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2006-04-06

Town v Gown

There's a gang-rape case in the States that's being much blogged about - 3 players from Duke University's champion lacrosse team allegedly raped/strangled/sodomised an exotic dancer who had been booked to perform at a party while over 40 of their team-mates allegedly looked the other way. The dancer and her companion had been told that they would only be dancing for 5 men at a buck's party.

Via Pinko Feminist Hellcat, it is at least encouraging to see that the Durham town community around the university is engaging in community demonstrations, with university staff and students joining them, to shame the alleged rapists and their team-mates who are protecting them, as reported in The Chronicle. There have been previous incidents in the town involving Duke athletes, in particular the lacrosse team, which the university administration have not dealt with to the satisfaction of the town community.

The demonstrators are carrying signs reading "Real Men Don't Protect Rapists". That's a damn good message.

7 comments:

Vicki Robinson said...

You're right; the University has cancelled any upcoming games and the community is not making excuses for boy who will be boys.

But I do feel compelled to remind us all that this case is not yet adjudicated, and it may be that these young men are innocent of these charges.

I think it's wrong to immediately rush to the defense of an accused rapist because "he'd never do that, she must be lying." But at the same time, to leap to the conclusion that athletes at an elite school must perforce be rapists is equally bad.

tigtog said...

I agree that the principle of presumed innocent until found guilty should never be forgotten.

The problem that I and a lot of commentors have with the Duke lacrosse team is that although there has been no denial that the two women were booked to dance and came to the house, no-one has stepped forward and said even the expected "sure we had sex, but it wasn't rape", and not one of the 40+ guys that weren't involved in the sex has come forward and said "well, I know who was in the room with her".

If someone had broken ranks and named the three guys in the room with her, the rest of the team wouldn't have had to provide DNA samples, the investigation would have proceeded from there with those three players being presumed innocent until proven guilty. There wouldn't be the same level of outrage aimed at the entire team.

At the very least the Duke lacrosse team should be charged en masse with wasting police time by not providing this information, or is that not an offence in the States?

tigtog said...

Vicki, I'm amending my text to place the necessary "alleged" etc where I should have placed it first. Thanks for the reminder.

Mentis Fugit said...

It gets worse (and the evidence more damning.)

http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/0405061duke1.html

Fuck I hate the "entitled" class.

tigtog said...

Stunning link, mentisfugit.

The race-class-gender entitlement beliefs of these elite young men that this case appears to reveal are appalling.

Mentis Fugit said...

P.S. The link behind your "Town v Gown" headline is broken because it's missing "tml" on the end, and in IE at least (I know, I know, here's a nickel, get a real browser) your sidebar is a bottombar. Emma should not be relegated to the bottom of the page.

tigtog said...

The Caped Code-wrangler strikes again!

Ta.