In response to the total implosion of Rolling Stone's preposterous story about a fraternity gang-rape at the University of Virginia, the media have reverted to their Soviet-style reporting. They're not even saying: We're choosing not to talk about UVA because it's a side show. It's more like: UVA? That's a school? Not only did the UVA gang rape turn out to be a hoax, but then President Obama's own Department of Justice completed a six-year study on college rape, and it turns out that instead of 1-in-5 college coeds being raped, the figure is 0.03-in-5.
Two recent items in the Washington Post support my contention that the establishment press is currently doing more than anyone besides Lena Dunham and "Jackie," both of whom have been irrefutably exposed as rape story fabulists, to cause victims of sexual assault to be reluctant to come forward (Note: That's not to say that the two women haven't been victims of sexual assault, "only" that the stories they are currently promulgating cannot possibly be true).
As Tim Graham at NewsBusters noted this morning, the Post provided feminist character witnesses supporting Dunham (including one who still "completely believe(s) her") and made pathetic excuses for the "Girls" star, including that she has a "demanding job." Meanwhile — and to be clear, this is appropriate work which Rolling Stone should have done in the first place — the Post has been thoroughly vetting the story of alleged University of Virginia fraternity gang-rape victim "Jackie."
Sorry this column is late. I got raped again on the way home. Twice. I should clarify -- by "raped," I mean that two seductive Barry White songs came on the radio, which, according to the University of Virginia, constitutes rape.
In mid-November, all the networks lunged when Rolling Stone magazine published a horrific account of an alleged gang-rape in September 2012 by seven men at a fraternity house at the University of Virginia. The word “alleged” wasn’t used by Rolling Stone. There was a presumption of guilt. The reporter, Sabrina Rubin Erdely, was celebrated. The networks reported it when the story fell apart, but why did they report it sight unseen?
Fox News “Mediabuzz” host Howard Kurtz reports yet another tilted article by disgraced Rolling Stone writer Sabrina Rubin Erdely is getting scrutinized, an article obnoxiously titled “One Town's War on Gay Teens: In Michele Bachmann's home district, evangelicals have created an extreme anti-gay climate. After a rash of suicides, the kids are fighting back.” A local conservative activist recalled Erdely asked her for a counterpoint, then never used it.
The University of Virginia rape story may be unraveling, but that's not stopping ABC News, or campus forces with a vested interest in the issue, from forging ahead.
On today's Good Morning America, host Dan Harris said that the "one big fear . . . is that this will scare other victims" from coming forward. But just who are the "victims" here: "Jackie" the pseudononymous accuser, or the UVA fraternity and the seven men she accused? Harris spoke at the end of a segment in which UVA President Teresa Sullivan said that despite doubts about the story, the university is "first and foremost" concerned with sexual assault survivors, and a campus advocate claimed "Jackie still has a truth in many ways."
The straw man argument is a fundamentally dishonest fallback tactic employed by someone whose side is losing a debate: Make up a position the other side has never taken, and then shoot it down.
The leftist fever swamp known as Vox, perhaps reacting to the utter implosion of Rolling Stone's University of Virginia fraternity gang-rape story and the potential impact it might have on keeping universities from imposing due process-denying regimes on campus, has produced a graphic employing that tactic against the apparent hordes of Americans who think that rape "isn't a real issue in America" (HT Twitchy):
When the now-retracted article by the Rolling Stone magazine was published on November 19 about a brutal gang rape of a first-year student at the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity house at the University of Virginia, the major broadcast networks rushed to the story and devoted multiple segments to both the article and reaction on the school’s campus. In doing so, they failed (unlike other outlets) to point out its flaws that brought an apology from the liberal magazine on Friday afternoon after it came to realize that many of the key facts in the story were in serious doubt.
Rolling Stone managing editor Will Dana issued a statement on Friday about their much-publicized "A Rape on Campus" story, which zeroed in on an allegation of gang rape at the University of Virginia by a woman named "Jackie." Dana acknowledged that "there now appear to be discrepancies in Jackie's account," and continued that "we have come to the conclusion that our trust in her was misplaced....We are taking this seriously and apologize to anyone who was affected by the story."
The rising doubts about the Rolling Stone rape story have become so widespread that now even Salon is becoming skeptical. However, Salon writer Erin Keane admits she completely bought into the story until other sources began checking it out. The admission can be seen in the headline of her story: "Rolling Stone’s UVA rape story backlash: When narratives are so compelling that we don’t notice unbalanced reporting."
Last week, the national media leapt on a Rolling Stone story about an alleged gang rape at the University of Virginia. The freelancer who wrote the story was appalled at the university’s lack of transparency. Now Washington Post media reporter Paul Farhi is wondering about the journalist’s lack of transparency. She’s declining to answer questions and warning about getting “sidetracked” by focusing on her professionalism.
Jon Stewart is on a roll this week. After publicly ridiculing and comparing George W. Bush's retirement to that of another former president, Jimmy Carter, and mocking coal miners for losing their jobs (and that they should go an work for the NFL), he has also had a war of words with Sean Hannity....and Hannity shot right back.