEW they were innocent, they knew they were innocent, etc.
    and this is just ONE example, there are lots more besides the DNA
    there are all sorts of crimes that can occur, and may not be provable in court. these fall under the commonly used term “he said/she said”. like if you threaten verbally to kill me, there are no witnesses, and i report it to police, and you deny it. it DID happen, but it probably won’t be provable beyond a reasonable doubt.
    this case is entirely different. it is NOT merely that it is not provable. even the frigging AG made clear that in fact – it did not happen (not merely that it was not probable). it is the fact in this case, that the evidence is OVERWHELMING that it did NOT happen, and the evidence that it did happen could fit in a thimble
    and that most people on this site completely ignored the evidence, because they liked the “narrative” of a singlemotherblackwoman ™ being raped by three powerfulrichwhitesouthernjocks(tm).
    evidence be damned
    there were more important things than that, like mindless sisterhood, identity politics, and slagging young rich white jocks

  12. noname
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 8:41 pm | Permalink

    “As some earlier posters have said, a valid claim of rape may well have no supporting physical evidence, not witnesses, nothing. It would look identical to a false claim of rape.” – Richard Aubrey
    This leads to a good point on your part, but I want to point out that this does not apply to this case. A brutal 30 minute gang rape and beating in a crowded house where the “victem” reports within an hour (without showering or changing) could not happen without leaving supporting physical evidence and witnesses.

  13. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 8:45 pm | Permalink

    And it’s worth pointing out that we didn’t just have “no evidence” here. We had “exculpatory evidence” which the prosecutor tried to bury.
    Which brings me back to my “prosecute the liars” point: No one is saying that a true rape victim would have to fear prosecution even if her case was shaky. Only “false victims”, in other words, women who lied about being raped and there was evidence that she lied, would be prosecuted. For example, in my case, my husband’s accuser gave a time frame for her rape. When we were able to produce a time stamped gas station video later, that was proof that she was lying.

  14. Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:04 pm | Permalink

    [Repeating a comment I posted at Feministe.]
    I think that one of the loudest messages from this case is that, if you’re a district attorney, and you prosecute a rape charge against a white man in a wealthy family, you risk losing your job.
    Now, I don’t know if Nifong was acting in bad faith, or just fucked up. None of us do, including the next prosecutor who gets a case like this. And I think that’s a goal of a lot of people making the outcry: to push the standard for bringing a rape charge to something so extreme that only the most egregious offenses (i.e., only the guy jumping out of the bushes with a knife, not the boyfriend who was “just overzealous�) will ever have a chance of being punished.

  15. atrope
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

    jeff, that is one of the most ridiculous things i have ever read on the internet (and that’s saying a lot)
    this case NEVER should have been charged. period.
    i say this as somebody who has investigated DOZENS or rapes.
    the case was a complete stinker.
    but the post shows a consistent tendency. when you can’t argue facts, attack people’s MOTIVES
    great job. and typical

  16. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

    Jeff, that’s ridiculous, inflammartory, and ignorant. Trying to bury exculpatory evidence and instructing cops to change their notes so that it wouldn’t look like the accuser had changed her story is what lost Nifong his job. Not the fact that he went after a rich white man.
    Please learn about a case before you comment on it.

  17. Tom
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:14 pm | Permalink

    “Now, I don’t know if Nifong was acting in bad faith, or just fucked up.”
    Then you know absolutely nothing about the case. Read up on it. Some of these commentators’ faith that “we don’t know” whether a rape occurred or whether there was willful prosecutorial misconduct reminds me of Creationists who think we “can’t know” if evolution is true.
    And once you deny that reality, you can pretend that this will chill other prosecutor’s behavior. Downplay his misconduct, and suddenly he’s an everyman DA. That’s why details matter to the overall framing (“larger issues”) of this case.

  18. Richard Aubrey
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

    You think Jeff really doesn’t know?

  19. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:16 pm | Permalink

    And if every DA does act like Nifong, then I do hope they sit up and take note. Railroading people to up your conviction rate and make for a nice sound bite is not how the justice system should work.

  20. Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:17 pm | Permalink

    Well, I hadn’t found an unbiased source that confirmed those accusations – at this point, I doubt there’s even such a thing as an unbiased source. I’m willing to check out a cite though.
    All I know is that if I were a DA, I’d be worried if any rape case came my way where the defendants had the clout to start up the noise machine because any procedural slip-up is going to lead to accusations of prosecutorial malfeasance.

  21. Dogstar
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:20 pm | Permalink

    Congratulations, Samhita.
    You are more blinded by hatred and racism than anyone else I’ve ever come across.
    You make Hitler look rational and open-minded.
    Is there some kind of contest among the women who post comments at these type of sites?
    Like, to see who can be the most anti-white, anti-male and anti-Christian?
    Earlier today, I saw a video of Rosie O’Donnell on the View, referring to the eight fired federal prosecutors as “judges”. I thought I was looking at the dumbest person in America.
    Wrong! You beat her.

  22. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:20 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, Jeff, I can see where it would be hard to take the Attorney General at his word because, hey, he’s just another biased observer in all this.

  23. Jenna
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

    EJ, RA, and Atrope:
    i’m sorry, but y’all are livin in a dream world.
    Or, in the case of RA, a world made up of complete bunk. I’m still waiting, RA, to hear if you lied, if you’re dumb, or if you’re ignorant.
    I mean, you totally got that wrong. That means everything else you say on the subject is completely without merit, right?
    The truth of this case is that you have a privilaged group pitted against a non-privileged person by an idiot of a DA. And, those of you who deny the privilege of those boys have never, ever, lived poor in the South.
    In individual cases, perhaps even in most, a false charge will be most damaging. In the case of these three, it simply won’t. Your sympathy is being wasted.

  24. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:25 pm | Permalink

    Jenna, we can’t all allow our hate to control us. If that’s a “dream world”, then…

  25. Jeff
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:26 pm | Permalink

    I missed the AG quote where he said that Nifong acted in bad faith. That’s *not* the same thing as saying the defendants are innocent.
    (Of course, he’s totally unbiased – not as if his office has any political stake in the matter now, and would benefit from saying this was the work of a “rogue” prosecutor.)

  26. Ninapendamaishi
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:28 pm | Permalink

    NOBODY HERE HAS SAID THE LACROSSE BOYS RAPED HER. WHY MUST IT BE THAT SO MANY OF YOU FALL BACK ON NEEDING TO PROVE THIS POINT IN ORDERE TO ADDRESS THE “AMBIVALENT” SIDE IN THIS CASE?
    “I very strongly feel that a famous false allegation like this one hurts rape victims, both past and future ones. As someone (Tom? Mark?) pointed out above, if ten highly publicized rape cases turn out to be false, what wil people think of the 11th case? Well, this is case 1, as far as I’m concerned. And I’m not happy about it.”
    Well, and if a proportionatley equal number of cases where an actual rape occured received high publicity in a supportive attitude for the victim, I do not think we would have that problem. That is why I have a problem with the way so many people are targeting this case. Like I’ve said, at feministing.com this rape case is one of many discussed. Many of these characters discussing it, however, just appeared for this one. Why?
    Honestly, if we turned rape into one of those crimes where if an accusation failed the accused could sue the accusor, the numbers in which that the accused tries to sue the accusor would escalate, whether or not the women involved were lying.
    “Nina, first of all, I find it a little crass that you think you should counsel me on how I, as a rape survivor, should view this case.”
    Many survivors also disagree with you on how they view the case. And if you knew this woman had been a victim of at least one rape at some point in her past history, would you still think she should spend many years in prison? I don’t care about your answer, frankly. I don’t think she should go to prison. And since you acknowledge there are larger cultural trends at work in perpetuating violence against women, I think it is unfortunate that this case seems so much more clearcut right vs. wrong to you than it does to so many of us. Also, we still do not know that harassment or assault of a non-penetrative nature did not go on between some of the boys and her that night. We just don’t. It’s not like we’ve got video evidence. It’s not like the physical evidence could give a definite answer on that one. Unless you can prove the boys didn’t so much as call her disrespectful names, in my mind you can’t prove that they are completely innocent of anything for which they should have faced repercussions. I don’t think the stripper should go to prison. I think there is displacement going on if you blame the stripper for problems other women will face when raped. If she lied, I still think sending her to prison would set a horrible precedent for a lot of other women who try to get a rape conviction. (And if we’re worried about sending innocents to prison, we should worry about creating laws that could result in sending women who have recently been raped to prison).

  27. Dogstar
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

    Nobody here was “priviledged”.
    Unless, by “priviledged”, you mean “driven into bankrupcy and beyond by millions of dollars in legal fees, most of which cannot be paid, because there’s nothing left to cash in or borrow against”.
    These kids were MIDDLE-CLASS, WORKING-CLASS kids. They were not elitist snobs.
    Do the FACTS of this case matter to anyone here at this site?

  28. EG
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

    OK. Here’s what I think (you’ve all been waiting with bated breath):
    Because of the misogynist history surrounding rape charges in this culture, and the still horrible difficulties that rape survivors face in pressing charges, I will always believe a woman who says she was raped. Always.
    Given that women are human beings, that does mean that once in a great while, I’ll believe someone who turns out to be wrong (note that I said wrong, not a liar. I’m pretty appalled at the way this woman has been attacked in the press and her identity made public, for the reasons Jill at Feministe has already written about so eloquently.). That’s OK with me. Given the numbers, and the overwhelming culture of misogyny that women who have been raped face, I’m willing to live with that small potential for error.
    But there seems to me to be a great amount of glee coming from anti-feminists in trying to demand that feminists who, as a matter of course, support women who bring rape charges, grovel in apologetic self-abasement. I…don’t think so. I’ll do that at about the same time that the mainstream media grovels in self-abasement for broadcasting the name of the woman who brought rape charges against William Kennedy Smith back in the day. Because, quite frankly, I don’t think that feminists should be sorry about having supported this woman, who has never recanted, who seems to have suffered some kind of trauma, according to the nurse she saw that night, who may well have been raped (though probably not by these three), and who honestly seems to believe what she’s been saying. In the same circumstances, I’d do it again. I don’t think we should be doing some kind of major mea culpa dance, because we went with the information we had, and the percentages (right, the guys said they were innocent–what else were they going to say, innocent or not?), to say nothing of how important it is that our voices help to right a rather despicable imbalance that’s far more typical of experiences surrounding rape in this country. If that means that once every so often, we fuck up, well, that’s a pity. It’s still a drop in the bucket compared to the kinds of things the mainstream media does to rape victims.
    I don’t think any charges should be brought against this woman at all. She believes she was raped, a medical exam supported her. She wasn’t in control of the investigation or of the media. I’m not convinced by the absence of DNA–we all know about cases in which women were raped with objects, to say nothing of instances when sexual assault didn’t involve penetration. If these guys are innocent, and the consensus seems to be that they are, then the justice system worked, and now they’re free to go. That’s what it’s for–otherwise we’d just shoot people through the head, or whatever, when they’re accused. It doesn’t seem to me that the woman in question did anything radically wrong.

  29. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

    Many survivors also disagree with you on how they view the case.
    Really? Well, I’d prefer to here from them, rather than from you claiming that they say that because, frankly, I don’t believe you.
    And if you knew this woman had been a victim of at least one rape at some point in her past history, would you still think she should spend many years in prison?
    Why would that have any bearing on whether or not she should be punished if she lied in this case?
    Or do you get a “one false rape allegation free” card when you’re raped? Hot-diggety-dog! I wonder who I should use my card on….

  30. atrope
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:36 pm | Permalink

    no, the facts don’t matter to (many) of the people here.
    again, i am not trying to “argue from authority” but i *know* rape cases. this case was BOGUS BOGUS BOGUS
    and it was clear many many months ago.
    but nobody wants to consider the evidence, because the metanarrative is way too sexy – blackworkingclassstripeersinglemother(tm) vs. evulfascistwhitejockprivilegedsouthernboys(tm)
    for pete’s sake, why can’t people first research the FACTS, then form a conclusion? nope. the conclusion was that she was victimclass and they weren’t, and it’s a rape, so we gotta do the sisterhood thing and support her, even if she is lying through her frigging teeth.
    go to the durham in wonderland site. i posted the link. read the FACTS. the facts have been known for months.

  31. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:38 pm | Permalink

    EG, the woman does not believe she was raped. Her most recent statement is that she is no longer certain that a penis was involved at any point.
    Surely you can see that for what it is? It’s a CYA recant, plain and simple.
    And before anyone starts bleating again about how she might have been drugged, she insisted numerous times that (a) condoms were not used, (b) she fought her attackers viciously, and (c) penises were inserted forcefully. So her now-contradictory statement is a clear recant.
    No one is saying that Samhita was wrong to believe her. No one wants grovelling. What would be nice is some admission from Samhita that those women she called stupid idiots and enablers maybe weren’t so stupid after all and that maybe, just maybe, those comments were a little over-the-top.

  32. Dogstar
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:39 pm | Permalink

    Because of the misogynist history surrounding rape charges in this culture, and the still horrible difficulties that rape survivors face in pressing charges, I will always believe a woman who says she was raped. Always.
    Wow, that’s amazing. Because Kathleen Willey and Juanita Broaderick both claim to be victims of Bill Clinton’s sexual assaults.
    So, Bill Clinton must be a sexual predator, right?

  33. atrope
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:43 pm | Permalink

    “Because of the misogynist history surrounding rape charges in this culture, and the still horrible difficulties that rape survivors face in pressing charges, I will always believe a woman who says she was raped. Always. ”
    cognitive dissonance defined.
    you sound like a frigging creationist…
    “because of what the bible says, i will ignore all evidence to the contrary”
    it’s the EXACT same “faith based” fallacy you are engaging in. why do u even bother? i just pray to god you never serve as a prosecutor, a cop, or in any other position where your judgment and fairness (lack thereof) could harm people.
    amazing. simply amazing

  34. noname
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:44 pm | Permalink

    Dogstar – I believe two of the families (especially the Finnertys) are actually quite rich. The working-class kids crap you are peddling to defend them is no better than the privilidged white boys crap others here are pushing to condemn them. Please stick to the facts and leave the meta-narative to the enablers.

  35. Dogstar
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:47 pm | Permalink

    noname, you are wrong. The families are deeply in debt to the tune of millions of dollars. The fees have not been paid, only a small portion of them.
    Stick to the facts yourself.

  36. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:49 pm | Permalink

    Dogstar and noname, it’s possible that you are both right. There’s still a big difference between being “land rich” and “cash rich” in the South where I live.
    I haven’t seen the Duke familes’ tax returns so I can’t be certain, but that’s just my 2 cents.

  37. Ninapendamaishi
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:54 pm | Permalink

    “again, i am not trying to “argue from authority” but i *know* rape cases. ”
    That sounds like one huge-ass contradiction right there. If anyone in this country *knew* rape cases beyond a reasonable doubt, our legal system would be more effective.
    EJ:
    I sort of feel like lately you’ve been picking out the least central parts of my posts to comment on, frankly. But here goes:
    “And if you knew this woman had been a victim of at least one rape at some point in her past history, would you still think she should spend many years in prison?
    Why would that have any bearing on whether or not she should be punished if she lied in this case?
    Or do you get a “one false rape allegation free” card when you’re raped? Hot-diggety-dog! I wonder who I should use my card on….”
    No, I do not think you should falsely allege a rape. Unless I knew the case in intimate, intimate detail though, I would give you the benefit of the doubt in your accusation. Also, irregardless, I would not want you sent to prison for years.
    You don’t /believe/ that there are any survivors who wouldn’t want this woman sent to prison? How interesting an angle to take on this issue, with so many people on both sides. I’m fairly sure near the beginning of this thread we had a survivor who expressed one of the ambiguous opinions about this case. I think doing a poll to determine percentages on each side though might be tricky. Either way, I think now you’re trying to express opinions for a group, without really having done any work to see if you have a consensus.
    You’re right though, I personally am not a survivor. The closest I come is being pressured into sex once, and I’m sure my experiences as a woman give me no cred on this issue. I mean, people I love have been survivors -likewise, someone you love was the falsely accused person from whom you seem to draw so many of your convictions from. Like I said, I think all of us take this issue personally to a degree (either because of our own experiences, or those of people we know). I think to some extent this (well I have had X experience so I can generalize about all of these cases (made by many people, in many positions)) debate is fruitless.

  38. noname
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:56 pm | Permalink

    Dogstar – Correct me if I am wrong, but doesn’t Finnerty’s father run a fund? That hardly seems like a working class job. These legal costs have been high, and I have no trouble believing that these families are now in debt, but at least the Finnertys are hardly working class.
    Anyway, I came on a bit strong in my previous comment to you, I am just sick of all the loaded terms used by the enablers that it rubs me the wrong way when someone who seems to be on my side tries the same crap.
    Hopefully there are no hard feelings.

  39. Ninapendamaishi
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:59 pm | Permalink

    *typo -I meant to say a survivor had expressed an “ambivalent” opinion, not ambiguous

  40. noname
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 9:59 pm | Permalink

    Dogstar – Just to prove I am not completely full of it:
    Kevin J. Finnerty
    Founder and Managing Partner
    F.I. Capital Management
    Audit Committee Member
    http://www.newcastleinv.com/directors.aspx
    I am sure he has worked hard to get where he is, but the “working-class” label simply doesn’t apply.

  41. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

    Evolution of a bait-and-switch argument:
    Nina: Many survivors also disagree with you on how they view the case.
    Erin: Really? Well, I’d prefer to here from them, rather than from you claiming that they say that because, frankly, I don’t believe you.
    Nina: You don’t /believe/ that there are any survivors who wouldn’t want this woman sent to prison?
    Did I say that? You really wouldn’t know an honest argument if it hit you on your head. Your shitty attempts at swiftboating me are getting less and less amusing and more annoying.
    Yes, I imagine that there are one or two survivors out there who would feel the way you do. But I can categorically state that a LOT of rape victims get pissed-right-the-fuck-off when a fake victim tries to pass herself off as “poor me, look I was raped” when she wasn’t. And, yeah, we get pissed enough to feel like she should be in jail for reinforcing the notion that women who report rapes are liars and for trying to pervert the justice system that already so rarely takes real rape victims seriously. Not to mention that whole “miscarriage of justice” thing. Yeah, that thing.

  42. noname
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 10:09 pm | Permalink
  43. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 10:11 pm | Permalink

    Heh. Noname, it may be a powerful tool, but now you’ve gone and ruined the page layout with your overlong link. :p :p :p

  44. Dogstar
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 10:11 pm | Permalink

    From the link:
    Kevin J. Finnerty has been a member of our board of directors and a member of the Audit Committee, Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee and Compensation Committee of our board of directors since August 2005. Mr. Finnerty has been a director of Newcastle Investment Holdings LLC (the predecessor of Newcastle) since its inception in 1998. Mr. Finnerty is a founder and the Managing Partner of F.I. Capital Management, an investment company focused on mortgage related strategies. Previously, Mr. Finnerty was a Managing Director at J.P. Morgan Securities Inc., where he headed the Residential Mortgage Securities Department. Mr. Finnerty joined Chase Securities Inc. in December of 1999. Prior to joining Chase Securities Inc., Mr. Finnerty worked at Union Bank of Switzerland from November 1996 until February 1998, where he headed the Mortgage Backed Securities Department, and at Freddie Mac from January 1999 until June 1999, where he was a Senior Vice President. Between 1986 and 1996, Mr. Finnerty was with Bear Stearns & Co. Inc., where he was a Senior Managing Director and ultimately headed the MBS Department and served as a member of the board of directors from 1993 until 1996. Mr. Finnerty was Co-Chair of the North American People Committee at JPMorganChase and Chairman of the Mortgage and Asset-Backed Division of the Bond Market Association for the year 2003.
    Bankers, brokers, middle managers, etc. are not considered middle class?
    I read that several times, but I can’t find the part where he woke up one morning and discovered a pile of several million dollars in the corner of the room and said, “Wow, good thing my son got railroaded! Now we can get rid of this pile!”

  45. noname
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 10:14 pm | Permalink

    Anyway, Dogstar brought up Hitler a few posts ago (it was entertaining, but still…), so I guess we can wrap this up now, right?

  46. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 10:14 pm | Permalink

    Did Mr. Finnerty inherit that pile of money or earn it? To me, that’s the major difference between middle- and upper- crust.
    Not that it matters. Even if these guys were Walden kids, it doesn’t make it right to fling them under the train.

  47. Jenna
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 10:15 pm | Permalink

    Dogstar said:
    [i]Bankers, brokers, middle managers, etc. are not considered middle class?[/i]
    Uhh. No.
    They aren’t.

  48. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

    Noname, don’t close the thread down yet – I’m still hoping that EG will pop in and respond to my post.
    And, while I don’t agree with Dogstar’s posts all the time, I DID think that the Bill Clinton analogy was apt. No one has brought up Tawana Brawley, either, which just boggles my mind, given the topic.

  49. atrope
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 10:19 pm | Permalink

    nina, it’s not contradictory. my point was based on my experience of interviewing dozens of REAL rape victims (unlike the alleged victim in this case), dozens of REAL rape suspects, and a couple of lying complainants who had fabricated things, i believe i do have a bit of an insight into this.
    but i don’t believe anybody need(ed) to be q trained investigator to realize this case was rubbish – from near the beginning.
    it just took a mind open to facts, instead of identity politcs based dismissal of case facts

  50. Erin
    Posted April 13, 2007 at 10:20 pm | Permalink

    Jenna, what would you consider to be a middle class job?
    middle class
    n.
    The socioeconomic class between the working class and the upper class, usually including professionals, highly skilled laborers, and lower and middle management.
    A social and economic class composed of those more prosperous than the poor, or lower class, and less wealthy than the upper class. Middle class is sometimes loosely used to refer to the bourgeoisie. In the United States and other industrial countries, the term is often applied to white-collar, as opposed to blue-collar, workers.

    It seems like “banker” could fit in that nicely. IMO.

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