Patterico's Pontifications


Barbra Streisand Victim Blaming: Hey Kids, You Were Thrilled To Be At Neverland With Michael Jackson When He Allegedly Molested You. I Mean, C’mon, It Didn’t Kill You! (UPDATE ADDED)

Filed under: General — Dana @ 1:39 pm

[guest post by Dana]

I guess the lessons here are that if you’re a child and you are really excited to be at a mega-star’s wonderland of an estate where you can do any fun thing you want, and an adult does something to you that is too terrible for words while you’re there, it’s your fault because you were happy to be there in the first place. Too bad, so sad. And if you’re a child who physically survives that something too terrible for words, yet your mind and heart and soul are deeply damaged, shake it off, it didn’t kill you:

Speaking to the Times in advance of performances in Britain this summer, Streisand said she “absolutely” believed Wade Robson and James Safechuck.

But she said: “You can say ‘molested’, but those children, as you heard say, they were thrilled to be [at Jackson’s Neverland ranch]. They both married and they both have children, so it didn’t kill them.”

In the documentary, the two men allege Jackson began grooming them when they were as young as seven and subjected them to sexual abuse. Both men say that as adults they have suffered from depression, self-loathing and anxiety and have struggled with familial relations.

Streisand, 76, said she had “a combination of feelings. I feel bad for the children. I feel bad for him. I blame, I guess, the parents, who would allow their children to sleep with him.”

It is widely believed Jackson was verbally and physically abused as a child.

“His sexual needs were his sexual needs,” said Streisand, “coming from whatever childhood he has or whatever DNA he has.” When she met him, she said, she found him “very sweet, very childlike”. [Ed. I suspect that victims of child sexual abuse might strenuously object to Streisand’s trivialization of the crime committed against them.]

Responding to her outrageous comment was the director of Leaving Neverland, Dan Reed:

“Did you really say that?” On Saturday morning, he added: “‘His sexual needs were his sexual needs’ – is pedophilia tolerated in parts of the entertainment industry?”

Well, it’s pretty much an open secret, so the answer is, disgustingly, yes. (Also see: Hollywood’s shameful history of supporting and defending child rapist Roman Polanski.)

Streisand responded to the backlash without naming Jackson:

…”to be crystal clear, there is no situation or circumstance where it is OK for the innocence of children to be taken advantage of by anyone.”

“The stories these two young men shared were painful to hear, and I feel nothing but sympathy for them. The single most important role of being a parent is to protect their children. It’s clear that the parent of the two young men were also victimized and seduced by fame and fantasy.”

My God, who has to clarify that child molestation is never, ever justified and is always wrong?? The individual who has just blamed the victim(s) of molestation and justified the gross and unlawful behavior of an adult toward a child, that’s who.

UPDATE: Streisand apologized for her comments this afternoon:


(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)


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