Monday, September 28, 2009

Roman Polanski drugged and raped a 13 year old child

Repeat after me:

Roman Polanski drugged and raped a 13 year old child.

That child did not seduce him. By her own account, she screamed and struggled and fought and tried to get away.

Roman Polanski drugged and raped a 13 year old child.

She is not an "accuser". She is the victim of a brutal, vicious, premeditated attack on her by a fully aware adult. The State of California is the accuser in this legal case, and it is the State that is pursuing this criminal.

Roman Polanski drugged and raped a 13 year old child.

In response to that accusation, Polanki pleaded guilty to the crime. He stated for a court of law that he knowingly planned and executed the violent rape of a child. Whether he did so as part of a plea bargain is irrelevant. He pleaded guilty to the full extent of his attack on a minor.

Roman Polanski drugged and raped a 13 year old child.

There was a civil case later, where he was also found guilty and made to pay retribution to the child he brutally violated. Some people think this constitutes "paying" for the crime. It does not. It is a civil proceding for damages against a private individual. It does not pay for his crime against the laws of the state, those that forbid violent assault, even if the criminal is able to hand over a wad of cash afterwards. And, by the way, that is known around these parts as prostitution - the exchange of sexual services for money or goods in trade. The civil law offers additional remedies to those wronged, but it is not a substitute for punishment by a criminal court for criminal acts.

Roman Polanski drugged and raped a 13 year old child.

His movie making "genius" is irrelevant to his assault on this child. He planned, in a horrific echo of Humbert Humbert in Lolita, to render the girl unconscious with drugs, unable to protest his carnal use of her body. As in Lolita, the drugs did not work. Unlike Lolita, much like real life, the child fought back. She rejected him. She did not want this to happen. He raped her anyway. Nabokov's novel is art, an examination of how men rationalize their violence against their victims. Polanski's rape is a crime, a case study of a particular man rationalizing his violence against his victim.

Roman Polanski drugged and raped a 13 year old child.

There is no defense for what he did. Nothing he has ever done as a movie maker excuses or diminishes the premeditated violation of another's body for his own physical satisfaction. Any pain he has "endured" since that decision - when he knowlingly and with malice of forethought chose to force alcohol and drugs onto a child so he could rape her - is entirely of his own making:
  • He chose to rape a child
  • He chose to play games with the court system
  • He chose to flee when the courts would not agree to diminish his crime
  • He has refused to face the consequences of his acts
  • He has attempted to buy off the victim and the law
  • He has paraded his story around to increase his own celebrity
  • He has traded on his celebrity to get his brutal rape excused and escape just punishment for what he did

The defense seems to be Polanski is an artist and should not be subject to the same laws as the rest of humanity becuse he has gratified us with his artistic endeavors. That is an exact inversion of the principle of the law:

Because Roman Polanksi does not wish to share the earth with other human beings, feeling entitled to treat another person as a sex toy for his personal entertainment and gratification, there is no reason why the rest of humanity should wish to share the world with him.

He deserves to go into prison with the rest of the child rapists and spend the rest of his miserable life suffering in his own self-inflicted hell. Why does he deserve this?

Because he drugged and raped a 13 year old child.



Koshem Bos said...

There is no dispute of the facts in the post. There is absolutely no reason to treat some people legally differently and better than others despite the fact that this is the cornerstone of the American justice system in the last 30 years.

Polanski, however, is entitled to the result of the plea agreement that required him to serve 18 months jail term. This agreement was vacated by a corrupt judge who decided not to accept the agreement. (Judges have the right and even the duty to do so if they find the agreement is flawed.)

Polanski has the questionable right to serve his term in club fed as done with many prisoners of his ilk. Since our justice system and it penal subsystem are siblings of our health care system, that's it, the worst in the civilized world, I propose that Polanski serve time in a Swiss jail instead of an American one.

Nona Nym said...

Thanks Anglachel. Your post I think is a worthy antidote to some of the frankly Polanksi-excusing commentary that's current.

You do omit one point however, and I wonder whether that is because you find it irrelevant: The "victim" (and I use these quote marks not to call into question the status of the person, but only to indicate that this is the word you used) has clearly expressed her desire not to have any prosecution proceed against Polanski.

You may feel you have addressed this obliquely by referring to "the State" as the accuser, but surely there is more to say about that?

How often is prosecution undertaken in a rape case in which the raped person has stated they don't want prosecution to proceed?

Leaving aside the desirability of demonstrating your, my or the State's utter moral rejection of rape, what is the likelihood of conviction in such an instance?

hg said...

EXACTLY. But what does it say about our culture today that you have to write something like this? The way that leading commentators, journalists, and *world leaders* have defended Polanski is horrifying and I can't imagine how they begin to rationalize it. But it's all a part of our culture of unaccountability--their reaction to a tabloid event like this only validates why atrocities from the war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan to the criminal aftermath of post-Katrina New Orleans have been neatly shoved under the rug by the media and government.

peon said...

I agree on all counts about Polanski, but if I was the 13 yr old he raped and was now an adult with kids and a life, the last thing I would want would be for this case to resurface. This may be justice for the system that Polanski thumbed his nose at but it would just be painful to me. It doesn't matter if he paid me off or not. I would hate being forced to relive this moment in my life, be subjected to the voyeuristic press, and possibly be subpoenaed.
I think it is typical that the victim gets lost in these kinds of discussions.

Anonymous said...

How often is prosecution undertaken in a rape case in which the raped person has stated they don't want prosecution to proceed?

In this particular case the victim was below the age of consent. It would defeat the purpose of statutory rape laws to require that the victim consent to the prosecution.

The victims of domestic violence often don't want their abusers prosecuted. Some of them even recant their stories and claim they lied and say their injuries were self-inflicted. Should we allow domestic abusers to escape justice too?

I would hate being forced to relive this moment in my life, be subjected to the voyeuristic press, and possibly be subpoenaed.

The victim in this case (who is now 45 years old) has voluntarily appeared on television and in a movie discussing this case. She even posed for pictures at an after-party for the movie premiere.

Her actions since receiving an "undisclosed" civil settlement give rise to the suspicion that she has been bought off.

I hope she got a lot of money from Polanski, but her wishes (genuine or paid for) are not controlling.

It says "The People of the State of California v. Roman Polanski" on the court documents. The People are represented by the LA district attorney.

Unless Polanski is allowed to withdraw his plea the victim need not appear in court or testify. All the court has to do is impose sentence.

Unknown said...

I agree with lots of things here:

Roman Polanski is an ADMITTED rapist and must serve his sentence.

If what Koshem Bos says is true, then that iS the sentence he should serve.

BUT he should serve it in the US, not in some Swiss Jail.

And the victim (no quotes here!) is already in the public eye - I even saw current articles yesterday on her. Besides, there doesn't need to be any other testimony by her - he plead guilty, therefore he is guilty and the only issue is how fast we can throw his ass in jail (even for 18 months...although I suggest that his fleeing the jurisdiction deserves some additional sentence).

AND, he needs to be tagged a sex offender just like all of the other scum of that same ilk.

CMike said...

Koshem Bos writes:

Polanski, however, is entitled to the result of the plea agreement that required him to serve 18 months jail term. This agreement was vacated by a corrupt judge who decided not to accept the agreement. (Judges have the right and even the duty to do so if they find the agreement is flawed.)

You are way off on the facts here. Apparently, the prosecutor and the defense came to an understanding that Roman Polanski would serve no time for his crimes, though the rich celebrity had been indicted on six counts:

1.Rape by use of drugs
2. Perversion
3. Furnishing a controlled substance to a minor
4. Sodomy
5. Lewd and lascivious acts upon a minor under the age of 14
6. Unlawful sexual intercourse

Polanski entered his guilty plea to the one charge of unlawful sexual intercourse. From his lawyers' 2008 motion to dismiss (careful, 238 page pdf), here was the open court explanation to Polanski of the plea to which he was entering into:

[From frame 8 of the pdf it reads:]

Before Mr. Polanski entered his plea, he was read the following condition of his plea agreement:

>>>>>>>Mr. Gunson [the prosecutor in the case]: Further, do you realize that this Court will not make any decision regarding probation and sentence until after it has read and considered the report and recommendation that will be prepared and submitted to it by the Probation Department? And after it has heard the argument of your attorney and the argument of the prosecutor; --

>>>>>>>>>MR. POLANSKI: Yes.

The argument subsequently made was that the Judge should have been bound by his agreement with counsel in private;

that, in deciding the final sentence, the Judge should weigh only the Probation Department report and the arguments of counsel,

that the Judge had no right to incarcerate Polanski during the period he was to undergo the pysch and other Probation Department evaluations,

that prior to receiving the Probation Department report and hearing the arguments of counsel the Judge had no right to decide to sentence the defendant to prison time,

and that the Judge had indicated he would agree to the plea bargain worked out between the prosecutor and the defense.

Polanski was incarcerated for 42 days. He fled the country after the Judge indicated to defense counsel that he was not going to sentence Polanski to 42 days of time served. As far as I can tell, the Judge indicated that he was going to sentence Polanski to another 48 days in prison. Were he alive to defend himself, I believe the Judge could make a reasonable case that he treated Polanski fairly given that, as a judge, he had responsibilities to parties other than the defendant.

[I've not read even half of the 2008 motion to dismiss.]

Anonymous said...

"You may feel you have addressed this obliquely by referring to "the State" as the accuser, but surely there is more to say about that?"

Not really. Drugging and raping a 13 year old child is a criminal felony, not a civil matter.

Linden said...

Just another situation that illustrates my own personal maxim: "Rape is bad. Good thing it never happens." By which I mean, everyone says they're against rape until a real case comes along -- then they bend themselves into pretzels to excuse the rapist. Thus, no one is ever really raped, not even children.

Bob Harrison said...

A good Christian would be pleading the case for empathy and forgiveness here, but I guess I just backslid clean out the church door. I agree with majority opinion that his crime has not been serviced by Lady Justice and he should be tossed in the big pokey and find out about that hard core pedophile status in prison.

Of course, we'll see that just about the time Deadeye Darth Dick and Scooter are strung up by their scrotums.

Uh, sorry for being crass. This stuff just gets to me.

Pie Hole said...

Anglachel, I've been scouring the blogs in hopes of finding some affirmation of my own ethical certainty about the Polanski case - so thank you for providing that here.

In 1977, I was old enough to be deeply shaken by the outpouring of contempt toward the 13 year old victim; and the outpouring of support for the 43 year old perpetrator who served a mere forty two days for psychiatric evaluation, after which he evaded any further sentencing.

Polanski has been an ongoing thorn in the side of women who grew up with this case especially for those who have, unequivocally, come to call themselves feminists. On the other hand, Polanski has been a standard bearer for a full spectrum of misogynists who are deeply galled by the notion that the rights of any woman, or girl child, could put limits on the behavior of any man.

Over the past 30 years it might appear that we have come some distance in terms of heightened public awareness regarding the welfare of women and children, most particularly when it comes to the matter of child sexual abuse. And certainly, the state was extraordinarily zealous in prosecuting 42 year old Mary Kay Letourneau who pled guilty to raping a 13 year old boy and served seven and a half years for the offense. (Unlike Polanski's victim, Vili Fualaau steadfastly professed his willingness for sex along with his equally steadfast wish that there be NEVER be any prosecution of any kind.)

By contrast, the Polanski case appears to be a monumental bellwether as to how little improvement there has been in cultural attitudes toward a certain class of male perpetrators relative to their female victims. More broadly speaking, it is proving to be a putrid repository of arrested male development and, unfortunately, it has a fair share of female enablers. At the risk of mangling metaphors, this is their Waterloo and Polanski is their Napoleon. I fear it will be very, very ugly, and deeply painful for all of those who hoped justice would one day be served.

Unknown said...

She did not struggle and she did not scream. Please get your facts straight and read the protocol of her court testimony here:

No way was this "a brutal rape" no matter how often you copy and paste your sentences (boring style btw). It was what is called "secuction of a minor" where I live. Still not right, but no way near the scenario you so lovingly describe.

She changed in front of him when they took photos, wearing nothing but a panty underneath. She drank and had before. She had taken qualuudes before and she had had sex before. 13 going on 35? You bet.

Moreover her mother let her go off with a stranger to take photos of her unattended. IMO she thought that having something going with a director would help her daughter's "career".

I yet have to see the brutal rapist who "performs cuddliness", i.e. orally pleasures his victim. Also please note that there's no mention of lube before the anal sex. Were this a fic reviewers would call WTF. There was no pain and she was not hurt. I wonder if it happened at all or whether she wasn't instructed to tell that because her mother/attorney knew that would add the crime of "perversion" to the list.

And then she just got up, put her dress on and left, saying "hi" to the woman in the next room.

Unknown said...

This morning brings more unbelievable news.....

"Film industry leaders like Pedro Almodóvar, Martin Scorsese, Costa-Gavras and Woody Allen signed a petition with more than 100 names that expressed “stupefaction” with the arrest."

Woody Allen! Oh this is just too good to be true. One pedophile supporting another. Whooda thunk it?

Creepy old dudes deserve their freedom.

Anonymous said...

I honestly did not think it was possible for my stomach to do any more turning on this subject - then I read what "Silkie" had to say.

Anonymous said...

Sorta obsessed with the Polanski thing but just found this. I agree with your post entirely. Just want to add one more fact: there is no evidence that Polanski ever paid the victim the amount indicated in the settlement agreement, or any amount at all.

Anonymous said...

Well, after that Silke's comments I went to read at the smokinggun... and apparently, according to her own accounting she did not scream and fight. She resisted his advances, whether it was sitting in the same side of the jacuzzi as him or kissing... she kept putting her underwear on after he was getting her to take it off, or taking it off himself. She pretended to have asthma to get out of the jacuzzi where he first put his hands on her. She said over and over she wanted to go home, she needed to go home for her medication (for the nonexistent asthma). She said over and over she said no, no, I want to go home. She said over and over she was afraid. That she didn't struggle and fight since she was alone in the house with him, and she points out that he was her only way home.

She was not a virgin... which quite frankly means nothing. I know a lot of people who lost their virginity as young teens... and she also never says if THOSE times were consensual or not,or with people of her own age etc. She had drunk alcohol before... heck, Sarah Palin's daughters were drinking all over the net as minors. She had found a quaalude at age 10 or 11, when she was small (she points out herself she was "little"), was curious and took a half of it. Having a friend myself whose 13 yr old daughter ended up in hospital for taking a pill a friend at school gave her, this is not hard to believe. But that was the one time... she wasn't 13 going on 35. She had never taken drugs and alcohol together before.

But all that is immaterial. She was afraid, she was alone with a wellknown important older man who wanted her physically and she wanted to go home enough to pretend she had asthma and needed medications. She said "hello" to a woman who came back to the house and was in another room... heck, why would she have not? She went out alone and sat in the car crying until he drove her home.

Sounds like a classic case of an adult taking advantage of a young girl to me. And frankly, having had a wellknown professional photographer take photos of me when I was 25, when I was in art school, I can entirely understand her vulnerability, her trusting him re changing clothes for photos and her lack of footing for real protest/fight when isolated in an empty house with him her only ride home. All in all that was a very believable testimony, and completely reprehensible behaviour. I am in my mid 40s myself and cannot imagine how far from normal behaviour with a 13 yr old that is for someone my age. And yes, sexual predators can force cunnilingus on someone just as much as intercourse, Ms. Silke. Especially if they like doing that for their own pleasure, or to "warm up" their victim.