Patterico's Pontifications

4/6/2015

Politico UVA Think Piece: Why Should Facts Define the Narrative?

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:44 am

Over the weekend, Rolling Stone retracted its blockbuster UVA story, and apologized to everyone involved. Nobody was fired or quit, and no changes to editorial policy have been announced. Reassuring!

But if you want to know how a narrative trumps facts in the mind of journalists, look no further than this think piece published in Politico (safe Google Cache link):

I am drained. I am confused. But I keep returning to one question. If everyone here believed Jackie’s story until yesterday — a story in which she is violently raped by seven men at a fraternity house as part of a planned initiation ritual — should we not still be concerned?

There was something in that story which stuck. And that means something.

You see where we’re headed: author Julia Horowitz is trying to sell us Fake But Accurate. It gets worse:

The University of Virginia — like most American universities — has a problem with rape. Current estimates, cited earlier this year by Vice President Joe Biden, hold that one in five women will be sexually assaulted while in college.

That means that in my 200-person politics lecture, roughly a full row will be filled with survivors. In my 20-person major seminar, there are at least two. That is not a calculus I should have to work out in the margins of my Marx-Engels reader.

DIGRESSION ON THAT STATISTIC: This startling statistic is the basis for much of what follows in the piece. The statistic is also questionable. To avoid this becoming a distraction, I have created a page that discusses some of the problems with the statistic, here. Suffice it to say that it is misleading to suggest that it is ironclad, as other studies have shown far less incidence of sexual assault, or that it is representative of the experiences of women on campuses throughout the country. (END DIGRESSION)

“If we are being honest with ourselves, no matter if specifics of the article are true, …reading the article as a college student, you were thinking, ‘This could happen,’” said Rex Humphries, a second-year who pledged a fraternity last spring. Your first reaction is not, ‘This is preposterous.” I asked if he thought Jackie’s story could be true. He paused and said, “Yes.”

If Rex Humphries actually does exist, the fact that he thinks a story “could be true” when we know it isn’t seems rather beside the point, doesn’t it? Not to Horowitz:

Ultimately, though, from where I sit in Charlottesville, to let fact checking define the narrative would be a huge mistake.

So who is Julia Horowitz, such that her musings get published in Politico?

Julia Horowitz is an assistant managing editor at The Cavalier Daily, the University of Virginia’s student newspaper.

She has a wonderful future in journalism.

90 Responses to “Politico UVA Think Piece: Why Should Facts Define the Narrative?”

  1. Ding.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  2. Why any parents in their right minds would send their daughters to a rape factory like UVA is beyond me.

    nk (dbc370)

  3. facts are simple and straight. Facts don’t do what they want them to.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  4. Miss Horowitz wrote:

    I am drained. I am confused. But I keep returning to one question. If everyone here believed Jackie’s story until yesterday — a story in which she is violently raped by seven men at a fraternity house as part of a planned initiation ritual — should we not still be concerned?

    There was something in that story which stuck. And that means something.

    But that’s just it: not everybody believed the story until yesterday; it fell apart because it was unbelievable, which inspired people to do something really radical like check it out.

    The Dana who understands that telling the truth is the simplest thing to do (f6a568)

  5. My youngest daughter graduated from a state university almost two years ago. The only male-female incident she witnessed in five years was a guy beating up his girlfriend when both were drunk. She called the cops and later testified at his trial. Neither were students. They were friends from where she worked as a waitress during school.

    This story is utter BS and the need of the left to have it be true is trumping reality. It is another moral panic like the gay marriage thing that is going on. Twenty years ago, it was day care molestation and satanic ritual abuse. Two hundred years ago, it was witches. They are all the same.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  6. It’s not like this is the first time that something like this has happened, with the Duke lacrosse team story being the most famous; the story was what so many people wanted to believe, but some people didn’t, some people actually checked the facts, and, once again, it fell apart.

    If there is a war on women, it is being perpetrated by the left. In her zeal to believe “Jackie,” and publish a story which was supposed to send a message, Miss Erdely has actually harmed women. The more probable result of this fabrication is that some actual sexual assault victims who would otherwise have gone to the police now will not report the crimes perpetrated against them, because they’ll fear not being believed.

    Telling the truth is the simplest thing in the world, but it seems that the truth just isn’t good enough for some of the Social Justice Warriors.

    The Dana who remembers the not-so-distant past (f6a568)

  7. I am drained. I am confuzzled. I want pancakes. But I keep returning to one question. If everyone here believed Food Stamp’s story until yesterday — a story in which a devout muslim kenyan ascends to the presidency on the thinnest of resumes — should we not still be concerned?

    There was something in that story which stuck. And that means something.

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  8. The most hilariously awful part of her article is where she quotes Joe Biden as an authority on campus rape. Is she the only one in America who hasn’t noticed that he’s a buffoon, who has said literally hundreds of ridiculously stupid and untrue thing? And the best authority she can come up with for the 1-in-5 statistic is that Joe Biden has also cited it!

    Dr. Weevil (c83662)

  9. This will not even remotely be made right until the author, and at least one of the two RS editors involved in OK-ing the piece are gone from Rolling Stone. There may be a sound legal-ish reason they are still employed by the magazine and Jann Wenner instead of firing them (perhaps easier to control them in any upcoming lawsuits against the mag than from the outside), but as to RS ever again being taken seriously from any reasonable journalistic sense by any reader they are history.

    elissa (3a50fb)

  10. reading up on the report, it seems the reporter did not do as much lying as the editors.
    which makes this Ju.Ho. even scarier, as she seems to feel there is no problem in editing a story to make the story match the needed meme instead of the facts.
    do we give this Ju.Ho. credit for being consistent throughout this whole mess? Or just insular? the line about ‘nobody doubting the story’ is just amazing.

    seeRpea (c1462d)

  11. “Journalism” majors in our universities must face some serious problems when it comes time to leave the nest and earn a living. I think a significant portion of their “education” is nothing more than scanning the latest AP headlines, checking today’s talking points from the DNC, and then selecting those articles that might best fit the desired theme. Survival of the fittest for the pretty ones means landing a job doing the same thing for an outfit like the ABC, which means they better look good while reading teleprompter, and know when to snark or not. I can’t imagine what the less comely ones are good for. Baristas?

    But this is nothing new. In WWII the British were facing oblivion, and had to make some hard choices. They found that the best observers of warfare were biologists with actual field experience. It takes a long time and a great deal of discipline to identify and catalog all the survival strategies employed by those critters in the bushes that we take for granted. A military “genius”, say a young Robert McNamara, would study records of battles and ammunition expenditures and notice that antiaircraft weapons on merchant ships shot down almost no German aircraft, and would conclude that there’s no point in arming the vessels. A biologist accompanying a convoy would watch the battle first hand and notice that the attacking aircraft very quickly determined which ships were unarmed, and would then focus their effort on sinking the easy pickings, leaving the armed ships unmolested. Since the cost of arming a ship, including manning the guns, was a tiny fraction of the value of the cargo, let alone the difficulty of replacing the ship, a country intent on its survival would arm the vessels.

    Today, with everyone quite satisfied with their survival prospects, especially as they man their desks at Lloyds of London, we face the problem of pirates with the military genius outlook. A few crews and ships disappear, only to be found in Asian wrecking yards with the asphyxiated, decomposed crew still locked in an airtight compartment. While other ships are held for months while the insurance company and owners negotiate the ransom for ship and cargo. But the loss is not threatening to the fellows behind the desks so we continue to nurture the pirates and take no effective action at eliminating the scourge altogether. And the lesson is not lost on the guys who used to be satisfied fishing for a living.

    bobathome who finds mason bees fascinating (ef0d3a)

  12. Perhaps now other J Schools might follow Columbia’s example and expose gross journalist malpractice. Hands Up, Don’t Shoot, and the character assassination of George Zimmerman come immediately to mind. It’s a target rich environment.

    ropelight (d4129a)

  13. never let facts get in the way of the story…

    redc1c4 (34e91b)

  14. Rolling Stone isn’t the only one at fault. The story was repeated by the MSM to advance some political position. Now that it has come apart, there is little concern for the true victims who have become grist for the mill. It is only going to get worse as we follow Hilary on a journey.

    AZ Bob (7d2a2c)

  15. “Twenty years ago, it was day care molestation and satanic ritual abuse. Two hundred years ago, it was witches. They are all the same.”

    -Mike K

    The Wayback Machine is just getting warmed up. Plato was writing about why women get the vapours in 360 BC.

    ThOR (a52560)

  16. ==Perhaps now other J Schools might follow Columbia’s example and expose gross journalist malpractice. ==

    One can hope, Ropelight. But CJR was “hired” to do an investigation and analysis of this story. Would they ever have done it on their own–not for pay? Will other J schools start to look more closely at other corrupt and false stories? I wonder.

    elissa (3a50fb)

  17. You see where we’re headed: author Julia Horowitz is trying to sell us Fake But Accurate.

    In fact, it’s the idea that won’t die. The Columbia report, the Erik Wemple blog at the Washington Post, and pretty much every other left-of-center outlet that is weighing in on this is absolutely certain to remind us that the campus rape problem is real. The newest talking point seems to be that RS screwed up in choosing this shaky story instead of the dozens of other more verifiable stories that they could have chosen.

    Well maybe, but here’s what they are overlooking: the fiasco with Jackie really ought to suggest to us that even if campus sexual assault stories aren’t completely fabricated, they are still often grossly embellished in order to seem more cut-and-dried and to remove gray areas. An example is when Johnny Fratboy meets up with Susie Coed at a party. Susie gets drunk on her on volition, desires physical intimacy with Johnny, and so they have at least some level of sexual contact with Susie neither specifically consenting to the act nor asking Johnny to stop. The Campus Rape Warriors say that should Susie retroactively decide that she did not want that level of intimacy that she should be able to bring charges, and that pointing out her culpability in drinking is “victim blaming,” so the new version of events becomes that Johnny Fratboy forced her to get drunk then ignored her pleas and forced himself upon her. And even when the police investigate and determine that there is no solid evidence to support that version of events, the campus culture demands that Susie eternally be seen as a victim and Johnny be seen as a predator. As long as that politically-driven version of events is the one that is to be accepted, the witch-hunt are going to continue.

    JVW (a1146f)

  18. The light at the end of his rope wrote:

    Perhaps now other J Schools might follow Columbia’s example and expose gross journalist malpractice. Hands Up, Don’t Shoot, and the character assassination of George Zimmerman come immediately to mind. It’s a target rich environment.

    At the plant, when someone suggests something that silly, the response is, “The drug test lady will be here tomorrow!” A journalism school, at a liberal university — please pardon the redundancy — actually investigating the professional media? Yeah, that’s going to happen. The only reason Columbia looked at the Rolling Rock story is because someone else caught the problems first, people who were — gasp! — conservatives.

    Nor would the students at such schools ever want that to happen; that would destroy the career prospects of the students there, ’cause which of the professional media, save Fox, would ever be interested in student from a school which did that? (And to get on at Fox, you had damned well better be a leggy blonde!)

    n a rational world, what you suggested ought to work, but no one ever suggested that the professional media and rationality were ever in the same room.

    The thoroughly amused Dana (f6a568)

  19. Nor would the students at such schools ever want that to happen; that would destroy the career prospects of the students there, ’cause which of the professional media, save Fox, would ever be interested in student from a school which did that?

    J-schools are cranking out way more graduates than there are available jobs, so that combined with the high costs of college suggests there is going to be a reckoning very soon, and J-schools probably aren’t going to come out smelling like roses.

    JVW (a1146f)

  20. The Memories Pizza story could be an easy, riveting story about media abuse. The initial ABC broadcast is available, the next ten or twenty retellings are available, and the public’s response is available in the form of a “survey” where the participants freely donated their money to the victims of this media abuse. But this story will never see a “prime time” on what used to be America’s news networks. Instead, this is a moment of embarrassment for the media as they were found out and chastised, and so the story will be “disappeared”. This story also revealed a lot about our “conservative” politicians. They didn’t think the issue through, choosing instead to bow down before political correctness. They really didn’t give a damn about the little family store and their religious convictions.

    One would think that a crusading J-School would pick up the story and see where it leads. But I think “appease” has replaced “crusade” in the lexicon. If, indeed, “crusade” and its variants are even allowed modern journalism.

    bobathome (ef0d3a)

  21. Math is so hard.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  22. Mike K (90dfdc) — 4/6/2015 @ 8:31 am

    Doc, McMartin et al were in the Mid-80’s.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  23. Sabrina meant well. Isn’t that enough these days?

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  24. Yes, and we should stop attacking her as it bruises her feelings.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  25. Sweet Loving Jehosaphat! Aging Angry Allah! Beer Bonging Buddha! Who in their right mind would cite Joe Biden as a source for anything. He’s a plagiarizing, woman pawing poltroon with a mental capacity which could be stuffed in the ass of a gnat with room to spare.

    Actually having watched Vice President “Boom Boom Biden” counsel using a shotgun (fired out your back window while somebody was breaking down the front door) for home defense, I’m surprised that anybody actually listens to whatever Slow Joe has to say.

    Comanche Voter (3f753e)

  26. There was a line and they had a formula
    Sharp as a knife, facts cut a hole in ’em

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  27. Doc, McMartin et al were in the Mid-80′s.

    Yeah, I’m getting old. Still Gerald Amirault “was released on April 30, 2004.” That’s ten. Rounding error.

    In 1995, Judge Robert Barton ordered a new trial for Violet, then 72, and Cheryl, who had been imprisoned eight years. He ordered the women released at once. Barton expressed his contempt for the prosecutors.[3]

    Superior Court Judge Isaac Borenstein presided over a widely publicized hearing into the case resulting in findings that all the children’s testimony was tainted. He said that “Every trick in the book had been used to get the children to say what the investigators wanted.” [3] Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly published a scathing editorial directed at the prosecutors “who seemed unwilling to admit they might have sent innocent people to jail for crimes that had never occurred.”[3]

    In 2000, the Massachusetts Governor’s Board of Pardons and Paroles met to consider a commutation of Amirault’s sentence. After nine months of investigation, the board voted 5-0, with one abstention, to commute his sentence, although no exculpatory evidence was presented.

    However…

    In 2002, then-Acting Governor of Massachusetts Jane Swift refused to commute Amirault’s sentence, despite a unanimous vote in favor of his release by the state’s parole board. Amirault’s case had previously been upheld by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court.[5] Martha Coakley, then Middlesex district attorney and subsequently State Attorney General, lobbied Swift to keep him in prison[6][7] and Swift denied Amirault’s clemency.[8]

    It wasn’t over until ten years ago. It only seems it was the 80s.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  28. The 1 in 5 (20%) statistic is OBVIOUSLY a lie, given that level of sexual assault greatly exceeds levels reported in the worst neighborhoods in the country. Are they really willing to try an sell us on the notion that college is more dangerous than East Saint Louis? Detroit? Compton?

    Eramus (8c487b)

  29. The truly disgusting aspect is how both the MSM and many in the blog-o-sphere have ignored false accusation victims.

    Sure, there’s the occasional article and such, but every story I see has some expert (or 3) in an article and they are all women’s victims advocates and rape victim advocates.

    Steven (a5268f)

  30. “I’m worried that because of the inconsistencies in this story, this will challenge the precedent of believing a survivor,” said fourth-year student Gianfranco Villar, a member of all-male sexual assault peer education group 1 in 4. “This belief is vital to improving reporting rates and maintaining a survivor’s health. It is very disappointing.”

    lol there’s a whole group called 1 in 4

    they probably get together a lot and make posters

    hey anybody seen the red glitter

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  31. The 1 in 5 (20%) statistic is OBVIOUSLY a lie, given that level of sexual assault greatly exceeds levels reported in the worst neighborhoods in the country

    What you have to understand is what constitutes “sexual assault” in these campus surveys that are so often quoted by the Campus Rape Warriors. A guy has sex with you when you are drunk? Sexual assault. A guy surprises you with a kiss when you weren’t expecting it? Sexual assault. A guy goes to second-base during a makeout session before you were ready for him to go to second base? Sexual assault. A guy brushes up against your buttocks while you are on the dance floor? Sexual assault. The wonder is that the numbers aren’t more like 4 in 5, but I guess there are still a lot of sensible college women who don’t buy into this stupefyingly expansive definition of the term.

    JVW (aa050c)

  32. What you have to understand is what constitutes “sexual assault” in these campus surveys that are so often quoted by the Campus Rape Warriors. A guy has sex with you when you are drunk? Sexual assault. A guy surprises you with a kiss when you weren’t expecting it? Sexual assault. A guy goes to second-base during a makeout session before you were ready for him to go to second base? Sexual assault. A guy brushes up against your buttocks while you are on the dance floor? Sexual assault. The wonder is that the numbers aren’t more like 4 in 5, but I guess there are still a lot of sensible college women who don’t buy into this stupefyingly expansive definition of the term.

    It’s worse than that: a guy has sex with you and two days later you regret it? Sexual assault.

    Chuck Bartowski (11fb31)

  33. In Lena Dunham’s case, her friends decided the next day that an earlier consensual sexual encounter was not,in fact, consensual after all. So, there’s that!

    Gazzer (eae5fa)

  34. It’s worse than that: a guy has sex with you and two days later you regret it? Sexual assault.

    It’s worse than worse than that: a guy hugs you and maybe pulls you close in so that you have chest-to-chest contact and two weeks later you decide that you wish he hadn’t done that? Sexual assault.

    JVW (aa050c)

  35. Gosh you guys, it’s even worse than that. Your father is being honored for something and you are standing in the background that the Creepy Veep sidles up to you and breaths his boozy breath down your neck and you think that’s sexual assault but that’s just Joe bein’ Joe.

    Pious Agnostic (4e1a81)

  36. So what do we do to combat the actual problem while simultaneously pushing back against the oversimplified and hyper-exaggerated version of the problem offered by its purveyors?

    Leviticus (f9a067)

  37. Put differently, the problem is inaccurate reporting, on both ends – people reporting falsity in many instances, and people not reporting truth in many others.

    Leviticus (f9a067)

  38. I love how the wingnut mind interprets this as indicating that no, rape is not really a problem on college campuses and all the hoohah is no more than a “leftist” fantasy based on a warped view of the Real World. That is, a world where white men have the privilege to take what is rightfully theirs and women’s rights are secondary.

    Missile (3f8f5f)

  39. The problem is simple,
    people need to remember there are at least two sides to almost every story,
    and it is good to listen to both sides before a decision is made.
    Solomon said that maybe 3000 years ago,
    and I bet he wasn’t even the first.

    But no one has to pay $50,000 a year tuition to learn that,
    so they don’t teach it at the university, I guess.

    The answer is also simple,
    people need to be more interested in the truth that justifying their opinions.
    Of course, in the short run, people disagree over who is doing the justifying and who is doing the objective observation.

    Now, as far as finding an effective and immediately implementable plan to accomplish that, well…

    Maybe a few members of that frat have parents wealthy enough to hire some good lawyers and push some consequences.

    MD in Philly (not in Philly at the moment) (deca84)

  40. Ummm,

    I think what this shows is that this story was a fake,
    many students were treated terribly,

    and whatever the truth is about sexual assault on campus,
    this did absolutely nothing to help a valid understanding,
    no matter how bad or how good the problem really is.

    that is really pretty simple.

    MD in Philly (not in Philly at the moment) (deca84)

  41. well ‘the narrative,’ gets in the way, of the actual facts, the exaggerated stats that create the crisis environment, that is typified by UVA,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  42. we need to do something about all this campus rape what is happening

    happyfeet (831175)

  43. ooh I know let’s raise awareness

    happyfeet (831175)

  44. Maybe college bureaucrats shouldn’t be handling felony complaints, Leviticus.

    Missile’s hate filled SJW diatribes are “special”

    JD (962b99)

  45. Leviticus, unless you are a “townie” you have been a resident on a college campus much more recently than many of us who comment here, so I want to ask: You say @36 that there is an actual problem that needs to be combated. Is this something you have honestly observed first hand or is it something you have read about or heard about second or third hand? Do these 1-5 statistics which some are stating ring true to you and on what basis? Granted, much in society has changed over a decade or two or three, but it’s just really difficult to imagine that things have changed that much on American college campuses.

    elissa (189bdf)

  46. I love how the wingnut mind interprets this as indicating that no, rape is not really a problem on college campuses

    And I love how the leftist perception of the world — often clouded or opaque or ass-backwards (ie, in which the good becomes bad, bad becomes good) — is deemed as acute and accurate by its adherents merely because it’s wrapped around good intentions, compassion and generosity—even if it really isn’t. A perfect example of that can be found across the Atlantic, where your type of mindset is even more pervasive than in the US:

    gatestoneinstitute.org, February 2015: In 1975, the Swedish parliament unanimously decided to change the former homogeneous Sweden into a multicultural country. Forty years later the dramatic consequences of this experiment emerge: violent crime has increased by 300%. If one looks at the number of rapes, however, the increase is even worse. In 1975, 421 rapes were reported to the police; in 2014, it was 6,620. That is an increase of 1,472%.

    Sweden is now number two on the global list of rape countries. According to a survey from 2010, Sweden, with 53.2 rapes per 100,000 inhabitants, is surpassed only by tiny Lesotho in Southern Africa, with 91.6 rapes per 100,000 inhabitants.

    A long-held feminist myth is that the most dangerous place for a woman is her own home — that most rapes are committed by someone she knows. This claim was refuted by Brå’s report: “In 58% of cases, the perpetrator was entirely unknown by the victim. In 29% of cases the perpetrator was an acquaintance, and in 13% of cases the perpetrator was a person close to the victim.” Brå reports that there are no major differences between women of Swedish and foreign background when it comes to the risk of being raped. Significantly, the report does not touch on the background of the rapists.

    Michael Hess, a local politician from Sweden Democrat Party, encouraged Swedish journalists to get acquainted with Islam’s view of women, in connection with the many rapes that took place in Cairo’s Tahrir Square during the “Arab Spring”. Hess wrote, “When will you journalists realize that it is deeply rooted in Islam’s culture to rape and brutalize women who refuse to comply with Islamic teachings. There is a strong connection between rapes in Sweden and the number of immigrants from MENA-countries [Middle East and North Africa].”

    This remark led to Michael Hess being charged with “denigration of ethnic groups” [hets mot folkgrupp], a crime in Sweden. In May last year, he was handed a suspended jail sentence and a fine — the suspension was due to the fact that he had no prior convictions. The verdict has been appealed to a higher court. For many years, Michael Hess lived in Muslim countries, and he is well acquainted with Islam and its view of women. During his trial, he provided evidence of how sharia law deals with rape, and statistics to indicate that Muslims are vastly overrepresented among perpetrators of rape in Sweden. However, the court decided that facts were irrelevant…

    ^ Nothing nuttier, nothing more contemptible or disgusting, than people of the left, be they in Sweden or the US. And what’s really bad is such people think they’re imbued with a special layer of humaneness, sophistication and intelligence.

    Mark (33be9a)

  47. would that this name were as wellknown as the slandered fraternity members.

    http://weaselzippers.us/219817-former-obama-aide-avoids-prison-time-in-two-sexual-assaults/

    narciso (ee1f88)

  48. I can see how rape could be a problem at UVA, as well as false accusations of rape. Nobody should allow their children, boys or girls, to attend that cesspool. I would also recommend the Justice Department investigate its administration as a racket influenced corrupt organization.

    nk (dbc370)

  49. Leviticus – do you really buy the 1/5 will be sexually assaulted stat?

    JD (962b99)

  50. The European Left has a problem with rape now?
    gee, 8 years ago they had a problem with women not being raped.

    see also http://americandigest.org/mt-archives/tinfoil_brigade/not_raping_the.php

    seeRpea (81ed29)

  51. 2. Why any parents in their right minds would send their daughters to a rape factory like UVA is beyond me.

    nk (dbc370) — 4/6/2015 @ 7:51 am

    All college campuses are hotbeds of rape culture. Rape everywhere; in the student union, in the dorms, in the classrooms, in the bushes landscaping the quad, in the gym, in the parking lot. Nothing but rape, everywhere.

    That’s why Barack Obama wants to be able make college affordable for everyone. All Americans should be able to enjoy it.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/06/17/obama-college-should-be-a_n_107681.html

    Steve57 (cd6f9a)

  52. The most recent rape stats I could find showed that the national average was around 27 per 100,000 people, and the highest state rate was Alaska at around 67 per 100,000. Quite humorously, most articles I looked at conflated sexual assault with rape like the current trend does. Should you believe the leftists, 20,000 out of 100,000 are victims on college campuses, making universities almost 300 times more dangerous than the rapiest of states, and around 740 times as dangerous as the U.S. as a whole.

    JD (962b99)

  53. when practically every important ideal or belief in their world is a lie or
    made up, how can anyone be surprised that liberals are nuts, cuckoo, off-kilter,
    psycho, disconnected from reality, unable to form rational thought?

    It’s why they can come up with such fabulous schemes that anyone with a brain cell
    can see will either fail or cause more problems yet they persevere because they no
    longer can tell reality from fantasy.

    They believe something should be and so it is in their minds. Which is why they
    get so angry with those who tell them it won’t work. They’ve got too much invested
    emotionally to abandon their insane outlook.

    jakee308 (49ccc6)

  54. I don’t for a minute doubt rape is a serious issue for women at some universities, though I don’t see Johnny Fratboy as the typical perp.

    I lived and worked in/near Berkeley for years. Violent crime is a huge problem at Cal. With a large, open campus, a woman is not safe by herself after dark on or off campus. The problem is so bad, coeds are often advised to cut their hair short because long hair is used to hold women down while being raped. I didn’t know anyone personally who was raped, but I did know a sophomore whose younger sister, a high-schooler, was raped while visiting big sis at Cal.

    I’ve had family/friend who attend USC and they report similar levels of violent crime.

    Those are the big cities I know best and they both have problems with hoods from the surrounding communities targeting vulnerable university students. I presume all big city universities have big city crime, no matter where you go, including breathtakingly high rates of rape.

    A friend of mine, a UC Berkeley grad, told me that she always had an eye over her shoulder trying to keep safe and if she thought she was being followed when walking near campus, she’d duck into the nearest frat house.

    Like so many other things, I presume the 90-10 rule holds: 90 percent of the rapes are committed on 10 percent of the campuses.

    ThOR (a52560)

  55. 54. Please don’t ask the crusaders to apply either math or logic, JD.

    elissa (189bdf)

  56. or demography or other important categories:

    http://acecomments.mu.nu/?post=355984

    narciso (ee1f88)

  57. You make a good point ThOR. Female students on campuses which are adjacent to or embedded within big cities may well have a greater concern for their safety than those who study at universities which are more self contained units. If there are campuses where young women actually are in constant fear and are routinely looking over their shoulders, then that is tragic. But when the media hawks the “rape culture” they do tend to imply something else–that it is fellow students who are at fault–not a larger population of non-student men who avail themselves of college women as their prey. Any “solution” really does depend on an honest analysis of where and who the offenders are, doesn’t it?

    elissa (189bdf)

  58. So what do we do to combat the actual problem

    Leviticus, do you even see the irony of the typical college setting — particularly if it faces a major dilemma of rape that you struggle to not tout, and which your fellow liberal comrades need to promote (perhaps to feel relevant and oh-so-courant?) — being chock-full of the ideology you most favor? From the politics and biases of just about all the professors, to the politics and biases of most of the administrators, to the politics and biases of practically every student, to the politics and biases of the people in the surrounding urban neighborhoods?

    I’m not even necessarily focusing on, in general, the ethos of “let it all hang out!” and “if it feels good, do it!” — or “meaning-of-is-is” Clinton-ism — which people of the left tend to embrace and rejoice in. Not to mention their quaint feelings of Nidal-Hassan-ism (see snippet about Sweden above).

    Liberalism in 2015 is a wonder and a delight.

    Mark (33be9a)

  59. what to do to combat the problem? how about everyone keep their underwear on?
    seriously, why do kids think that attending college means ‘hey fùk with anything that moves’?
    and not just the final act, how about keeping hands and lips to yourselves?

    i’ll accept its one thing if you are in a relationship with someone (though still a bad idea to get intimate) but the one nighters, or meet at a party at 10p into each other by 11p? really??

    seeRpea (81ed29)

  60. So what do we do to combat the actual problem while simultaneously pushing back against the oversimplified and hyper-exaggerated version of the problem offered by its purveyors?

    I think Leviticus asks a legitimate question. I would start with demanding that we tighten up our use of language. The term “sexual assault” to me suggests something way more horrific than a lingering hug, a boozy kiss, or a creepy stare. Let’s leave the term “assault” to its more legal definition which includes the intent to cause harm. We could also use the term “molestation” to cover less dangerous offenses, especially if we separate forcible molestation from non-forcible molestation. An example being that if I pat a young lady on her rear end that would be molestation, but if I give her a hard spank that would be assault. Thus a crude and brutish grope and the use of physical force to make contact would still be assault, but it would stop attempting to criminalize a young man making an awkward pass.

    And we really do need to do something about this current obsession with “safe spaces” on campuses, and the predilection of college students to retreat to them at the first sign of dissent from progressive orthodoxy. At a certain point the usual victimology crowd has to be told that it’s a rough and tough world out there, and that when they become grown-ups they won’t be able to run away from ideas that they find unpleasant or upsetting.

    JVW (a1146f)

  61. Ummm,

    When I was in college in the late 1970’s, it is recommended that women not walk places alone at night. I wouldn’t let female friends walk home at night. there was a volunteer service to make sure no woman had to walk home at night.

    It sounds like that old idea was a good thing.
    Is it assumed that society should have evolved by now so women can walk home in the dark by themselves? Did something happen in the last 30 years that didn’t happen in many thousands?

    MD in Philly (not in Philly at the moment) (deca84)

  62. precision in terminology is crimethink, therein lies the problem,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  63. Under Illinois law, Biden’s unwanted touching of women is Battery, Class A misdemeanor, up to 364 days in jail. (If on the public way or in certain public buildings it’s technically Aggravated Battery, a felony, but nobody gets charged with that unless there’s actual physical injury or the “victim” is a cop.)

    nk (dbc370)

  64. I never thought Clinton did anything actionable to the trailer trash lady with the big nose who started the whole Monicagate thing. He asked her for her favors, she refused, and he took no for an answer.

    nk (dbc370)

  65. And there is that newfangled thing “sexting” by both boys and girls as young as Jr. High using smart phones. How does that fit into all of this?

    elissa (189bdf)

  66. I never thought Clinton did anything actionable to the trailer trash lady with the big nose who started the whole Monicagate thing. He asked her for her favors, she refused, and he took no for an answer.

    You don’t believe her when she claimed that he whipped it out in front of her?

    JVW (a1146f)

  67. There is answer to campus rape, but it would be anathema to the Left…
    http://women-with-guns.tumblr.com/post/107955274277/superdames-better-do-what-she-says-sally

    kishnevi (91d5c6)

  68. I believe her, JVW. Even with that. Even in the medieval ’90s. Grown man, grown woman, private setting. Much ado about a small thing.

    nk (dbc370)

  69. Grown man, grown woman, private setting. Much ado about a small thing.

    I hadn’t heard that it was a small thing, but I know rumors are that it is a oddly bent thing.

    JVW (a1146f)

  70. re #70: Paula Jones only became a big thing due to missteps by Clinton Gang. They should not have gone the whole ‘trailer park’ routine and really should have just shutup as the Jones lawyers were making a mess of things. Clinton made things worse with his relations with Monica and by lying to the Court.

    As for the whether it was a thing or not – is ‘flashing’ a crime in Arkansas?

    seeRpea (81ed29)

  71. It’s “public indecency” in Illinois, emphasis on the “public”. I give Clinton the reasonable doubt that it was a private setting and no intimidation was attempted.

    nk (dbc370)

  72. I know rumors are that it is a oddly bent thing

    I had a guy asking me to sue his urologist for causing, or maybe not successfully fixing, something like that. I demurred too.

    nk (dbc370)

  73. There is an old joke from Boston I will not inflict on you, which depends on the fact that the hospital that was originally named the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital was commonly referred to as the Peter Bent.
    That name no longer exists, as it merged with two other hospitals to become Brigham and Women’s in 1980.

    kishnevi (91d5c6)

  74. “One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws.”

    Ag80 (eb6ffa)

  75. (shuffling feet, looking down and embarrassed) I’m just an engineer. But it seems to be that in a proper world the quest for truth should be one of the defining features, if not the most important defining feature, of journalism. But if I start looking a history I start to get the impression that the quest of journalists is to sell dead trees or equivalent bits and BYTEs while defining truth as opposed to discovering it. It’s the reader’s job to try to find the truth out of the welter of bias, lies, and agenda out there on the part of supposedly unbiased “journalists”. There’s a word that should soil the mouth as surely as lawyer and politician do.

    {o.o}

    JDow (770dee)

  76. This Rolling Stone thing makes me extremely angry. I devoted my life to telling the truth as a journalist. I failed.

    I like to think I failed because I told the truth. Sometimes I did. Ultimately, though, my whole career as a journalist collapsed because I sold out to lies to advance my career. I also was an asshole who destroyed people for some sort of reward that never came.

    I thought I was a good soldier of journalism. I thought I would right wrongs. I thought journalists were interested in the truth. I was wrong.

    I can’t do much about it now. I still believe in the truth, though. The truth is the thing. The truth may seem complicated, but it is not.

    Ag80 (eb6ffa)

  77. I’d be interested in your story, Ag80. I know you to be a good guy — and the thought of you working in the leftist viper’s nest of journamalism raises an eyebrow of curiosity.

    You know my email if you would like to discuss more.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  78. So what do we do to combat the actual problem while simultaneously pushing back against the oversimplified and hyper-exaggerated version of the problem offered by its purveyors?

    I don’t mean to be flip, at all. I think people with real knowledge of the honest-to-God reality of how this stuff goes down need to visit college campuses and lecture on the dangers of excessive alcohol consumption.

    Yes, it makes me and anyone who might participate in such an activity look like a fuddy-duddy. I don’t care. Get someone with personality and actual experience with these issues to make a passionate presentation. Maybe most college women would ignore it — but some might listen. And that would be the biggest advance anyone could possibly make.

    Because there are men standing ready to take advantage in such situations, often disgustingly so. You could give the same talk to them from the point of view of scaring them with the chance of prosecution should they take advantage. I would encourage such talks as well. But honestly? I think discouraging excessive drinking by college women would be a huge step forward. This is not an exercise in blaming the victim. It is a hope that we could avoid more victims in the future — because there actually is a real problem out there.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  79. nk (dbc370) — 4/6/2015 @ 8:24 pm

    Good to know I could flash your mom or sister in a private setting and you’d
    be okey dokey with it.

    What he SAID was uncouth, what he DID was a crime. Just because he then didn’t

    commit sexual battery doesn’t let him get off.

    And I certainly hope your not conflating that with what he was impeached for.

    He was impeached for lying under oath. (just to remind you about the level of

    depravity that that man is/was capable of. The man you’re so dismissive of his

    criminality.

    jakee308 (49ccc6)

  80. but what does Associated Press propaganda slut Geoff Mulvihill think?

    Retracted Rolling Stone story is rare demerit for its writer

    a redone konvict gaga

    happyfeet (831175)

  81. This startling statistic is the basis for much of what follows in the piece.

    I have created a page that discusses some of the problems with the statistic, here

    Couldn’t you have saved yourself the trouble and just highlighted this part:

    cited earlier this year by Vice President Joe Biden,

    ??

    I mean, if Joe Biden says “The sky is blue“, I’m getting out the color chart to see if my color vision is messed up somehow…

    IGotBupkis, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses." (225d0d)

  82. Jakee308,

    The story of The Princess Who Never Laughed by David Allen. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gr7PDahzP1k Funny, safe, and the best reason yet put forth why men should not expose their wee willies willy nilly.

    Y’all all others will like it too.

    nk (dbc370)

  83. *Dave Allen*

    nk (dbc370)

  84. The man you’re so dismissive of his criminality.

    But Clinton is the perfect Rorschach test for or ideal textbook example of that large portion of liberal America who excuses, tolerates, justifies or rationalize away his behavior, if not outright criminality. The reason? Merely because he’s of the left or generally favors most of the ideas, people and policies of the left.

    You’ll find a version of this among the right too, but far, far more of it exists among the left. That’s why various forms of socio-economic corruption (including aspects of decadence) start to churn and bubble when liberals become a dominant part of a society.

    Mark (33be9a)

  85. “Is this something you have honestly observed first hand or is it something you have read about or heard about second or third hand? Do these 1-5 statistics which some are stating ring true to you and on what basis? Granted, much in society has changed over a decade or two or three, but it’s just really difficult to imagine that things have changed that much on American college campuses.”

    elissa & JD,

    First off, I was never a resident on my college campus, which is largely a commuter campus, so I didn’t see much of dorm living. And I never saw anything resembling an assault firsthand at the handful of wild parties I attended as an undergrad. So, from my personal experience as a student, the 1 in 5 number seems high.

    However, I’ve spent the last year and a half working with victims of childhood sexual abuse (now in their 40s, 50s, and 60s) who never breathed a word of their abuse to anyone for many decades. So I do believe from personal experience that non-reporting is a common issue, which is what I attempted to clarify in my second comment.

    I think Patterico’s answer makes good sense. Alcohol is a huge problem in these cases. If someone could make the “limited consumption = self-empowerment” argument in a persuasive way, I think that would be a good first step.

    Leviticus (f9a067)

  86. so, last night i viewed a segment of a show called ‘Big Bang Theory’. I think i’ve seen segments of the show twice before so I’m not up on how old the main characters are supposed to be.
    This segment had a woman get drunk on a bad date, come to her former beau’s place, drag him (who was not drunk) to the bedroom and have sex. Next morning she was “ooops , bad idea”.
    Keep in mind this is all being played (written,acted) for laughs by a Hollywood studio.

    Was he guilty of rape?

    seeRpea (7c70fd)

  87. Oh, yeah, definitely. Women are weak, feeble-minded creatures and not capable of making decisions or protecting themselves from the consequences of their folly. It is up to the man to control his animal nature at all times and not to take advantage of feminine frailty.

    nk (dbc370)

  88. In the Third Book of Moses, it was written:

    I think Patterico’s answer makes good sense. Alcohol is a huge problem in these cases. If someone could make the “limited consumption = self-empowerment” argument in a persuasive way, I think that would be a good first step.

    One problem s the “tough girl” concept, the “ideal” of the woman who can match a man in anything, including drinking. (See Karen Allen in Raiders of the Lost Ark.) But it’s ridiculous to think that a 120 lb coed can match a 200 lb guy drink for drink, and not wind up more intoxicated, more quickly.

    We think that it’s perfectly valid advice to tell people to not drink and drive, to lock their doors at night, to look both ways before crossing the street, but somehow, some way, it’s just horribly sexist to tell women not to get stinking drunk.

    The teetotaler Dana (f6a568)


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