“Don’t jump to conclusions, let’s just wait and see if… OMG SHE’S A LIAR JUST LIKE TAWANA BRAWLEY LET’S PROSECUTE HER RIGHT NOW”

Remember all those people who used the “wait and see” line with the Duke rape case? How they argued that us man-hatin’ feminists should wait for conclusive evidence? Well, now that the defense lawyer for the lacrosse players is doing his job and advocating for his clients by telling the press that the first round of DNA tests “conclusively” proves that the players are innocent, those same folks are jumping in with their conclusions: The “boys” are innocent. The woman is a liar. This is just like the Tawana Brawley case. Etc etc.

Except, you know, there’s that whole “conclusiveness” issue.

But District Attorney Mike Nifong, who has said he is “convinced” a rape occurred, immediately downplayed the significance of the test results and held open the possibility of charges being filed.

“There are no new developments and when there are new developments, we’ll schedule a press conference,” Nifong said in one interview.

Asked again later, he added: “The investigation is proceeding and I expect to have all the information I need within a week.”

A Durham police spokeswoman, in response to a series of questions about how the test results could affect the investigation, said only, “The Police Department is still actively investigating this case.”

Meanwhile, a lawyer close to the case, who declined to be identified, said the DNA tests returned Monday afternoon from the State Bureau of Investigation crime lab were not all-inclusive. Another lab also is analyzing the DNA samples and those results are not available yet, the lawyer said.

But he’s the prosecutor, right? Not exactly a neutral source. Let’s ask someone else:

But UNC law professor Rich Rosen said the test results don’t entirely clarify the situation.

“There’s certainly no way this helps the prosecution,” Rosen said. “It’s clear that if I’m a defense attorney, this is a good result. Whether it’s a definitive result or not, we’ll have to wait and see.”

Funny words, those.

There’s obviously a lot we don’t know. This obviously is not good for the prosecution, and I’m not posting this to make the point that there’s no way that these men are innocent. A more comprehensive follow-up post about all the issues this raises will be coming in the next day or so (taxes call, I’m in class, and my little brain can only do so much at once).


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123 comments for ““Don’t jump to conclusions, let’s just wait and see if… OMG SHE’S A LIAR JUST LIKE TAWANA BRAWLEY LET’S PROSECUTE HER RIGHT NOW”

  1. April 11, 2006 at 9:36 am

    Ha ha… I particularly like the title.

    Certainly I’d say there was jumping to conclusions in the feminist blogosphere, but to claim that and now jump to the “lying bitch” -bandwagon is quite transparent.

  2. April 11, 2006 at 10:28 am

    Hell, I saw many comparisons to the Brawley case long before yesterday’s news concerning the DNA tests. I also saw people claiming that it was wrong to “convict these boys in the press” and then in the very next sentence try and make the case that the women had to be lying, then later in the same posts claim that because she was a stripper that meant she deserved anything that might have happened to her. The breakdown of logic in those stream of consciousness rants was breathtaking.

  3. Gabriel Malor
    April 11, 2006 at 10:47 am

    This is an ad hominem tu quoque.

    This type of ad hominem is what I call the hypocrisy defence. It goes llike this: “He’s a hypocrite, therefore he’s wrong.” It’s a convenient way of shifting attention.

    Here, Jill is shifting attention from the fact that she and many others did not take a “wait and see” attitude but rather got all kitted up to hang these guys. Instead of just saying “oops” and learning from this experience, it’s easier to say: “But my opponents are hypocrites.” Again, that’s very different from saying “my opponents are wrong.”

    BTW, I love all the links to those “lying bitch” bloggers and op-eds which are now calling for prosecution of the “victim.” No doubt, some will eventually seek justice if this turns out to be a false allegation of rape. But tarring the entire “wait and see” crowd as hypocrites is silly. Since, of course, I’m still in wait-and-see mode. And, so, for that matter, is Jeff G.

  4. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 11:10 am

    Gabriel, given that there has already been evidence that the victim’s fingernails and property were found in the house, and that one of the lacrosse players wrote that lovely email, and that other people heard the racial slurs from outside the house, tell me — what are we waiting for to see?

    This isn’t a he-said, she-said. There’s physical evidence that she was not only in the house, but that she left without the kinds of things one would normally take with one if one were just visiting and not, say, fleeing (I dunno about you, but if I’ve paid for a set of nails, and I lose four or five at one shot and I’m not worried about my safety, I’m collecting them to glue them back on. I’m also bringing my cell phone and other items with me). There are witness statements, and evidence as to the state of mind of at least one of the players.

    So the DNA tests are inconclusive at this time. See Dianne’s comments in the White Guilt thread about the vagaries of DNA testing in cases like this.

  5. human
    April 11, 2006 at 11:12 am

    Exactly, zuzu – I mean, they found the money that was stolen with some of the players later. In the house and out of it. Even if ultimately a rape can’t be proved by DNA evidence, there is still assault and robbery – does that suddenly magically go away if there’s not DNA evidence to prove a rape? What the fuck?

  6. Gabriel Malor
    April 11, 2006 at 11:17 am

    This isn’t a he-said, she-said. There’s physical evidence that she was not only in the house, but that she left without the kinds of things one would normally take with one if one were just visiting and not, say, fleeing…

    zuzu, we’re waiting to see if this is actually a rape. The things you listed are not necessarily indicative of rape. They indicate that something happened in the house. One option is rape. Others include battery or other types of abuse. Another option is some type of wierd attempt at going after the players money. All of those (and I’m sure more) are possible options.

    So, yes. There is plenty of reasons to “wait and see.” And, frankly, I’m surprised at you. You’re not actually saying that we have nothing to wait for–if you were, you’d be ready to send the players to prison. The fact that we still don’t know which of the players are guilty (or even what crime has occurred) means that we have plenty to wait for here.

  7. Gabriel Malor
    April 11, 2006 at 11:23 am

    does that suddenly magically go away if there’s not DNA evidence to prove a rape? What the fuck?

    Excellent goal-post moving. Instead of “OMG, these children of privelege, these rich, white men raped a poor, black woman–SEE WHITE MALE PRIVILEGE!!!” it’s “well, maybe they robbed her.”

    Robbery does not equal rape. It is not nearly as serious in the popular eye. One person has already lost their job over this. Also, this cannot be easy for the victim or for the team members (especially the members that weren’t involved).

    I think that something went on in that house. But I am apparently the only one here who thinks that it is appropriate to wait for the investigation to tell us what.

  8. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 11:29 am

    Another option is some type of wierd attempt at going after the players money.

    Pardon?

    Please explain this one. Because *her* money was found on the players. Unless you’re talking about bribery or hush money.

    I don’t know what you’re so surprised about. There’s always something to wait for as evidence develops. However, those who are calling for “wait and see” based on the DNA tests seem to be arguing that the inconclusive results magically obviate the other evidence that’s already been found that some crime occurred. And I’m surprised at you, being so ready to admit that there’s evidence of another crime and not being so ready to admit that rape is a strong possibility.

    Also, my understanding is that the DNA tests were conducted not necessarily to find evidence of rape but to identify which of the players are potential suspects.

  9. Chet
    April 11, 2006 at 11:30 am

    The things you listed are not necessarily indicative of rape.

    Does that really make sense to you? That, after being robbed, roughed up, and verbally abused, she suddenly felt like consenting to sexual intercourse with someone?

    It truly never ceases to surprise me the situations under which rape apologists find it completely reasonable to expect women to get horny.

  10. JeffL
    April 11, 2006 at 11:33 am

    But tarring the entire “wait and see” crowd as hypocrites is silly. Since, of course, I’m still in wait-and-see mode. And, so, for that matter, is Jeff G.

    Jeff G’s post strongly implies a rape didn’t occur, and then approving links to a post from Darleen that says flat out no rape occured. In what univerise is this “wait and see” mode?

    Oh, and the first comment to Jeff’s post? Have a look:


    I’m sure they’ll be over to comment pretty soon. Right now they’re over at Tawana Brawley’s house for supper.

  11. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 11:36 am

    Does that really make sense to you? That, after being robbed, roughed up, and verbally abused, she suddenly felt like consenting to sexual intercourse with someone?

    Even if she did, the fact that she was being robbed and assaulted may, depending on the state laws, mean that any consent she may have given for sex during the commission of a felony is invalid, and that therefore she was raped.

  12. Gabriel Malor
    April 11, 2006 at 11:37 am

    those who are calling for “wait and see” based on the DNA tests seem to be arguing that the inconclusive results magically obviate the other evidence that’s already been found that some crime occurred.

    Perhaps you could direct me to some of these people who “seem to be arguing that the inconclusive results magically obviate…”

    And then you could tell me why my argument should be tarred by theirs.

    1) “You are a hypocrite, therefore you are wrong” is a fallacy.

    2) There still aren’t any links here to the hypocrites who are “saying not to jump to conclusions” but are themselves jumping to the conclusion that she should be prosecuted for false allegations (or, alternatively, that nothing bad happened at the house at all).

    3) I’m pretty sure I just got called a “rape apologist”. That hurts, yo, really.

  13. April 11, 2006 at 11:47 am

    2) There still aren’t any links here to the hypocrites who are “saying not to jump to conclusions” but are themselves jumping to the conclusion that she should be prosecuted for false allegations (or, alternatively, that nothing bad happened at the house at all).

    …seriously? I can dig some up for you, but you’re the one who linked to Jeff’s post. Read the comments.

  14. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 11:48 am

    Perhaps you could direct me to some of these people who “seem to be arguing that the inconclusive results magically obviate…”

    How about this?

    Darleen pretty clearly is latching onto the defense attorney’s statement that the DNA test performed gets these guys off the hook without, you know, considering that not all tests have been performed, or that the tests were inconclusive rather than conclusive, etc.

    And the Tawana Brawley comment JeffL just cited above? That’s pretty damning.

    Now, I’m quite aware that you haven’t gone the Darleen route nor have you hopped onto the Tawana Brawley train like the commenters at the site to which I refuse to link, but you’re still bending over backwards to find some reason that this woman could have been beaten and robbed, but we really need to wait and see if she was raped because rape, now that’s a serious charge.

  15. April 11, 2006 at 11:49 am

    They’re really not hard to find, Gabriel. Just go to Technorati. They range from the “tamer” sentiments like the March 31 post over at Talk Left that merely states the woman has to be lying because the timeline doesn’t make sense, to LaShawn Barber’s open assertion that the rape accusation is false (her most recent post is titled “False Rape at Duke: Next Steps”).

  16. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 12:05 pm

    Here are a couple more, from this very blog:

    one

    two

    three

  17. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 12:06 pm

    Here are a couple more, from this very blog:

    one

    two

    three

  18. ilyka
    April 11, 2006 at 12:15 pm

    Gabriel’s also conveniently ignoring that most of the posts on this case at Feministe (and elsewhere) deal with issues that remain whether or not rape occurred:

    http://www.feministe.us/blog/archives/2006/04/09/those-duke-boys-just-needed-a-dose-of-chivalry/
    David Brooks’ “rape as native baser impulse that must be trained out of young men” column? Still stupid.

    http://www.feministe.us/blog/archives/2006/04/06/boys-will-be-boys/
    That email from one of the players? Still vile.

    http://www.feministe.us/blog/archives/2006/04/05/dont-read-this/
    Yeagley’s FrontPage magazine column? Still repulsive.

    The privilege on display in remarks like “Thank your grandfather for my shirt?” Still present.

    But no one should ever have mentioned them, right, because that’s trying the whole team in public! WITHOUT AN ATTORNEY! OMG WTF PWND BY BLOGS!

    Give me a break.

  19. Gabriel Malor
    April 11, 2006 at 12:42 pm

    Jill, zuzu, Blitzgal,

    conceded. Some folks who previously complained of feminists and others jumping to conclusions are now jumping on the negative DNA tests.

  20. April 11, 2006 at 12:45 pm

    Those who are saying that yesterday’s DNA results proves there was no rape don’t know what they are talking about. There’s a huge difference between lacking certain evidence (DNA) and proving that the victim is a liar.

    Here are more of my thoughts on this subject.

    For those who disagree with me, I have to ask: What training do you have in understanding evidence collection in a crime involving rape?

  21. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 12:55 pm

    My understanding of the tests for which there have been results were based on the swabs taken from the players and scrapings from under the victim’s fingernails. I have not seen a mention that, for instance, evidence collected from a rape kit has been tested.

    Dianne said in the White Guilt thread that fingernail-scraping tests are often inconclusive because a) crime victims, especially rape victims, tend to want to clean themselves after a crime, which destroys evidence and b) the nature of the scrapings tends to make it difficult to select individual DNA strands from, for lack of a better term, “background noise.”

    The DA has said that there are other tests in the works.

  22. CoRev
    April 11, 2006 at 12:57 pm

    OK, Ithose who want to continue the investigation, what next? The DA said he was using the DNA to eliminate the innocent. Now who does he investigate?

  23. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 1:00 pm

    Gee, you’d think there had never been a conviction for any crime before DNA testing.

  24. Rex Little
    April 11, 2006 at 1:09 pm

    Does that really make sense to you? That, after being robbed, roughed up, and verbally abused, she suddenly felt like consenting to sexual intercourse with someone?

    If these things happened, and then there was intercourse, then clearly it was rape. But has it been established that intercourse took place? If the defense lawyers’ statements about the DNA are true (and I’m not assuming that; these are defense lawyers, after all), it would seem the answer is no.

  25. Alex
    April 11, 2006 at 1:31 pm

    I am a little confused on something. Here’s is what I have heard of what happened.

    -This lady was definitely roughed up a bit, called racial slurs, and possible physically assaulted. I say possibly because I have not heard anything official on that yet, but I am obviously willing to believe it did happen.

    -DNA tests come back saying there is no match between the players DNA and what was under her fingernails.

    Here are some things I haven’t heard/been confirmed yet.

    1. Was there evidence of sexual activity on the woman.
    2. Was there evidence of sexual assault on the woman.
    3. Was there DNA evidence taken from any other part of this woman, like from a rape kit?
    4. Whose DNA was there on her?

    Finally, what is the timeline/story supposed to be from both sides.
    Like, the woman says she was beat up, then dragged to a room and raped, and the guys say she came over, there was an altercation over money and then she made up a rape story? Did the woman go straight to the police/hospital afterwards etc etc.

    I guess I am saying at least from what I have been exposed to, there is nowhere near enough information for either side to convinced, and there are clear ‘sides’ here. You have the ‘blame the victim’ crowd who has interest in basically discrediting every rape claim for whatever horrible purpose. Then you have people who are pushing for rape to be considered a more serious crime, and who are pushing to change society to protect the victims and try to make people understand how devastating these crimes are. The problem with this group is that part of their ideology (and I think it is absolutely one of the most worthy causes) leads them to reflexively defend all accusers.

    Here is my point, there are things in this story coming from one or both sides that can be shown to be factually false. We should find out the best and closest representation of the truth before starting the back-and-forth on this issue that seems inevitable.

    Finally, it is strongly in the best interest of people who work to make rape be considered a more serious crime to severely punish woman who falsely claim rape. Why?

    Because if somehow we can force the incidence of false accusations to near zero, then when a woman comes out with a claim of rape it will be almost guaranteed she is telling the truth. What I mean is in the current situation, we have a general tendency in society to question the veracity of a rape claim, and this is directly responsible for women who HAVE legitimate claims not coming forward. Now, if we say that the very very small percentage of woman who DO make false accusations are not concerned with how likely there story is to be assumed true, then there is a cycle at work here. Less truthful claims are made, and the percentage of false claims rises as a proportion of the overall totall…which effects the reputation of rape victims and makes real victims less likely to come forward. I realize getting it to go in the other direction is hard. And that persecuting false victims actually hurts the overall reputation in the short term which exacerbates the problem, and that it could decrease the overall reputation of rape victims, but I think the long term is what we should be looking at.

    I realize this has become somewhat of a tangent, but I think it is relevant. Even if the idiots on other websites automatically assume the woman is wrong, it is so important to make sure when you throw your weight into supporting a victims claim (which is different than treating a victim with respect) you try to be as sure as possible that all the facts are out.

  26. Otto Kerner
    April 11, 2006 at 1:57 pm

    Yeah, what Alex said. Well put.

    Note, though, that punishing women who make false accusations will necessarily mean that there will be some number of innocent women who are mistakenly punished (after being raped in the first place). Likewise, punishing rapists means that there will be some number of men who are mistakenly sent to prison for rape.

  27. R. Mildred
    April 11, 2006 at 2:23 pm

    http://heraldsun.com/nationworld/national/30-722531.html

    Updated, it says:

    1) see 2.
    2) yes, injuries.
    3) We now know that the bathroom floor she says she was raped on turned up negative for DNA traces, which is even more confusing because it means it’s not entirely certain whether dna from any of the lacrosse team was present on her person due to the rape, plus it says they’re still doing tests on some other DNA, the first release was the quick stuff that they can test in under 48 hours, there’s a link to a self proclaimed expert (it’s teh internets, take him as honestly as you want) in the comments section at the “breaking….” thread at pandagon, can’t get on to pandagon right now sorry, who says it’s the mitochondrial DNA that is still being tested.
    4) no idea, they don’t mention it.

    There is physical, as in injuries, evidence that the DA is saying is conclusive proof that she was raped that evening, so all those who have been calling her a lying whore have been saying that about a a rape victim.

    Well done.

    In future do try to come up with a less insane and farfetched motive to assign to her before whipping the sexist, hate filled slurs about.

    Assholes.

    anyone know if the story about some of hte lacrosse guys skipping country is true, or is that just a confused conflation from the second rape video incident?

  28. Jason
    April 11, 2006 at 2:50 pm

    Jill,

    Unfortunately you significantly contributed to blogosphere bandwagon jumping to conlusions. The evidence is not yet conclusive, but now there is no way the prosecutor gets a conviction. In fact, it would be almost impossible for this woman’s story to be true unless there was a DNA match (there would be Duke players’ DNA in her fingernails). And just because a prosecutor insists on charging somone doesn’t hold any water with me. Prosecutors are evil.

    Anyway, I’m a little surprised at your tone. You’re still on the attack, when maybe you should have considered all possibilities before you convicted these guys in a public forum.

  29. Ledasmom
    April 11, 2006 at 3:06 pm

    Alex, you say:

    “-This lady was definitely roughed up a bit, called racial slurs, and possible physically assaulted. . .”

    By what definition does “roughed up a bit” not equal “physically assaulted”?

  30. Jason
    April 11, 2006 at 3:15 pm

    Roughed up would be physically assaulted. Which would be a crime. But it is not certain she was roughed up.

    She claimed she was choked. I haven’t heard that the doctors saw any bruise marks on her neck. She has bruises on her legs, which the defense claims she had before she arrived (and they supposedly have pictures to prove this). She claims she clawed at her alleged attackers. However, there has not (yet) been any DNA to prove this. The other dancer claims she didn’t see an assault. All of the players claim she was not assaulted. In short, there is no compelling evidence that she was roughed up at all. E

  31. Otto Kerner
    April 11, 2006 at 3:44 pm

    Well done.

    In future do try to come up with a less insane and farfetched motive to assign to her before whipping the sexist, hate filled slurs about.

    Assholes.

    I’m frankly bemused by the tone of the responses that this subject has brought up. The situation is that some athletes at Duke have been accused of raping a women. That’s a horrible thing to do if it’s true. It’s a horrible lie if it’s not true. No one who wasn’t there at the time knows what the truth is yet. So why have this kind of emotional reaction to discussion about it? You don’t even know who the victim is yet.

  32. r4d20
    April 11, 2006 at 3:47 pm

    Do you really expect a Defense Attorney to public say “well, the DNA tersts came up negative but that does not mean my client is not a rapist bastard”?

    This whole thing is a carnival of people who love “innocent until proven guilty” until its their ox that is gored.
    You were willing to hang these kids with no evidence.
    They are willing to hang her with equally little.

    There are several plausbile explanations – some involve rape and others do not. She could have been raped. She could have felt stiffed on the bill and pissed at being called racial epithets and made it up. Still too early to tell. Of course, the “judge first” crowd never waits.

  33. r4d20
    April 11, 2006 at 3:57 pm

    “You don’t even know who the victim is yet.”

    Thats simply not true. They KNOW the victim : women.

    Women get raped much more often that men get caught – so that makes it ok to railroad everyone accused of rape. Cause erveryone knows if you cant catch the perp its ok to put an innocent person in jail – SOMEONE HAS TO PAY.

    Facts point the way to truth, but once one knows the truth one has little need of facts anymore.

    This is where the ends meet and team up against the middle. If Gitmo were being used to hold accused rapists (whose guilt cannot yet be proven) they would be chanting “BUSH!” till 2008.

  34. ilyka
    April 11, 2006 at 4:04 pm

    Commenters 30-33: If I may be so vain, please see comment 18. Once you’ve read it, please refute. Bonus points if you can point me to where Jill or Piny “hanged” or “tried” anyone.

    Unlike, you know, some people, who believe we should

    [press charges] against the woman for defamation, false accusation, extortion, slander, libel, whatever. This is unacceptable. It seems to be quite clear – what from has been said here and in news reports – that there is no evidence whatsoever that the team in question assaulted or otherwise violated the woman

    It ain’t tu quoque when the action’s this one-sided, my darling dorks.

  35. ginmar
    April 11, 2006 at 4:24 pm

    Where the fuck are all my comments going?

  36. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 4:28 pm

    I don’t know. Are you posting the names of certain poker games and getting into our spam filter?

    I haven’t seen any of your comments in the moderation queue.

  37. ginmar
    April 11, 2006 at 4:33 pm

    Nope, I don’t play that game.

    Anyhoo, I dug this list out on my LJ and I figured it’d be useful here. It doesn’t examine how gender is a class, and how women of a lower class are vulnerable to the predations of rich white boys, but it still makes a good point.

    figure this is a good time to publicize this list, which comes from Helen Benedict’s Virgin or Vamp: How the Press Covers Sex Crimes.

    These myth are especially relevant today, and they appear to be almost completely unknown.

    “Whether any one victim is labeled a ‘virgin’ or a ‘vamp’ and which myths are brought into play, depends both on the characteristics of those who are discussing the case and on the circumstances of the crime itself. Going over the vast amount of sociological literature on this subject—studies of how people react to rape scenarios—I have identified eight factors that lead the public, and the press, to blame the victim for the rape, and to push her into the role of ‘vamp’.

    1. If she knows the assailant. (Victims recieve more sympthy in the assailant is a stranger.)

    2. If no weapon is used. (Studies show that the public is more inclined to believe a rape happened if a weapon was used.)

    3. If she is of the same race as the assailant. (Victims traditionally attract the most attention if they are white and their assailants are black. Blacks raped by whites tend to recieve more attention than black-on-black crime, which recieves the least attention of all.)

    4. If she is of the same class as the assailant. (She will be blamed less if the assailant is of a lower class than she.)

    5. If she is of the same ethnic group as the assailant. (If prejudices to do with ethnicity or nationality can be called in to slur the assailant the victim will benefit.)

    6. If she is young. (Older women tend to be seen as less provacative.)

    7. If she is ‘pretty.’ (Studies have found that although people tend to be biased against attractive rape victims, they are biased in favor of attractive assailants. The idea is that an attractive man does not need to rape because he can get all the women he wants, a relfection of the ‘assailants are motivated by lust’ myth. This finding applied tellingly in the Chambers/Levin case.)

    8. If she in any way deviated from the traditional female sex role of being at home with family or children. (People blame the victim more if she was in a bar, hitchhiking, at a party, or out on her own anywhere ‘good girls’ are not supposed to be preceeding the attack.)

    Copyright 1992 Helen Benedict.

    I think a ninth one needs to be added to this list, as well: if the assailant is of a higher social class than the victim, she will be regarded as a cynical gold digger.

  38. Raging Moderate
    April 11, 2006 at 5:11 pm

    Whatever happened to “innocent until proven guilty”?

    If you assumed that this woman was lying before any evidence was found to support your assumption, obviously you have unhealthy attitudes towards women.

    If you assumed that the woman actually was raped before any evidence was found to support your assumption, obviously you have unhealthy attitudes towards men.

    Both groups are equally frightening to those of us who truly wish for equality between the sexes. If you are in either of these two groups, you are part of the problem, not the solution.

  39. April 11, 2006 at 5:15 pm

    Zuzu –

    “There’s physical evidence that she was not only in the house, but that she left without the kinds of things one would normally take with one if one were just visiting and not, say, fleeing (I dunno about you, but if I’ve paid for a set of nails, and I lose four or five at one shot and I’m not worried about my safety, I’m collecting them to glue them back on. I’m also bringing my cell phone and other items with me).”

    I left for work this morning without my wallet and sunglasses (both things I would normally take with me if I was not fleeing). Does that mean I was raped and/or in danger of being raped this morning? Maybe I was just too drunk to remember them (always a possibility for me in the AM).

    -CS

  40. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 5:16 pm

    Did you leave half your fingernails behind, too?

  41. ginmar
    April 11, 2006 at 5:26 pm

    christ, I hate that kind of argument. If I hit you over the head with a frying pan, do you call that cooking?

  42. April 11, 2006 at 5:33 pm

    If I did, would it mean I was raped?

  43. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 5:49 pm

    Gee, I don’t know, colin. Did both a doctor and nurse who examined you in the ER find injuries consistent with having been raped?

    Or did you just forget your keys because you’re a halfwit?

  44. April 11, 2006 at 6:03 pm

    No, Zuzu, I’m not a half-wit. If I were I’d claim I knew what happened in that house based on the smattering of evidence that’s been released to the public on this case.

    You are making the assumption that she was examined immediately after leaving the party and that there’s no intervening cause. We don’t know this. We don’t know much.

    And it was my wallet and sunglasses that were forgotton. Not my fake nails and keys, you dimwit.

  45. April 11, 2006 at 6:03 pm

    If you assumed that the woman actually was raped before any evidence was found to support your assumption, obviously you have unhealthy attitudes towards men.

    Or you know that rapes are notoriously underreported, that false accusations lie very close in line with false accusations of other crimes, you work with rape victims who deal with the aftermath of being violently assaulted and live a life under suspicion, or you were a rape victim who wasn’t believed.

    Or you could be a feminist who is inclined to believe people who report all forms of sexual assault with the understanding that if he or she was lying about the assault you would have been duped by a con, but nonetheless want to avoid the consequences of disbelieving someone who has been physically, mentally, and emotionally violated.

    Or any other number of things.

    Just sayin’.

  46. April 11, 2006 at 6:10 pm

    Both groups are equally frightening to those of us who truly wish for equality between the sexes.

    Shorter Raging Moderate: ‘Of course you’re equal, babe! That’s two creams, no sugar.”

  47. Raging Moderate
    April 11, 2006 at 6:40 pm

    “Or you know that rapes are notoriously underreported, that false accusations lie very close in line with false accusations of other crimes, you work with rape victims who deal with the aftermath of being violently assaulted and live a life under suspicion, or you were a rape victim who wasn’t believed.”

    This would explain why one would have such an attitude towards men, but it would not make that attitude any healthier. A man who develops a unhealthy attitude towards women (they’re all manipulative lying bitches) because his wife cheats on him may be understandable to some, but it is still unhealthy isn’t it?

    “Or you could be a feminist who is inclined to believe people who report all forms of sexual assault with the understanding that if he or she was lying about the assault you would have been duped by a con, but nonetheless want to avoid the consequences of disbelieving someone who has been physically, mentally, and emotionally violated.”
    Why does one have to jump to a conclusion (believe her, or “disbelieve” her) before any facts that would help make this decision are known? As I asked earlier, what’s wrong with innocent until proven guilty (applicable to the alleged rape, or to the alleged false claim of rape)? Those who jump to such conclusions are doing so based on their biases and prejudices, not facts.

  48. Raging Moderate
    April 11, 2006 at 6:42 pm

    “Shorter Raging Moderate: ‘Of course you’re equal, babe! That’s two creams, no sugar.”

    Huh?

    Because I believe in “innocent until proven guilty” I’m sexist? Please explain.

  49. April 11, 2006 at 6:46 pm

    This would explain why one would have such an attitude towards men, but it would not make that attitude any healthier. A man who develops a unhealthy attitude towards women (they’re all manipulative lying bitches) because his wife cheats on him may be understandable to some, but it is still unhealthy isn’t it?

    It would imply gender bias if you were the one to assign genders to rapists and rape victims. You did, I did not. Reread my statement.

    Why does one have to jump to a conclusion (believe her, or “disbelieve” her) before any facts that would help make this decision are known? As I asked earlier, what’s wrong with innocent until proven guilty (applicable to the alleged rape, or to the alleged false claim of rape)?

    That’s fine in a court of law. We are not a court of law, we are commenters on blogs. Feel free to keep me off of the jury since you read so much bias into my feelings.

    And for what it’s worth, are we to remain completely bias free when it is our spouses, our children, or hell, our own bodies that have been violated, or is the condemnation of biases and prejudices only applicable when a person who is not “of note” to our own lives is under public scrutiny?

  50. April 11, 2006 at 6:48 pm

    The real question for me is: why are we so determined to believe that rape victims are lying?

  51. April 11, 2006 at 6:50 pm

    Sorry Raging Moderate, but I’m with Lauren on this — who needs a court of law, anyway.

    I say we drag these fuckers off campus and sling a rope over a tree.

    Who’s in?

  52. April 11, 2006 at 6:55 pm

    Sorry Raging Moderate, but I’m with Lauren on this — who needs a court of law, anyway.

    I say we drag these fuckers off campus and sling a rope over a tree.

    Who’s in?

    To the contrary, these guys have representation, representation who are doing their jobs as defense lawyers quite well, judging from the commentary here and elsewhere. Do keep in mind that defense lawyers are able and allowed to say whatever they want about the case when they want, while the prosecution has to keep their cards much closer to their chests. I’m not proclaiming anyone’s innocence or guilt — I’m merely acknowledging the facts that surround rape investigations (and the conversations that surround them) in general.

    But touche. Nevermind that the investigation is still pending, let’s string the slut hooker up from the nearest tree for ruining those poor boys’ lives.

  53. April 11, 2006 at 6:57 pm

    But don’t you think due process is taking just a little bit too long here? We all know they’re guilty as sin and with such good representation, they probably will walk. I say we get ’em know before they disappear.

  54. April 11, 2006 at 7:10 pm

    Colin, I sure hope that it’s your sincere and deeply held belief that one is always innocent until proven guilty that keeps you obsessively refreshing this page. My opinion has absolutely zero legal effect on this case and thus can’t be framed as an ethics breach. But thanks for trying.

  55. Raging Moderate
    April 11, 2006 at 7:16 pm

    Lauren, thanx for the reply.

    I agree that I should have kept my questions gender neutral. Let me try again:

    This would explain why one would have such an attitude towards the opposite sex, but it would not make that attitude any healthier. An individual who develops a unhealthy attitude towards the opposite sex (they’re all manipulative lying scum) because his or her spouse cheats on him or her may be understandable to some, but it is still unhealthy isn’t it?

    If a person is raped, is it healthy for that person to project the attititudes and actions of the rapist on all members of the rapist’s gender?

    “And for what it’s worth, are we to remain completely bias free when it is our spouses, our children, or hell, our own bodies that have been violated, or is the condemnation of biases and prejudices only applicable when a person who is not “of note” to our own lives is under public scrutiny?”

    If you know this woman and her character, it would make sense for you to have a bias as to whether or not she is telling the truth. If she is a stranger to you and you still are of the opinion that she is telling the truth, how does that make you any different than those who claim she is lying? Both of your opinons are based on bias, not fact.

    “The real question for me is: why are we so determined to believe that rape victims are lying?”

    Can’t help you there. I dunno.

    I believe those who are determined to think she is lying, without evidence to support this view, are just as reprehensible as those who are determined to think the lacrosse players are guilty without evidence to support that view. Do you agree?

  56. Pingback: Acephalous
  57. April 11, 2006 at 8:39 pm

    If you know this woman and her character, it would make sense for you to have a bias as to whether or not she is telling the truth. If she is a stranger to you and you still are of the opinion that she is telling the truth, how does that make you any different than those who claim she is lying? Both of your opinons are based on bias, not fact.

    Does it matter? Let me repeat: My opinion has absolutely zero legal effect on this case and thus can’t be framed as an ethical breach.

    However, as someone who tends to fall on the side of victims, I’d rather err and be called an idiot by people who enjoy being right than disbelieve a rape victim and victimize that person again. Call me ridiculous and/or biased, but as cynical as I might be, I’m not so cynical to hear about rape and shrug.

  58. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 8:50 pm

    Because I believe in “innocent until proven guilty” I’m sexist? Please explain.

    You do realize, don’t you, that no individual has yet been charged in this case?

    You also realize that this is still at the evidence-gathering phase, that there has been some determination that there is sufficient evidence to believe that a crime has occurred but not yet enough evidence to pin it on anyone just yet?

  59. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 8:52 pm

    Oh, and you also realize that in order to find the eventual defendant guilty, the prosecution must prove their claims beyond a reasonable doubt?

    And you also realize that this is so elemental that it needs not even be gone over at this point?

  60. r4d20
    April 11, 2006 at 9:37 pm

    There’s physical evidence that she was not only in the house, but that she left without the kinds of things one would normally take with one if one were just visiting

    They are ALSO the things a person who was NOT raped, but was storming out after an argument and being the victim of racist taunts, just darn well might. Filing a bogus rape charge is also something a particularly (and rightfully) angry would do – but even if the anger is rightful, this kind of action is simply NOT.

    This girl is probably not lying about EVERYTHING and I think its a fair bet that she was in at least an ugly verbal fight with the guys. Calling someone the N-word, however ugly, does NOT justify being put in prison for rape.

    It is VERY clear that the mixture of class/race/and gender is here – and that many people are doing the morally cowardly thing and siding up with the “group” that each party seems to represent in their mind.

    IF you want these guys to go to prison for 15 years for being priviledged white prettyboys who called a black girl working her way thoug schoool the N*****, then at least be honest about it and say so.

  61. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 9:39 pm

    So, how do you explain the injuries that the ER doctor and nurse found that were consistent with having been raped?

  62. r4d20
    April 11, 2006 at 9:44 pm

    As for the idiots who are attacking her being as big a bunch of reactionary losers who will always side with pretty white boys over a black girl, they are moral degenerates.

    The police apparently didnt search the place for 60 hours – plenty of time to clean up and certainly not “proof” of innocence without more information. However, if the skin under her nails does not match after the other tests ….. the DA is going to need a good reason why.

    I quote ZUZU

    And you also realize that this is so elemental that it needs not even be gone over at this point?

    If a man criticises sexist-pigs on a feminist blog, but essentially no sexist pigs are around to read it, does he make a sound?

  63. April 11, 2006 at 9:47 pm

    It occurred to me last week when the team members were so adamant that the DNA would come back negative that another scenario might be probable: that other invitees (non-members) to the party were the actual attackers, men whose identities are being kept secret by the members. After all, the police only have the word of the members that they were the only ones at the party. Their taking the test then would be a smokescreen as would their posing for photographs showing no scratches.

    Again, this is just another possible scenario.

  64. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 9:52 pm

    The police apparently didnt search the place for 60 hours – plenty of time to clean up and certainly not “proof” of innocence without more information. However, if the skin under her nails does not match after the other tests ….. the DA is going to need a good reason why.

    Like, oh, she felt dirty after having been violated, and took a shower? Or she was wearing a set of fake nails that were thick and rounded (ask anyone with a set of silk wraps about this; it was one of the things I could just not get used to about having them) and did not lend themselves to scraping up skin cells the way real nails did? Or that since she lost four nails, she had the rest removed?

    None of these are insidious, and they’re good reasons that the majority of rape cases proceed to trial with no conclusive DNA samples.

  65. April 11, 2006 at 9:53 pm

    Also, I think that inanimate objects like beer bottles should be tested for her DNA. Who’s to say what she was penetrated with that could do the type of traumatic injury that was in the warrant?

  66. April 11, 2006 at 9:59 pm

    Sharon, I’m leaning toward your explanation in #63. It seems clear that they have evidence that the woman was raped, but who did it is the question. I’m still bothered that the team refuses to talk, no matter the lawyers’ reasoning. For chrissakes, if something happened, help the woman out.

  67. zuzu
    April 11, 2006 at 10:04 pm

    It’s the Blue Wall of Silence, college version.

  68. April 11, 2006 at 10:21 pm

    IF you want these guys to go to prison for 15 years for being priviledged white prettyboys who called a black girl working her way thoug schoool the N*****, then at least be honest about it and say so.

    Hey, whatever the laws against hate crimes will inflict upon them AND disiplinary action from Duke, as well as any civil suits brought by the victim for the racial slurs hurled at her (verified by third parties that evening), threatened forcible sodomy with a broom stick, and robbery.

    There. I said it.

  69. April 11, 2006 at 10:22 pm

    Oh…forgot to add battery/assault to that.

  70. April 11, 2006 at 11:05 pm

    Because I believe in “innocent until proven guilty” I’m sexist? Please explain.

    Yeah, it must be that. It couldn’t be anything to do with your walking into a feminist blog and piously proclaiming yourself the Realio Trulio Feminist And If Only The Silly Girls Would Stop Their Protesting They’d See You Are.

    Do you ever, I dunno, read the comment to which you’re responding? I’ve found it generally useful.

  71. Otto Kerner
    April 12, 2006 at 12:55 am

    Raging Moderate didn’t say anything about anybody stopping any protests. She or he made her/his comments, and you responded with insults. What’s up with that?

  72. Alex
    April 12, 2006 at 2:52 am

    Hmm, ok.

    Well if what you say about there being proof of evidence of sexual assault, then the question becomes how did she get it/by whom?

    So, timelines become important. If say, the recorded cell phone call of her leaving gives her just enough time to get to a hospital or police officer or whathaveyou, then we have established that she was sexually assaulted at least on the premises and that someone at the party did it.

    Like I said, if we take our time and piece it together, we make actual progress. So, let’s assume for now the doctors are correct and she was sexually assaulted, then even if the lacrosse players did not do the actual raping, they are in serious culpability for what happened to her when they called her in.

    I think the rush to call people names (however well earned) takes people’s eyes off the issue here. People should spend their time disseminating the (apparent) fact that she was sexually assaulted and that it is not a matter of her lying about the fact, but finding out who did this to her.

    When you blow this up, you lose the opportunity to get the message out that there is very solid evidence that at the absolute least she is not lying about the sexual assault, which is important, because then when DNA tests come back, assholes can’t say ‘look nothing happened!’ it becomes an issue of ‘this makes it less likely a lacrosse player was the perpetrator’.

    Is any of this getting across?

  73. Raging Moderate
    April 12, 2006 at 3:44 am

    Chris Clarke:

    “It couldn’t be anything to do with your walking into a feminist blog and piously proclaiming yourself the Realio Trulio Feminist “

    I never claimed I was a feminist.

    I do proudly (and perhaps piously, if you mean “firm in one’s allegiance”) proclaim to be a Raging Moderate. This puts me at odds with every “ism” I know of, except egalitarianism.

    I believe that the victim of this alleged rape should not be assumed to be lying (or telling the truth) because she is poor, black, or female. I believe that the lacrosse players should not be assumed to be guilty (or innocent) because they are white, rich, or male.

    I also agree with probably 95% of the columns I’ve read on this site.

    So, since you brought it up, can I be both a feminist and an egalitarianist at the same time?

  74. April 12, 2006 at 3:55 am

    There seems to be a lot of cross arguing here about the DNA. The defence is not claiming that no DNA matches were found, they’re saying that the report says there was no testable DNA found for matches to be run against. This is something the players have said would be the finding all along – no DNA. There’s two reasons the players would be so sure about that – one is that they’re totally convinced that no rape ever took place.

    Counterclaim: the prosecution says there was clear evidence that she was sexually assaulted in the medical exam.

    Now here’s the second reason the players might have been so sure that no DNA would be found in a rape kit: an obvious method whereby she would not have DNA samples on her but would have evidence of forcible sexual penetration is that she was sexually penetrated by a foreign object, which is exactly what is alleged that at least one partygoer threatened to do with a broomstick.

    Certainly, it is possible that she is lying. It is equally possible that she was vaginally, anally and orally raped with an object rather than a penis, and that is why there is no DNA. As for the fingernails, if the man’s wearing long sleeves on a cool night, just maybe there wouldn’t be any DNA under them either.

    Of course the above is speculation. But let’s not forget that it’s not just a penis that can be used as the penetrating object in rape.

    And it will be very interesting to see what later tests indicate about samples such as hairs etc which take longer to test, apparently.

    It’s far too soon to jump to a conclusion about this case either way.

  75. Raging Moderate
    April 12, 2006 at 4:27 am

    Alex:

    “So, let’s assume for now the doctors are correct and she was sexually assaulted”

    The doctor never said that. He said that he “witnessed symptoms consistent with sexual assault” (meaning “it’s possible she was raped”). Some of the symptoms consistent with sexual assault (bruising or genital or rectal trauma) are not exclusively caused by a sexual assault.

    If the doctor’s opinion was that her injuries were due to a sexual assault, he would have said the injuries were “inconsistent with consensual sex” (meaning “she was raped”).

    There is a distinction between the two. Your assumption is not based on fact.

  76. Raging Moderate
    April 12, 2006 at 5:11 am

    Lauren:

    “It seems clear that they have evidence that the woman was raped”

    I haven’t heard anything that clearly indicates a rape occurred (or didn’t). As I get much of my news from non-American sources, perhaps you know something that I don’t. What facts support your belief that a rape did occur?

    “However, as someone who tends to fall on the side of victims, I’d rather err and be called an idiot by people who enjoy being right”

    As I am relatively new to this site, I had not read the post you referred me to. After reading it, your point of view makes much more sense to me (although it seems to support my theory rather than refute it).

    A white man who is mugged and assaulted by a black man might develop a fear or hatred of all black men as potential assailants, and come to think all black men accused of a crime must be guilty. While understandable, is it healthy?

    A woman who is raped by a man might develop a fear or hatred of all men as potential rapists, and come to think all men accused of rape must be guilty. Again, while it’s understandable, is it healthy?

    I know nothing about rape counselling. Does it include trying to combat a female victim’s possible fear of all men as potential rapists? If so, doesn’t that mean that such a fear is unhealthy? And wouldn’t the assumption that all men accused of rape are guilty be another symptom of that same unhealthy attitude?

    I do not mean to be insulting, and I hope you are not offended by my questions.

  77. April 12, 2006 at 6:11 am

    I haven’t heard anything that clearly indicates a rape occurred (or didn’t). As I get much of my news from non-American sources, perhaps you know something that I don’t. What facts support your belief that a rape did occur?

    Pretty much everything the defense isn’t saying (it’s their job — of course they’d suggest that lack of linking DNA evidence “proves” no rape — nevermind that DNA doesn’t exist in the majority of rape cases where a rape has occurred).

    (although it seems to support my theory rather than refute it).

    I don’t understand the circle jerk for what you term healthiness. I personally don’t see someone violently assaulted saying, “You know, that was fucked up, but I’m not going to take any logical precautions, having been through this illogical act, to protect myself.” People who go through traumatic incidents generally don’t walk away unscathed. I’ve already been clear in saying that I believe we’re all biased, so what gives?

    I know nothing about rape counselling. Does it include trying to combat a female victim’s possible fear of all men as potential rapists?

    No, it deals with rape triggers and generally trying to convince the victim not to blame herself for a crime she didn’t commit, since most rape victims blame themselves.

    However, assuming you are an adult with enough free time to post on blogs, you are presumably able to look up the answers to your “know nothing” questions for yourself.

  78. Nina
    April 12, 2006 at 7:41 am

    You know, the prosecuter was the first one to throw around the word “conclusive” here. He was the one who couldn’t shut up for five minutes about how this round of DNA testing would conclusively prove this woman’s innocence and those boys’ guilt.

    The prosecuter is to blame for the publicity and the turmoil that’s going on in the area and on campus.

    Funny how he all of a sudden, now that the DNA didn’t give him his conclusive evidence, finds it “inappropriate” to discuss such matters.

    BOTH the boys and the woman are innocent until proven – PROVEN – guilty in this country.

    Frankly, the prosecuter should have shut his big fat mouth from the get-go. If this woman was indeed raped and if there is no trial or if there is no prosecution of her rapists, the blame lies directly at his feet.

    In a DNA world, no jury is going to convict this woman without DNA evidence ESPECIALLY when the prosectuer started by claiming that the DNA tests would conclusively prove these boys’ guilt. Well, he said it, and the results didn’t conclusively prove the boys’ guilt.

    This is not the fault of those who said “let’s wait and see”. This is the fault of a loudmouth prosecuter who spoke out of turn to serve his own political ends and the people who were so quick to judge these boys as guilty from the beginning.

    A “let’s wait and see until the evidence” attitude hurts no one and actually serves the system of justice this country is founded on. The “let’s hang ’em on our blogs and in the media and let’s make lots of unfounded claims in front of the camera” attitude screws everyone.

    So far there have been no charges filed against anyone and not one single person outside of this woman and those boys knows exactly what happened that night, yet people sure seem to know who’s innocent and who’s guilty and how this (so far non-existant) trial should play out.

    How about everyone stop using innocent people they don’t know to push their agendas and let the system work the way it’s supposed to. Yeah, it’s flawed, yeah, there’s probably no way there will be a fair trial IF it ever goes to trial, but whose fault is that? Not the people who said “let’s wait and see”.

  79. April 12, 2006 at 7:51 am

    A rather long comment of mine is still in moderation from a couple of hours ago. Wake up you northern hemisphereans!

  80. zuzu
    April 12, 2006 at 10:08 am

    BOTH the boys and the woman are innocent until proven – PROVEN – guilty in this country.

    They’re all over 18, so they’re not boys.

  81. johnieB
    April 12, 2006 at 10:08 am

    Lauren,

    I was very moved by your story (link in #57). As a trauma survivor myself, I am impressed with the clarity and fair-mindedness of your comments here. I was a little late for your recent heyday as a blogger here, but this is clear evidence of the praise you get from others I read and respect.

  82. Raging Moderate
    April 12, 2006 at 10:45 am

    “No, it deals with rape triggers and generally trying to convince the victim not to blame herself for a crime she didn’t commit, since most rape victims blame themselves.

    However, assuming you are an adult with enough free time to post on blogs, you are presumably able to look up the answers to your “know nothing” questions for yourself.”

    As you stated that you had recieved rape counseling, I thought that you’d be a better source of information than a web site. A brief internet search revealed the following, which seems to contradict your statement:

    Trauma, such as fear of being alone, fear of men, or sexual problems may be after effects of rape. Counseling is recommended to help you deal with any trauma you may experience. – Psychological Services Center, U of Cincinnati.

    Fear of men. Some women may be fearful and angry at all men. Counseling can be especially helpful in preventing this from becoming a long-lasting problem. – The Center for Women and Families of Eastern Fairfield County.

    Survivors of sexual trauma often experience a variety of fears as a result of the trauma. You may experience fear that the perpetrator will attack you again, or you may fear men, in general. Give yourself time to heal and process your fears with someone you trust. – North Carolina Rape Crisis Volunteers.

    I found several others, but will not quote them here (unless asked to). The common theme is that a fear or hatred of men, while normal and expected, is regarded as “a problem” to be “healed” through counseling (according to many women’s and psychological health groups). If it is a healthy and “logical precaution” why is it to be healed?

    “I’ve already been clear in saying that I believe we’re all biased, so what gives?”

    Yes, we’re all biased. Are you saying an opinion formed by bias is just as valid as an opinion formed by fact?

    “Pretty much everything the defense isn’t saying”

    Methinks thou doth protest too little?

  83. ilyka
    April 12, 2006 at 11:26 am

    If the doctor’s opinion was that her injuries were due to a sexual assault, he would have said the injuries were “inconsistent with consensual sex” (meaning “she was raped”)

    Finally, my pitiful manner of employment becomes valuable–because no examining physician would ever say any such thing. It is both too definitive and too speculative, and malpractice costs being what they are, no physician who wanted to stay licensed would indulge in it.

    Whether’s it’s a Workers’ Compensation claim or an alleged assault, the physician determines only one thing: Whether the injuries he or she observes, clinically and through testing, are or are not consistent with the patient’s history (the patient’s statements regarding how they occurred).

    That’s it. They would not go beyond that.

  84. ilyka
    April 12, 2006 at 11:33 am

    By the way, RM, you need to learn to distinguish between rational fears and irrational ones. And you need to quit lecturing Lauren about her mental state. That’s offensive on more levels than I can begin to count, and so not “egalitarian.” You’re presuming her interest in this case is born out of an “unhealthy” fear of all men instead of–brace yourself; radical concept ahead–reading what she actually writes, and responding to it.

    Get out of the armchair, shrink. No one paged an amateur psychologist here.

  85. r4d20
    April 12, 2006 at 12:01 pm

    This whole thing is pretty sick

    I was in a fraternity, and NOTHING like this ever went on. Maybe it was because we really were mutli-racial and at a “nerd-school” rather than all white at a school full of “good old boys”. We got strippers for bachelor parties – they performed got paid and went away happy and untouched. They are my brothers, but that makes it even more my responsbility to make sure that I stop them if this happens. If I saw something like this and I’m grabbing my knife and they can stop the behavior or try to stop me from stopping it myself.

    I’ve been defending these dudes from the rape charge, but it is true that – regardless of that – they almost certainly indulged in behavior I would simply not stand. It is a real shame that 43 people could participate without any of them bineg “man enough” to say “fuck this and fuck you guys too”.

  86. Raging Moderate
    April 12, 2006 at 12:10 pm

    “no examining physician would ever say any such thing”

    Not true.

    the exam revealed “multiple lacerations” and “bruises” between the vagina and anal opening. The nurses, noting the subject had not showered or douched since the encounter, described the injuries as genital “trauma” inconsistent with consensual sex.

    In the Virginia case, an RN certified as a sexual assault nurse examiner testified that the injuries she observed on a 15-year-old girl were “consistent with non-consensual intercourse.” In the Jan. 11 ruling, the court concluded that it is permissible to testify that a victim’s injury was inconsistent with consensual sex, because it’s factually based, the Post reported. “But to take it a step further and claim that an injury was consistent with non-consensual intercourse ‘improperly invaded the province of the jury.'”

    That would provide evidence for an expert examiner to testify about recovery from injuries inconsistent with consensual sex.

    testimony by the doctor who examined her at the hospital–that she had multiple scratches to her upper chest and shoulders, bruises on both of her inner thighs, and inflammation in the vaginal area, all of which were inconsistent with consensual sex

    As the medical examiner testified, taping the eyes and mouth, tying the
    hands and legs and weighting the body all point to kidnapping and homicide, and are
    inconsistent with consensual sex and death by natural causes

  87. rayperez
    April 12, 2006 at 12:14 pm

    please tell me why you are so invested in this case. why are feminists so invested. why are some in the black community so invested, particularly its self appointed leadership? why is the DA so invested? i guess when you all jump to “conclusions” illogical as they may be, because they vindicate some delusional “feelings” you have about american society, and then you are made to look like fools when real evidence comes in, even though that evidence is modern scientific forensic evidence, oh yeah, but we don’t need your white rascist mysoginstic modern science! because as the DA said, “in the dark ages we didn’t have science to do policing, and we still got prosecutions all the time, we’ll get our prosecution, all you invested quasi-marxist social justice freaks, don’t get your panties in a bunch, you’ll get your poster boys, facts be damned!”

    Justice may be blind – but she’s not stupid…and i’m offended that you feminists think she is? is this some sort of feminist chauvinism? the feminists women are to dumb to get basic science? that’s pretty sad and you should be ashamed of yourselves.

  88. Joey
    April 12, 2006 at 12:25 pm

    I’m a little late to this thread, but has anyone noted that the reason the Durham DA may be keeping this case alive is that he’s UP FOR RE-ELECTION IN THREE WEEKS in a county with a heavy black population?

    A lot more here from a Durham-based blogger and Duke instructor:

    http://blog.lordsutch.com/

  89. Andreas
    April 12, 2006 at 12:27 pm

    (1) How long did the victim wait before getting a forensic rape exam? Was it more than 72 hours? If it was, then a forensic rape exam is — while not useless — unlikely to turn up a great deal of usable evidence, especially if she’s showered, brushed her teeth, or changed her clothes.

    (2) Did any of the players ejaculate? Semen is the best source of foreign genetic material. If they didn’t ejaculate — and if degrading the victim, not sexual pleasure, was the purpose of the rape, they might well not have — then getting foreign genetic material would depend on whether they left flakes of skin or hair. Getting genetic material out of hair often requires the entires shaft of the hair, plus part of the follicle.

    (3) This is both technical and unpleasant to talk about, but some reports have indicated that there was anal penetration. The rectum is full of several different things that make PCR difficult: first, lots of bacterial DNA; second, lots of enzymes designed to inhibit cell division; third, proteases, DNAses, and other enzymes left over from the rest of the digestive system that quickly degrade genes. While you can get some genetic material from pre-ejaculate from the vagina, it’s very difficult to get it from the anus.

    The fact that they didn’t find any genetic material from the players doesn’t mean that she’s lying. The real world isn’t CSI: there are real issues that can prevent the gathering of DNA evidence, and when a proseuctor can’t get DNA evidence, they just have to soldier on without it. Her story is, on its face, credible. Though this is a blow to her credibility, and a blow to the prosecutability of the case, this is not at all determinative.

    — ACS

  90. April 12, 2006 at 12:30 pm

    “They’re all over 18, so they’re not boys.”

    That’s a really imprtant point to bring up. Glad to see you’re not stuck on semantics.

  91. rayperez
    April 12, 2006 at 12:45 pm

    wait..i love how the csi effect is being brought up in this case. it is usually used to describe the unrealistically high expectations of the jurors with regard to the evidence. hmm. and in this case so far, what has been the evidence? oh yeah a claim, and verbal “assaults” in the heat of the moment? unless you guys know something i don’t which may be possible. but the only evidence i know of so far is DNA evidence (or the lack there of, even under fingernails, on her person, etc.) and when compared to her description of events…seems highly suspiscious. be a little critical…it shouldn’t be hard for you critical theorist femmes…or should it?

  92. Gabriel Malor
    April 12, 2006 at 12:47 pm

    Her story is, on its face, credible. Though this is a blow to her credibility, and a blow to the prosecutability of the case, this is not at all determinative.

    Andreas, this (and your whole comment) were excellent summations of the type of questions and discussion that fairly follow from the news that no DNA matches were found. Thank you.

    Count me with him (or her). ::Mal points to Andreas::

  93. Andreas
    April 12, 2006 at 12:58 pm

    Ray, you’re full of shit.

    The alternate theory in this case is that — what — she slipped in the shower, fell on a shampoo bottle, and tore her vaginal walls? That she tore off her own fake fingernails and left them in the bathroom for the police to find in a clever attempt to frame these guys for rape? That she ran away from her payment in order to leave incriminating evidence at the lacrosse house? That she punched herself in the inner thighs to leave bruises?

    Having seen multi-perpetrator rape cases go down, I’d wait for two things:

    (1) Though it appears that the accused in this case have a good defense attorney — and that might keep them in line — this sort of case frequently turns into a circular firing squad. If I were the police, I’d bring everyone back in for a second round of interviews. Remember, the final police report hasn’t even been released.

    (2) The victim says that the perpetrators were part of the Lacrosse team, but that they told her that they were part of the Track team. It would not surprise me if the victim was wrong, and that the perpetrators were in fact outside the pool of Lacrosse players that they tested.

    Prosecution screwed up by jumping the gun and assuming that the DNA test would come back right. As my partner works in a lab doing, essentially, the same type of test, I happen to know that it’s real easy to fuck up testing, especially when you’re dealing with small samples — like the sort of samples that would accrete underneath the fingernails.

    — ACS

  94. zuzu
    April 12, 2006 at 1:08 pm

    RM, none of the examples you cite contradict ilyka’s point whatsoever.

    Ilyka stated that the physician (and nurses, as you may know, are not physicians) will state that the injuries are or are not consistent with the patient’s reporting of their cause. They can put it two ways — consistent with sexual assault, or inconsistent with consensual sex. What they will not do is say that the woman was raped, which is what you claim they’re saying by using the consistent with/inconsistent with formula, and which you are wrong about.

    In any event, for all your reliance on semantics, you’re reacting to reporting of what the ER doctors found, not the actual statements of the examiners (and your examples do the same).

  95. April 12, 2006 at 1:36 pm

    We seem to be doing a lot of back-and-forth about whether or not these “boys” are innocent. To clarify my position, the purpose of this post was simply to point out that it’s a wee bit hypocritical to argue “Let’s wait and see” and then jump on the “They’re innocent!” bandwagon and argue that they’ve been “cleared” just because their defense attorney says so.

    Again, as I wrote in the post,

    There’s obviously a lot we don’t know. This obviously is not good for the prosecution, and I’m not posting this to make the point that there’s no way that these men are innocent. A more comprehensive follow-up post about all the issues this raises will be coming in the next day or so

    I think that this case raises a lot of important issues that need to be discussed. We’ve done a good job of talking about them here — race, class, privilege, gender, sexual violence — but when the conversation turns into “They’re innocent” “No they’re not” we lose a lot of that.

    Our justice system is working to figure out whether they’re guilty or not. That said, our justice system is far from perfect — and far from just. Only 2% of rapes result in convictions. This case brings up a lot of things that are worth talking about, besides our opinions of whether or not these men are guilty. I don’t think we’ve “convicted” anyone here; I don’t think that we need to exonerate anyone here, either. We can discuss the relevant issues in depth without doing either. (And considering that we’re a blog, and not a court of law, it would be difficult to do either).

  96. April 12, 2006 at 1:38 pm

    ACS –

    Regarding point 2 you made on post 93:

    I think you’ve made this point before (or someone else did) and I find it far-fetched. Why would the lacrosse players allow their names to be dragged through the mud (and forfiet their season, allow their coach to resign) in order to protect a few who weren’t their own?

  97. rayperez
    April 12, 2006 at 1:55 pm

    strippers have bruises on their inner-thighs all the time from pole dancing etc. everyone knows she was in the house. do you know what the nature, degree, etc. of the vaginal trauma is, where was that info released? as to your “she said track”?, maybe they should dna test the whole school. maybe pigs have wings. but, wait, where have you read that there was any unidentified dna on the victim at all? it seems like if these guys were so smart and premeditated they wouldn’t have done what has been reported, (below included with reports of the affidavits.)

    If they were so concerned with not leaving dna when they were strangling and raping her and she was struggling so hard her fake fingernails ripped off, they probably wouldn’t have left that stuff behind. if anyone had opportunity to premeditate according to reports, it was the alleged victim. keep developing your imagination though andrea, you could be the next jk rowling.

    The below quotes are taken from msnbc, newsweek, cbs before the no dna spin:

    “Within minutes of breaking free of the house, the woman was driven to a nearby supermarket where an employee called 911, according to police.”

    “According to the affidavit of a Durham, N.C., police officer, one of the strippers, an African-American woman, told the police she had been raped, sodomized, strangled and beaten by three of the partygoers.”

    “Two males … pulled her into the bathroom. Someone closed the door to the bathroom where she was and said, ‘sweet heart you can’t leave.’ The victim stated she tried to leave and the three males force fully held her legs and arms and sexually assaulted her” for about half an hour as she was “hit, kicked and strangled,” according to the police affidavit, which only uses first names. The affidavit does not say what happened to the second dancer. Police are investigating the crimes of first degree forcible rape, first degree kidnapping, first degree forcible sexual offense, common-law robbery and felonious strangulation.”

    “But if the three lacrosse captains who occupy the house had anything to hide, they didn’t act like it. They cooperated in the search and voluntarily went down to the police station to give statements, without lawyers present. Their offer to take a lie-detector test was rebuffed by police. No one accompanied her into the bathroom, the players told police. Defense lawyer Cheshire says, “Evidence I’ve heard indicates that the accuser was acting as if she was inebriated by some substance at the party.”

  98. zuzu
    April 12, 2006 at 1:57 pm

    Why would the lacrosse players allow their names to be dragged through the mud (and forfiet their season, allow their coach to resign) in order to protect a few who weren’t their own?

    Because they were at the party themselves, and the minute they admit that they knew something was going on and they didn’t do anything about it, they open themselves up for a world of trouble.

  99. April 12, 2006 at 2:04 pm

    Zuzu –

    I’d take a world of trouble over a universe of trouble any day of the week.

    Having been a lacrosse player (at a Div I school) and in a fraternity, I’ve been to my share of parties where strippers have been present. If one or two ‘outsiders’ do happen to be there (a rarity, I assure you), they don’t make trouble for their hosts.

    This conspiracy theory asks for just a bit too much in the way of suspension of disbelief. It’s an interesting theory, but don’t think it holdsmuch water.

    -CS

  100. rayperez
    April 12, 2006 at 2:11 pm

    jill, that’s my point…why are these groups so invested in these high profile cases? it seems obvious, because it happens so often, that they jump for joy, jump to the conclusion, and convict the accused in the realm of public awareness as the symbol of all that is wrong in american society as a whole, as being rascist and misogynistic and oppressive etc., just because most people, women and minorities included don’t quite buy your wacked out social and gender theories. look in the mirror ms. broader issues/implications. what is the broader issue of someon lying becaused she gets pissed off at someone(s) and opportunistic individuals/groups trying to hype it all up before the facts come in to advance their own cause/career/revolution…hmm…now that’s a theory.

  101. Lauren
    April 12, 2006 at 2:12 pm

    Funny that nobody asks Colin why he’s so invested in this case, but feminists are suspect for their inherent and unhealthy bias.

  102. Magis
    April 12, 2006 at 2:13 pm

    With regard to the “why would the lacrosse players….” question.

    Let’s flip that around, shall we?

    Now why would a dancer who makes her living off frat boys raise a stink if there wasn’t something pretty bad to raise a stink about? Can’t be good for business, can it?

    Furthermore, you gotta know women in this trade have to put up with a lot of bullshit from time to time including some unpaid for touchy-feely. Exotic dancers are generally not ultra-sensitive. The rules of what is allowed and what is not are generally made abundantly clear before the night starts.

    I don’t know what happened. But, if I were a bettin’ man….

  103. zuzu
    April 12, 2006 at 2:17 pm

    This conspiracy theory asks for just a bit too much in the way of suspension of disbelief. It’s an interesting theory, but don’t think it holdsmuch water.

    Obviously, you don’t watch much Law & Order.

  104. April 12, 2006 at 2:43 pm

    Sorry, Zuzu. I didn’t realize we were taking our cues from television procedurals.

    Magis – I agree. The accusations should be taken with absolute seriousness.

    And Lauren – I’m invested in this case because it hits close to home. Your clever retort to my post about lynching the accused was wholly unbased, as I’ve never publicly or privately brought the accuser’s race, sex, or profession into the arguement. If those accused are guilty, then I hope they are punished. That said, I sincerely hope the allegations prove false because – I don’t know – I’d be glad to know that someone wasn’t raped.

    -CS

  105. rayperez
    April 12, 2006 at 2:48 pm

    i don’t think you saw “defenders” until the likes of the reverend jesse jackson swooped in to “cash in” on this. and even then it was much more wait and see…but at least now we have seen something…that’s much much more than could be said in the opposite.

    as for the why would she hurt her business, i don’t know. but then, why would she have done this?:

    “According to a 2002 police report, the woman, currently a 27-year-old student at North Carolina Central University, gave a taxi driver a lap dance at a Durham strip club. Subsequently, according to the report, she stole the man’s car and led deputies on a high-speed chase that ended in Wake County.

    Apparently, the deputy thought the chase was over when the woman turned down a dead-end road near Brier Creek, but instead she tried to run over him, according to the police report. Additional information notes that her blood-alcohol level registered at more than twice the legal limit.”

    sorry..is that attacking the victim?

  106. Medicine Man
    April 12, 2006 at 3:02 pm

    Funny that nobody asks Colin why he’s so invested in this case, but feminists are suspect for their inherent and unhealthy bias.

    Heh, good question Lauren. It seems to me that some people are shocked, *just shocked*, to browse onto a “possibly” feminist blog and find that the meddling females there are for some reason all worked up about irrelevant topics like… you know… rape. It seems to me that their interest would be pretty obvious, but then I sometimes miss the nuances of these long debates, so don’t mind me. :)

    On the bright side, I think I’m getting onto the same page with Ilyka now, concerning nay sayers squatting on other people’s websites. When I first read her comments on her blog, I thought “Give it a rest. If you can’t handle dissenting opinions, you should just close your blog to the public.”. After reading this thread however, I’m starting to get a specific idea about what she was talking about.

  107. April 12, 2006 at 4:38 pm

    as for the why would she hurt her business, i don’t know. but then, why would she have done this?:

    Well, clearly she deserved whatever she got then. Thank you, and I stand corrected.

  108. Raging Moderate
    April 12, 2006 at 8:07 pm

    ilyka said:

    “no examining physician would ever say any such thing.”

    Perhaps I misunderstood you. I thought you meant a physician would never state that injuries were “inconsistent with consensual sex”.

    After re-reading your post I see that perhaps you were saying that a physician would not say “she was raped”. If that was the case, I agree, but for different reasons: it’s a conclusion to be made by juries, not due to doctor’s fears of malpractice suits. The “she was raped” is just how I would interpret such a statement.

    “You’re presuming her interest in this case is born out of an “unhealthy” fear of all men”

    Not at all. I assume that her interest is born of the fact she wishes to change society for the better. I do however presume that her assumption of the guilt of the accused is based on an unhealthy fear or hatred of all men (quite normal, after what she’s been through), and not on the facts of the case.

    I earlier posted a few links where a fear or hatred of all men after being raped, while nromal, is considered a “problem” or “trauma” to be “healed”. If you could post some that state such a fear is not a mental health problem, is in fact rational, and should not be corrected, I’ll certainly be willing to concede I’m wrong.

    P.S. Egalitarianism provides no guarantee against being offended. That’s political correctness.

  109. April 12, 2006 at 8:17 pm

    I do however presume that her assumption of the guilt of the accused is based on an unhealthy fear or hatred of all men (quite normal, after what she’s been through), and not on the facts of the case.

    Thank you, Dr. Pepper. How much do I owe you?

    I’ve stated plainly several times that I am biased in favor of victim’s rights (on any crime, mind you) because I would rather be wrong than victimize a victim a second time. You call this a mental health problem that should be corrected, while I call it a political choice.

    Can you fathom the dissonance here?

    Egalitarianism provides no guarantee against being offended.

    Egalitarianism says nothing about diagnosing strangers on the internet either, but go for it, dude.

  110. April 12, 2006 at 8:19 pm

    One final question before I ditch this thread:

    Why is it that we yell “innocent until proven guilty” for alleged rapists and “lying until proven truthful” for alleged rape victims?

  111. zuzu
    April 12, 2006 at 8:44 pm

    Because they’re golddigging sluts, silly.

    After re-reading your post I see that perhaps you were saying that a physician would not say “she was raped”. If that was the case, I agree, but for different reasons: it’s a conclusion to be made by juries, not due to doctor’s fears of malpractice suits. The “she was raped” is just how I would interpret such a statement.

    Well, no. They don’t say “she was raped” because their opinions as to the ultimate cause of the injuries can’t be admitted in court. It’s the jury that makes the determination whether the victim was raped and whether the defendant was the rapist. The examining doctor or nurse offers fact evidence based on their examination and observation and experience.

  112. Andreas
    April 12, 2006 at 9:24 pm

    Lauren:

    Not to criticize you, but ‘innocent until proven guilty’ implies that that the victim is lying. The problem is that people take the specific guideline we use in the legal system, which works for a legal system, to mean that they can’t use their own fucking judgement to judge whether someone is guitly of rape, which is what they should be doing.

    — ACS

  113. zuzu
    April 12, 2006 at 9:32 pm

    Not to criticize you, but ‘innocent until proven guilty’ implies that that the victim is lying.

    Not necessarily. There can be rock-solid evidence that a crime occurred (say, a corpse tied up with a bullethole in the back of the head), but the person accused of doing it is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

    In that case, whether you got the right person in jail doesn’t change the fact that the victim was murdered. The same thing applies here, or should.

  114. April 12, 2006 at 10:08 pm

    Not to criticize you, but ‘innocent until proven guilty’ implies that that the victim is lying.

    No offense taken. The flipside to the statement is that the victim is incredible.

  115. April 12, 2006 at 11:35 pm

    According to Tucker Carlson, it’s different cause she’s a stripper:

    I’m merely saying that her testimony about matters of sex is to be taken by ordinary commonsense people a little differently than the testimony of someone who isn’t a crypto-hooker.

  116. April 12, 2006 at 11:49 pm

    That’s not quite what I meant, zuzu, Lauren. What I meant is that a lot of people believe that ‘innocent until proven guilty’ is a valid or useful way of looking at crime in the real world; that is, that unless someone is convicted in a court of law, no crime actually occurred. This just isn’t the way the world works. It’s a huge defect

  117. April 13, 2006 at 12:06 am

    That’s not quite what I meant, zuzu, Lauren. What I meant is that a lot of people believe that ‘innocent until proven guilty’ is a valid or useful way of looking at crime in the real world. It’s a huge defect in perception — the belief that ‘innocent until proven guilty’ describes not just justice in a world where the court has limited knowledge, but the way the world works itself. It’s as though they believe that the court itself retroactively determines reality rather than just making absolutely sure that what happened did happen.

    This is an issue separate from the “sluts make false accusations” and “Gus from CSI got better results, so she must be lying!!!1!!” bullshit that half the posters on this thread seem to be peddling.

    I was trying to make a sort of narrow point, but I think it came out broader than it should’ve.

    — ACS

  118. Raging Moderate (aka Dr. Pepper)
    April 13, 2006 at 4:06 am

    “I’ve stated plainly several times that I am biased in favor of victim’s rights”

    I am in favor of victim’s rights too. I believe any accuser has the right to have the authorities fully investigate any crime he /she alleges.

    I don’t see how assuming one accused of a crime to be guilty is a victim’s right. Investigating an allegation before declaring it to be true is not victimizing a victim again. It is the skepticism required to find the truth (some accusers lie, most accused lie). If the authorities dismiss the allegations out of hand and refuse to investigate, that would be victimizing the victim again.

    “You call this a mental health problem that should be corrected, while I call it a political choice.

    Why is it that we yell “innocent until proven guilty” for alleged rapists and “lying until proven truthful” for alleged rape victims?”

    For many of those who do so, they call it a political choice. I call it a mental health problem that should be corrected.

  119. Raging Moderate (aka Dr. Pepper)
    April 13, 2006 at 4:13 am

    P.S. Thanx for the back and forth, Lauren. I’ll go bug some bible-thumpin’ homo-haters for a while (the ones who don’t believe computers are evil).

    Take care.

  120. Andreas
    April 13, 2006 at 10:43 am

    Oops. Posting from my partner’s computer. Sorry about the name mix-up.

    — ACS

  121. johnieB
    April 13, 2006 at 11:52 am

    Raging Moderate,
    “I call it a mental health problem that should be corrected.”
    I have dealt with a similiar issue for the past forty years. Characterizing it as a “mental health problem” tends towards a “blame the victim” definition. It ignores the social dimensions of becoming “normal” in what, in many ways, is a dysfunctional society: patriarchal and imperialist.

    Confronting that dysfunction or, as I prefer, evil, directly, is not a universal experience. I find the designation “mental health problem” for those who have had such experiences an arrogant putdown, which obscures rather than promotes understanding and blocks constructive change.
    If you don’t get it, as I suspect may be the case, I am willing to take this off-thread so as not to make this discussion overly long.

  122. April 13, 2006 at 6:57 pm

    johnieB:

    When I said ““I call it a mental health problem that should be corrected”, I was referring to people who assume that the accuser is “lying until proven truthful” as well as those who assume the accused are guilty.

    Switching “mental health problem” to “dysfunction” works for me.

    I’d be happy to continue the discussion off-thread. How?

  123. Mike
    April 14, 2006 at 7:21 am

    The third poster nailed it. Jill can hardly criticise people who jump on the “OMG liar!” bandwagon before all the evidence is in when she jumped on the “OMG guilty!” bandwagon with even less evidence. Neither of these extreme views of the case are creditable.

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