So because I cannot completely avoid the real world, I have come across this whole Kesha thing. If you haven’t heard of it, apparently the artist in question tried to leave Sony because she’s bound by contract to them and apparently will be forced to work with someone who allegedly assaulted her. This has apparently led her to not producing any more music which…I’ll be honest I hadn’t even noticed.
Such is the state of Pop-rock.
Anyways, the reason i’m talking about it is because a blogger I follow wrote a post about it and there’s a few issues I want to address. I will be playing…devil’s advocate to an extent, presuming the innocence of the accused.
I can’t believe presuming innocence is now a part of devil’s advocacy….
Before anyone cries “innocent until proven guilty”, I understand the concept but in cases of rape it’s a tricky one to apply. Because in presuming the accused innocent we are suggesting that the victim is lying.
I love how people automatically love to jump to suspending “innocent until proven guilty” as soon as a woman is sexually assaulted. We don’t suspend it for murder, an often much more violent and final crime. We don’t suspend it for theft, a much less violent or final crime. But somehow, we’re supposed to just suspend it as soon as a woman says she’s raped. Why? “Because it’s harder to prove.”
Here’s the thing though, millions of murders go unsolved every year. Same goes for theft. When you get right down to it, a lot of crimes are hard to prove. We’re talking hours of investigation, putting tiny pieces together, often with very important pieces missing, and yet despite the difficulty of solving and then proving the crime, we still insist that the “Accused” be treated as though they are innocent until their guilt is proven. Why? because time and again it has been shown that unless we do so, unless we insist on proof, undeniable proof, innocent people will be punished for crimes they did not commit. Often for the sake of ease in prosecution and bringing closure to the case.
Now, does the presumption of innocent automatically mean the “victim” is lying? No. It presumes that the “victim” making the accusation could be mistaken about the person’s identity, or mistaken about certain events. Were the presumption that the “victim” was lying there would be no investigation and thus no need for “presumption of innocence.”
Personally, I think the victim should be believed and protected. That should be the starting point and investigation can come later.
Presented without comment.
False rape claims are rare and a woman has very little to gain from lying, as mentioned it places them under scrutiny and especially in Kesha’s case it doesn’t make sense.
You know, I keep hearing this…meme. The fact is thought that if we look at rape claims at universities, every single of the ones that caught the public attentions (rolling stone, duke, etc) all turned out to be…false. Egregiously false even. Heck, Matress Girl spent an entire semester dragging around her bedding protesting that her “rapist was still at school” when both the police and a highly prejudicial College investigation intent on proving her right…had to admit he was innocent.
All of the women involved gained much public attention, fame, and in cases payment for their statements to the press. They were lauded as heroines, brave victims coming forth to challenge the patriarchy and rape culture. Indeed, most rape cases on college campuses never even make it to the police, there is just summary judgements with little to no defense for the accused.
Given that most of these claims have been false, or at least unprovable by legal standards (necessitating artificial and biased trials outside the Law). It is very hard for me to buy into the “false rape claims are rare” belief.
Now, does this mean Kesha is making a false claim? No. She is making a claim, that should be investigated. But these two things do not correlate. The prevalence of false rape claims doesn’t invalidate Kesha’s claim, anymore than accepting the practice of innocent until guilty insists the victim is lying.
The news that a judge refused her appeals to be released is so infuriating and upsetting, as were images of Kesha reduced to tears in court. A young woman is being forced to make a horrible choice- give up the career she has built and loves, or go and work with a man who was physically and emotionally abusive to her.
First off, this legal case was about a business contract…not a rape investigation or charges related to it. Now, is it fair that Kesha is being forced between these two options?
Well, no. But if this DJ did in fact rape her, or sexually assault her, then a criminal investigation should have been undertaken, he should have been tried, and if guilty…he would be jailed and the problem is resolved. However, he is apparently still employed at Sony and there is no word about any sort of investigation or trial that I have seen. Meaning there was no evidence presented, beyond her word, at which point the value of her word of his guilt is of equal value as his word of his innocence.
Funny, how if he was guilty the problem would resolve itself. Yet lacking any proof, we are to presume his guilt so that an “easy resolution” can occur for Kesha and her career (hmm, sounds like a gain then, by making this accusation). Hmmm.
Nobody should be forced to interact with their abuser and the judge’s ruling seemed more about business than the issues involved.
Funny that. A judge making a legal verdict about a legal contract doesn’t take into account unproven allegations of sexual assault to which there was no legal investigation.
I mean, when you get right down to it, this was about the only verdict the judge could give. The contract is legal and sound and no other option is available to him. He cannot nullify the contract because Sony has done nothing wrong, there is no proof that this DJ person did anything wrong, and the only thing you have is Kesha saying she wants out of it because she doesn’t like the terms or her co-workers any more (and potentially could get a better deal elsewhere now she’s famous).
Because the Business is the only Issue involved from a legal standpoint.
Really dropping the ball are Sony, who look terrible on this whole thing. Firstly, they seem to be siding with DJ Luke, which is not cool and secondly they appear to be putting profit over Kesha’s wellbeing. Sony could have handled it a lot better. They could have just let Kesha go and cut losses, or else worked something out where Kesha stayed with them but the link to DJ Luke was severed and he would not be involved or profit from her work.
Yes, how dare Sony side with a Lawfully Innocent Man.
Now I get it, Kesha’s cute, she’s crying, she’s hurt, clearly it appears something very bad happened to her and now the big desire of everyone is to rush over and make her feel better, and hang that damn dirty man who dared lay hands on the beautiful princess.
But there’s no evidence, and I’m sorry but an accusation of wrong doing cannot, and should never be, considered evidence of wrong doing. And yes, they could have let Kesha just “walk away” from their studio…at which point they loose not only a major artist, but the ability to retain other artists. What if they did that and then another female star came forwards claiming that DJ Luke or someone raped her, and now she wasn’t to leave Sony too? Only she is completely lying about it because she thinks she can get a better deal somewhere else? Sony isn’t going to open that door, because that door is nothing but an exit for them in what is a very tight, very competitive market that if they loose, they go out of business. Heartless, but factual.
The question that comes up here is, where are the men?
I would bet hiding. Why? Because if they defend a lawfully innocent man, they will be decried as Rape Apologists. If they show this method of getting out of a contract has potential, they open themselves up to be accused in the future. And if they join in, they are opening the door ever wider to there being no need to prove innocence or guilt if they themselves are accused, because it will automatically be “guilty.” Because time and again men have been told that Rape is a “women’s issue” for “women to speak about” that “men have no place in the discussion,” because “all men are potential rapists.”
So yeah, I would go with they are hiding in their offices, terrified of what comes next.
Rape and abuse our uncomfortable subjects, and ones that men have trouble engaging with. It’s not something we have to fear as much, and fear of saying the wrong thing lurks at the back of your mind. But we have to speak out, we need to show Kesha that we support her too, that we condemn the actions of DJ Luke and men like him.
Gee, I wonder why they’re uncomfortable subjects for men to discuss
No, men do not have to fear being raped as much as women do. Of course, men do apparently need to fear for their civil rights being denied them simply because women are scared of something that may, or may not, happen to them. But then, perhaps that is the better solution, that men be the gender living in fear rather than women?
That’s not equality, that’s just sexism.
And as for condemning DJ Luke and “men like him” what does that mean? DJ Luke is legally innocent, and his actions, at least the provable ones, are lawful. So we must then condemn lawful actions by innocent men? That…hardly seems like a good idea.
We need to show that we believe those who come forward with allegations of abuse, that we believe they should be heard and the guilty punished. We need to show that we agree that rape is wrong and there are no excuses.
I’m going to present two analogies here based on this statement.
A woman comes up to me and says, pointing to another gentleman, “That man raped me.”
“This is a serious crime!” I cry, “Do you have proof of this?”
“No, but I am a rape victim, I have said so,” the woman replies crying, “And he is a man, and all men are rapists. Isn’t my word good enough, knowing that fact?”
Now, to me this is not proof. To the author, this is acceptable proof. But let us change a couple people, and see if this logic still holds true.
A man comes up to me and says, pointing at a black man, “That nigger just tried to kill me!”
“This is a serious crime!” I cry, “Do you have proof?”
“No, but I was nearly murdered, and he is a nigger, and we all know that niggers murder people. Isn’t my word good enough, knowing that fact?”
Now, how many people would accept that line of reasoning when it came to declaring someone guilty of attempted murder? My guess is no one. But some how, I am supposed to suspend logic, and the need for evidence before ruining someone’s life, because of who they are, what they are supposed to have done, and who the accuser is?
That hardly sounds lawful or just…