What happens now that IMF director Dominique Strauss-Kahn (as of today, make that former director) has posted $1,000,000 bail while hiring the world’s most expensive defense lawyers for his rape trial?
Now the victim gets pilloried.
Her name has been published in France and on the web, where fantasies of her being a whore are rampant (apparently it’s okay to rape a prostitute). The French gang of good ole boys (and, doubly shamefully, gals) have proclaimed themselves in shock — shock! — that a pillar of society like DSK could be treated by the NYPD like a common criminal. So what if rape is criminal assault? Handcuffs are fine for the lower classes, but for the privileged few? How dare those Americans! Can’t they see she’s just a maid?
Once again, as DSK’s lawyers dig up every detail of the victim’s life and twist it to make it appear slutty, it’ll be clear why rape is so drastically under-reported. This woman has real courage. Most victims simply can’t face the idea of being picked apart and violated again and again in the press and by the defense, who will do everything they can to “prove” that she is a lying, vengeful, publicity-seeking slut. Like the mob that raped CBS reporter Lara Logan in Tahrir Square, they will do their best to pull her apart.
Could you pass the slut test?
Imagine it: every detail of your personal and work life put on public view and twisted into leering ‘significance.’ Every date, every drink, every tittle and every tattle of gossip or innuendo, every misstep you ever made will be paraded as “proof.” Only a hermit could pass this test.
You’ve had sex before — guilty.
You are poor — guilty.
You are black — guilty.
You are a single mother — guilty.
You have breasts and a vagina — guilty.
You are human — guilty.
How did you even dream of daring to bring such a charge against a wealthy, powerful, white man? Who do you think you are? You’re just a cleaning woman. Just a nobody. Just another lying slut.
This sentence really struck me in President Obama’s Middle East speech this morning:
We have a chance to show that the US values a street vendor in Tunisia more than the raw power of a dictator.
And now we have a chance to show that we value the dignity of an immigrant maid more than the assumed privilege and entitlement of wealth and power. How dare they treat him like a common criminal? Because if he is indeed found guilty — and for the NYPD to act with such alacrity in a rape case, you can be sure the evidence is very solid — then that is exactly what he is. A criminal. And all too common.