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View Diary: Rape Culture is Not a Left/Right Issue (100 comments)

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  •  I join this request. (1+ / 0-)
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    Presumably your dismay has to do with the reluctance of many on the left to make the unquestioned assumption that Woody Allen is guilty of child molestation. It this is at the center of your charge, please explain why a person, even if it is just in the public arena, is not entitled to the presumption of innocence.

    If you say that Dylan is also entitled to the presumption of innocence I think almost everyone would agree and almost everyone has already accorded it to her. I don't see anyone accusing her of malicious and deliberate lying (as would happen if she were  not under the presumption of innocence). She is and always has been the victim, whether her memory is genuine or otherwise.

    A refusal to participate in a public character assassination based on evidence that is both questionable and incomplete does not imply in any way  that one is part of or condones a rape culture or does not abhor child molestation.

    The world is a den of thieves and night is falling. -Ingmar Bergman

    by Pirogue on Sun Feb 09, 2014 at 02:39:24 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  Not questioning Allen's integrity (5+ / 0-)

      and privilege, does in fact condone rape culture.  Instead of reading the documented behaviors of Woody Allen, as well as the court documentation that denied him custody, people are resorting to questioning Mia Farrow's own past behaviors and decisions.  Or they're saying "a pox on both their houses".

      It's not just the Woody Allen affair, either.  There have been other instances where the rape apologists here on DKos came out in full force.

      •  Rape apologists (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Susan G in MN, cks175

        I don't think there are any here, people who would make excuses or apologies for a rape. There are however many who aren't ready to reach a conclusion of guilt for WA. Two different things.

      •  I am sorry (0+ / 0-)

        but I  don't know why Woody Allen's past behavior is fair game but no one is allowed to delve into Mia Farrow's past to find a possible explanation for the accusations.

        You talk about the documentation of his behavior. I have read more on this case than I usually would on something of this nature and I have to say that what I have read does not amount to a clear and convincing case that his his guilt is beyond reasonable questioning. I just finished reading an outline of his "creepy" behavior toward young girls and one instance was a series of letters he exchanged with a 13 year old girl who had initiated correspondence with him. This left me at a loss. I have always found the minds of confident and precocious young women to be beautiful and worthy of awe. I would have been honored to be in the same correspondence and would not feel "creepy" in the least. Please read the comments section where the the very girl in question replies and disavows the slant placed on their exchanges.

        I am just saying that trying someone in the press is not a very reliable way to arrive at the truth and facts are easily distorted to sway opinion. The public has no way of knowing if the representations they are getting are indeed factual or complete. I don't think it is responsible to be willing to deeply stigmatize a person based on information as sketchy and questionable as what is available to the public.  

        The world is a den of thieves and night is falling. -Ingmar Bergman

        by Pirogue on Sun Feb 09, 2014 at 03:21:59 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  His past is perfectly relevant (3+ / 0-)

          Screwing his then-partner's daughter while she was still in high school and witnessed accounts of his obsessions over Dylan that crossed boundaries that no adult-child relationship should cross is enough for me to make my conclusions.  Sorry if that's not enough to convince you.

          •  Please read my comment again if (0+ / 0-)

            you think I said his past is not relevant. My question is why is his past to be examined in every minute detail while Mia's past is a forbidden topic. IMHO, basic fairness dictates that if his past is relevant then so is hers because she is a central party to the whole affair and her stability and character are quite germane.

            You cannot heap unbridled calumny on one person and then, in the same breath, declare another person who is intimately involved to be exempt from all examination relating to their character.  

            How is it not relevant, for instance, that her son said that she had over the years poisoned the minds of the children against W.A.? I would be interested to know if you think this should be taken into consideration when looking at the facts, and if not, why not.

            The world is a den of thieves and night is falling. -Ingmar Bergman

            by Pirogue on Sun Feb 09, 2014 at 04:04:50 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Yes, one son out of how many kids? (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Involuntary Exile

              Most sided with Dylan, last I checked. Including his own biological son, no less.  Family taking sides is not relevant.

              The reason Woody Allen's past is relevant is because it falls into a pattern that would be considered disturbing and predatory; a classic sign of someone who may be a threat.   The custody case is relevant because the judge himself found Woody Allen's behaviors to be revolting enough to warrant a denial of custody.  

              What is not relevant is Mia's own sexual affairs; she was an adult when she married her first two husbands and remained friends with them afterwards. Sure, one might question her taste in men and her judgement in staying with Woody in spite of her suspicions of him surrounding Dylan right up until the whole mess in regards to the legal stuff.   But to compare her past sexual affairs to older men to that of her daughter Soon-Yi's affair with Woody Allen (as if dating one's partner's teenage daughter is in any way okay-!) is disingenuous at best.

              •  I am not sure that (0+ / 0-)

                you get to declare that one of the children publicly attesting to the fact that Mia Farrow systematically poisoned the minds of all the kids is not relevant. I think most reasonable people would account it as extremely important given that the main question is whether Dylan's memories have been influenced. Don't forget that actual conscious "coaching" is not even necessary. Trained therapists who are completely neutral have to walk an extremely delicate path in order to avoid unwittingly implanting memories in children as they seek to investigate the facts on cases such as these.

                With respect to W. A. and Soon Yi, I think their relationship might have some minor relevance to this "trial" that seems to be taking place in the court of public opinion but I don't think it is nearly as important as the fact that one of the children claims to have been indoctrinated against W. A.

                Since I am a feminist I trust that a 19 year old young woman is fully capable of making a judgement for herself about who she wants to be intimate with. If either of them had asked me at the time I would have told them that it seems misguided, but at the same time it is far from a reprehensible decision on the part of either one. I don't feel that because she is a woman she lacks sufficient judgment and strength of will to resist the influence of an older man. But you should be careful how you think about this because if you say that W. A. took advantage of her youth to exert an overwhelming influence on this 19 year old young woman, then it would be hard to argue that it is not reasonable to think it possible that a 7 year-old girl could be strongly influenced in areas where even trained and practiced therapists have to be careful how and where they tread.

                The world is a den of thieves and night is falling. -Ingmar Bergman

                by Pirogue on Sun Feb 09, 2014 at 05:25:52 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Far from reprehensible? (3+ / 0-)

                  She was a socially awkward, developmentally delayed teenager with a traumatic childhood. He was one of the most respected and powerful men in Hollywood. That's reprehensible right there.

                  But most importantly - he SHATTERED the family unit. He poached from among his children's siblings. With no thought whatsoever as to what it would do to them. And it seems he still doesn't care. In my world, that's reprehensible in the max.

                  I find this incredible how many men don't get this. It really explains how creepers like Woody Allen are so successful in what they do.

                  •  Of course it is possible that he (0+ / 0-)

                    "poached" as you call it, but it is also possible that on following Mia Farrow's request that he become better acquainted with Soon Yi, that they were simply drawn together and the relationship evolved to another level. I am not making a judgment either way. I fully agree that many, perhaps most, men would break off the relationship once it was seeming to move into another direction. I believe that he is wrong for allowing it to continue but I don't think that it constitutes proof that his character is so lacking that he would be capable of molesting his own child.

                    His marriage to Soon Yi is, as I have said before, relevant but let's not forget that this discussion started about what aspects of whose lives are germane. My only point is that in weighing the various publicly known facts one should, if one is bent on making a definitive judgment, take into account facts from the other side. I was saying that the fact that one of M. F.'s kids publicly attested to the fact of her indoctrination of them against W. A. is quite germane when the central question is whether Dylan's memories are possibly implanted. This is especially true when dealing in an area where trained therapists must be extremely careful to not unintentionally implant memories.

                    The world is a den of thieves and night is falling. -Ingmar Bergman

                    by Pirogue on Sun Feb 09, 2014 at 06:27:02 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Again, only ONE kid out of how many (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:

                      is claiming "poisoning against Woody Allen".  ONE.  That alone disqualifies the argument, unless others come out and make that same claim.  Apparently the feelings of the other kids in the Previn-Farrow clan don't appear to matter.  They are estranged from both Moses and Soon-Yi, and have no contact with Woody Allen whatsoever.  Including his biological son, Ronan, who has come out to publicly support his sister.  And all of them adults now, and perfectly capable of speaking their own minds without the help of any "brainwashing".

                    •  ^^^^^is a rape apologist^^^^^ (0+ / 0-)

                      There was a finding in the courts that an open trial on these issues that while a successful prosecution was Very likely, an open trial would be even more traumatic to the child involved.  And Btw, you thinking that you'd be flattered by having a "precocious" teen corresponding with you wouldn't be creepy, is VERY creepy!  Men lose custody/visitation for a reason.

                      ~Arianna_Editrix-- I willingly accept Cassandra’s fate, To speak the truth, altho’ believ’d too late

                      by Arianna Editrix on Mon Feb 10, 2014 at 03:17:58 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Well that screwed up......the ^ were to Pirogue (0+ / 0-)

                        ~Arianna_Editrix-- I willingly accept Cassandra’s fate, To speak the truth, altho’ believ’d too late

                        by Arianna Editrix on Mon Feb 10, 2014 at 03:19:14 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  The most eloquent and moving letter I ever read (0+ / 0-)

                        was written by a teen-aged girl. It was addressed to me but not by name, only by title because I was the circulation manager of a local magazine. It was during the height of the Viet Nam War and she had traveled with her boyfriend to a receiving center where he was being inducted into the service and would very soon be involved in the conflict. She was writing the letter on the train during the return trip. She had seen the magazine in the depot and thought it would remind him of home if she sent him a subscription. All she really had to do was include his name and address with a simple request for a subscription. Instead she wrote a three or four page letter that explained in depth her thoughts about the war and her own particular situation. She had no real notion of who was going to read the letter and yet it was an trustful outpouring of all the emotion she was experiencing, the anguish of impending danger, the horrors of war and the tragic uncertainties that loomed before her. The humanity of her words was overpowering and the insights were worthy of someone much older. She was little more than a child yet the eloquence of the words she sent still move me deeply as a 71 year old almost forty-five years later. If anyone thinks it is "creepy" that I felt honored then and continue to feel honored to have been the recipient of this letter, then I don't know what to say but that it makes me very sad.

                        Just a final suggestion that owing to my lack of writing skill may seem sarcastic or confrontational, but is not intended as such.What I want to say is that it might be profitable if you would examine your reasons for changing my original wording of "honored" to your wording of "flattered" in your response. If it was a simple error of memory then no matter, however if it was changed because "flattered" sounds a bit more sordid than "honored" in that context then you might ask yourself why you felt a need to do so.

                        The world is a den of thieves and night is falling. -Ingmar Bergman

                        by Pirogue on Mon Feb 10, 2014 at 10:27:10 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                •  It depends on the 19-year-old (2+ / 0-)

                  I remember being young and naive.  Just because a 19-year-old is legal, doesn't mean she can't be taken advantage of, especially if she was as shy and passive as I was at that age.  If you were a feminist, you would know that  an unequal dynamic between a naive young teenager with no other family except what she knew and a rich, privileged white man in his fifties is not at all comparable with an adult woman whose family was well-known in Hollywood who married older men.

                  •  I agree that there is (0+ / 0-)

                    often an unequal dynamic is a relationship like this, but there is also an at-least comparable unequal dynamic between a mother and a 7 year old daughter in a situation where the mother harbors a deep animus toward the father.

                    Do you think the worries that therapists have of possibly unwittingly implanting memories is not something that should be a matter of concern when the person involved is not trained and is deeply biased emotionally against the person under scrutiny?

                    The world is a den of thieves and night is falling. -Ingmar Bergman

                    by Pirogue on Sun Feb 09, 2014 at 07:08:58 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Well, gee... (2+ / 0-)

                      if I were to find out my partner of 12 years was fucking one of my own kids behind my back and possibly molesting another, I'd be pretty pissed too.  Wouldn't you?

                      It's not irrational to expect that Mia had a right to be upset.  Like, Goddess forbid.

                      •  IMHO, the question (0+ / 0-)

                        is not whether her anger was justified or not but whether it is possible that it resulted in Dylan being influenced by her mother's attitude and animus toward Woody A.

                        You haven't mentioned anything about the fact that trained therapists have to be always on guard against influencing children under examination in cases like this because of how easy it is to get an implanted memory started. Children are very susceptible to suggestions from adults when it comes to interpreting reality and they tend to organize their beliefs to accord with those of the adults around them.

                        I am interested to know if you think this is a real problem among therapists and if so, I am interested to know whether you think this problem should be an important consideration in the present discussion.

                        The world is a den of thieves and night is falling. -Ingmar Bergman

                        by Pirogue on Sun Feb 09, 2014 at 07:43:29 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  No I don't think it's a real problem... (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          churchylafemme, Cinnamon

                          false accusations are extremely rare.  Most victims never come forward because they're scared, and for the ones that do, slut-shaming and bullying is their reward.  It's not an easy thing to come out and accuse someone of sexual assault, most especially if the perpetrator is a celebrity of some kind.  And predators bank on that in order to get away with their crimes.  And so the seeds of doubts of their guilt are sown.

                          In my case, law enforcement believed me, but knew that I did not have the mental strength to manage through a trial.  However, my co-workers did not, and my work environment was made more hostile (they were already abusing me in other ways, but those are labor-related issues).  Eventually, I was driven out of that job and have been either chronically unemployed or in school getting degrees ever since.  I'm almost 36 now and in therapy for mental health issues and I have Asperger's besides.  

                          No one takes reporting sexual abuse lightly.  The costs of doing so are too high culturally, as well as emotionally and financially.  That's why we need to have these discussions, to make the world much more comfortable for the survivors to speak out and get justice.

                          •  It is clear that (0+ / 0-)

                            you have been deeply injured emotionally by your ordeal and I truly hope that you can find healing. It is not my intention to add to your pain and it was never my intention to become an advocate for Woody Allen's innocence but my sincere feeling after doing more reading than I had ever wanted to that there simply isn't enough clear evidence available publicly for me to add my voice to those who are calling for a universal condemnation of the man.

                            Please understand that I am far from indifferent toward child abuse, either sexual or otherwise. I think it is reprehensible and leaves a permanent scar on whoever it touches. It makes me sad just to think about it. But I am also deeply committed to the principle of presumption of innocence, whether in a court of law or the court of public opinion. I just haven't seen enough to allow me in good conscience to brand him a certain molester. But if he is indeed guilty he hasn't gotten off Scott free, few people will ever look at a Woody Allen movie in quite the same way and few will find will be able to hear his name mentioned without there being a degree of doubt about his character. I am, myself in that number.

                            In the end I certainly agree with those who say that we need to be vigilant in protecting children from abusers and they should never be treated dismissively if they reach  to the adults around them for help.

                            The world is a den of thieves and night is falling. -Ingmar Bergman

                            by Pirogue on Sun Feb 09, 2014 at 09:09:13 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I think that we need to stop (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            churchylafemme, Arianna Editrix

                            making the whole sordid detail about the feelings of the casual observers and consider the feelings of Dylan Farrow and other survivors who never got justice.  We need to stop making these cases about the integrity of the victims and their supporters, and start having conversations about how we handle them and their feelings and how much damage was done to them, and not coming off as feeling "bad" for the person accused of abuse.  There is no real "damage" to Woody Allen's reputation.  He will never be prosecuted for the crimes alleged to have been committed against Dylan, but that should not completely absolve him from reproach, especially when there is a compelling case to be made that he is a sexual predator.  I believe that he is a sexual predator.  He has displayed all the behaviors of one in regards to both Dylan and Soon-Yi.  And so, he gets my scorn for him and others like him, who use privilege as a shield so as to avoid accountability for their actions.

          •  That daughter has a name (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            It's Soon-Yi Previn.  And she isn't just a prop in this whole sordid mess.  She's a fully actualized human being.  

      •  Shadow boxing our shadow (0+ / 0-)

        I find militant feminism off-putting like militant veganism.

        With that said I am all for all of us coming together and ending all oppression for all sentient beings  and non sentient forms.

        We have lived in matriarchal societies and we have lived in patriarchal societies…. BUT we were born into them.

        I don't want to be faulted for what I was born into. I kinda stumbled into the present situation correct?

        I am a male and I have no part of any rape culture and you can cast a dragnet when I think you could use a good LSD, mushroom, or MDMA trip.

        Planetary healing is not a gender specific thing. There requires plenty of growth for all of us.

        Shall we re-create a better world together?

        •  Pointing out privilege is not militant. (3+ / 0-)

          And apathy about rape culture isn't productive.  

          •  Your whole framing of "rape culture" is (0+ / 0-)

            ridiculous. Rape is always treated as a criminal act in this culture. The issue you have is with the fact that it often isn't provable. That isn't "rape culture." That's just a fact of life.

            •  Really, now (3+ / 0-)

              Then explain to me how CNN felt soo soo sorry for the student football players in Steubenville and how their lives are going to be ruined with their convictions and giving no considerations to the feelings of the girl those boys victimized, even when the court of law decided that there was compelling enough evidence to convict the boys.  Or how young girls who become victims are harassed and bullied into suicide, while their attackers are protected and get off scott free?  

              It's not the justice system at fault here.  It's the community.  When you create a culture that protects the perpetrators of violence over their victims, that is rape culture.  

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