Thursday, April 26, 2007

I didn't break the law today. Where's my fucking medal?

What is it about giving medals to just about everyone except people who deserve them? First it was the Franks/Tenet/Bremer Congressional Medal of Freedom, and now Reade Seligmann of Duke Lacrosse fame. Having had the rape charges against him dropped, his high school has bestowed upon him the Delbarton Medal, the highest honor from the all-boys Delbarton School.

His headmaster says Seligmann demonstrated "courage, nobility, integrity and charity" during the "ordeal" of the last year. Then he goes on to say the most asinine thing I've heard in awhile:
“You gave us a model of how to handle the pressures that we all experience.”
Yes, let us all rally around a guy whose experience is justlikeours. Because it is the average person who is the white son of privilege, who gets to attend a pricey university on athletic scholarship, and who attends parties where African-American women are hired to stroke the male, uh, ego. Yes, yes, we all belong to this elite club, and we're all just as likely to get dragged under by nasty hos who are asking for it, not that we would actually do anything wrong, wink wink. I've lost count of how many times my friends and I have been accused of raping people. See? I'm just like this guy!

'Cause let's face it. I don't have the first clue as to whether Reade Seligmann raped Crystal Gail Mangum because a)I wasn't there and b)I didn't examine her afterward. But the same can be said of nearly all of the people defending Seligmann and his co-defendants, leading one to surmise that these people are defending them for other, more sinister reasons. Reasons relating to sexism, racism, classism, and probably several other isms. And with less-than-stellar conviction rates in rape cases, I'm not inclined to think that many women make false accusations. I imagine some do, but not nearly to the extent some people claim. Who would put herself through all the public scrutiny with such little chance of success? This woman's life has been damaged much more than the lives of the defendants in this case; it just doesn't seem like it sometimes because she started from an awfully low rung to begin with.

So quit with all the public displays of blind support for these guys. It's offensive. Because even if they didn't* rape her, they don't deserve a fucking medal for it.

*The case was dropped for lack of evidence. They were not found innocent. There is a difference.

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