Duke Rape Charges Dropped
First off, I want to make something clear. I promise this little rant isn't going to be a blog entry calling DA Mike Nifong a deuchebag. And it's not going to attack the female accuser. And it's not going to declare the three Duke boys innocent victims and urge that they be considered for sainthood. The charges were dropped, but no one's walked away innocent.
Nifong, at least initially, did what any good district attorney should do. He believed someone who claimed to be a rape victim. There's already too many rape victims in this country who are afraid to come forward because they don't think people will believe them.
His mistake of course, was turning this whole thing into a media circus. He didn't just believe the victim, he began to ignore any evidence that was contrary to her account. That said, a lot of rape victims don't have their stories straight. That, initially, was not as big a red flag as many people think it should have been. But Nifong went on TV time and time again declaring the Duke boys guilty before he had even built a case against them. In the end, Nifong's vanity was his downfall. He didn't have to go on TV or speak to the media. But he did, possibly because it looked good in an election year.
And the female accuser... well. She clearly has some problems. She's clearly not completely sane. And maybe the reason is that she was raped or abused at some point in her life. I don't think anyone should drag her through the mud. It's not her fault that Nifong chose to use her case to further his career. And, I should point out, she was victimized... in a different way than rape.
That leads me to the Duke boys. Newsweek says they got their reputations back. But they shouldn't be let off the hook that easily. Yes, every major news organization should send them an apology and a nice gourmet gift basket. But we shouldn't forget that the rape charges overshadowed behavior that shouldn't be easily forgiven, behavior that none of the boys have denied. The same behavior that everyone now is smacking around Don Imus for. The Duke boys used racial slurs. They demeaned two women for kicks. Not once have they denied this. Yes, they didn't rape the girl, but they did call her a n****r. I'm not ready to declare them martyrs for justice.
And in case you're wondering why I refer to the Duke boys as "Duke boys" instead of "Duke Lacrosse Players," read my previous blog entry. I said it once and I'll say it again THIS HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH LACROSSE. I don't care what Slate and Rolling Stone said. Those guys could have easily all been members of the chess team. There's no secret worldwide lacrosse subculture of loose morality and uber-privilege, complete with keg lined locker rooms stocked with slutty sorority girls and brainless muscleheads.
That's just the DUKE culture.
Oooh. Yes, that's right, I dissed Duke right there. I never promised I wasn't going to do that.