Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Accepting Harm To All Rape Victims While Showing Concern

In my post Agenda behind duke hoax theory I received a comment with several points which supposedly proves that the alleged victim was a liar and that if I only read more about this case, I would agree with him. His personal assumptions about a specific case are incorrect in my opinion, but if his points were about this case alone I would likely let it go. However, he -- like many others -- doesn't view this case as being independent of other rape cases.

His comment contains a contradiction which is so important that I had to bring it into a post of its own.

Toward the end of his comment, he writes:

Lastly, I appreciate that you work hard for survivors' rights. I do, however, believe that Crystal has harmed beyond repair the rights of real rape victims (sadly) and hurt your cause dearly. My best friend was raped (in a foreign country), and nothing makes me more angry than to know that it happened to such a fantastic person (or any person, of course).

This mix of accepting harm done to all "real" rape victims while expressing concern for all "real" rape victims is the reason I responded to his comment with this:

Ben, none of your points provide credible evidence to support the hoax theories. If this woman wasn't perpetrating a hoax as has been repeatedly alleged (the report undermines the hoax theory btw) then she can't have harmed the rights of real rape victims and she can't have hurt the fight against sexual violence.

Many people, including yourself, have made conclusions about the unkown DNA that simply isn't backed by evidence which makes those conclusions mere conjecture.

The source of that DNA is simply unknown unless or until one or more matches are made. Only then can anyone come to any firm conclusions about the source of that DNA.

When it comes to alleged rapists we are told we must wait and no matter how improbable we must give these men the benefit of the doubt while those who tell us that fail to follow their own standards when it comes to alleged victims. They repeatedly overstep the evidence.

We are told not to trust prosecutors, but when a prosecutor says something against alleged rape victims their words suddenly become gospel. Very convenient.

If this case sets back the fight against sexual violence then it is the fault of those who have used this case as a bat to make unfounded accusations about all women who report being raped. Most of those people want the fight against sexual violence harmed but they want to pass the buck for their concerted efforts onto a woman who from the AG's report has serious issues and who he is convinced absolutely believes what she has told investigators.

That harm also means that more people like your friend will be raped and their rapists will get away with their crimes. Is that really okay with you?

If you believe the AG is smart enough to accurately declare the 3 defendants innocent then he must also be smart enough to accurately declare that the alleged victim has always attempted to cooperate to the best of her ability. Yet you villify her for that.

There are enough pieces of evidence which have not been refuted so that I cannot conclude that everyone at that party that night is innocent beyond a reasonable doubt.

Note: the hotlink wasn't included in my original comment.

Also not included in my original comment is that I notice how Ben selectively makes certain details of the alleged victim's testimony reliable when her entire testimony has been deemed unreliable. Once the selected testimony is made reliable then he uses other evidence (DNA mismatch) to prove she's a reliable liar.

If she's truly an unreliable witness for whatever reason, then you can't use anything she says to prove any specific detail about her or the case. Yet people who say they understand the law and this case keep doing this.

He and others also seem to find great delight in repeating the woman's talk of being assaulted while floating, but this feeling has a clear name and that is disassociation. This is a sign of trauma so this testimony, while unreliable about objective details, supports the assertion that she has endured great trauma.

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posted by Marcella Chester @ 1:40 PM   2 comments links to this post


At May 02, 2007 6:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your delusions are causing REAL harm to women. This is not a game.

Please stop hurting women.


At May 02, 2007 9:07 AM, Blogger Marcella Chester said...

Anonymous, I am not delusional and I know -- firsthand -- that this isn't a game. I also know this alleged victim is a real woman. Do you? Or has she become less than human to you?

If protecting women means turning my back on all women who don't fit certain prototypes from unfounded attacks then no I won't do that.

It's interesting that you say my beliefs harm women but don't say a word about all those who repeatedly say this case proves that most women lie about rape and who want to dismantle current protections for rape victims and who want to return us to the "good" old days when the criminal justice system treated most rape victims as if they were the real criminal if they bothered to listen to them at all.

They want to return us to the "good" old days when if you knew your rapist's name that proved you weren't raped.


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