Guilty Or Not, Derrick Rose Is Rape Culture Personified » VSB

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Guilty Or Not, Derrick Rose Is Rape Culture Personified

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I wish I could say I was surprised that Derrick Rose and his cohorts were found not liable on all counts in the civil trial accusing them of rape, but I’m not. Disappointed, certainly. I’ve indicated previously that I believe he did it, and in following all of the details of the case — from the motions filed to the texts exchanged — that conviction continues to hold true. But I’m not surprised.

I’m sure that there are people who will accept this “not guilty” verdict at face value – a legal term which, when determining someone’s actual “innocence” means practically nothing; infinitesimal in its significance. Still, the fact remains that the burden of proof in rape cases is generally high, albeit lower in a civil case. There was no DNA evidence, and if more than 10 people were able to surmise the exact same interpretation from a series of text exchanges than half of the debates on Black Twitter would be dead in the water.

What continues to be jarring to me, however, is that I can fully examine a case in which the accused has an admittedly tenuous relationship with the meaning of the word “consent” and backed by a legal team who has spent the last several months executing every possible combination of slut-shaming like it’s a freakin’ game of Madden, and still be wholly expectant that the verdict would be a toss-up at best. As messy as this case seemed — from the TMZ involvement to exposés on sites like “Baller Alert” — the core circumstances of the case were not altogether different from the majority of rape cases involving a friend, acquaintance, or current partner. Alcohol is involved, the details are fuzzy, the victim takes some time to report, and it ultimately comes down to a matter of competing narratives. It’s the case with countless cases — including the Nate Parker case of current infamy — yet no matter how many times it is shown to be the standard when it comes to acquaintance rape, these are the same details that are constantly used to detract from the validity of the victim’s case.

They were both drinking.”

“She interacted with the accused after.”

“She waited weeks, or even months, to report.” 

As much as we like to continue to tell ourselves that our understanding of consent and rape culture has evolved – and it certainly has for some of us with names other than Derrick – we still haven’t done nearly enough to address this many-headed beast. Whether it’s 17 years ago or 17 days ago, rape – and to a greater extent, violence against women – continues to be a violation that is annotated way more by the miscarriages of justice tied to it than by landmark progress. The need for rape accusations to be clear cut and not be marred by any sort of gray area or doubt will continue to undermine the reality of most sexual assault victims.

The dust will settle and Rose’s life will go back to business as usual. He’ll prepare to start the season as the presumed starting point guard for my home team, and I will continue to hope that Brandon Jennings replaces him. But moreover, the Jane Doe who tried to find some justice for what she many others believes happened to her will have to try to hit reset on her life and move forward after having her truth denied to her. And somewhere, a victim who may have been on the fence on coming out with her story, may have decided to continue to stay silent. Because the justice system in its current iteration is not made for radical progress, much less any true definition of justice. We see further reinforcement of this in practice every day.

Shamira Ibrahim

Shamira is a twentysomething New Yorker who likes all things Dipset. You can join her in waxing poetically about chicken, Cam'ron, and gentrification (gotta have some balance) under the influence of varying amounts of brown liquor at her semi-monthly blog, shamspam.tumblr.com

  • RaeNBow

    idk… i saw a competent legal team put on a good defense. they created doubt. which led to the plaintiff not being able to prove their case. i wouldn’t call that a miscarriage of justice.

    it is a sad reality that the credibility of an accuser is always an issue. mental state (including inebriation), as well as behavior before and after that may offer other motivations or competing theories. In a sexual assault case this will naturally turn to a prior sexual relationship with between accuser and accused. this doesnt make it right, but i dont think the legal system should take such a hit in these cases. i mean, it aint perfect. that is for sure. but we have to allow for a defense.

    • mr. steal your costco samples

      just doubt ain’t enough in civil, though, gotta be 50%+, not beyond reasonable doubt

      • RaeNBow

        not to be rude, but your reply seems to be derived from a misunderstanding of my comment. your comment also fails to make evidentiary standards clear. since lay persons will read your comment you should really make it clear that you are talking about different standards. fully compare/contrast preponderance of the evidence, and reasonable doubt. heck, throw in clear and convincing in there for good measure.

        • mr. steal your costco samples

          i should totally get disbarred for not setting forth fully my understanding of evidentiary standards in a comment thread. you right.

          • RaeNBow

            no, you should just make things clearer because lay persons are also reading comments. i mean, EYE knew where you were going, but not everyone reading will get the distinction right away

            • mr. steal your costco samples

              cool and fair.

              in truth, I hate the outcome and D-rose but can’t speak to whether it’s a system issue. I’m usually reluctant to go there.

              I also don’t really believe there are many people in the professional extortionist plaintiff tribe, so I tend to believe the victims as a matter of course. who wants to become famous / rich that way?

              • RaeNBow

                just based off of personal experience, I know at least one professional athlete who is extremely wealthy. (top 10 draft pick wealthy). and the types of things that women will do for money baffle me. because of this, i just wouldn’t put anything past anyone. it has definitely made me more skeptical about these types of cases.

                but in general, i really try to start at neutral. like, i don;t want to prematurely judge a defendant just because of the nature of the accusation you know? i really believe in the system that plaintiffs/prosecutor have to PROVE their case/ not defendants disprove it… and again, i know it isnt perfect (especially in operation, and especially for people of color) but by design, i think it is a good system

                • mr. steal your costco samples

                  i hear you. i come from an exec comp background and so some of the things those cats do to / for women are just as baffling to me. i always counsel that if you need new ladyfriends, take your rich azz and get your wife a wig and a personal ttrainer.

                  hard to start at neutral but definitely needed for the system to work

              • Brooklyn_Bruin

                ” I also don’t really believe there are many people in the professional extortionist plaintiff tribe”

                Naive isn’t just a bottle of French spring water.

                If there is a system, people will game it.

                • mr. steal your costco samples

                  even given that, public humiliation in exchange for a little cash is not a win

                  • RaeNBow

                    no to you. but to some people its no big deal (see: ALLLLLLLLL the Kardashians and the people like them. which is more of the American population than we can even really imagine)

                    • Brooklyn_Bruin

                      By the logic of Jennifer Lawrence, Kim was intimately violated with the release of that tape, but she turned it into a fortune.

                    • Kas

                      And still can’t stay clothed.

                  • D A

                    Ha!! That’s not what I get from “reality” TV.

              • outlyer06

                don’t be naive.. we live in a society where lazy people will do anything for money

                • mr. steal your costco samples

                  i don’t think that many tho. that’s all.

              • Duff Soviet Union

                Exactly. R*pe and death threats tend not to the kind of “attention” people are looking for. Can anyone actually name someone who became famous for being a r*pe victim?

            • Cheech

              I dunno, Costco’s line was just about how I’d explain it to a layman (or jury). But then again I was about to start in on res judicata a little bit ago downthread.

              • RaeNBow

                LMBO! i prefer to draw the distinction outright. telling a civil jury that reasonable doubt is for criminal cases and to completely forget about what they’ve seen on TV to re-set expectations.

                then i’d go with the football explanation. let them know that we’re going by ‘Preponderance’ and explain to them that it means the plaintiff has to prove their version of events by 50% plus. illustrate that it means moving the ball just a HAIR past the 50 yard line. doesnt even need to reach the 51 yrd line. just extend the nose of the ball past 50. and if they fail to do it? not liable.

                • mr. steal your costco samples

                  not to be rude but there is no 51 yard line.

                  i kid, my M&A prof explained majority the same way

                  • RaeNBow

                    LMBO you have me in stitches today

                  • Kas

                    You three are killing me

                • Cheech

                  Whereas i’m on the criminal side. Forget that 50 yard line stuff. You’ve got to get ALL the way to the end zone. You need TV replay to see if the ball broke the goal line? That’s reasonable doubt.

                  • RaeNBow

                    EGGGGZZZZAAAACTTLLYYYY (i just imagined appellate review like the ref standing at the replay box / booth review) we’ve taken this too far LOL

                  • Blueberry01

                    I really like that analogy.

                    Are you a Redskins fan, Cheech?

            • Blueberry01

              EYE got it, too, Rae.

    • Diego Duarte

      Lawyer here. From my perspective I think s lut-shaming shouldn’t be allowed as a tactic for defense. Is it relevant that a victim had s ex with other people before the perp? No. As a matter of fact, rape can even happen between spouses. Bringing up the victims’ s ex life into question is further demeaning and humiliating a victim of rape.

      Now the part with the alcohol is a bit tricky. According to criminal doctrine (Roxin) one can drink to a point where one is not fully conscious of what they are doing and therefore act without will or intent. However, reaching that point is very hard, and normally there is still will and intent present in the majority of cases when people are intoxicated. Based on this alone, the defense that “they were both drunk” comes off as absolutely insufficient.

      Where they both drunk to the same degree? Who initiated the engagement? Was there resistance from the victim? All of these are relevant, but the problem is, outside of witness testimony, it’s difficult to prove that there was deliberate intent to take advantage of intoxication, by one of the parties.

      IMO, the best that can be done in these sort of cases is completely disallow the questioning of the presumed victim’s character and integrity. You can dispute evidence and testimony, sure, but you can’t attack the victim.

      • I have a question. In cases where there’s a third party to the interaction who observed the victim, how key is their testimony. It appeared to be a huge deal with this particular case.

        • Brooklyn_Bruin

          *waits for evidence fascists to quote hearsay rules*

          • Cheech

            Bruin, are you a lawyer too?

            • mr. steal your costco samples

              who isn’t?

              • Cheech

                That seems to be a really good question about now.
                *gavels the inn of court to order*

              • RaeNBow

                LMBO. right

            • Brooklyn_Bruin

              I watch a lot of Law and Order!

          • mr. steal your costco samples

            fk is hearsay? I stopped trucking with that when the prof was like “yo, now there’s TRIPLE hearsay” and I laughed out loud like HAAAAAAAAAAAAAA good one prof and he ice-grilled me

            • Cheech

              “Not offered for the truth, your honor” works about 2/3 of the time.

        • Cheech

          In cases of intoxication and impaired recollection I’d ordinarily say it’s key. But you have to discount for the third person’s bias and interest, etc.

        • fedup

          I think it matters none. You might have observed that the victim was drunk, but still leanin all over ole boy, but that doesn’t mean that, at some point later on, she didn’t sober up enough to resist, or say no, and yet he kept going anyway.

        • Diego Duarte

          I didn’t follow this case in particular, but it depends largely on several factors:

          1- Was the witness intoxicated as well? Is his testimony reliable?

          2- How much of the interaction did he witness? How much of what he “saw” was his perception alone, or his take on the matter?

          3- How many other witnesses were there? Is he the sole witness?

          Testimony is just a tool, it’s up to the prosecutor and the attorney for the defense to use it as they see fit. Obviously it helps when you have a witness in your favor, but you have to know how to guide his narrative so that he won’t end up contradicting himself and being a detriment to the case, instead of helping.

      • Brooklyn_Bruin

        If I recall in this case, the plaintiffs team put her character at issue.

        I think the real death knell here was the discussion of the plasma TV.

      • RaeNBow

        hey Diego. I’m also an attorney. while I think its a sad reality (as i mentioned in the first comment) it IS the reality that credibility is always at issue. it IS demeaning. it IS humiliating. but i also think it is relevant to a defense.

        i ALSO think the degree of inebriation is SOOOOO hard to factor in. when both people have been drinking, who bears the onus to be the “responsible” one? who is “less” drunk? its such a slippery slope.

        but i respectfully disagree about not allowing the presumed victim (or in this case, plaintiff) to be let off the hook in terms of having their character and integrity questions.

        • Diego Duarte

          Perhaps I didn’t fully express myself well. When I make a reference to questioning a victim’s character and integrity I’m referencing the all-too-common practice of s lut-shaming, by trying to infer consent from the victim’s se xual life, or her attire.

          Clothes and previous circumstances are not consent. Judges need to understand that. There will always be difficulty proving that rape took place, and the burden of proof is mostly on the victim. We do not need to tip the scale further on favor of the abuser (especially considering only 2% of rape allegations are false) by allowing the victim to be s lut-shamed.

      • cyanic

        I hate the term s l u t shaming. If you’re a s l u t that’s a shameful thing. And men are the biggest s l u t s in the world.

        • RaeNBow

          oh em gee i just DOUBLED over in laughter. i mean, i laugh at inappropriate things. but it just read so funny. “If you’re a S L U T that’s a shameful thing” <– so accurate, so true

        • Brooklyn_Bruin

          I celebrate them. Now that Hill dawg started that nasty woman meme and with a ton of chicas going as Harley Quinn this year…

        • fedup

          I think the word S L U T is shameful it is used to shame people who do not behave in a manner consistent with someone else’s personal values. Being someone whose actions are considered S L U T T Y is not shameful. Shame stems from the person doing the accusing, but the accused may or may not care about other people’s opinions. Based on this logic, IMO, the word is really meaningless. But its used as a tool to hurt people, hence the term S L U T shaming.

          Are we in agreement?

          • cyanic

            No. It’s an oxymoron. Like being late to your own funeral.

            • fedup

              Because a S L U T has no shame?

              • cyanic

                Being a s l u t is shameful. Like being a murderer or a rapist.

                • mr. steal your costco samples

                  nah

                • fedup

                  Wrong! Bigly, wrong.

                  • cyanic

                    Listen owning your ality in a puritanical society means you won’t be policed by language.

                    • fedup

                      Ok. Now it sounds like you’re playing both sides of the fence.

                      Maybe I am just slow on the uptake, but it sounds like, on the one hand, you think being a S L U T is a shameful thing for a person to be (you believe there to be something wrong with a person who sleeps with alot of people), and, on the other hand, people shouldn’t get bent out of shape if they are S L U T-shamed if they believe there is nothing wrong with their behavior.

                      Sounds like “Don’t be mad cause I called you a S L U T; that’s just my opinion!”

                    • cyanic

                      Being rut is shameful therefore the term is ridiculous. Owning who you are despite what the world thinks or says is a small price to pay.

                    • fedup

                      Listen my friend. The word “shame” requires someone to pass a moral judgement on someone else. Therefore, S L U T-shaming cannot be an oxymoron. That’s just your opinion. I sleep with people who want to sleep with me. There may be alot of those people, but, so what? Shame only comes into the picture because you can’t keep your nose out of my business and want to assert your moral superiority over me. The mere fact that I have or do sleep with alot of people does not, by itself, cause me to be a S L U T. I only become one in your eyes, as a result of your biased judgement.

                      You are, in fact, wrong about S L U T-shaming being an oxymoron. Period.

                  • Blueberry01

                    My ears get hot everytime he says that!

                • TheOtherJerome

                  “Being a s l u t is shameful. Like being a murderer or a rapist.”

                  Thats the dumbest fucking thing i’ve read today

                  • cyanic

                    Laughs.

                    • Kylroy

                      I hate the damn word myself, I don’t think it’s shameful to have a varied sexual history, but even if you do it’s got to be a sin on par with alcoholism or other self-harm rather than someone who assaults other people.

                    • cyanic

                      I’m gay. I’m a chex outlaw anyway. I hate PC language for everything. Every group deserves to have their voice heard and the world is unfair. No. There are a handful of isms that cause major harm sexism and racism.

                    • Blueberry01

                      You feel like an outlaw because your gay? Hmmm…so are you gay because you intentionally try not follow social conventions or because you prefer men over women?

                    • cyanic

                      I want men above everything else one could sleep with.

                    • Blueberry01

                      So, have you ever loved a woman, but preferred men chexually?

                    • cyanic

                      I believe all men need women regardless of orientation. I believe the biblical narrative that women were created to help mankind through motherhood and sisterhood and as wives. I need them for the first two not the last.

                    • Blueberry01

                      Interesting perspective. So, how does having a man as a partner differ than having a woman as a partner? Wait, I think I’m reaching. Have you been with a woman before? (I hope I’m not being too intrusive. If so, feel free to not respond.)

                    • cyanic

                      I’m a real gay. Not one of those tried to be with a girl to please my family gays.

                    • Blueberry01

                      So, I’m curious, what does having a man as a partner provide that having a woman as one cannot? (Obviously, we’re excluding genitalia.)

                    • cyanic

                      Gay people want everything straight people want except their partner is same gender.

                  • Cheech

                    Even on a day covering last night’s debate. This was dumber.

        • miss t-lee

          This dog ain’t hunting.

          • cyanic

            Like lipstick on a pig.

            • miss t-lee

              As you can tell, I don’t agree.

              • cyanic

                I know. Despite my emotionalism and my desire for a man. I’m still one of them.

                • miss t-lee

                  Exactly.

        • Blueberry01

          Truth. Some men are definitely on the DL with their #s l u twalks.

          Cy, did I ever tell you that you remind me of someone that I used to know?

          • cyanic

            Really? Are you from California?

            • Blueberry01

              No, but the person I’m thinking of, interestingly enough, is from Cali. He’s from L.A.

              Where are you from?

              • cyanic

                LA. Do I remind you of someone who went to school with?

                • Blueberry01

                  This is very interesting. Nah, not at school, I met him last year.

                  What part of L.A. are you from?

                  • cyanic

                    The south bay.

                    • Blueberry01

                      Lol, I don’t know what that means. I’m not too hip on all of the places in L.A. Is that like saying you’re from Inglewood?

                    • cyanic

                      Wood is apart of the south bay.

                    • Blueberry01

                      Ohh…I see. No, he wasn’t from The Wood. He’s from Long Beach.

                      Is that in South Bay, too?

                    • cyanic

                      No. Long Beach is far geographically from the south bay.

      • D A

        Lawyer here as well. I think that there is a trend towards prohibiting prior sexual history of accusers from cross examination that will always be a difficult thing to do.
        1. In most rape cases there are no witnesses and scant physical evidence so the cases turns on whom the jury finds most credible. From a constitutional standpoint in terms of the right to a defense its difficult to test credibility without examining similar circumstances. Even leaving aside cultural biases beyond a reasonable doubt is a hard standard to meet with only credibility in issue. How can character and integrity not be in issue when the case turns on credibility?
        2. Its only too easy for an accuser to open the door to this kind of evidence; “that is not something I would do” naturally leads to “is that so, well tell us about what you do” and the defense has an open door.
        3. Then there is evidence that can be admitted to show fact but not truth which is a difficult distinction for most people to make.

        I think that perhaps removing the jury from rape trials might bring some progress but even that is a two edged sword because it will make weak cases harder to bring and creating separate standards for one particular crime is inherently problematic.

        • RaeNBow

          all of this. but especially #3. like i said, this system ain’t perfect. but what we’ve got is good. especially as it concerns a defendants ability not to be completely railroaded by accusations alone.

          • Diego Duarte

            Except, where rape is concern it’s not good. Only 2% of rape accusations are false (FBI statistics), despite that only 10% of rape reported to law enforcement is brought to trial.

            • Epsilonicus

              Is that because the quality of evidence? Speaking to your second point about cases brought to trial.

              • Diego Duarte

                Quality of the evidence? No, it’s mostly because there is no evidence. I mean, the only way you could gauge or measure how intoxicated a person was during the act would be to jump and test them sometime after the rape, or during the following hours. That’s not usually what happens. By the time the rape has been reported (and most rape isn’t, according to the CDC and the national survey about 90% isn’t reported) the alcohol has been eliminated from the victims’ and the culprits’ blood system.

                How do you prove, without medical evidence, that only one of them was drunk? You can use witness testimony, but rapists tend to take their victims to a secluded place before assaulting them. All the defense has to do is establish reasonable doubt for the perp to walk out.

                • LMNOP

                  Also even if the victim is also physically assaulted, the person can just say “she wanted it rough” and it’s hard to definitively prove that false. Many times there’s not significant physical injury, so that makes it even harder.

        • LegallyClueless

          I agree with this completely.

          And not that this is means much, but I feel the need to add that I am also a lawyer, though since I don’t practice criminal law most of my applicable knowledge still comes from Law & Order.

        • Hmm. Is it possible to tell someone that they don’t have a right to a jury for a criminal charge? How does that mesh with Sixth Amendment and Article 3, Section 2?

          • Cheech

            Ding ding ding.

            Even in federal civil trial you’s have the 7th Am. Dont know about state civil trials, though.

          • D A

            In some matters a defendant can elect to have a bench trial but, of course, that’s not the same as removing the jury. It is however something that comes up in the academic literature.
            There was serious discussion of doing this in England when I was a student there a decade ago.

            I wouldn’t be surprised to see laws like that though its a violation of defendants’ rights. The same is true of the prior sexual history prohibition and mandatory sentences.

        • Diego Duarte

          I think we need to make a distinction between the victim’s integrity and her s ex life. Too many attorneys seem to conveniently confuse both (not accusing you here), as if somehow consent can be inferred from previous se xual encounters with other people. Integrity cannot and should not be inferred from a person’s attire, religious beliefs (or lack of thereof) or s ex life.

          • Cheech

            As is often the case lately, I want to defer to Amber Rose on this. If Nancy Grace or Greta Van Susteren could become ubiquitous in the media, surely we could use Amber’s more on-point perspective.

          • D A

            Unfortunately integrity is the basis of credibility. People must believe someone is trustworthy to find their account true and when those people are strangers they have very little to work with. It almost invites the jury to give their biases full reign. We judge character differently and, for many, sexuality is a part of that.

        • Blueberry01

          What’s the difference between fact and truth?

          • D A

            A statement can be admitted to show the fact that it was made or that A spoke with B but the jury is instructed not to evaluate the content of said statement i.e. whether it was true or what it meant.

            • Blueberry01

              Ahhhh, I see.

              Statement vs Interpretation.

      • Blueberry01

        They brought up Jane Doe’s exes? I thought they only focused on JD and DR’s previous consensual sexual relationship.

        • Diego Duarte

          Did not follow the case, I was speaking in general terms. It’s never okay, acceptable, or even necessary for a legitimate defense, from rape allegations, to bring up the accuser’s s ex life, or to try and misconstrue her attire as consent.

  • With the evidence they had it’s a good thing that Rose was found not liable.
    People do lie. Innocent people are found wrongly liable for crimes. People act as if accusation means automatic guilt. No. If an accuser’s attorney withheld exculpatory evidence I don’t think the accused should be found liable.

    • You do realise that less than 5% of all rape allegations are false right? Marinate of THAT for a bit. Besides WHY would a person subject themselves to the scrutiny that comes with reporting rape in this culture that clearly bolsters it?

      • IDareYou

        21 million dollars

      • The 5% statistic is BS, because it comes from an off-hand quote from one judge in one city. That said, more rigorous analysis still says it’s a small minority of cases, somewhere in the 10-20% range. (Also, the 60% I’ve seen quoted is also BS.)

        • Negro Libre

          I’m all about helping victims, but I don’t know when or how, certain researchers or social scientists convinced themselves that they were somehow able to quantify lying and truth-telling? The premise of the argument, forget the results whether they be 5% or 20%, are massively flawed.

        • LMNOP

          It’s pretty consistently been found to be consistent with the rates of false reports for other crimes, I think.

      • Yes. I realize that few rape charges are proven to be false. But statistics don’t say anything about an individual case. Let’s say that over the years 1% of rape charges are proven to be false, not just unproven but demonstrably false. Instead of a trial we give the defendant a paper bag with 99 one dollar bills and one five dollar bill. We blindfold the defendant and have him pick one bill from the bag. If he picks the five, then he’s not guilty. Otherwise he’s guilty.

        Would that be a fair method of determining guilt? Of course not.
        And that is why talking about the infrequency of proven false rape charges in a particular case doesn’t tell us very much. In Rose’s case there wasn’t enough evidence to find him liable. That doesn’t necessarily tell us anything about the larger issues of sexual assault. It does tell us that for some strange reason Rose has an interest in being intimate with a woman simultaneously along with other men. But that’s his life…

        As far as WHY people lie about rape, I don’t know. I can’t read minds. But I know that some people do indeed lie about it.
        http://www.mlive.com/news/muskegon/index.ssf/2016/10/woman_jailed_after_admitting_s.html

        • Duff Soviet Union

          I actually read something interesting about fake r*pe allegations. For all the “revenge” or “she’s looking for money” fantasies MRA types have, a disproportionate number of fake allegations don’t actually name a specific perpetrator. A lot of them are just women who were doing something they shouldn’t have been doing and need some sort of alibi / excuse.

      • raul

        Welp you just talked yourself in a circle. If the number of false accusations is greater than zero (which it is by your own admission) then your last question doesn’t follow.

    • That last sentence is the truth. That’s a reasonable doubt right there. Personally, I would have just left the jury if I would have found that out. There’s no way in the world any liability would stand, but you’d have to live with someone getting way with $exual assault if you followed the rules. Nope.

  • No one can view any case in a purely objective and impartial manner because we all have biases, whether we recognize them or not. But celebrity sexual assault cases are particularly bad because everybody goes straight to:

    1. She’s lying and after his money
    2. He’s rich and famous, so he doesn’t *need* to rape anybody.

    The whole thing is a mess. And the comments are illustrative of how complicated people like to make consent. IMO, anything less than a sober, enthusiastic yes = NO (unless y’all had an extensive conversation and decided the real safe word is “pineapples”). There are holes in every story, but if someone says they got robbed folks will more or less take it at face value. If you say you got raped, you better have it on camera…..never mind, R. Kelly still got off. Just try not to get raped ladies! (j/k but not really)

    • Val

      “…if someone says they got robbed folks will more or less take it at face value. If you say you got raped, you better have it on camera…..never mind, R. Kelly still got off.”

      Welp.

      • Wasn’t it because the cops forgot to fill out a search warrant form properly or something like that? Sadly, crap like that happens.

        • Val

          Was that it? I don’t know the details. All I know is RKelly should be behind bars.

          • grownandsexy2

            He should have been behind bars a long time ago. He is truly sick, IMO.

        • Brooklyn_Bruin

          If it was a clerical error, he must have had a great defense team. I would imagine that when Rell n’nem get arrested, the paperwork is also sloppy, but their public defender has no time to review with 300 cases to look at

        • Negro Libre

          I remember hearing that the girl in the video actually ended up joining his side or some kind of ludicrous thing in the end.

          • La Bandita

            No she didn’t. She was a little girl and her aunt filled for her. Her aunt had introduced the little girl to him. She was so scared she was going to get in trouble and scared to go against R Kelly. But when then they showed her the video…welp.

    • The whole thing is a mess. And the comments are illustrative of how complicated people like to make consent. IMO, anything less than a sober, enthusiastic yes = NO (unless y’all had an extensive conversation and decided the real safe word is “pineapples”).

      Word. Unless that talk in parentheses happens, that’s exactly the way to go.

    • RewindingtonMaximus

      Sad but unfortunate truth from that last sentence.

    • Negro Libre

      I think there’s two different kind of things:

      The belief issue, I agree, if someone said they got robbed, they believe that a person is likely telling the truth. However, if they say I got robbed by this so and so person, that level of belief by it’s nature drops, on a universal level, even if the person has a history of crime, because there is now a face attached to the person being accused of such. People find it easier to believe crimes, when they don’t have a human face to attach to the criminal.

      If a woman comes to you and says for instance, “I got raped”, a good chunk of people will believe it (belief doesn’t necessarily mean take action though). However, if she continues, “and the person who raped me was your brother, your best friend, your favorite uncle etc” There will be hesitation to say the least, because no one is quick to immediately believe that someone they know, is in fact a criminal, unless, they always knew the person as such.

      Furthermore, a lot of crimes never get solved: whether it’s murder, armed robbery, burglary etc. Courts in order to make judgments against criminals rely heavily on the carelessness and hubris of criminals which shows up in evidence from investigation. This is why, if there is to ever be a change in how such cases are handled and the results in such cases, the battleground has to be fought in the generation of evidence and the way such crimes are investigated. Changing beliefs or teaching about consent helps, but that is primarily a social problem, I don’t think it does much to address the legal issues and problems within the justice system.

      • With the evidence generation side, no one wants to spend the money to do it right. Also, the prosecution has a motive to push out convictions on as flimsy a basis as humanly possible, so oddly enough, they have zero motivation to fix the evidence. With the detectives, they’re so used to open and shut cases, and often are demoralized by victims dropping cases, that it’s hard to convince them to change.

      • I mean look at what happened with Ryan Lochte in Rio. Lied about being robbed by a specific group of people and got global sympathy. He was given the benefit of the doubt, and lots of people (read the American public) went in on Brazil and even had his team mates back him up. Leaves the country, video evidence comes out to show he lied about everything and nothing happened to him. We don’t even extend the same benefit of the doubt or sympathy to rape victims – it is almost immediate distrust.

        • Blueberry01

          Yeah, uh, he has white man privilege, too. No minority could have told the same story and not be HELD in Rio, as they stripped them of their Olympic medals.

    • LMNOP

      I think the having it videotaped thing cuts both ways, because that’s a pretty horrible thing to have out on the internet for public consumption.

      • Yup. I don’t recommend recording all of your encounters. But it seems like you need that evidence or else there’s no way you’re getting justice as a rape victim.

    • CheGueverraWitBlingOn

      This is the only bright line standard I can think of to avoid these issues, but then how many of us actually apply this standard in our relationships or marriages even. I’m not trying to go down a rabid hole or anything, cause as a personal rule I’m not down for any grey-area/ inebriated activities, but rarely have formally asked for or received consent is such a formalized fashion (the ‘yes’s usually aren’t vocalized until after the chex has started and in a whole different context).

      • Freebird

        This is the conversation for me. I dont think men and women are helping each other figure it out.

      • Digital_Underground

        Everything you wrote here is why I try to stay out of these conversations. When I hear people say “consent” I honestly wonder what they really mean. Everyone understands “NO”. That’s straight forward and clear. But as any honest man here will tell you a formal “Yes” almost never comes. At least not before hand. There are lots of implied messages when it comes to s*x. The gray area is for real.

        For pro athletes it may be better to just pay for prostitutes. At least there is more clarity and there is no pretense. That doesn’t mean s*xual assault can’t happen. But people’s intentions are at least known up front.

    • Michelle

      This morning, I read a Jezebel article about a man having his jail sentence suspended, which happened to be a r*pe charge. The victim? His 12 year-old daughter. His wife and her mother wrote to the judge, in search for leniency, because his “sons needed him”.

    • La Bandita

      Or beat. Dont get raped or beat. Because you’re stupid for…getting beat? Can we tell Black men don’t get shot?

    • Semiotexte

      What if both parties are drunk?

      • Probably best to abstain because both parties’ judgment is impaired. That’s easy for me to say though since I have about 4 alcoholic drinks a year.

  • I just read the entire court transcripts. What a slimy individual. Ive lost all respect for him. I know we say “Justice will be served in court” but even OJ was found Not Guilty so….

    • CheGueverraWitBlingOn

      C.K., where did you read the transcripts at btw?

    • Blueberry01

      Do you mean that you read the complaint filed by Jane Doe?

      • La Bandita

        The complaint is a small part of the bigger file. The file contains reasons the police decided to look into it. A complaint does not make a case – that’s just the beginning. His statements are in there as well.

        • Blueberry01

          True. But the original poster stated the court transcripts and I was wondering where those could be accessed.

  • Brass Tacks

    Sham, Brandon Jennings isn’t the savior of the Knicks franchise this or any other season. But great to see you keep hope alive.

    • Brandon Allen

      6th Man of the year….

      • mr. steal your costco samples

        he good.

        yo what happened w/that detective who got kilt tho.

      • Brass Tacks

        For some team in China…

      • Medium Meech

        He has a son named Legend Truth Jennings. Give that a minute to sink in.

  • BigHouse

    “The need for rape accusations to be clear cut and not be marred by any sort of gray area or doubt will continue to undermine the reality of most sexual assault victims.”

    While this is definitely true I don’t know how we could have a “fair” justice system where accusations of any sort are given more credence becasue of the nature of the crimes. The entire justice system is predicated on the fact that reasonable doubt (gray areas) mean that the accused should not be convicted.

    • LMNOP

      I think this is really a huge problem with secksual violence. A significant number of these cases will have reasonable doubt, that’s just the nature of the crime.

      So then what? Do we just agree that most rapists won’t have consequences? Do we stab rapists or use some other kind of extrajudicial punishment?

      • grownandsexy2

        I could never be an attorney defending a r@pist. Just couldn’t do it.

      • BigHouse

        “A significant number of these cases will have reasonable doubt, that’s just the nature of the crime.”

        Agreed. It’s really an impossible situation because in order to have any semblance of a fair justice system we have to have a few things.

        1) A stance of innocent until proven guilty.
        2) The idea of “reasonable doubt” being enough for exoneration in a court of law.

        It’s just a crappy situation all around.

      • esa

        ~ Do we just agree that most rapists won’t have consequences?

        i’ve been thinking about this question since you asked, and i was like, “i’d like to say ‘I Spit On Your Grave’ gave us the formula back in ’78” but my higher self can’t get behind it.

        but i am really focused on solutions, so i kept thinking: howww. and that lead me back to the things i was thinking about on the post for 13TH, about solutions to end slavery, and i think they share some similarities.

        public awareness, public shaming, and economic sanctions/boycotts. institute a personal end to cognitive dissonance. i can’t convince anyone of what to believe or how to act, but i can do my best to advance the cause through the channels available to me.

        i think it’s a matter of starting small and being steadfast in your faith. it’s such a tremendous undertaking that i’m not thinking about how to solve the problem for humanity, so much as i’m thinking: how can i cut off all support for known predators? how can i use my energies to contribute to the cause in a way that is authentic to myself?

        i think of it first as a change of attitude and then a change of habit, in the hopes that as a result my intentions will manifest in opportunities to do something that can be a larger contribution to the world.

        but first, baby steps ..

        • LMNOP

          What you said about how can you personally cut off predators made me realize that there really are social sanctions for this kind of behavior, in a way that I think didn’t happen in the past.

          Also, as much as I understand the desire for justice, and specifically punishment, secksual violence is really a large scale public health issue, and it really needs a multifaceted approach. Consequences for offenders are a piece of that, but there is a lot more to it, and there really has been an increase in awareness and changing societal views about acceptable behavior, and to an extent, more support for victims.

  • PinkRose

    Pictures with some of the jury? Victim must have been Black.

    • Epsilonicus

      White girl I think

      • PinkRose

        I almost forgot, White girls that “have relations” with Black men get NO “sympathy” from the jury.

        • cyanic

          Laughs. They were warned ahead of time. Once you go black you can never come back.

        • Epsilonicus

          Most women of any color color get no sympathy for rape. Even white ones.

      • TheOtherJerome

        From the looks of her she’s Black or Latina

      • Michelle

        Nope, Latina. Looks mestiza. A blog posted her pictures, around the time this popped up.

    • cyanic

      Nate Parker was acquitted for a white girl. OJ too if you wanna go there.

      • PinkRose

        A White girl KNOWN to like dark meat. Kinda different IMHO.

    • Blueberry01

      I think she was Mexican or Latina from California.

  • Brooklyn_Bruin

    Who taught Lance how to side eye though?

  • Lot of “rape is awful, only rhetorically speaking though” in the comments.

    Are there any NBA players short of maybe LeBron who could call out a teammate for rape? I think he’s the only one who could do it without being excommunicated.

    • mr. steal your costco samples

      chris paul. no teammate tryna clap back at him and get nutshotted every day in practice forever

  • LMNOP

    Shamira, I always appreciate what you have to say on these kinds of topics.

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