What We Missed

The Strauss-Kahn sexual assault case may be thrown out due to a potential lack of “credibility” from the alleged victim. Here is the letter from the District Attorney to DSK’s lawyer with details. More to come.

After failing to come to an agreement on budget negotiations, Minnesota’s government has shut down.

“The Doctors”: Your aging, deflated vagina is like a hamburger.

A federal court has blocked South Dakota’s anti-choice legislation that would have enforced the most extreme mandatory waiting period in the country. (Not to mention require those seeking abortions to go to a CPC.) More from the ACLU here.

More from A Feminist in the Pentagon.

Feministing will be taking Monday off to enjoy the long weekend. What are y’all doing for the holiday?

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  • davenj

    That letter from the District Attorney looks pretty damning. There’s no way the prosecution can use her as a witness now, and since this case is dependent on her testimony and its accuracy it appears that the case against DSK is basically done for.

    In addition, it looks like the accuser may be in trouble for other crimes, and possibly subject to deportation if she lied that much in her asylum plea.

  • http://www.feministcupcake.com laiven

    I am so upset about The Strauss-Kahn sexual assault. Did y’all see he was released from house arrest? What does her credibility have to do with anything. I don’t care what kind of woman you are if you get raped or assaulted people should care!

    • unequivocal

      I think the intended reasoning behind the credibility defense is not “she lacks credibility, therefore no one should care if she got raped or assaulted,” but rather “she lacks credibility, therefore it is more likely that this assault didn’t happen.”

      Not saying I agree with that assessment, just that that is probably the reasoning.

    • davenj

      “What does her credibility have to do with anything.”


      It affects what we think of her statements. This case is entirely dependent on her testimony, and now it is being argued that she has lied about being raped for personal gain in the past, and has maintained that lie in front of prosecutors and investigators.

      All statements aren’t equally credible, and this information seems to mean that the prosecution no longer has a case against DSK, meaning that it makes sense to release him on his on recognizance while denying him his passport.

      People should absolutely care if a woman is raped or assaulted, regardless of who she is, but we should also consider the credibility of criminal claims, and in this case the accuser’s seems to be nil.

  • sex-toy-james

    On the labial puff video, all this labiaplasty ridiculousness needs to stop before it gets normalized. I know that you could argue that you’re doing it for yourself and not your potential partners, but if you’re worried about appearing attractive to others, then just no. I challenge anyone to Google up evidence that there’s some sort of demand among men or lesbians for their partners to have some sort of labiaplasty. You can find a whole lot of men talking about how much they just don’t care. Google suggests that there are multitudes of guys looking to convince their partners peg them in the ass with a strap on, but guys who want their partner to get a labiaplasty, well, if it’s too small for the internet to pick up, I question whether it exists.
    You can still do it for yourself or to keep plastic surgeons employed, but don’t do it for potential partners.
    I just hate to see a business building itself up by reinforcing an irrational insecurity. They’ve got to convince a lot of normal women that they are in fact deformed in order to build their business, and that’s just not cool.

  • http://feministing.com/members/toongrrl/ Jessica “Jess” Victoria Carillo

    Dear Doctors, I like vaginias and hamburgers (with cheese *unrelated*)

  • http://feministing.com/members/mutengene/ camer

    nothing they have accused her of lying about discredits her allegations against DSK. I understand it may make it difficult to prosecute if the jury hears these facts( and that’s a big if), but the prosecution should go forward unless she has said something that undermines her allegation.

    the only potential problem area is her going back to clean the room after DSK left. But none of this proves a rape did not occur.

    • davenj

      “nothing they have accused her of lying about discredits her allegations against DSK.”

      Really? A false rape accusation from the past? Perjury? Lying about the actual events surrounding the accusation itself?

      Vance isn’t gonna push on with this case. It’s circling the drain. The entire case is based on the veracity of the accuser’s account, which is now subject to extreme doubt.

      • http://feministing.com/members/mutengene/ camer

        yes. a false rape accusation in a another context does not mean she wasn’t raped here. there is an argument to make that she will make a poor witness and thus the case is weakened, but these lies do not mean what she stated in the underlying event is false. the story she told the police did not differ from those she told her boyfriend, even though she was unaware that she was being recorded.

        i have client that lie in a variety of situations to obtain benefits, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be raped.

        • davenj

          Of course it doesn’t mean that. What it does mean is that her credibility as a witness is severely diminished, and it will be next to impossible to convict DSK.

          And her story has changed in regard to the events surrounding the accused rape.

          Her credibility is absolutely harmed by having made a false rape accusation in the past for personal gain. Doesn’t mean she’s lying now, but it does mean her credibility is seriously damaged. As this case depends on said credibility I doubt it proceeds any further.

  • http://feministing.com/members/juliei/ Julie Inzanti

    I’m upset about this DSK issue. Obviously if this woman is lying about the encounter it has the potential to make sexual assault victims look less credible in the eyes of the public…and jury. But on the other hand–if she’s just confused about the story and has a cagey past–that doesn’t mean she WASN’T assaulted! She could be a drug-dealing, gun-wielding criminal and still be a victim of rape… It seems as if the public still needs their rape victims to be innocent little virgins who don’t “ask for it.”
    I’m sad that this beast is getting off (in more ways that one.) Women need to STOP sticking by their sexually aggressive husbands and take a unified stand against harassment.

    ALSO, “The Doctors” GIVE ME A BREAK!!!! Women have to deal with enough! Now our aging vaginas are being compared to a f-ing hamburger!?!?!? How about we compare men to a rotting bag of potatoes? or a deflated whoopee-cushion…

    • http://feministing.com/members/azure156/ Jenny Gonzalez-Blitz

      Yes, it is extremely upsetting. It’s going to make a lot of difficulty both in getting rape cases prosecuted and fighting stigma against immigrants if either this or the claims on her plea for asylum were falsified. Part of me also wonders if this is simply the new version of the old “asking what color underwear she wore” tact? I don’t know.

      Regarding “The Doctors” – As a vegeterian I prefer to think of my labia not as a hamburger but as delicate pink but nonetheless spicy slices of ginger. :p

    • http://feministing.com/members/djh1/ D.J.

      RE: The Doctors — I think it’s terrible that they are attempting to manufacture an insecurity so as to prey on it! As for showing men what it feels like, though… remember that a highly-sensitive functional piece of the penis is usually chopped off of most men in our society, in large part because people think it’s gross or “unclean.”

  • http://feministing.com/members/djh1/ D.J.

    Regarding the Strauss-Kahn case, I found the prosecutions’ mentioning of her immigration paperwork and other irrelevant details to be in bad taste. However, in the letter they do raise the relevant point that she has confessed to making false rape accusations in the past, with political motivations. The court of public opinion often makes its judgment before it has finished reading the headline. Perhaps that is not such a good thing.

    • davenj

      It really just shows why we shouldn’t be seeing the details of this case at all. This case went from “DSK is totally guilty” in the media to “the accuser is a big liar”, and to be honest I don’t think we needed either of those things. Anonymity for both parties would have made this a lot better for both of them.

      As for the immigration paperwork, it’s totally relevant. Making a false rape claim in the past for personal gain is as relevant as it gets.