Another rape that never was

Trigger warning: This story contains a description of a young innocent girl being raped that is supposed to get you angry with men. All men. You should be frothing at the mouth, demanding that we not blame the victims. With red face and veins standing out, you should be screaming that we should teach men to not rape. Then, you’ll just have to bottle all that rage for the next rape, because this one didn’t happen either.

On Thursday, 29th April 2015 numerous news outlets alerted the good people of Albury, New South Wales, Australia, that a 17 year old girl had been attacked by three men in the heart of their fair city.

The attack was described as a sexual assault by the Daily Advertiser, but as a rape by the ABC website. Both terms, sexual assault and rape, were used almost interchangeably by the media throughout. Which was it? Rape? Sexual Assault? Who cares? Get your torches and pitchforks and we’ll sort the facts out after the lynching.

The other term that was abused was the word “allegedly”. Sometimes it was completely left out, as in this headline from the ABC’s website:

“Images of three men released after teenage girl raped at knifepoint in Albury, NSW”.

The same article begins with this statement:

“Police have released computer-generated images of three men following the alleged rape of a girl in Albury, in southern New South Wales. [emphasis mine]”

Two paragraphs later and it’s gone again:

“NSW Police said the group dragged the girl into bushes and sexually assaulted her at knifepoint before fleeing along Dean Street.”

No, “alleged” is kept to a minimum. It is only used when it is legally necessary, and not when it is accurate. The assumption of guilt is further promoted by the repeated use of the word “victim”.

As the headline states, computer sketch images of the three knife-wielding fiends were widely publicised, along with descriptions of age, height and weight. Both the Daily Advertiser and the Cowra Guardian ran Sarah Dean’s emotive article entitled:

“Find them: East Albury rape victim, 17, was followed by men.

However, as the call for vigilante rape detectors went up, another familiar song and dance was beginning.

Albury mayor, Kevin Mack, thought it important to make a chivalrous call for damsels to be escorted at all times. According to the Age, he reportedly “cautioned women not to walk alone,” because “it was an invitation to be taken advantage of.”

Many news outlets then focussed on the Mayor’s clear lack of understanding of feminist dogma. So effective was the feminist uprising that the Good Mayor (and yes, I do mean that in the sense of Good Men) promptly made a complete retraction of his earlier statements. SBS tell us that the Good Mayor said these politically appropriate words:

“She was doing what she would do every day and she’s been the victim of a heinous crime and her callous attackers are responsible for that.”

The Border Mail reports that Good Mayor Mack’s grovelling went further, quoting him as saying:

“I absolutely and categorically support women and their rights, and believe that violence against women is totally unacceptable in any form. And to that end I encourage the community, as one, to support this and prevent this.”

Yes, now the Good Mayor has his Feminist Sacred Babble working. Any idea how we support something and prevent it at the same time? Or are we just supposed to get caught up in the emotion and cheer?

So, the hunt was on. Clear descriptions of the monsters were distributed. Let’s not forget that Albury is a small country city with a population of less than 50,000. So it should only be a matter of time before justice would be served, and served hard. Two days later, the NSW Police, in their Facebook page, made this surprising statement:

“An investigation into the reported sexual assault of a teenage girl in Albury earlier this week has concluded.”

In case that doesn’t explain it for you, they cleared it up by adding this:

“Police are no longer seeking three men and no further action is anticipated.”

So, no rape? No sexual assault? Not even ordinary assault? No knife? No three men? No stalking?

Not even cat-calling or leering-with-intent?

Did the Good Mayor now demand that the feminist outrage machine apologise? Did the police charge the 17 year old girl for false accusations? Did anyone ask any hard questions at all?

Not yet, and breath-holding is not advised.

It gets worse. The Sydney Morning Herald’s Rachel Browne who, whilst announcing that the investigation had been “finalised”, continued to berate the still-not-Good Mayor for his victim blaming ways. She concludes with quotes apparently left by women on Mack’s facebook page which ironically includes this gem:

“Start with the men who [rape], not blame women for men’s disgusting actions.”

I wonder how she feels about false allegations. Or perhaps we should just lock up any three young men. Maybe then she will feel she’s getting justice for having to live on a planet that’s contaminated by men.

In news.com.au the “finalised” announcement gets an even weirder treatment. The sketches of the men that are no longer wanted are still being shown, and they are still referred to as suspects for an attack that never happened.

Again, Mack gets a bitch-slapping for not being their bitch. But then, they go on to discuss what panelists in a domestic violence forum have to say about Mack’s politically incorrect and clearly not-retracted-enough statements. The quote from one panelist, clearly proficient in the Sacred Babble, adds to the irony:

“When it comes to gender stereotypes, like saying that women need to take measures to protect themselves, we need to make people aware that the way they respond to these incidents perpetuates those myths.”

Which myths would they be? The myth that domestic violence includes being raped in a public park by strangers? That a rape that didn’t happen is still rape? That women never lie about rape? That false accusations of rape are good for innocent men?

What about the myth that mainstream news journalists and the domestic violence industry are not promoting feminist bigotry? Or, the myth that police and politicians are not well and truly cowed by the feminist propaganda machine?

Fortunately for the young men of Albury, the computer sketches did not throw suspicion on any actual individuals before the lynch mob was told to stand down. Because the other myth that is perpetuated is that the assumption of guilt somehow equates to justice.

 

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