Why Race Matters In The Cleveland Rape Case

from Flickr user: alykat

I woke up yesterday to a slew of links on my Facebook and Twitter feeds about the New York Times article on the rape of an 11-year-old girl in Cleveland, Texas. Many of you probably saw the article, and most of you probably read the endless blog entries posted yesterday shaming the New York Times for victim-blaming. And yes, what the New York Times did was absolutely victim-blaming and was absolutely shameful. I, too, was shocked that the New York Times would write an article from that angle. So I started poking around the interwebs trying to find more information about the case.

Here’s where I’m going to talk about my own prejudice: When the New York Times didn’t specifically state that the victim and her attackers were nonwhite, I assumed we were talking about a white girl and a group of white attackers. Maybe because I come from a small town that is almost completely white, when I hear “small town” and “abandoned trailer,” I think white folks making meth. That’s my prejudice here. So I was surprised to click a link to a Houston newspaper and to see row after row of black faces, images of the alleged attackers, looking back at me. All of a sudden something snapped in my brain: No one is talking about how race complicates this whole mess, even though race is staring all of us in the face.

Maybe I should rephrase that. It’s not that no one was talking about race. It’s that everyone was NOT talking about race, on purpose, in a way that left what we in the academic biz like to call a present absence. And when you reframe your reading of the articles under the assumption that race is actually a huge issue in this case and in the way it is being presented, all of a sudden you see that every news posting on the case wants us to understand that we aren’t talking about white folks here, without ever once coming out and saying so.

The attacks took place in an area of town called “The Quarters.” Local residents blamed the victim’s mother for not being more in control of her daughter. The New York Times infamously raised the issue of the victim dressing and acting like a “woman in her 20s.” After a brief survey of the news in circulation, I was convinced the victim was not a white girl. I couldn’t find a single article that told me whether I was right or not, but to be perfectly frank, news outlets don’t talk about white girls this way. Not on the first pass, anyhow. Old stereotypes–the Jezebel, the Welfare Queen–jumped off the pages of these articles, and the fact that the attack happened in a part of town named for the place enslaved black folks had to live on the plantation (in 20-fucking-11) all implied to me that racism and racist productions of “characters” in the story were already present in the news reporting on the rape case.

This morning both the Houston Chronicle and ABCNews posted articles that identified the victim as “Hispanic.” While that only complicates the racial dynamic of this story (this could be read now as two different groups of color being pitted against one another by systems of white power like the police force, for example), it reaffirmed to me that news reporting on the rape had been using a racist logic to produce an image of the victim. This instance of victim-blaming happened, at least in part, because the girl who was attacked was not white.

Why should it matter that the victim was nonwhite, you might be asking? Aren’t we, as feminists, meant to be a united front? A woman is a woman! I mean, right?

The problem with colorblind rhetoric in discussions of rape–and particularly in the case of a rape this egregious in which the victim, despite her age, is still somehow being painted as a willing participant–is that it masks the fact that no matter how long your skirt or how sensible your shoes, you cannot cease to don your skin color, every morning, day in and day out. We talk about how it shouldn’t matter what a woman wears, but we should also be talking about how women (or in this case, little girls) of color should not be read or portrayed as inherently sexualized just because they are nonwhite. Out of curiosity this morning, I read the first article the New York Times published on the JonBenet Ramsey case. Despite the fact that this was a girl who was purposefully dressed like an adult and painted with makeup and paraded around, not once does the newspaper mention that her lascivious behavior could perhaps have led to her death. JonBenet was a white girl, and white girls have the privilege of being read as innocent. Women and girls of color more often than not start out as temptresses in the popular imagination, even as children, before conduct and appearance even begin to enter into the equation.

The feminist blogging community yesterday cried out, “How dare you mention that she dressed older than she was! What does it matter that she wore makeup?” All of this is absolutely true. And yet no one said, “She is being blamed here because she isn’t a white girl. She is being blamed here because her skin is brown.” It is important for white feminists (like myself) to remember that our skin color still provides and marks a high level of privilege, and that if I, as a white woman of a certain socioeconomic class, get raped, that I will be read as a victim in a certain way. No group is exempt from victim-blaming (see the case of the reporter raped in Egypt for example), but if we continue to pretend that race doesn’t make a difference or if we refuse to talk about how race informs the way victims get read and judged, we risk perpetuating a system in which women of color remain more vulnerable to sexual assault and remain less likely to be protected by the legal system that should punish their attackers.

White feminists have to talk about race. Yes, rape is rape, and yes, victim-blaming is victim-blaming. But if we as white feminists pretend like violence against women isn’t colored, if we condemn this group of black male attackers without interrogating the social and systemic structures that produced this violent incident and will inform the attacker’s prosecution, we will fail to form and sustain alliances with people of color and groups that work for racial equality. As Quanell X, a member of Houston’s New Black Panther Party and local activist pointed out, “Every adult male that had sex with this child should go to prison, I don’t care what the color is. But I do not believe black males are the only ones that had contact with this young child.” I would agree. If we only condemn black male attackers, we allow violence against women to persist and we also fail to address the actual root cause of violence against women: a system of power that is both patriarchal AND white supremacist. Dismantling power structures is complicated and difficult, and we need to start (and keep) having hard and uncomfortable conversations about the interaction between race violence and gender violence if anything is ever going to actually change.

About Susan Quesal

Susan Quesal is a Ph.D. candidate in American Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. Her work examines the nature of blackness in the present day through the lenses of home-space and the historical violence of slavery.
This entry was posted in feminism, media, news, race, sexual assault. Bookmark the permalink.

95 Responses to Why Race Matters In The Cleveland Rape Case

  1. excellent piece. makes me kick myself for not putting this together myself.

    • tom says:

      Ms. Susan, you have spoken very passionately with a logic that would be good for the advocacy of rape victims. I have a granddaughter who is close to the age of this little girl. And I would be cut to the core if this happened to my family. The spectrum of social issues for a post-modern society is both cutting and tragic. I’m a white male heterosexual about 50; and I am clueless about everything. I once had a strong confidence in fair play, justice, moral decency, the public good and American democracy. But its quite clear things aren’t working. I hope that the victim and her family are going to be supported by whatever it takes to recover from this ordeal. I hope that the rapist will face the full force of justice; not just a sentence, but working towards amending very poor decisions and outrageous criminal behaviours. Every time a woman, child or even a man is raped… it will be the last time any human every has to be treated this way…. might as well hope for a cure for cancer! It should not matter what your race, gender or economic status is… everyone is deserving of basic security and autonomy… and if this basic right isn’t protected and respected… there isn’t any law… only
      class, privilege and every evil society has faced when you have only power in a few and burden in the many. And a further thought, there will be a day when all will see a Judge… and this one will know everything about us… we’ll be pleading for mercy more than demanding Justice!

  2. clairedammit says:

    Yes, race does matter.

    Reading the articles yesterday, I had wondered if the victim was black, then when her hair was described as long, assumed she wasn’t, but thought she might have been Hispanic, just based on the racial makeup of this part of Texas (I’m in Houston) and her hair being described as dark. But then, it never occurred to me that her behavior was being picked apart because she wasn’t white. I assumed it was because she was poor.

    Knowing that the men and boys who were arrested are black (all of them? really?) makes what the townspeople said sound a little less victim-blamey to me and more like legitimate concern. Our justice system, especially in east Texas, is notorious for not treating African-Americans fairly. (Seriously, all of them are black? What Quanell X said – no way.)

    I’m white and non-Hispanic, so there’s probably a ton of stuff I’m getting wrong here.

    • ginamero says:

      You creep me out as well. It’s not the guys fault because they are black? WTF? You people are all nuts. Close your eyes and imagine for one minute we are all one color, now imagine up to 28 men, 18 of whom have been arrested, gang raping an 11 year old child…you see how sick you are for acting as though it’s ok because they are black and do not know any better? Sick, sick, all of you are just sick.

      • Swan says:

        I think part of the point being raised here is that it seems suspicious that there are not white guys who are being accused. Small town in a culture that demonizes blacks? Where people take care of their own? Hmm… look below the surface, dig more deeply, and I wonder if you’ll find one or more white people involved in this mess.

    • C.Dot says:

      @clairedammit

      I hate to be off topic but to assume that the victim wasn’t black because she had long hair is quite baseless. I’m sure you meant absolutely nothing by it but it is one of those stereotypes about black women that I really wish would just go away. I’m not pointing it out to single you out or antagonize you, it’s just something I hope you can consider in future.

  3. amanda says:

    Sorry, but your comparison with JonBenet Ramsey doesn’t fly, as that was a kidnapping/murder case, not a rape case. And just last year the victim of the Richmond California gang rape was white, and what she wore and whether she was perceived as promiscuous were central elements of almost every article written about it.

  4. Jessica says:

    Race doesn’t matter in this case. I am from the town that this crime happened in and I don’t blame the girl at all. In fact the guys caught have been arrested on other occasions. It is a poor community and the area in which this happened was a poor neighborhood. The white families live in another area on the other side of town and a lot of them are old and retired. Quannell X is stupid because he believes that just because black people are arrested means the town is racist. But it isn’t. It’s just a poor town and crime happens a lot because they can get away with it. Look at the pictures and videos from the rape and tell me how many nonblack people you see.

    • Monica says:

      Jessica I will have to say I myself lived in Cleveland, TX and it is by far one of the most racist places I have been. When you see a primer grey bus driving through town at 10 miles an hour with men in fatigues packed on the bus and one standing guard in the open door with huge letters reading “KKK” on the side in bold black….I think that is abnormally racist. I had a black friend who was working and said “I am taking my black ass to the house”. Then, later that evening Black Panthers arrive? Not racist? When you can walk to a payphone and pick up a business card from a pile of cards advertising the “KKK”, I would say “racist”. Inter-racial couples are still scoffed out and a good chunk of the white population still walk around spouting racial slurs in their daily conversations and in front of their children. I still have family that live there and not only is it racist, it is a very poor community regardless of the color. It is inundated with criminals, registered sex offenders and so many meth addicts that people who know better start to think it is normal. I am dumbfounded at how in 2011 you have this many men, regardless of color or income, in such a small town, that all agreed that since she looked older and maybe acted older, that it was ok to rape her. Rape is what it was. She is 11. Thought is, she was probably molested and that is how she relates. I don’t care if she was black, white or hispanic spinning down a stripper pole and said “have sex with me”, even a teen male should KNOW better…regardless of education unless he was mentally retarded. I am just disgusted by this and embarassed that my daughter has to say she was born in this God Forsaken town. My mother still resides there and is so appalled by this and other rapes, scandals, etc. that she won’t even list Cleveland as her hometown on facebook. I pray for my family that does still live there. God have mercy on Cleveland, Texas.

  5. Total Cynic says:

    I read the first article the New York Times published on the JonBenet Ramsey case. Despite the fact that this was a girl who was purposefully dressed like an adult and painted with makeup and paraded around, not once does the newspaper mention that her lascivious behavior could perhaps have led to her death. JonBenet was a white girl, and white girls have the privilege of being read as innocent.

    Jon Benet Ramsey was five years old. And you should have gone further than the “first” article, if you actually found it. There was all kinds of commentary on kiddie pageants. In this case, I think we’ll see the usual white guilt complex at play, with no one daring to utter the sorts of condemnations you’d hear if this was a white-on-white, or “worse,” a white-on-black crime.

    Racist coverage? Give me a break. It’s the other way around. There was no coded language in those reports. They were scrubbed clean of any racial angle, because no one wanted to point any fingers at the noble black people.

    Yeah, and of course you’ll call me a Stormfront type. It’s so easy.

  6. jh says:

    When I read the Times piece, I knew the the socioeconomic factors meant the attackers and victim could be any race. I think omitting race was the only thing they did correctly in this case. It’s not unlike hearing about a horrific crime that takes place in Brooklyn or Queens, because you know they could be from a variety of backgrounds. The minute one of these stories hits a local blog, you know that people are just waiting behind their keyboards to confirm their own sweeping generalizations about Italian-Americans, Russians, Polish (and all other caucasian cultures associated with redneck behavior), African-Americans, Haitians, Jamaicans, Mexicans, Colombians, Egyptians, Iranians, Turkish, Hassids, Native New Yorkers, Transplants, etc.

    Yes, society judges victims by their skin color, and the circumstances are examined differently when the race of the victim is discovered. In this case, however, the age of the victim overrides everything; the thought that someone would make such comments about ANY 11-year-old is profoundly disturbing. This is a child, and people don’t attach the same stigma as they might if the victim was in her 20s. The JonBenet example isn’t relevant here.

    Not knowing the race of those involved allows the reader to fully ingest the horror of the crime itself. We owe it to the victim not to dilute this crime with what is almost a “story hijacking” with:

    …if we condemn this group of black male attackers without interrogating the social and systemic structures that produced this violent incident and will inform the attacker’s prosecution, we will fail to form and sustain alliances with people of color and groups that work for racial equality.

    I condemned them the minute I read the story before I knew their skin color or background. I’m not going to retract my condemnation after this revelation. The increased vulnerability of women of color within the system is an injustice, and an even bigger injustice is asking a woman of any color to take a backseat “for the greater good.” Implying that a social structure might be a reason to reexamine contempt for a group of rapists diverts attention and, to an extent, sympathy for the victim. This is not the way to heighten awareness for a victim of color.

    If there are white men among the accused who have not yet been picked up, this needs to happen immediately. Just realize that any mishandling on the part of the police is not the fault of the victim. If you don’t feel appropriate saying to the family of the victim “I’m sorry about your daughter, but consider the social structure of the attackers,” then perhaps it’s a little insensitive in general.

  7. jh says:

    Another note: when I say the Times was “correct” in omitting the race, I know full well their intent was to make others pause in preconceived racial judgements. I applaud the action, but also know that the secondary effect of allowing the reader to see the crime for what is was is only a byproduct. The NY Times is your “sensitive,” liberal, male friend who won’t hesitate to resort to “mansplaining” to illustrate what he sees as a greater injustice (as illustrated by the very recent douhat column, among other inherently sexist coverage).

  8. ginamero says:

    You are nuts. I was hoping to read something interesting and find a good site for women in Texas but you just lost my vote, my intentions, my respect. You are such a racist you can’t stop talking about how horrible white people are. Your a self hater. Your blaming the white guy when the whtie guy wasn’t even there! If there were white men on those video tapes or white guys there, they would have been fingered by now. People like you make sure the white guy is always front and center. I bet you were so dissappointed not the have a white person to hang this on…oh, wait, you hung it on them anyway. Blame the rapists, not the 11 YEAR OLD GIRL! The Quarters…give me a break you don’t KNOW that area was named after ‘slave quarters’ you assume it is because you think you’re cute.

  9. Total Cynic says:

    if we condemn this group of black male attackers without interrogating the social and systemic structures that produced this violent incident and will inform the attacker’s prosecution

    Yeah, race was relevant. This is partly about a black community, in Texas and everywhere else, where illegitimacy and neglect are the rule. But no one can say that, or even whisper about it between the lines, much less the NYT. So they do what whites do all over America: Wear an impassive public mask, while fleeing as far as they can get.

    You want the media to turn this into another excuse to blame whites. I’d ask you if you’re joking, but I know that you actually believe that crap. Anyway, good luck trying to sell it anywhere.

  10. Maverynthia says:

    I’m going to call you out on your use of the word “colorblind” as it is an abelist appropriation of the word as being colorblind is a disability and using the word in relation to race is erasing the people who have colorblindness (like my grandfather and my brother).

  11. G.L. Piggy says:

    This post is ridiculous. The only people explicitly blaming the victim here are the black parents and Quanell X. Quanell went to a meeting in Cleveland, TX and *showed the girl’s Facebook pictures* to a gathered crowd to prove that she exhibits “slutty” behavior.

    The elephant in the room here is that the victim is being blamed because the perps *are black*. Nobody wants to point out that these crimes happen more in *black* communities. Whatever you consider victim blaming on the part of the NYT or the press pales in comparison to that going on within the black community in Cleveland and by Quanell X.

    And you say that you agree with X that somebody else besides black males have exploited this young girl. Who? Show me the effing evidence before you make grand conjecture like that just to cover a certain group’s trail.

    I’m not a feminist, but I can identify a true case of victim-blaming. You are basically granting a portion of the Cleveland, TX community and Quanell X free cover to blame this victim. Despicable.

    • D says:

      I actually agree with most everything you said EXCEPT the part about admitting that these type of crimes happen more in *black* communities; I’ m not sure I sex crimes against children happens more in *black* communities vs. others.

  12. Sarah says:

    I disagree with the racial angle. People always blame the girl/woman in cases of rape and even assault. It doesn’t matter her skin color; they always find blame. They recently blamed a white woman for a black guy punching her in the face and putting her in a coma in NYC.

    There’s no racial angle here, except that some of the black families are blaming racism for their sons getting arrested for rape, and they are also blaming the little girl. They would do that no matter her skin color. If she were black, however, it would be harder for them to say the arrests were race-related.

  13. Myself says:

    You would agree there were white attackers based on what expert evidence? What inside information to the crime scenes do you claim to possess that those who reported on this story do not have or perhaps did not provide? Or should I just go with my assumption that this is horseshit conjecture on your part based on no evidence whatsoever? It sounds to me like you are wanting there to be white attackers. If there are white attackers in this case they should be prosecuted and demonized alongside their black counterparts just the same. No sane person would dispute that. However, again, you give the impression to your readers that you are specifically holding out hope that there are white attackers. Meanwhile, everyone else is just sad and angry that this happened to the little girl (no matter what color she or her attackers are).

    Wow. Did I truly read that right? So in essence, rape or any other violence that occurs against women can always be blamed on the white man whether or not there were any whites involved in the given situation. To extend your logic, you are stating that if not for the white race, the act of rape and other violence against women would be non-existent in the other races, cultures and religions of the world.
    At this point, your essay loses all credibility.

  14. Myself says:

    “As Quanell X, a member of Houston’s New Black Panther Party and local activist pointed out, “Every adult male that had sex with this child should go to prison, I don’t care what the color is. But I do not believe black males are the only ones that had contact with this young child.” I would agree.”

    You would agree there were white attackers based on what expert evidence? What inside information to the crime scenes do you claim to possess that those who reported on this story do not have or perhaps did not provide? Or should I just go with my assumption that this is horseshit conjecture on your part based on no evidence whatsoever? It sounds to me like you are wanting there to be white attackers. If there are white attackers in this case they should be prosecuted and demonized alongside their black counterparts just the same. No sane person would dispute that. However, again, you give the impression to your readers that you are specifically holding out hope that there are white attackers. Meanwhile, everyone else is just sad and angry that this happened to the little girl (no matter what color she or her attackers are).

    “If we only condemn black male attackers, we allow violence against women to persist and we also fail to address the actual root cause of violence against women: a system of power that is both patriarchal AND white supremacist.”

    Wow. Did I truly read that right? So in essence, rape or any other violence that occurs against women can always be blamed on the white man whether or not there were any whites involved in the given situation. To extend your logic, you are stating that if not for the white race, the act of rape and other violence against women would be non-existent in the other races, cultures and religions of the world.
    At this point, your essay loses all credibility.

  15. Pingback: Feminists Remain Cowardly on Cleveland 18 « Gucci Little Piggy

  16. Susan says:

    Just to clarify, because I feel like this article is becoming more and more strangely misread, I am not saying that white men are responsible for all rapes or that the black men who were videotaped raping a girl are being blamed for the rape because of their race. My concern in this article is with the race of the VICTIM, not her attackers. And it’s interesting that the readers of this blog, in the race to “defend” the victim totally ignore her presence here.

    What I am saying is that a refusal to recognize the racial element present in this instance of victim-blaming denies white privilege which disenfranchises women of color. All rape is bad. No rape should ever, ever occur. But things can be equally heinous without being the same. Discussing difference does not negate unity.

    Further, because this girl had been showing signs of trauma since September or October according to some reports, even though this even occurred in November (another subtle hint in the media reports that indicates more is going on than anyone is saying publicly), this case offers us a feminists a chance to form alliances with groups that advocate for equality for communities of color, especially in Texas where a deep and painful history of racial strife and violence is often ignored or denied. I’m not saying these black men did not rape this girl. If there is video evidence, if there are confessions, if the victim identifies them, I will not argue against that. I’m saying that it’s important for us as feminists to advocate that a) EVERYONE who touched this girl gets punished for it and that b) no one who is innocent goes to jail for it. The very fact that bringing up race became so divisive indicates that we all need more practice talking about the intersection between racial violence and gender violence, between structures that make women unequal and less than human and those that make people of color unequal and less than human.

    • G.L. Piggy says:

      If anything, Susan, black people have a monopoly or at least first dibs on victimhood in this country. Why can’t you see that the parents of these youth are blaming the victim because black communities in this country have been socialized to believe that they aren’t responsible for their actions or their negative outcomes?

      And Quanell X can get up there and engage in the most blatant form of victim blaming that I’ve ever witnessed because he is black and black people are protected in this regard. Not even feminists are addressing Quanell X’s behavior here; you yourself defended him and said that he had a point when he stood up in front of a sympathetic crowd and showed this girl’s Facebook page. What is your response to that?

      • Dee says:

        “If anything, Susan, black people have a monopoly or at least first dibs on victimhood in this country. Why can’t you see that the parents of these youth are blaming the victim because black communities in this country have been socialized to believe that they aren’t responsible for their actions or their negative outcomes?”

        More racial stereotypes I see. Do you assume that black people play the victim in most situations due to systems of racism? It is very steroetypical and racially condescending to assume that most black communities indulge in the belief that they are not responsible for their own actions. This only further proves that black people and white people are on opposite ends of the same stick. Both assume things about one another that may not even be true or even close to the truth. It is simple minded to assume that a majority thinks or does something when only a few actually do.

    • John Prewett says:

      Dee opined: Do you assume that black people play the victim in most situations due to systems of racism? ”
      As a matter of fact, I often see post from Blacks who believe the “oppressive white system” [history etc] is more responsible for negative [crime inciting/hopelessness inciting] thinking than Blacks are. Blacks certainly are NOT solely responsible for the prevalence of the negative thinking. More than any other single group, White liberals, by supporting collective guilt of whites [which demands punishment of whites] are responsible for the current terrible racial state of affairs .
      The Black person who holds Blacks mainly responsible for Black crimes is quickly attacked by both White liberals and by a vocal segment of fellow Blacks who will deemed him an “uncle Tom.”

  17. Myself says:

    “I’m saying that it’s important for us as feminists to advocate that a) EVERYONE who touched this girl gets punished for it and that b) no one who is innocent goes to jail for it.”

    Okay? Duh. One doesn’t have to invoke his or her feminism to advocate for these things, only ones humanity.

  18. Myself says:

    And if your article is being “more and more strangely misread”, maybe it’s you, not everyone else.

    • MsM says:

      Concur. Comparing the rape of an 11-year old with evidence to the abduction of a beauty queen is out of context. Agreeing with the Quannel X’s ‘assessment’ that the girl was from another community so, why weren’t there other men arrested? Actually, they were. But keep in mind, the girl was DRIVEN to the first location and was relocated when someone heard a car pull-up. Phonecalls were made and more sexual assailants came over. Are the assailants men whose friendships span cultural groups or do they mainly fraternize with other men ‘of color’?

      I understand that INNOCENT brothers have been MURDERED, been JAILED both past and present for crimes they have NOT committed or been sentences harshly for minor fractions due to the prejudices and the system’s thirst to keep bodies in prisons to maintain cash inflow. BUT, there are pockets of people within our communities who will defend men who are PREDATORS in our communities which is NOT ACCEPTABLE. When men are video-taping sexual assault whether inflicted upon minors, women or men that is EVIDENCE of their nature and actions and leniency should NOT be extended. White patriarchy does not play a piece in this henious act, only the deplorable concept of ‘running a train’ (anyone who’s lived in the ‘hood knows what I mean when I spit that term) on an 11-year old baby.

      Using her Facebook account as evidence…kids talk/mimic sh*t. However, put those same kids in a situation and they don’t know OR want what is happening. The situation between the overly sh*t-talking cheerleader in ‘American Beauty’ is prime example of an all-talk, no walk situation. However, the male figure in the movie was brought back to his senses when he realized the reality of who she was, not the dream of what he was ‘missing’…

  19. jh says:

    this case offers us a feminists a chance to form alliances with groups that advocate for equality for communities of color, especially in Texas where a deep and painful history of racial strife and violence is often ignored or denied.

    Fair enough. However, I hardly think Quanell X is a legitimate source to support your argument:

    http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/ap/tx/7467292.html
    http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/metropolitan/7466774.html

    He told the audience of more than 130 people who had packed a small community center that the gathering’s goal was not to criticize the girl but to question the investigation by police, although he did question why she didn’t report the attack to authorities herself.

    This blows my mind completely…yeah, an 11-year-old is brutally attacked and he can’t get his head out of his ass to wonder why she might be afraid to report the attack to the authorities herself.

    he said Hispanics “have a right to be angry with black men who ravaged a young girl … but the first house you need to stop at is her Mama and Daddy’s house!”

    And yet he doesn’t hold the parents of the attackers to the same standards.

    Attorney James D. Evans III, who has represented several of the young men, further inflamed the debate by claiming the victim was “seeking attention.”

    There are no words to describe this guy. How the fuck does he sleep at night? And Quanell is encouraging people to donate to this guy for their defense?

    As a feminist, I’m always eager to form an alliance with other groups. I would likewise also expect quid pro quo behavior in terms of respect and reciprocity as opposed to victim-blaming. My energy is finite, and I’m not going to expend it defending others’ rights if they’re not going to step up and do the same for me once in a while.

    If anyone who does not identify as a feminist wonders why I do, it’s because women are always expected to take the back seat if any other issue is at stake. Another very recent example can be found here:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/03/05/AR2011030503668.html?hpid=artslot

    “Gender issues are going to have to take a back seat to other priorities,” said the senior official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal policy deliberations. “There’s no way we can be successful if we maintain every special interest and pet project. All those pet rocks in our rucksack were taking us down.”

    Of course.

    The 2008 presidential campaign is another example; during the Democratic primaries, Clinton supporters were often asked to tolerate sexism so we could get a Democrat back in the White House. There was also a tremendous amount of sexism toward Palin from both major parties.

    Keith Olbermann brushed aside legitimate concerns about Assange because the importance of his work overshadowed the possibility of a sex crime. Roman Polanski was defended by many because of his work, and often cited that the 70s “were a different time,” or the “victim dropped the case” or whatever. On a local level, the US grants tax-exempt status to religious institutions that practice sexism, and their “religious freedom” permits this (remember when NY State governor candidate Carl Paladino held a press conference in a temple that didn’t allow women? Technically, a female reporter could have been limited in her job responsibilities because of our tolerance of religious sexism).

    What’s even worse is that organizations will use feminist issues to publicize their own causes when convenient. Never had I heard Republicans embrace the word “sexism” unless it was in reference to Palin, or Sharia law/the Qur’an. First world governments suddenly exhibited tremendous outrage over the possibility of a sex crime when they found out Assange could be hauled in for a charge other than hacking to buy them time. Feminist concerns can be very convenient, until they become very inconvenient when feminists demand consistency.

    So, forgive me if I don’t feel particularly enthusiastic about reaching out to Quanell X.

  20. Donika says:

    Okay wait hold up, have y’all closely read the points in this post? People seem to be getting upset without fully understanding what the author in this blog is trying to say. Race does enter in the picture in terms of the racially-marked body of the victim – this does make a difference of how the rape has been portrayed in the media and this seems to be the overall argument. We could sit here and talk all day long about race and violence, and racism that goes on in communities BUT the main point that I believe the blogger is trying to highlight is that people are not thoroughly discussing how the victim’s race affects the way the media has been portraying the crime, in particular how the notion of victim-blaming is associated with racially-marked bodies.

  21. Pingback: Respone to Susan from Hay Ladies! « Gucci Little Piggy

  22. Alison says:

    Susan, Donika,

    I read Susan’s article and read all of the comments. I think a lot of the commenters who were critical of Susan’s article DO in fact understand her point(s) – they just disagree. And rightfully so, IMO.

    I thought your piece was embarrassingly anti-feminist. As someone who has a Master’s degree in Multicultural Education and grew up in a multiracial family that was impacted by racism, I understand your lingo and I understand the term “racially-marked bodies” – although I do believe the over-use of this term in the context of this rape case borders on the ridiculous.

    The tough thing is, you do have a modicum of a point, and I will acknowledge this before going ahead further. The fact that Quannell X is on the lookout for possible racist procedures by the police is fair, considering the town’s history. But this should hardly be making news seeing as THERE IS NO EVIDENCE THUS FAR that this has happened. IMO, this is simply something that local activists should quietly be on the lookout for. Q X’s assertion that it is unlikely that a white boy was not at the scene of the rape is very odd without further details. Why is this so unlikely? Were white boys seen raping the girl on the circulated videos? Were the black culprits in question known to congregate with some specific white boys? Really, unless there is something more compelling than what is already being suggested, this should NOT BE MAKING NEWS and is absolutely unworthy of a blog post.

    What Susan is missing here is the extreme power and largeness of the patriarchy. So huge is the patriarchy that it encompasses every country and almost every culture in the world. So huge is the patriarchy that the important and momentous civil rights movement was also a patriarchal movement. So huge is the patriarchy that my own degree in Multiculturalism was patriarchal since the lives of women and girls was not even a topic during my 2 year degree.

    So huge is the patriarchy that Susan, a feminist writes an article claiming:

    “This instance of victim-blaming happened, at least in part, because the girl who was attacked was not white.”

    White girl Susan must be aware that white women are raped all the time and are victim-blamed. My own white girl roommate in college was raped and victim blamed. Hardly anyone in my very liberal college sided with my raped white girl friend because she dressed sexy, despite being unconscious during the rape. Polanski’s young white rape victim was said to be “mature” at the age of 13 and the famous Jodie Foster movie “The Accused” resonated as being so realistic (white woman raped in a bar and no one really cares because victim was “slutty”) because…. ta da! It happens all the time. The Jon Benet comparison makes absolutely no sense as other commenters have already explained. If white women were not victim-blamed one would think that the rape conviction rates would be much higher than 9 percent.

    Now here is where it gets interesting. This specific rape event in Texas did not even happen to a white woman! It happened to a Latina woman! And all the rapists thus far are African American. Yet somehow, the patriarchal element of Multiculturalism has dragged this conversation back to White Privilege which is convenient because it gets us to stop talking about the ACTUAL RAPE AND THE ACTUAL RAPISTS. So as far as things go, we get one New York Times article that victim blames, and a whole host of articles that are musing about the “racial elements” of this rape case. It’s fucked up. Way to go Patriarchy. Wait… what happened again… was a woman raped????

    • Diverkat says:

      No. A child was raped. A child is not a woman. An 11-year-old girl is not a woman. And Susan is absolutely spot on with this article; the victim-blaming would not have nearly been as virulent had the victim been white.

      Susan isn’t stating that victim-blaming doesn’t happen to white women. She’s merely pointing out that in the extreme circumstances of gang rape (where victim-blaming is less likely to happen, if previous slants on reports of gang rape are any indication), an 11-year-old girl is being held responsible for 18 alleged rapists raping her, whereas she shouldn’t be. (Susan correct me if I’ve read you wrong)

      Everyone that’s taking umbrage with Susan’s observation that race is indeed a factor needs to check their own privilege. This little girl’s race is undoubtedly a factor in this round of blaming the victim, and it is disgusting that people are ignoring this. Thank you, Susan, for writing this.

      • Alison says:

        Diverkat,

        You must be in the same or a similar Master’s Degree Program as Susan which teaches young maleable minds to focus on White Privilege even when Misogyny is the most glaring culprit. I believe in White Privilege. From my experiences and the experiences of my brown family members I know it to be real. But speaking about White Privilege in the context of a Latina girl raped by Black men and boys is bull sh*t.

        Yes, I know that Susan didn’t say that victim-blaming never happens to White women and girls (although I do wonder what adverb of frequency Susan would apply… rarely? occasionally? often?)

        But here is what she said:

        “…white girls have the privilege of being read as innocent.”

        Again, this is bull sh*t. Completely untrue. White girls do not have the privilege of being “read as innocent.” White girls and women who are raped are pretty much thought to be bitches, whores and sluts just like brown women. And why are white women, just like brown women, so loath to tell anyone about a rape? Please tell me why, if white girls are so privileged to be “read as innocent” the conviction rate for rape is so abysmally low? And do I really, truly need to site the media portrayal of white women rape victims to show that this is not the case? We have already started to do that here but somehow all this is falling on def ears. The recent gang raping of the 15 year old white girl in California was reported with mention of her sexually provocative actions and clothing! And seeing as Jon Benet was only FIVE and years away from even being a tween, it was her mother who was treated like a pimp for dressing her daughter up like a doll/ country music star.

        Way back in ’75 a White Privileged central park jogger was gang raped and left for dead by a group of young Black men from Harlem. Al Sharpton led the group of activists chanting of “whore!” and “drug addict!” when the victim arrived at the court house to testify. Wow! What a lucky duck this woman was to have so much white privilege! It really helped her after her rape!

        And then I can’t help thinking about the rape of the (Black) young High School cheerleader by Mike Tyson. I remember vividly watching news programs of Black community leaders speaking to crowds of African Americans and in the news in defense of Tyson, saying that it was unbelievable that the young victim did not know that a meeting in a hotel room with Tyson meant sex. Really, I do not remember a ton of support from Black male activists for the young black rape victim here.

        Then there was the 8 year old Liberian girl who was gang raped in 2009 in Arizona by a group of Liberian boys. This young girl was not victim blamed by the media but was by her parents who disowned her after the rape.

        So perhaps Susan is correct and there is a “racial element” to this story but is wrong in how she interpreted it. The racial element is this – Multiculturalism has a Patriarchal element to it just like the rest of our god forsaken world. And dang, if it didn’t do a great job at getting Susan and the rest of Liberal Dude Nation to misdirect the conversation here from Misogyny to Racism! I’d like to ask Susan and her supporters this: do you think in all the media discussion of this gang raping in Texas that the word “Misogyny” was adequately dealt with in the context of this crime? Really, I hear victim blaming and I hear cries of “racism” and “racial elements” in the mainstream media but Misogyny? No, nobody wants to talk about this 4 syllable word, even liberal Multiculturalists.

        BTW, I consider myself left of center and this is why it is so outrageous to me. My own peeps are afraid to discuss Misogyny without some sort of misdirection!

    • MsM says:

      “The fact that Quannell X is on the lookout for possible racist procedures by the police is fair, considering the town’s history. But this should hardly be making news seeing as THERE IS NO EVIDENCE THUS FAR that this has happened. IMO, this is simply something that local activists should quietly be on the lookout for. Q X’s assertion that it is unlikely that a white boy was not at the scene of the rape is very odd without further details. Why is this so unlikely? Were white boys seen raping the girl on the circulated videos? Were the black culprits in question known to congregate with some specific white boys? Really, unless there is something more compelling than what is already being suggested, this should NOT BE MAKING NEWS and is absolutely unworthy of a blog post.”

      Bing! This is NOT the Jenna 6 case. This is NOT a Civil Rights case. This is the case of an 11-year old baby who was driven to one location, transferred to another and had a train run on her baby body by a bunch of men who for the most part WERE Black men. Full-stop. End of story.

  23. Bravo! I am a Brown woman and have been haunted by this for quite some time. I am so proud to be a woman after reading things like this.

  24. Em says:

    I’m a fan of neither patriarchy nor white supremacy, but my goodness. Did you really intend to say that “the actual root cause of violence against women” is white supremacy factoring coequally with patriarchy?

    I think the reason this piece is being misread is that you didn’t give the subject the thought it deserves before posting. The initial post is not really a call for unity, it’s a protest against the unfortunate realities of the case. I’m sorry the perpetrators complicated everything by being African-American. Don’t let it fry your circuits.

  25. Tore Kvaeven says:

    Countries like Norway and Sweden (I am myself a norwegian) has taken in hundreds of thousands of people from the third world during the last 40 – 50 years. The populations of Stockholm and Oslo are now concisting of between 20 – 30 % of people of non-European origin. And the numbers are growing at a relatively fast rate. Anybody who opposes this development is branded as racist. One of the most frightening aspects of this development is what it has done to the rape-rate in our countries. 40 years ago Sweden used to have below 1000 police-reported rapes per year. The number now is 6000 per year. Sweden has developed from beeing amongst the safest countries in the world in this respect, to becoming one of the unsafest. In Oslo, over a 3 year period, amongst 41 assault rapes committed, all 41 were carried out by men of non-european origin. In Oslo, amongst all rapes reported in 2007, 72.8 % were carried out by men of non-european origin. In Sweden, in a report worked out for the high court in 2001, a strange fact came to the surface. 85 % of the rapists had non-swedish origin.

    Since then no research about the race or origin of rapists has been published in Sweden. If the facts of the situation does not suit a society (that is beeing more dominated by leftist and feminist powers than probably any other single country in Europe) then those facts must be hidden.

    The rape victims in Norway and Sweden are in a huge majority of norwegian and swedish origin.

    Still there are no demonstrations in the streets of Norway and Sweden. Group rapes that were unknown of in these countries 50 years ago, are now fairly common. The newspapers try to hide the racial aspect. The immigration is beeing kept at a high level. Anything else would be considered racist.

    I have myself traveled in countries like Marocco, Algeria, Niger. There were no drinking girls with sexy outfits to be seen in the streets in those countries. There is a good reason for that. They would have been concidered whores and animals and they would have ended up raped. In norwegian and swedish cities the story is different. Yet the leftists and the feminists have decided that these two cultures shall be mixed in our countries, and if something bad comes out of it, that shall not be spoken of.

    What I see in our countries today is a scary willingness to sacrifice even our own girls for the sake of something “good” (The “good” beeing the multicultural tolerant society that the euoropean left and socialists and feminists are eagerly striving for).

    One day I hope that a great number of our politicians and journalists are beeing put to court for their cooperation in this unjustice. However, the most guilty of them all, to me seems to be the feminists and the white liberals, as nobody seems to be as willing to accept this rape epidemic as them. Nobody seems to be as willing to put smoke over the broader picture and to silence the critics of what is happening.

    • Sarah Davies says:

      Thank you for being so brave Tore Kvaeven, and for telling the truth which we are no longer permitted to tell in Europe

    • Diverkat says:

      It sounds like you’re blaming people for their race as opposed to blaming them for the cultural environments they grew up in, and the attitudes toward rape ensconced within those environments. Correct me if I’m wrong?

      • alicec says:

        It sounds to me like she’s blaming these people for their ACTIONS — not their race.

    • Seditious says:

      Tore, since this situation is not in the U.S. and does not involve the same social or political factors as we have here, I can only conclude that you are raising it here for one reason: To spread your opinion that all Black men are rapists. And I will absolutely not apologize for calling that a racist opinion. I am NOT, however, calling YOU a racist. I believe you have jumped to the most simple + obvious conclusion without using any real analysis.

      Of course you have an excellent reason/knowledge for concluding that. I trust that your statistics are correct about the horrific rise in rape and, UNLIKE the corresponding stats in the U.S., there is clearly SOME explanation for the attacks being done BY one race and TO another. It could be something extremely complex, or it could be something simple (such as conveniently leaving out the CLASS stats or the RELIGIOUS stats.) I can’t speak with any real knowledge on the situation because I don’t know the complexities of your country socially, politically, class-wise, etc.

      What I CAN speak authoritatively about is the power issue of spreading a generalization that rapes happen because Black men are typically rapists. In America, Black men were historically lynched for any action that was slightly PERCEIVED as being overstepping the “boundaries” to keep separate from the White communities. Emmit Till was lynched for simply whistling at a White woman. My point here is that while being Black is no excuse for sexist, male chauvinist, or violent behaviors, there is ALSO a serious danger in the blanket spreading of this age-old racist fear of Black men, in general, as predators against White women.

      As for the Cleveland case, the stats of race are NOT what happens frighteningly on the rise in your part of the world. The victim and criminals (assuming they are indeed guilty, which I have no reason to doubt) are of the same class: that is typical. They are of different races: that is Atypical in the U.S., where the vast majority of sexual assaults are committed by a member of the same race and class as the victim.

      I hope that people, the media, and public organizations in your country will do the hard work of finding out what is really happening to cause the rise in, including really digging into the factors of race and immigration and cultural differences. However it does no justice to the victims there, or here, to fan the flames of racism by saying it is simply that Black men are more predisposed in any way to commit rape.

  26. Alison says:

    Good conversation happening here despite the anti-feminist article.

    I just wanted to leave a link in regard to those in Texas who are supporting the girl. Mujeres Unidas.

    http://www.khou.com/home/Group-supports-11-year-old-in-center-of-alleged-Cleveland-sex-assault-117866074.html

    “The small group of men and women representing Mujeres Unidas wanted her to know they care.
    “There hasn’t been any public support of this young girl and so we decided we wanted to come and show her she does have support,” said Morales.”

    • Diverkat says:

      Alison,

      I appreciate what you’re saying and I agree that misogyny is the most obvious prejudice being expressed here – I am in no way erasing that. Please note that I said the girl’s race is a FACTOR in this whole debacle, not the only reason she’s suffering from victim-blaming. We are all capable of holding two thoughts in one head; this is an example of where misogyny and racism intersect. And I don’t think Susan was wrong in saying “white girls have the privilege of being read as innocent.” Because white GIRLS, they do, for the most part. I understand that it doesn’t always happen that way, there are anecdotal exceptions to every rule – just like the examples you gave were of white women (which by the way, was not who I was referring to when I am referring to girls – I was not referring to women). But your argument is sounding a lot like the “but men can be raped too!” argument, which is of course true, but we’re not discussing that right now. No one is disputing that women in general are victim-blamed, we just aren’t talking about that right NOW. Nowhere in the article did Susan say that “all white women are believed to be innocent all the time.” That would indeed be a fallacy. But having the privilege of being read as innocent, it is a possibility. It is not a given, but it is a possibility. And that’s not to say that ALL women/girls of colour are not read as innocent, some of them may be, but across the board, if we’re looking at institutional/patriarchal/kyriarchal oppression, race is a factor in all of those things. Just like gender is a factor in those things, and sexual orientation, and able-bodiedness, and neurotypical/atypicality, fatness/thinness, cis/transgenderedness, et cetera. There are many different layers of oppression, and the fact that someone may embody more than one of these traits means that at times, whatever prejudice they experience will in fact intersect. Also, your comment here is spot on:

      “Multiculturalism has a Patriarchal element to it just like the rest of our god forsaken world.”

      Of course it does, and here you recognise that the patriarchy infiltrates every aspect of our lives. So, in fact, does racism and every other institutional prejudice. Sexism isn’t the exception to the rule.

      The patriarchy hurts everyone. But, I still don’t see how this article is erasing the misogyny, that’s been well-covered. Susan was merely discussing the racial element present alongside that misogyny, not erasing it entirely. Why do you think it’s wrong that Susan discuss the racial element of it?

      • Alison says:

        Diverkat,

        I appreciate your response. This may end that we will just disagree but I want to go over a few things because I think we are at a dangerous place for women in the United States in terms of VAW and other forms of sexism.

        1. I understand that women of color can be both victims of racism and sexism. I really do. But too often I find that the ideas behind intersectionality are pushed and morphed to fit almost any situation and then… the discussion goes back to race. It’s often used as a form of misdirection that takes the focus off dealing with misogyny. Most of the articles in the mainstream media have victim blamed (NYT) or have discussed the “racial elements” of this case while the most glaring issue in the Cleveland Texas case is misogyny, clear and simple. I strongly disagree that the media has discussed this to any worthwhile extent. The media should take this as an opportunity to discuss rape culture, to report on rape statistics in the United States and to report on the mind of a rapist. The media should take this as an opportunity to discuss date rape and acquaintance rape and the mindset that causes us to defend the rapist and not the victim. The media should be discussing the terribly low conviction rates of rapists.

        2. You wrote: “I don’t think Susan was wrong in saying “white girls have the privilege of being read as innocent.” Because white GIRLS, they do, for the most part.” White girls do have white privilege. Like the sort of privilege that might give an 11 year old white girl shopping at a mall the privilege of not being identified as a potential shop lifter. Some white girls also have an economic privilege that is based somewhat on a history of white privilege. But do white girls / women have privilege in terms of victim blaming? Really? You want to go there? You respond to say that you are referring to girls, not women. Does this mean you think that white women DO NOT have this privilege of being “read as innocent” that it is just something for the youngest white girls? And why do you assume this? Do you have any statistics to back this up? Where does this assumption come from? When I was working in a wealthy community in a suburb of New York I once passed a bunch of tweens hanging out on the street corner. One of the moms I was walking with commented on the attire of the tweens with horror. “Oh my god! They look like a bunch of sluts!” Young, wealthy, white tweens. I wonder if this community would defend one of these tweens if they were date raped by a classmate at a party? I can’t really say. And as I said, I KNOW THAT SUSAN NEVER SAID THAT WHITE WOMEN/ GIRLS ARE NEVER victim blamed. I’m just wondering what adverb of frequency would you would apply then. White girls who are sexually assaulted are rarely victim blamed? Occasional? Sometimes? Often?

        3. You wrote “here you recognize that the patriarchy infiltrates every aspect of our lives. So, in fact, does racism and every other institutional prejudice. Sexism isn’t the exception to the rule.” Yes, but nowhere else are we expected to deal with every other -ism before dealing with the most glaring and obvious -ism of a specific case. Only when the -ism is sexism due we have to first deal with racism, homophobia, classism, ablism, etc. Susan may be a well-meaning young woman with a good heart. I am sure that she is. But Susan’s effort to misdirect this case away from the issue of misogyny stems from a sickness in liberalism. I do think there is a lot of misogyny in liberal thought that many of us do not explore because we think of liberals as the feministy ones because we are pro-choice. But what Susan did is, IMO, about as ridiculous as turning the focus to class when a black man is lynched. Yes, class may be an issue for both the victim of the lynching as well as the lynchers. But if we were to have some big dialogue about class in regard to the lynching… what would that do for blacks? What does it do for blacks if we never fully delve into the issue of racism afte a lynching? And what if the classism issues were only a hypothesis here? How sick would that be to harp on and on about class without dealing with racism?

  27. Laura says:

    I just don’t get it.

    Does anyone dispute that an 11-year-old is a CHILD regardless of their race, religion, skin-color, culture, heritage, or whatever? Under what circumstances is it OK for an ADULT to have sex with a CHILD? Don’t all defendants deserve a fair trial in this country regardless of their race?

    Why does the race of the accused or the defendants matter? Does being hispanic make the CHILD less deserving of protection under the law? Does being black mean the defendants cannot be guilty? Does it make them less responsible for their actions? Are black men allowed to rape children? Is it OK for grown men to have sex with an 11-year old because she is hispanic? If you close your eyes and just imagine a group of adults and teens raping (no question that sex of ANY kind with an 11-year-old is rape) a child, is there any shade of skin that makes that OK?

    I get that minorities are often the victims of discrimination and are unfairly targeted, but what evidence is there to suggest that is the case here? Just because all of the alleged attackers are black? Does that necessarily mean they have been unfairly targeted? If there is evidence (cell phone videos and photos) that they had sex with this LITTLE GIRL, how have they been targeted unfairly?

    Nobody has alleged that this didn’t happen, nobody has alleged that the girl is lying, and nobody has suggested that the videos and photos are not authentic. It has been suggested that because of the way the CHILD dressed, spoke, acted, things she posted online, or whatever, that she brought this on herself. So by that logic is a 5-year old who entices a sexual predator with her pigtails responsible as well? Do their races matter? Is there any combination of racial backgrounds that make that OK?

    I understand that the families of the accused men are disappointed and hope that these accusations are untrue. If they are, then I hope they will be proven innocent. If that is the case, then why not simply say that the girl is mistaken or lying and the event never happened? Why justify something that didn’t occur by pointing at her dress, speech, or what have you? Should these men be held less accountable because they are black? Would that not be an insult to their intelligence implying that they are somehow less capable of self-control or moral reasoning because they are black? Surely that isn’t the appropriate solution.

    Also, is this LITTLE GIRL less deserving of justice because she is hispanic? Would we even be having this conversation if the accused were hispanic or white and the victim were black? Look at the Duke University case, where the accuser was black and the alleged rapists were white. Those boys were crucified in the media and nobody suggested that they were being targeted by a young black woman because they were all white. She was an adult accuser, an exotic dancer or something, and nobody suggested that her rape (had it actually occurred) was justified. Of course it turned out that the whole thing never happened, but only after those boys were villified and trashed in the media.

    Grown MEN having sex with a CHILD is WRONG, regardless of their races. These black men deserve a fair trial and to be judged innocent or guilty by a jury of Texas citizens after hearing evidence from both sides, just like every other American citizen. If the US Constitution guarantees the same legal rights to all Americans, including whites, blacks, hispanics, asians, etc, then why are we even discussing their race?

    I just don’t get it.

  28. Shine the light says:

    You said it all. But until the black community stops protecting black males from crimes against it’s females, it won’t be changed. It needs to be talked about… who’s brave enough to bring it into the light? Example: Precious and the “father” (monster) who repeatedly raped her and was protected by the “mother”. The black women are only perpetuating the crimes against themselves by protecting the guilty criminals.

    • Seditious says:

      Okay, I’m one of “it’s females” and that’s just a f*cked up thing to say. There IS no singular Black community. There are millions of us and in every class strata, every religion, both rural and urban.

      The losers in Cleveland Texas who are defending these boys are wrong — and they are doing the EXACT SAME THING as MOST parents whose son is accused of rape! When was the last time you heard a mom denounce her White son who is accused of rape?! Heard about that White male model in New Orleans who has been accused over and over for decades — and always gets bailed out by wealthy White parents, always gets expensive legal services paid for by the parents? I think you’d understand this better if I were to blame YOU, until the White “community stops protecting [White] males from crimes against it’s females.”

  29. Dolphingirl says:

    FYI Alison – you should get your facts straight regarding the Central Park rape case:

    “Way back in ’75 a White Privileged central park jogger was gang raped and left for dead by a group of young Black men from Harlem.”

    Those young black men had their convictions vacated in 2002 because DNA and another man’s confession proved they were innocent! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Central_Park_Jogger_case

    • John Prewett says:

      A senile DA enabled a liberal judge to vacate the sentences. Anyone who really researches the event knows they have not been “proved innocent.”

  30. Alison says:

    Thanks for that link. I will read that. I support the Innocence Project with all that they do and I’m very aware that innocent men (and women) are often condemned.

    But my main point of my referencing that case was in regard to the treatment of the victim, as Susan stated that white women have the luxery of being thought “innocent”.

    Don’t forget this little piece of the story:

    “Al Sharpton led the group of activists chanting of “whore!” and “drug addict!” when the victim arrived at the court house to testify. “

    • Diverkat says:

      Hi Alison,

      (as a side note, for some reason it won’t let me reply to your reply, hence the responses to other posts)

      You’ve made some very good points, and I certainly don’t disagree with you regarding the precipice that women in general are standing on regarding their autonomy, healthcare, rights to deciding what to do with their own bodies, et cetera, especially in light of the recent attempts by legislators to further subjugate women in any way they can.

      For me, the way I read this article (and I suppose I should have said this at the outset) is that as a feminist space, I assume the writer takes the virulent misogyny as a given. The victim blaming that happens, to various extents, to ALL rape victims, as a given. That rape culture exists, as a given. I have read articles written in feminist spaces that have dissected the misogyny in the Cleveland rape case as much as they could, and I would never ignore the fact that it is, quite obviously, the Big Issue here (so to speak). I read this article as something that was mentioning what was also present: the Race Factor. From this side of my computer, I saw this as a discussion about an additional factor; it didn’t read to me as though the misogynistic aspect of the whole debacle was erased. Perhaps that’s where we disagree? If so, that’s a matter of perspective, and I respect that’s where you’re coming from, but I stand by what I’ve said about race being a factor in this. Because when I’ve read about horrible gang rapes that have occurred in the past, I don’t remember this much victim-blaming happening, and I think that’s part of the reason I’m so interested in what other factors are present. The natural question I would next ask is, what else about this situation is causing such a backlash against the victim, when she is, even by society’s usually stringent standards of what a “victim” is, so clearly a victim here?

      I think when you said, “Like the sort of privilege that might give an 11 year old white girl shopping at a mall the privilege of not being identified as a potential shop lifter”, that made a lightbulb go off in my head. I think that sort of privilege can actually transcend into the way society reads white girls vs girls of colour, especially if girls of colour are, as in the situation you described, more likely to be read as ‘untrustworthy’ to an extent. Perhaps I’m reading too much into that, or my reading of Susan’s use of the term “innocent” was different from yours, but the impression I get from societal views regarding white girls and girls of colour is that girls of colour will more often be read as untrustworthy, whatever the circumstance. Hearing older people’s comments about younger generations in the multiracial places I’ve lived certainly showed that tendency. I realise this is all anecdotal, but again, that’s the environment I come from and thus why I read the article the way I did (and to a more direct point, why the way that I read it differs from the way you did).

      I think it would be difficult to prescribe an adverb to how often white women are victim blamed versus how often women of colour are victim blamed; I don’t think I could. And your anecdote about the white tweens, I agree that they would be victim-blamed as well. Again, I’m not disputing this. I’m just aware that in this particular case, where it seems like it is JUST SO OBVIOUS that this little girl had done NOTHING to deserve such backlash from the media (and to be honest, we could write tomes and tomes about what the media “should” be doing, because both of us know how ridiculously stupid and misguided the media machine actually is), a whole heap of garbage-filled victim-blaming was put onto her. And that is positively shameful.

      You said here: “But Susan’s effort to misdirect this case away from the issue of misogyny stems from a sickness in liberalism.”

      Ah, I think I see where you and I differ. I don’t see Susan’s article as an effort to misdirect the case away from the issue of misogyny, and you do. For the reasons I stated above, as in, the misogyny in this case being a given, I don’t think that discussing the issue of race diminishes at all the underlying acknowledgement that a horrible amount of misogyny is the crux of this issue. I think that perhaps the article could have been misread as “It’s not misogyny that caused the victim-blaming, it’s race!” But that’s not the way that I read it. I read it as: “In addition to the horrible misogyny, I think race has played a part in this too.” Again though, I realise that we’ll be coming at this from two different experiences, and perhaps that caveat should have been more explicitly stated from the outset of the article.

      I just want to respond to your questions really quickly, and then I swear I need to finish my work :)

      Does this mean you think that white women DO NOT have this privilege of being “read as innocent” that it is just something for the youngest white girls? And why do you assume this? Do you have any statistics to back this up? Where does this assumption come from?

      I do think that after girls become women, society sees them as being responsible for their chastity, yes. I think that’s the case for all women, in fact, and most especially when women are in the public eye (either by being on the news, or by being celebrity). For example, and this is one of the things that I noticed most, when little girls go missing in America, there’s a direct linkage to the child’s race and the amount of news she garners nationally. How many times have you seen national reports of young girls of colour going missing? Now, my anecdotal experience may be out of date now (seeing as I’ve not lived in the USA for 5 years), but I more often saw reports of white girls going missing than girls of colour. If it was a local child, there was more of a chance I’d see something on the news regardless of the race of the child, but if it was a child from out of state, it was, almost always, a white girl. Does this translate to innocence? Does it translate to “white girls are the only ones who matter according to media”? I don’t know about the first one, but I can say “most likely” to the second. In that same thread, when white women are abducted, or missing, the media tends to lose their shit over those stories as well, and I can’t help but see a line being drawn between the invisibility of the countless women and girls of colour who go missing, and the presumed “innocence” of those who had been abducted (I’m sorry to use scare-quotes like that, but that’s the media portrayal I’m talking about).

      I’m sure if I had time, or if I had the ability to search research databases, there might be some sort of way we could determine the breadth of media coverage on the comparison of kidnappings of young girls by their race, and so I am telling you that my reasoning behind this is purely anecdotal. Which I’m sure doesn’t amount to much for those looking for hard statistics, but I’m willing to bet that I’m not the only person in the world who would have noticed that.

      Anyway, I hope that clarifies my point. Okay I really need to get some work done!

      • Alison says:

        Diverkat,

        I appreciate this conversation. I really do. And as much as I whole heartedly disagree with Susan, I respect that she is giving so many of us a forum to hash this all out. A lesser person would have simply mocked those who disagreed and then the conversation here would not be nearly as interesting as it is.

        But oh dear. We still disagree on so much and you raise so many interesting points I’m not sure how to tackle it all. So I think I’m just going to focus on one thing that you wrote. Because it makes me understand this whole “privileged ‘ innocent’ white girl sex assault victim” thingy that you and Susan have going. I had no idea what you were talking about before but now I get what is motivating you both.

        Diverkat, you wrote:

        “For example, and this is one of the things that I noticed most, when little girls go missing in America, there’s a direct linkage to the child’s race and the amount of news she garners nationally. How many times have you seen national reports of young girls of colour going missing?”

        Honestly, everything you wrote on this topic of the white (usually blond) child who is abducted and how the media responds is very interesting to me. I’ve heard this before and now it makes sense where you and Susan are coming from in terms of “innocence”. But I absolutely disagree with both your assessment of what the media is doing here and what our response should be to such a weird media propensity.

        I do not believe the media highlights attractive white blond girls who are abducted/ murdered because they care about these little girls. I do not think they highlight these cases because they see these young attractive blond girls as more innocent than young less attractive nonblond caucasian girls and I do not think they highlight these cases because they see these cute blond dead girls as more innocent then missing young brown girls across the country.

        I think the media hight lights attractive, young, blond dead girls because we are, as a misogynistic country, somewhat titillated by the idea of “perfect” young blond girls dead and/ or defiled. Believe me when I say there is plenty that is not wonderful about being extremely attractive, white and blond in this culture. A dear friend who fits the bill in this department, who is a tall, blond, thin, white double D youngish woman, hates men more then anyone I know because she is treated like a sex worker by almost half the population. There is no privilege in being identified as a member of the sex class, whether you are white/ blond or a brown “Jezebel”. And if you think there is nothing “racial” about being blond and white, just take note of CSI Miami and countless other movies that feature gruesome depictions of white/ blond women. So often, the attractive white/ blond/ porn star / model-type woman ends up dead. Yes, so many Americans find this titillating!

        Last, I find it misogynistic to dissect this “privilege” of white female rape/ and or murder victims. There is no privilege in being worm food. This discussion of “privileged white girls” who are raped/ and or dead is about as repulsive to me as harping on and on about the class privilege of some rich Jews (as opposed to poorer Jews) during the Holocaust. It would be about as hideous as harping on about the male privilege of a black man beaten by white cops. And I ask you to identify ANY OTHER VICTIM WHO IS NOT FEMALE whose victimhood privilege is analyzed the way it is for white women.

        I love Melissa from Shakesville (which is how I got here in the first place) but she is also guilty of this sort of analysis. Check out her article “Which Victim Matters” in which she states:

        http://shakespearessister.blogspot.com/2011/02/which-victims-matter.html

        “Logan and Jones are my sisters in a grim sorority. I do not want nor intend to minimize what happened to either of them, nor suggest that they were not deserving of every bit of righteous outrage and heartfelt compassion that was afforded them. I hurt for those two women. But I hurt for the women in Iraq, in Saudi Arabia, in Brazil, in the Ivory Coast, in Japan, in Uganda, in South Africa, in Afghanistan, in India, in Mexico, in Guinea, in Kyrgyzstan, in Haiti, in DR Congo, in Sudan, in places all over the world, too. I hurt for women who are not thin, blond, beautiful, white women raped on the job. I hurt for all of them. And for the men who survive sexual violence, too.
        I beg my colleagues to pay more attention to them. They all matter, too.”

        I find this insulting. Just imagine the media story was of a black man who received racist treatment from a white police officer in the United States. We hear these sort of stories all the time in the media. Now imagine Melissa were to write an article about “the other victims of racism” who don’t make it to media attention… victims in Saudi Arabia and the Sudan, victims in China and in France. Other victims of racism outside the African American community in the United States. Blah, blah, blah. They matter, too.”

        It would be perceived as insulting to do this and yet we do this to sex assault/ murder victims who are white women all the time. And as I keep saying here, I believe this is an attempt to SILENCE us all from getting as DEEPLY into the topic of misogyny as we should. Misdirection, my friends. Misdirection.

      • Seditious says:

        Allison, I’d be able to read your post more clearly without all the rage that blinds me whenever people use the words Beautiful, White, Blonde, and/or Attractive repeatedly, in combinations, as if these are labels that go together. Who exactly, then, would be the LESS media-grabbed, societal-fascinating females?

  31. Kameena says:

    “If we condemn this group of black male attackers without interrogating the social and systemic structures that produced this violent incident and will inform the attacker’s prosecution, we will fail to form and sustain alliances with people of color and groups that work for racial equality.”

    As a WOC, I’m going to say you’re full of shit. “Forging political alliances” with POC (or any group) should never come before seeking justice for the child victim. Or perhaps you’re forgetting this child is also a POC? Or do you simply not know which side to take, because neither the child nor her rapists are white? Seriously, this isn’t that hard. How is it possible that your response here is, “But what about the rapists?” They have PICTURES AND VIDEO of these scumbags raping her; it’s not even a question of whether they raped her. They did.

    This incident was produced by a bunch of young men decided to rape a child. Racist oppression and white supremecy do not magically make our men into rapists.

    That you pick this case, of all cases, to worry about the prosecution of black men and worse, “forging alliances” is disgusting. When a child has been raped, the response should not be, “But what about the welfare of the accusers?” or “What about our political alliances with the accuser’s broader community?”

    Shame on you.

    • John Prewett says:

      Breath of fresh air appreciated.

    • Seditious says:

      I’m with you on that. I think if someone is seeing this kind of crime as the place to consider forging alliances between Black and White, it shows they really do not respect Black folks en general. To think that THESE families (of the rapists) are the ones to bond with, assist, show concern about, is incredible. Do people REALLY have difficulty finding intelligent, committed, moral, social justice-minded Black people to align yourselves with? Come on… To suggest vaguely that these criminals are at ALL representative of Black America is the biggest insult I’ve endured so far. Well, maybe not as bad as the comments on the Houston Daily article about this case. But at least the little Klan rally happening on that page is not trying to sound as if it is trying to HELP us…

    • Alison says:

      Yes, yes, yes. Completely agree with Kameena.

      I’d also like to note Susan’s double speak. In comments Susan wrote: “My concern in this article is with the race of the VICTIM, not her attackers.” But the quote Kameena lifted from Susan’s article shows this not to be the case. She is very concerned with the race of the attackers (as well as the victim).

      Susan also wrote in her article:

      “So I was surprised to click a link to a Houston newspaper and to see row after row of black faces, images of the alleged attackers, looking back at me. All of a sudden something snapped in my brain: No one is talking about how race complicates this whole mess, even though race is staring all of us in the face.”

      Clearly, something clicked for Susan the moment she saw that the attackers are black, and this act of misogyny suddenly became racial to Susan because of the attacker’s darker skin color. Weird, huh? I’d say that interpretation is, er, a bit “racial”….

      And then Susan quotes misogynist Quanell X in AGREEMENT (without at all mentioning some of Q X’s misogynistic tendencies and actions). Susan writes :

      “As Quanell X, a member of Houston’s New Black Panther Party and local activist pointed out, “Every adult male that had sex with this child should go to prison, I don’t care what the color is. But I do not believe black males are the only ones that had contact with this young child.” I would agree.”

      So Susan agrees with misogynist Q X that there must be a non-black attacker in this case despite having no REAL information to suggest such a conspiracy. It just seems to match what she’s learned in her American Studies Programs about White Power intersecting in just about everything, even clear cut misogyny.

      Kameena summed this up well….. BULL SHIT!

  32. John Prewett says:

    http://www.riversidesheriff.org/press/mvs11-0310.asp ……………….

    No word yet as to whether or not Quanell X will visit riverside ……….

    ……………. to aid in the investigation.

  33. Pingback: Really, New York Times? How hard was that? | HAY LADIES!

  34. Mimi says:

    I am late to the discussion but I do not think race in this matters except to those to whom race plays a part in their views on everything. This child was selected because of her vulnerabilities by a pack of predators. She was too young to understand the danger she was in, they threatened her, they assaulted and violated her, and to complete her humiliation they recorded it for posterity. The victim could have been any race, and the predators can also be any race. This is what will be shown at trial.

  35. Alison says:

    Seditious,

    That’s interesting that rage blinds you in regard to beautiful/ blond going together. Of course blonds are not necessarily beautiful! It’s interesting that you see that from my post. Rather, I’m more appalled at the media’s morbid fascination with those who happen to be attractive and blond. I’m also not saying that they aren’t fascinated with other women and that other women aren’t attractive. But when people complain about the plethora of (attractive) blond white women highlighted in our media, I wanted to draw attention to another reason these women are highlighted (in movies, fashion and even missing/ murdered little girls) that has nothing to do with respect or innocence.

    • Seditious says:

      I did see what your point was. I still challenge the idea that those labels, when used in combinations repeatedly, or used interchangeably, reflect a Euro-centric position. Given this country’s tradition, longstanding hatred of dark skin, kinky hair, and thicker curvier body-types, it’s important to be clear on understanding that overall, the group of women you describe are status quo, and thus have certain privileges. That widespread fetishes about them include the morbid doesn’t change their having White privilege. Of course, they still are in OTHER ways clearly NOT holders of privilege: being female, some being poor, + some being other things non-status quo.

      Anyway, I think a more salient question to ask is Why AREN’T women of color viewed as innocent, fragile, in need of protection etc? The answer to that is crystal clear to me, but I raise it to help as we look at the issue of why a victim may be seen in a more + or – light. On TOP of the fact that ALL women live within a societal culture that is somewhat accepting of sexual violence.

      • Real Truth says:

        Given this country’s tradition, longstanding hatred of dark skin, kinky hair, and thicker curvier body-types, it’s important to be clear on understanding that overall, the group of women you describe are status quo, and thus have certain privileges.

        Oh boy, not this crap again. Is it just me, or are certain WoC obsessed with being equally objectified? You want to take white women’s place as a disposable sperm receptacle? LMWAO! Be my guest. But provoking an erection from Master has it’s drawbacks. I would hope that you’d have more productive goals than that.

        So, yeah, I’m really tired of the whole “Don’t you love my currrrves?!” thing coming from black women. Why are you so desperate for white men’s approval? And exactly HOW is it a “privilege” for these white women (that you’re oddly jealous of) to be presented as nameless, faceless f*ckholes? Jeez.. is this what Feminism has came to? Fighting over who gets to be perty in the eyes of The Man? Absolutely pathetic.

  36. Alison says:

    Seditious,

    There is innocent innocent and then there is fetishized innocence. I was referring to the fetishized innocence in terms of dead white girls in the media. Also, it’s not all white girls that are so “privileged” to receive this attention. Dead white girls with even dark brown hair are much less likely to receive this media attention, not to mention dead white girls who are not middle class but on the poorer side of the spectrum. Dead white girls with dark brown hair or from poorer communities don’t quite fit the Brother Grimms Fairy Tale fetish.

    Also, in terms of the regular use of the word innocent, I don’t think our country sees murdered brown children (or white girls with dark brown hair or from poorer neighborhoods as not innocent). So I disagree with you here. Although those who fall under the “tween” category are being increasingly sexualized by our culture and media so I think (all) tween girls are being judged by more adult standards these days.

    At any rate, as I said before, I think conversations about the privilege of dead/ raped/ defiled girls is disgusting. Really repulsive and yes, misogynistic.

    Anyone else who sees the need to talk about white privilege at ALL TIMES EVEN AMONGST DEAD GIRLS I’d be very curious to know your feelings about the White Privilege of Mathew Sheppard. Or how about that gay young man who killed himself at Princeton. We should really be having this conversation about his white privilege, don’t ya think? And somehow no response yet in regards to whether we should be discussing the male privilege of black men who are victims of racist attacks/ murder. Hmmmm…

    • Seditious says:

      Allison, you’re waaay off base in terms of my comments. You will get nowhere trying to attack a Black woman by calling her “misogynistic” or by twisting my words to make it sound like I was talking about “dead/raped/defiled girls” in my explanation of what Privilege means.

      If you are THAT adamant in defending your use of the phrases i challenged, then there’s no need for me to try discussing anything with you. I’d rather spend my time healing from my own sexual assaults, and helping empower those who suffer any oppressions that result from others’ abuse of power and privilege.

    • Jason Parsley says:

      I completely agree with Alison, there is a defect in liberalism, but not even Alison can pinpoint what it is. The media is victim-blaming in this case because the attackers are black, being that it is a white media machine they think that somehow they are being less racist by trying to understand the nuances of the accused parties backgrounds, socio-economic status, neighborhood, the make-up of the town, the history of racism in Texas, etc. Alison is completely correct in her assertion that it is to avoid the misogyny in this particular case, because by avoiding that the media will not have to question, “what could make a group of 20 black males accept raping a child is ok and even something to brag about on video”. This is not to say that misogyny is limited to any one particular race, but that the media wants to ignore it in the case where the attackers are non-white, they decide other factors were more prevalent i.e. socio-economic status or history of patriarchial institutions that have been dominated by whites. Remember the Duke Lacrosse rape case? Susan apparently does not remember this case. A black stripper accused 4 or 5 white priviledged Duke Lacrosse players of rape, the media descended on them so fast with charges of misogyny and racism, and even wrote hundreds of stories about how this happens due to white priviledge, of course in the end it was all a made up story. The media isn’t defending white folks, they are defending people of color, not because they care about people of color, but because they think maybe they will be perceived as “non-racist” because they defended someone that seemed indefensible. Susan is a prime example of this behavior as she asserts that the victim-blaming of the hispanic girl in this case is due to her skin color, and not due to the media’s hurry to shift blame from the black suspects to a systemic problem. This is due to the leanings of a media that is overwhelmingly liberal, this case to them is a way to expose the “inner workings” of a racist, white dominated society which they can use as a club to effect change in the direction they choose. So, my conclusion of the victim-blaming in this case is racial, as Susan insisted, she just didn’t view it from the correct angle, she instead is defending the same actions she is holding up for scrutiny. “How can you say that?” you might ask. She AGREED with Quannel X that maybe there were white folks involved in the case, with no evidence at all, she agreed, and placed pretty much all of the blame on a white dominated patriarchial society, thereby giving a pass, no matter how convoluted, to the accused attackers.
      Misogyny is everywhere in popular rap music these days, though the media and liberals refuse to acknowledge it because doing so will make them feel racist. I think that is short sighted. It is racist to deny misogyny among a certain sector because you don’t feel like you can criticize them due to your own race. White people do a disservice to people of color if they ignore the ills in their cultures because they have too much guilt to express their dissatisfaction.

      What these animals did to this young girl is completely wrong and there is no amount of perceived racism, patriarchial social structure, real racism or historic injutices that can change that fact. You can’t put society on trial in a court of law, but you can put suspects of cimes on trial. If the attackers were white in this case, the same storyline would be touted by Susan, it’s a white dominated society that provoked the attack. No matter how much she tries to backtrack, this is her conclusion.

  37. ben says:

    2 points.
    1) You say you agree with Quannell X that there were non-black attackers. Do you or he have information that you are witholding from the investigation or are you just buying into his racism?
    2) ” if we condemn this group of black male attackers without interrogating the social and systemic structures that produced this violent incident and will inform the attacker’s prosecution, we will fail to form and sustain alliances with people of color and groups that work for racial equality”…. Unbelievable. So if we don’t excuse these pigs because they are poor black victims of flawed social and systemic structures then the true racial equality pursuers won’t like us? What? So we have to use racism to prevent racism?

    You haven’t really convinced me how important racism is in this case.

  38. John Prewett says:

    What McCall should have done, … should do:

    Place prominent ad in newspaper in vicinity of where he participated
    in the gang rapes [and gang assaults] he describes in his book.

    [He knows the names of some of his victims]

    His newspaper announcement should read something like the following.
    =========================================

    To: Jane Doe, Suzy Q , Shirly, Vanessa ……. [and to anyone whose name I don't know or remember who was among my many victims,]

    I Nathan McCall sincerely apologize to you for the crime I committed against you.
    For apology in person, contact me at xxaddressxx. Sincerely Nathan McCall.
    =========================================
    If you think Nathan McCall does not owe and should not offer apology to all his victims, please explain why he should not.

  39. Victor Castillo says:

    I see what should be a very simple situation being turned into a far more complicated issue than it should be.A little girl was RAPED!!!!!Forget her exact age for a moment,forget her race,her demeanor,her height and her clothes she wore.She is a little girl!These so called men regardless of color and boys acted despicably.I would love to be able to ask everyone involved if this was your mother or your sister or aunt “would you ask her about her appearance or behaviour maybe leading these men to do this?”I would also like to add that this is a great example ofwhat a world that has “Gone Wild” gets us.The media plays a huge role in this.What is to be expected with the garbage all over the television and magazines and radio and now the internet?Games that involve war and sexualized characters have become so common.We live in a materialistic world that embraces the selling of childrens souls.Where is the childrens’ innocense?It no longer exists.I am not saying that children have matured faster.Maturity is not what comes from the exposure to adult materials otherwise we would all be mature and we are further from that than ever.Maturity cannot be forced and it seems that is what the world is trying to do with horrific results.Kids beating eachother,killing eachother and hating for the most ridiculous reasons.Posting their outrageous bahaviour on our SOCIAL networks.It should be called antisocial.Where were the parents of this little girl you ask?Where have any of the worlds parents gone?Sad times these are indeed.With worse to come don’t worry.

  40. Seditious says:

    Why Race Matters In This Case:
    Because it’s America.

    First a crazy sick multiple sexual assault happened to a young girl. If this were NOT a racist society, there would not be REAMS AND REAMS of comments on the pages of every news story covering this, all full of racist bile. People INJECTED race into this case. I’ve been close to physical illness after bouts of reading through comments talking about “apes” and “savages” and the “rap video culture” and even the comment here saying Black males basically brought rape to her country — as if that has something to do with why THIS child was raped. Then I get verbally attacked for raising white female privilege, in regards to an OFF-SHOOT topic.

    So thanks to Quanell X and mainly to all the scummy a-holes who insist on blaming this assault on the race of the assailants, now we indeed do have a story where race is part of the story. It didn’t start that way. But now that we’re here, people of good conscience do need to stand firmly against this onslaught of anti-Black-male rhetoric. Frankly, arguing against that re-writing of the story is in the best interest of freedom-loving people everywhere — including women of all colors, and our allies.

  41. MJ says:

    What type of mentality thinks there’s anything legit to any statement by a New Black Panther Party member? A gang of misogynist homophobic racists who call for sharia law? Who stood outside the courthouse to shout death threats at the Duke lacrosse guys while feminists danced beside them (to smugly show how non-racist they are). There are civilized people in the world, as well as uncivilized barbarians, and this writer better think hard about what side she wants to wind up on.

  42. smh046 says:

    I do not understand why this has become an issue of race. To me, this is an issue of a little girl losing her innocence. Whether she was a white girl, a black girl, or a hispanic girl, in my eyes the issue would be the exact same. Yes, she is no-doubt a victim. Whether or not she ran around flaunting what little assets she could possibly have as an 11-year-old, she was still victimized. Granted, there could and should have been some parental factors in place to prevent this from happening, but it happened just the same, and is tragic, especially when it hits so close to home (I live about 5 minutes outside of Cleveland).

  43. John Prewett says:

    smho46 would understand if the colors were reversed.

  44. im mexican and I resent blacks who make hypocritical excuses.

    I resent whites who try say this is not being about race to nurse their white guilt even more.

    Lets take the biggest injustice of African American history: slavery. If it turned out europeans kidnapped you,butchered, raped , treated you like animals just for money and not because they hated your race…. would you feel any differently? would their oppression of your people not be racism? get back to me on that one

    • Seditious says:

      I’m a little confused by your statements, James.

      Which hypocritical excuse are you referring to, the statements by Quanel X? (I don’t see them as hypocritical — just flat out WRONG and based on his patriarchal thinking.)

      And the question about slavery is odd, because by all accounts it WAS about money! But they rarely did that to their own people because they could not justify it; whereas they could justify it against Africans by USING racist ideas about us being inferior, thus making it ok to force us into slavery. But they did that because of money and power. Do you agree?

      • John Prewett says:

        At one time or another all races have been slaves and slaver owners. For instance, search engine: Irish slave history. I’m proud that America had a big debate about slavery, leading to a war partially over slavery, and ended legal slavery 146 years ago. Whereas anyone really upset about slavery, can go to Africa TODAY and do something aboout it.

      • Seditious says:

        Not exactly true, John. Many races and nationalities have been enslaved or indentured. A much smaller amount have been in the position of power to create a slavery system and then own other human beings.

        As for the suggestion that we all just go back to Africa, haven’t people been saying that for about as long as the Night-riders and Klan were around? Seems clear that the idea behind that is not about Blacks having the “right” to live where we want — rather that idea is yet another White Supremacist day dream. Not gonna happen. The people most oppressed historically in this country, including the Irish you mentioned, frankly have the MOST right to this land. Because we built much of it, farmed it, and it is our collective sweat and blood that was our currency on buying our right to be here if we choose.

        In other words, No: You don’t get to haul millions of folks over here, force them to labor and suffer or else die, and then tell their descendants [when we raise this as evidence of the early nature of this system ] to just leave.

      • BREN says:

        Racists are not going to send blacks back to Africa for the simple reason that they don’t really want blacks to have Africa. How do I know ? History. Racists have been against every effort towards decolonization and liberation from white rule in Africa. After regions were freed, Racist moaned about what a shame it was and exhorted the remaining colonies to fight to the death; don’t give up “white” land.

        If racists took over the government now, there would probably be a debate between those who want to re-enslave blacks versus those who want to exterminate blacks. Africa — especially eastern and southern Africa — would be set aside for white settlement again — with less hospitable regions set aside as a game preserve. Excess blacks would just be taken out.

    • John Prewett says:

      Dear Resentful Mexican, In Mexico, how many headless bodies were found today ?
      Have they caught the Ciudad Juarez serial killers ? How does Mexico treat immigrants coming through Mexico to get to the land founded by wicked slave owners who “butchered” their slaves ?

      • John Prewett says:

        Dear Seditious,
        AFRICANS enslaved other AFRICANS. Excusing the African slave owners/traders [and Islamic slave owners/traders] exposes antiWhite bigotry. I did NOT suggest Blacks return to Africa. That is just the inference you drew so as to paint me as a bigot.
        I plainly suggested that ANYONE [ANYONE] really upset about slavery, can go to Africa TODAY and do something aboout it. As opposed to PRETENDING to be upset about slavery and using it as a major support for a claim to “victim” status.

  45. BREN says:

    I believe the gang rape of this little girl was a horrid thing to do. And, if these guys are guilty, they should be put behind bars for a long time.

    I don’t see it as a racial attack generally since I believe these “dogs” lump many “dark-skinned” girls of various types together (whether “black,” Hispanic or Filipino) with “black” girls as meat to be used and thrown aside. The “dogs” have no respect for human rights in general but no respect for dark women in particular. Their video behavior suggests to me that they probably didn’t feel the “white” authorities would do any thing for a dark skinned female — black or brown — feeling that these shared their contempt for such a female.

  46. CB says:

    I am a black man, and I look at it t his way. I don’t care if the “Rape” was done by blacks or whites…., “RAPE” is just wrong no matter who is doing it!! It’s about time we stopped letting people get always with using “Race” as an excuse for bad behavior.

    Again being black and raised in a different time when my “parents” (notice I had two) taught us responsibility and not to place our own failures on everyone else.

    If the blacks that live in the “ghetto”, it’s their choice. let them get off their “asses”, pull their pants up, get an education (at lease high school) like I did and change their lives instead of always being the “victim” and blaming society for their lack of ambition.

  47. John Prewett says:

    August 22, 2011 at 8:40 pm Terrance said:
    “This was a rape case of a 11 year old girl. Race has nothing to do with it. ……………..
    I am African American so dont say I am a racist.”
    ————————————————
    racist: “a person who believes in racism, ………….”
    racism: 1. the belief that races have distinctive cultural characteristics determined by hereditary factors and that this endows some races with an intrinsic superiority over others 2. abusive or aggressive behaviour towards members of another race on the basis of such a belief
    ————————————————————

    Being Afro American does NOT mean you cannot be a racist.

    As is becoming ever more obvious

  48. Priatore says:

    “the more it seems like a bunch of bitter old biddies just looking for things to criticize. ”

    —classic sexist language and rationalization…classic…man, i haven’t read anything so obvious as that since the stop sign i passed this morning.

    what i don’t like is how rape is something that men think doesn’t happen to men. huh. yeah bro’, you go on ahead and rape. and when you wind up in prison and it’s your back-hole on the line ROFLMAO we’ll see how much you joke about barney the big,bald redneck using you as his personal sex toy. btw? male on male rape is *the* most under-reported act of rape in the country. less so even than the rape done to little children. you know, four year olds? but hey, that’s fair game for ‘funnyland’ too, right?

    yeah tosh. let’s see you joke about raping five year old boys and see how long your ‘comic career’ actually lasts. ok everyone…ready? now defend comedy and tosh’s right to joke about raping kids. Can’t wait to hear it…

    Race matters in this country, and elsewhere. It always has. There was tension between Greeks, Romans, and Egyptians, whose politics were quite intertwined.

    Fast forward a couple thousand years and here we are. A guy who jokes about rape and people defending his right to do it and people saying that the gang rapes and the race of the victim not mattering.

    side comment…you know those people who think aliens, a superior-intelligence species of some sort, would actually come to Earth ‘to visit’?

    they are out of their ever-lovin’ minds, for all of the above content….no truly superior species with superior minds and advanced society would want dare risk being infected by us…

  49. Gideon Elrod says:

    Uh, Channon Christian was not only white, but a willing participant in her own gang rape, torture and murder. Just ask those in control of the media, the black men who raped, tortured and murdered her, or the defense attorney. Not only was she a whore, but she was also a drug addict. Let’s not talk about Chris; too disturbing. Of course, it’s obvious he was a drug addict and a homosexual, so he probably got what he deserved.

  50. Gideon Elrod says:

    Oh, I forgot, he was also white, which is worse than being a sexual deviant, a homosexual or a drug addict. P.S. By the way, I’m being sarcastic.

  51. Tom says:

    once again are Media tells us less than all the facts.

  52. HEY GUYS. Since this post is nearly a year old and the comments coming in tend to lean toward the Ignorant, Racist Assbag variety, I’m closing comments on this post. Thanks for playing.

Comments are closed.