Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Salon denigrates the victimization of false rape victims by pretending false rape claims are rare

Salon beats the radical feminist tom-tom and spreads more misinformation about the prevalence of false rape claims. This is from an article on the WikiLeaks rape claims against Julian Assange:

"It certainly appears that the case was handled poorly, but there is a whole lot we still don't know. Here's what I do know: Regardless of the validity of the specific claims against Assange, high-profile prosecutorial reversals and fumbles like this are a disservice to victims of sexual assault. They help perpetuate a distorted sense of the frequency of false accusations and contribute to the view of rape claims as a tool used to manipulate and destroy men. Ultimately, cases like this discourage victims from coming forward and only make it harder for women with legitimate claims of sexual assault to be taken seriously by police, prosecutors and the general public."

First, "high-profile prosecutorial reversals and fumbles like this" surely do a disservice to victims of sexual assault, but they do a much greater disservice to victims of false rape claims.

Second, claims such as this do not "help perpetuate a distorted sense of the frequency of false accusations" because false accusations are far more common than Salon is willing to tell its readers.  It is astounding that we must continually explain how the persons who dominate the public discourse about rape are spreading myths, half-truths, and outright lies when it comes to the prevalence of false rape claims.  See here.  What is most galling is that publications such as Salon posit such assertions as if  they were a given, suggesting that any contrary view can only be -- oh, no! Misogyny!  Heaven forbid that facts should get in the way of a good feminist victim metanarrative.

Third, if cases like this "contribute to the view of rape claims as a tool used to manipulate and destroy men," that is because far too often rape claims are used precisely in this manner. Salon's writers would do well to spend several weeks reading through the true-life false rape cases and objective materials posted on this Web site before they spread any more half-truths.