Sex

Lena Dunham, Sexual Predator? Or Just Really Weird?

Dunham's memoir-one in which she positions herself as a sexual assault victim-also highlights some blatant sexual and political double standards.

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Lena Dunham
David Shankbone

I'm happy to say I have never seen an episode of Girls, Lena Dunham's HBO show which sounds like a younger and grubbier version of Sex and the City; but it's almost impossible to follow the modern cultural scene, especially its feminist segments, and not run into Dunham all the time. Anointed as "the voice of a generation" by the elite media, whose ongoing love-affair with Dunham was documented in scary detail in The American Prospect last January, the 28-year-old writer/producer/actress has also been hailed as the voice of millennial-generation feminism. (Her political activism is best encapsulated by a 2012 Obama campaign ad directed at young women in which first-time voting is like sex and Obama is like an awesome boyfriend who cares about your problems and gives you stuff.)

Dunham is now in the spotlight over her confessional memoir, Not That Kind of Girl—an unwelcome spotlight for a change, with some of her confessions being spun into sensational claims that she sexually molested her younger sister Grace. Having perused the book, which a generous estimate would put at about two hours' worth of reading, I think the charge is a wild overreaction that reflects not only sexual-abuse hysteria but a rising, noxious intolerance toward edgy humor. But this entire episode, especially when juxtaposed with the response to another part of Dunham's memoir—one in which she positions herself as a sexual assault victim—also highlights some blatant sexual and political double standards.

The supposedly incriminating passages were first pointed out by National Review writer Kevin Williamson in a cover story on Dunham as the uber-child of the liberal elites, then picked up by the right-wing website TruthRevolt.org under the headline, "Lena Dunham describes sexually abusing her toddler sister." What Dunham actually described was opening up her sister's vagina to peek inside when she was seven and Grace was one (only to freak out at the discovery of some pebbles Grace had apparently stuffed inside). She also says that as a teenager, she let her sister sleep in her bed, and mentions that she occasionally masturbated while Grace lay next to her. And she writes this about their relationship:

As she grew, I took to bribing her for her time and affection: one dollar in quarters if I could do her makeup like a "motorcycle chick." Three pieces of candy if I could kiss her on the lips for five seconds. Whatever she wanted to watch on TV if she would just "relax on me." Basically, anything a sexual predator might do to woo a small suburban girl I was trying.

In happier times, about a year ago, Dunham shared the "motorcycle chick" photo on Instagram; it shows a surly child wearing makeup and a T-shirt with "BAD GIRL" scrawled on it, and is captioned, "that time I dressed my 5 year old sister as a Hell's Angel's sex property." Now, that's more grist for her detractors, not all of whom are on the right (more on that below).

What to make of all this? Williamson's pronouncement that there is "no non-horrific interpretation" of the vaginal inspection episode seems rash, to say the least. While the six-year age gap makes it different from the usual "playing doctor" experience, it seems clear that Dunham's motive was curiosity, not erotic gratification; most experts seem to agree that it's within the range of non-abusive childhood exploration. Taken together, these excerpts may show that Dunham was a weird kid, as she herself has said. They may, and no doubt will, be cited as evidence of the pitfalls of sexually liberated child-rearing. But to turn them into proof of child molestation seems quite an overreach. Particularly absurd is the idea that Dunham's obvious jokes about wooing her baby sister like a sexual predator or dressing her up as "Hell's Angels sex property" are clues that betray her as a sex offender. Dunham has already apologized for her "insensitive" comedic use of the term "sexual predator" and for any "painful or triggering" material in her book. (Personally, I'll take the tackiest sex joke over the word "triggering.") At this rate, it isn't long before every subject except the weather and the flaws of straight white males is off-limits to humor.

And yet it is also hard to deny that Dunham's defenders in the mainstream liberal media, especially her feminist champions, have done a fair amount of spin. They have, for instance, treated Grace Dunham's oddly ambiguous Twitter commentary as a defense of her sister, even though it actually reads more like a deflection. (One tweet affirmed support for "people narrating their own experiences, determining for themselves what has and hasn't been harmful"; two others decried the policing of non-normative sexuality.) They have uncritically cited Lena Dunham's claim that anything she has written about her sister has been "published with her approval," even though it doesn't mesh with Grace Dunham's recent statement in The New York Times Magazine that she and her sister had fought over "my feeling like Lena…made my personal life her property." Nor have they acknowledged that the allegations against Dunham have arisen in a paranoid climate in which children as young as six—nearly always boys—can be treated as sex offenders for playing doctor with a child of similar age, kicking another child in the groin during a fight, or kissing a classmate's hand.

There is also an anti-Dunham feminist faction, which believes Dunham is a sexual abuser and has urged Planned Parenthood to drop her as its spokeswoman. But if anything, it confirms to what extent the charges against her tend to be viewed through the lens of politics. With few if any exceptions, the "guilty" corner is made up of feminists who weren't exactly Dunham fans in the first place—who have long scorned her as too privileged and not radical enough, as the face of white, upper-class, elitist, mainstream media–approved feminism.

The far-left Dunham-bashers who lambaste her for such offenses as "rape culture enabling" are not a particularly sympathetic bunch. But that doesn't make the pro-Dunham portion of the sisterhood any less guilty of double standards. How would the same feminists react to similar reminiscences from a man, or a woman of the wrong political affiliation—say, Bristol Palin? What if Dunham had described being on the receiving end of such behavior from an older, especially male, sibling—and if she had retroactively, in therapy or in a women's studies class, come to regard these experiences as sexual abuse?

That brings us to the Dunham-as-victim narrative, which was undoubtedly the most talked-about part of her memoir until the Dunham-as-victimizer narrative emerged. At one point, Dunham describes an encounter at Oberlin with a "mustachioed campus Republican" named Barry. Actually, she describes it at two points: first, as a comical drunken tumble during which she suddenly spots the condom she thought Barry was wearing hanging off of her roommate's potted tree; then, as a likely rape about the nonconsensual nature of which she was at first in denial.

In the second, supposedly authentic recounting, Dunham runs into Barry at a party while lonely, drunk, and high on Xanax and cocaine. She goes home with him, rebuffing a male friend's attempt to stop her. When they are on the floor "doing all the things grown-ups do" and trying to have intercourse, with Barry not quite up to the occasion, she hazily notices that the condom is on the floor and asks him to put it back on. They do more grown-up things, some of which Dunham asks Barry to do to her. (Retroactively, she believes she was trying to persuade herself she was doing this by choice.) They have another go at intercourse, which is when Dunham notices the condom in the tree. She picks herself up and tells Barry to get out, which he does.

When Dunham relates this to a friend the next day, the friend turns pale and blurts out, "You were raped." Dunham's first reaction is to laugh. Eventually, though, she comes to believe it, partly because she's in pain for a while after that night and she knows she didn't consent to such rough handling or to being penetrated without a condom.

Assuming that Dunham's alcohol-addled memories are reliable (a big if), how is this rape? Because she was drunk and high—as was Barry, who apparently couldn't remember the next day who he'd been with—and wouldn't have done this when sober? She certainly wasn't past being able to say yes or no. Because Barry was too rough during an otherwise consensual encounter? Because he took off the condom—or perhaps lost it when, as Dunham repeatedly mentions, he wasn't fully erect? If he did it intentionally, that certainly makes him a massive jerk. But a rapist? Would anyone apply that label to a woman who lies, for whatever reason, about using birth control?

I would say that, on the basis of Dunham's narrative, Barry is as much of a rapist as Dunham is a child molester. In both cases, there is some questionable behavior that can be described as troubling, inappropriate, possibly exploitative—but far short of criminal. Yet the people who have pooh-poohed the accusations against Dunham have embraced her accusation against Barry (who is, apparently, easy to identify and track down). An essay in Time applauds her decision to share the story as "her bravest work of activism yet," a bold challenge to rape denial and victim-blaming. The Oberlin administrators have even launched an investigation, though no charges can be filed unless Dunham cooperates.

While they're at it, perhaps they should investigate Dunham, too. Immediately after her first description of the Barry fiasco, she writes that her next partner, a senior named Geoff, "once cried in my parents' hammock because, he told me, 'You are forcing sex when I just want to be heard.'"

Forcing sex, to the point of reducing her partner to tears? There's a whole new chapter in Dunham's history as a sex offender! I think TruthRevolt.org needs to get on the case. Maybe their next headline can read, "Lena Dunham describes raping college boyfriend."

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  1. Couldn’t have happened to a nicer girl.

    1. This pretty much sums up most of the reaction against her on this.

      1. Thankfully she’s got a white knight like you to ride in and defend her honour.

        1. Shorter PM: Why ya spoiling our fun with your principles *shakes fist*

          1. Shorter Bo: Stop picking on people I like for having ridiculous double standards!

            Principles, indeed.

            1. I don’t know Lena Dunham from Eve, but I do know when partisans feed an anti-liberty hysteria for partisan reasons.

              1. Yes, you have a remarkable ability to sniff out partisanship in anyone with whom you disagree. You’re like a drug dog – your senses are so finely tuned you often find it even when it can’t be detected!

                1. As I said below, I disagree with playing into anti-liberty hysteria. You’re fine with it as long as it’s directed toward your partisan enemies.

                  1. I disagree with playing into anti-liberty hysteria.

                    Well, as soon as that becomes relevant to this particular issue, let me know won’t you?

                    1. Calling what she did child molestation feeds into the hysteria surrounding that subject, a hysteria which lies behind a great deal of government abuse.

                  2. I disagree with playing into anti-liberty hysteria.

                    And yet you think the people feeding off that hysteria shouldn’t be judged by the standards they’re advocating?

                    1. If the topic is Dunham’s claims about campus rape, then we should argue loudly against her alarmist claims. If the topic is whether she is a child predator we should laugh that right off the discussion board.

                    2. “we should argue”

                      Bo,

                      Have you attacked her somewhere? I missed that post. Perhaps you have. You seem intelligent and you comment often.

          2. What principles, Bo? By the very standards she’s pushing, she’s a sexual predator. Any morally honest person should demand either that she cop to it or that acknowledge those standards are wrong. That, much more than any dislike of her personally is the point so many have made.

            Or are you just being a proggie douche and misspelling “principals”.

            1. “Bo? By the very standards she’s pushing, she’s a sexual predator.”

              Are those your principles? If so, why are you adopting them here, other than that you don’t like the principal here?

              “Or are you just being a proggie douche and misspelling “principals”.”

              The fellow who admits to being a GOP party member and going to their Thursday night get together’s thinks I’m partisan. That about says it all about that narrative around here.

              1. Super poop.

              2. Are those your principles? If so, why are you adopting them here, other than that you don’t like the principal here?

                No. My principle is that people have a responsibility to live by the standards they’re demanding of others. Dunham clearly isn’t willing to do that.

                The fellow who admits to being a GOP party member and going to their Thursday night get together’s thinks I’m partisan.

                Shorter Bo: Are you now or have you ever been a member of the Republican party?

                Bo, we’ve been through this before. You really are caricaturing yourself. There are libertarians within the Republican party – Ron Paul, Rand Paul, hell, Gary Johnson right up until he ran on the Libertarian ticket. Your playing cards right out of Joe McCarthy’s deck really isn’t going to change that.

                1. Your answer of ‘yes I’m a Republican, but lots of libertarians are’ doesn’t help much against the charge that, well, you’re a Republican. Of course being one you might find those that are not (lots o libertarians are not Republicans, and lots of them find the Republicans as bad as the Democrats) will seem ‘biased’ to you.

                  “our playing cards right out of Joe McCarthy’s deck”

                  The irony, it burns (look at your original comment!).

                  1. Of course being one you might find those that are not (lots o libertarians are not Republicans, and lots of them find the Republicans as bad as the Democrats) will seem ‘biased’ to you.

                    No, Botard, the fact that you consistently excuse progressives while damning conservatives is why I note that you’re biased. Your attempt to conflate political party with ideology is just completely consistent with your dishonesty on the matter.

              3. Are those your principles? If so, why are you adopting them here, other than that you don’t like the principal here?

                No one is adopting her principles, just pointing out her hypocrisy in failing to apply them consistently. Considering the central role that tu quoque plays in your schtick, you might want to tread lightly on dismissing it out of hand.

                1. So you admit you’re doing a big tu quoque, but I shouldn’t call you on it because, what irony, I engage in tuquoque (that’s like a meta tuquoque!).

                  1. but I shouldn’t call you on it because, what irony, I engage in tuquoque (that’s like a meta tuquoque!).

                    You didn’t call anybody on tu quoque anywhere in this thread, you accused them of being crypto-right-wing reactionary propagandists falsely accusing a woman of being a sexual predator. In defense, it was pointed out repeatedly that we were just indulging in a bit of tu quoque. This isn’t a formal debate, and we’re all kind of enjoying watching an extreme anti-liberty fucking asshole get hoist on their own petard. The only reason it has you upset is because it’s directed against someone you happen to share ideology with.

                  2. So you admit you’re doing a big tu quoque

                    Tu quoque is only a logical fallacy when there is agreement with regard to the standard. When the standard itself is the subject of the debate, it’s perfectly reasonable to point out that it’s advocate can’t abide by said standard.

  2. Lena Dunham, Sexual Predator? Or Just Really Weird?

    Why can’t it be both?

    1. Lobster and cracked crab for everyone!

      1. It’s almost time to fire up that movie.

      2. Extra primo good!

  3. #Barf

    1. +1 Tattooed Potato.

  4. Well, there’s 178 seconds I will never get back.

    Other than that, I see people are letting her have it regarding the picture she posted on Instagram.

  5. How on earth have I not known she went to Oberlin? Sooooo much makes sense now.

    1. Oberlin or Liberty University. Which one provides the better education? Certainly not the latter.

      1. I’m always willing to give the first college to look past tribalism and admit blacks and women some leeway. Oberlin is a great example of how private institutions can resist the government sponsored oppression of the day.

        1. Oberlin is a great example of how private institutions can resist the government sponsored oppression of the day

          How hard were you laughing when you typed this?

      2. Oberlin or Liberty University. Which one provides the better education? Certainly not the latter.

        I give up. Which one is it?

        1. Liberty is a conservative version of Phoenix University with all of the Bible beating in the parlance of online academia.

          You probably know this though.

          Conservatives can make sure they remain cloistered if they “attend”.

          1. Non-profit religious colleges with brick and mortar campuses, NCAA D1 sports teams are exactly like fully online, for-profit institutions lacking any semblance of university culture.

            1. Don’t feed it, dude. All he wants is for you to respond. He say any stupid thing he can to further that goal.

              1. I’m trying to train its program to become even dumber in the hopes that it eventually starts spouting actual gibberish and gets shut down by its handlers. Maybe after it reboots into a new handle we can train it better, but this model is too far gone.

            2. Non-profit religious colleges with brick and mortar campuses, NCAA D1 sports teams are exactly like fully online, for-profit institutions lacking any semblance of university culture.

              More importantly, this all has what to do with the actual quality of instruction provided to students?

            3. It is the conservative brainwashing I object to. Teens need to step away from their little familial cult and grow up.

              1. Teens need to step away from their little familial cult and grow up.

                By stepping into your little familial cult?

              2. I agree. Teens need an entirely different dogma to get drilled into their heads. Thank goodness for higher education!

              3. Yes, there is no brainwashing going on at the non-Christian colleges. It’s pure enlightenment and a studied attention to critical argument from unbiased professors that turns so many first year students into reflexive leftist zombies.

                1. true – most liberal colleges are indoctrination centers for socialists. It takes years of real life experience in the private sector to overcome the brainwashing that happens at the mainstream colleges and Universities.

            4. And 90% of the students are online.

          2. University of Notre Dame

            Number 15 academically in the country
            95-99% graduation rate
            95% admittance rate by graduates into graduate school
            Number 1 undergraduate school in the country

            Just because an institution is “Christian and Conservative” doesn’t mean the students there are mindless brainwashed idiots or their education is inferior

            Far from it- Catholic Education is superior to public education and many other private institutions.

      3. Look! Up in the sky! It’s non-sequitur man!

    2. How on earth have I not known she went to Oberlin?

      Things you can tell just by looking at her.

  6. never have sex with a drunk chick,never

    1. More importantly, never have sex even with a stone-cold sober chick who looks like Lena Dunham. Under the level of intoxication required to actually consider such a thing, I’m not sure he could even legally be held responsible for his actions.

      1. soon men will need to wear body cams to prove they didn’t commit rape

        1. Please do go on. [/California legislator]

        2. “soon men will need to wear body cams to prove they didn’t commit rape”

          Of course that will lead to immediate arrest under Peeping Tom laws, but hey it’s the lesser crime.

        3. agreed

      2. Fat chicks are like scooters fun to ride till your friends find out.

        1. Fat chicks are like scooters fun to ride till your friends find out.

          All the intelligent, insightful things you * could * have said … and that is what you led with?

          1. I thought it funny

          2. I feel like your overestimating my character/moral fiber.

          3. I don’t like small cars
            or real big women
            but somehow
            I always find myself in ’em.

            Kid Rock

        2. My issue with fat chicks is they are to body conscious. “I don’t want to have sex on an airboat in a Wal-mart parking lot at high noon.”
          Boo-hoo

          1. There are physical limits, but generally confidence is sexy in either gender.

        3. #2 never have sex with a chick that out weights you

          1. I can’t help that I only weigh 98 pounds.
            /runs off sobbing

  7. I just want to add while I was in school, there were plenty of girls like Dunham. She’s not unique in this way. Heaven knows there’s nothing interesting in this person.

    The difference is back then we seemed to, you know, stay clear of them. Now they’re on TV and people seem to think she’s a voice of a generation.

    Those are just voices in their heads I reckon.

  8. Sounds like Barry was raped.

    1. Maybe that was the first boyfriend she was comparing to voting.

      1. Maybe that was the first boyfriend she was comparing to voting.

        I love you for this.

    2. Also with a partner like Dunham, his difficulty getting an erection is pretty understandable. Ugh, that mouthy fat hunchbacked cunt is an emetic, not a “voice of her generation.”

  9. Contrast the media reaction to this with the way John Grisham was treated for his opinion that sex offenders are treated too harshly by the justice system.

    1. Im in Grisham’s corner there but he was talking about adults while Dunham was describing her actions as a 7 year old child, so there’s a substantial difference

      1. the thing is Dunham’s worldview has such a low standard for rape and assault, that if this was anyone else on the enemies list the Jezebels,slatetards, salonophides and their five shared readers would be breathing fire.

        1. I don’t believe in living by their terrible standards.

          The real problem here is described by Ms. Young: “a paranoid climate in which children as young as six?nearly always boys?can be treated as sex offenders for playing doctor with a child of similar age, kicking another child in the groin during a fight, or kissing a classmate’s hand.” Feeding that to make momentary points against a hated for partisan reasons is not helping.

          1. Exactly.

          2. meh. I’m no martyr and don’t really care one way or another.

          3. I don’t believe in living by their terrible standards.

            And you apparently don’t feel they should be called to do so, either.

      2. while Dunham was describing her actions as a 7 year old child

        … and into her teens. Which you should probably know from the 50 times it was pointed out to you the other day. Something tells me a teenage boy caught bribing a girl 6 years younger than himself for kisses and masturbating with her in his bed would probably not be met with the same defense from the same people defending Dunham – including Dunham herself. Ironically, Grisham’s comments could pretty accurately apply to the situation Dunham could have found herself in if she’d been caught doing that in her teens:

        “I have no sympathy for real pedophiles. God, please lock those people up. But so many of these guys do not deserve harsh prison sentences, and that’s what they’re getting.”

          1. I don’t think anyone is clamoring for her immediate jailing at this sight. Just sit back and enjoy the schadenfreude bo.

            1. “I don’t think anyone is clamoring for her immediate jailing”

              Feeding this nonsense plays right into the hands of the policies that do just that.

              1. Yes, it’s truly a slippery slope from calling out hypocrites on their hypocrisy to…

                1. The critics of Dunham are calling her a child predator and child molester. That’s feeding the hysteria around that subject.

                  1. The critics of Dunham are calling her a child predator and child molester. That’s feeding the hysteria around that subject.

                    I see the problem. You’ve conflated the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy voices in your head with things that actual, real-life people at this particular website have actually ever said.

                    1. Is Kevin Williamson and TruthRevolt part of that? Curiously I’ve not seen you criticize their hysteria.

                    2. Curiously I’ve not seen you criticize their hysteria.

                      Well curiously, I’ve not seen you deny the horrific, untrue rumors that you raped and killed a girl in 1990.

                      Curiously, I don’t generally feel the need to repudiate positions I’ve not taken in an informal online discussion.

                    3. PM|11.11.14 @ 9:05AM|#

                      The critics of Dunham are calling her a child predator and child molester. That’s feeding the hysteria around that subject.

                      I see the problem. You’ve conflated the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy voices in your head with things that actual, real-life people at this particular website have actually ever said.

                      Bo Cara Esq.|11.11.14 @ 9:11AM|#

                      Is Kevin Williamson and TruthRevolt part of that? Curiously I’ve not seen you criticize their hysteria.

                      Emphasis added: You are aware that this is reason.com, not truthrevolt, right? Or are you lost again?

                  2. Seriously Bo, just stop. I just read over the comments again, and nothing jumped out at me as calling for her to be arrested or treated like a child predator. Almost all the comments point out that by her standards and the standards of her supporters, that is what she would be called if she were male.

                    1. Lena Dunham, Sexual Predator? Or Just Really Weird?

                      Why can’t it be both?

                      She decided to write about how she masturbated in bed, as a 17 year old, with her 11 year old sister. After forcing her sister to give her kisses.

                      I can relish in the negative attention she is getting because those actions should not be normalized.

                    2. So now you’re saying she is a sexual predator? This post makes no sense to me.

                    3. Those are quotes from others in this thread.

                  3. No one here. Go over on Jezebel if you want to have that argument.

                    We are just rejoicing in a hypocrite getting called out. The same as with Larry Craig. We don’t think having gay sex should be a crime, but a hypocrite Repub getting caught wanting gay sex is hilarious.

              2. Poop.

              3. bullshit. You of all people should no that the views on this site don’t impact the policies of any of the major political parties, or branches of gov. in any way shape or form. I think your overestimating your and everyone elses role in our society.

                1. People come on this site and find people echoing National Review’s nonsense that this woman’s childish curiousity is child predation, that’s what we want libertarianism to be conveying?

                  1. No one is seriously suggesting this woman is a child predator. Get your head out of your ass.

                    1. wrong, shit breath. if she did those things she’s not curious, she’s fucking demented.

              4. No, far better to excuse the policies’ advocates from their hypocrisy. Especially when it’s a proggie, right, Bo?

                Why do I have the sinking feeling that you wouldn’t be so quick to excuse someone on the right?

                1. Is she pushing for harsher sex offender laws aimed at seven year olds?

                  “Why do I have the sinking feeling that you wouldn’t be so quick to excuse someone on the right?”

                  Projection, perhaps?

                  1. Is she pushing for harsher sex offender laws aimed at seven year olds?

                    Consistently applied, her views on what constitutes sexual assault would pretty much demand it.

                    1. “Consistently applied”

                      So no, but you think she would. And for that you want to pile on her rather than the pearl clutching of National Review and other conservative sites on this issue?

                    2. So no, but you think she would.

                      I actually think she wouldn’t, at least not stated as such. Which is precisely the source of the irony.

                      And for that you want to pile on her rather than the pearl clutching of National Review and other conservative sites on this issue?

                      Those aren’t mutually exclusive propositions (that you see them as such says more about you than anything else; methinks the Bo doth protest too much). And I’m certainly not going to go white knighting for Lena Dunham against the mean old white men at National Review. When someone at National Review is busy getting hoist on their petard, I’ll even up the scales of Bo Cara justice by indulging in some schadenfreude at their expense as well. I’m sure you’ll be there to defend them on that day, just as you do Dunham now.

                    3. So no, but you think she would.

                      Personally, I don’t know whether she would or not. I do know that the only options available, given her revealed standards, would be to apply them consistently and impose such laws or privilege some over others.

                  2. Is she pushing for harsher sex offender laws aimed at seven year olds?

                    Oh, I got it. Botard thinks that a behavior that would be considered the act of a sexual predator if performed toward a college-aged woman is just horsing around when performed toward a child.

                    Projection, perhaps?

                    Sure because we just all know you’d be reticent on commenting about someone on the religious right getting caught engaged in bad behavior. I’m sure you’ve never commented with regard to Larry Craig.

                    Bullshit! I’ve seen your posts.

                    1. “Botard thinks that a behavior that would be considered the act of a sexual predator if performed toward a college-aged woman is just horsing around when performed toward a child.”

                      Oh my lord, as noted the difference might be that she was a child herself at the time!

                    2. A 17 year old child to boot.

                2. No, far better to excuse the policies’ advocates from their hypocrisy. Especially when it’s a proggie, right, Bo?

                  Why do I have the sinking feeling that you wouldn’t be so quick to excuse someone on the right?”

                  I think it’s safe to assume that if Dunham’s name were switched with Ted Cruz he would be having a hissy fit of glee and condemnation.

          2. Suffice to say your definition of “infancy” is not shared by any of the listed countries in the article you’ve just cited. And, of course, doesn’t address anything in the post to which you replied.

            1. “Children aged seven to fourteen (13 years, 364 days 23’59’59” aged) were presumed incapable of committing a crime but the presumption was rebuttable. The prosecution could overcome the presumption by proving that the child understood what he was doing and that it was wrong.”

              1. Poop.

              2. So 13 years, 364 days 23:59:59.01 is now considered “14”?. What are we coming to?

              3. Scroll down a little further, past the part that’s prefaced by “Under the English common law” and you’ll notice:

                The following are the minimum ages at which people may be charged with a criminal offence in each country:

                United States 6-12

                Age determined by each state; the minimum age is 6 (North Carolina); however, only 15 states have set minimum ages, which range from 6 to 12 years. States without statutory minimum ages rely on common law, which means that 7 is the minimum age in most states; for federal crimes the age has been set at 11.

                Note again that the behavior she (jokingly) describes as child predation occurred into her teens (According to Dunham, her sister was the one crawling into her bed, and Grace was asleep when the masturbation happened?so Dunham, who was at least 13 at the time, was essentially masturbating in private. ). There are quite literally young children on lifetime sex offender registries for doing similar types of things. That type of over-sentencing is precisely the type of thing Grisham was speaking out against when he was shredded by many of the same media outlets and personalities rushing to Dunham’s defense. It’s the hypocrisy, stupid.

                1. The new age limits were set in our big government days, you think they are the better ones than the common law one that predated them for centuries?

                  “There are quite literally young children on lifetime sex offender registries for doing similar types of things.”

                  Which is why we should loudly denounce people like Williamson who scream that those children are truly child predators, right?

                  1. Which is why we should loudly denounce people like Williamson who scream that those children are truly child predators, right?

                    Cool false dilemma. That doesn’t require us to ignore the hypocrisy of the media narrative painting Grisham as a kiddie rape apologist while excusing Dunham’s frisky times with her sister, which, again, lasted well into her teens.

                    1. Exactly. All of us who are continually subjected to the media’s hypersensitivity and channeling everything into its narrative can sometimes relish when a wrench is thrown into the machine we get to watch the contortions and wreckage.

  10. I think the charge is a wild overreaction that reflects not only sexual-abuse hysteria but a rising, noxious intolerance toward edgy humor.

    Edgy humor more like a vagi rumor. Am I right, guys?

    1. You are right.

  11. I’m having a really hard time caring about this.

    1. I, too, can find no fucks to give.

      1. She decided to write about how she masturbated in bed, as a 17 year old, with her 11 year old sister. After forcing her sister to give her kisses.

        I can relish in the negative attention she is getting because those actions should not be normalized.

        1. No poop fecal fiend?

          “Normalized.” Sheesh. That’s like the SoCon ‘triggering.’

          1. Accusing someone of rape years after the act, or writing about masturbating in a bed with a child…she should be shamed for writing that. She should not go to prison or lose her job, she should just be shamed. And she has been. And that is a good thing.

            1. Agreed, though this wouldn’t be an issue if her parents had had a damn clue what they were doing when they were raising their daughters.

          2. Yes, Bo. Arguing your belief that something has negative consequences is exactly like saying that the topic is verboten because of your fragile psyche.

            1. “Arguing your belief that something has negative consequences” doesn’t equal “should not be normalized”

  12. Unless Grace expressed enthusiastic consent for the entirety of the encounter, she was raped, wasn’t she? Isn’t that the SJW standard now?

    1. Oh my Goddess, you really don’t get it. That’s enforceable only against bepenised persons.

  13. noxious intolerance toward edgy humor.

    Rape: It’s only funny when feminists joke about it.

    he told me, ‘You are forcing sex when I just want to be heard.’

    Rape: It is only not rape by the feminist definition of rape when feminists do it.

    1. I am a woman, and it would seriously be poetic justice if this man filed a complaint.

    2. “Rape: It is only not rape by the feminist definition of rape when feminists do it.”

      Kind of like the line about racism the libtards teach the gullible college students, where “minorities don’t have the power to be racist.” Maybe this should be called Rapism.

  14. Fuck you Reason and Reasonoids. Up until a couple of weeks ago I was confusing this person with Lena Headey whenever she came up in conversation. Now I know she exists. And it’s like a car accident. I won’t be able to look away.

    And does anyone else think she is the real life incarnation of the Ayn Rand villains that say and do and wrote nothing of substance but are lauded over as geniuses because everyone else says they are? Behold, the end of days is near.

    1. Bring on the horsemen! It’s going to be a party and I intend to enjoy the decline.

    2. Up until a couple of weeks ago I was confusing this person with Lena Headey

      It’s Hedley!

    3. Same here. I pretty much live in a hole, and Reason is the only way I am exposed to pop culture (well, that and Talk Soup). But now I know who she is, I hate her, and I hate anyone who tries to say “she’s not that bad. . . “

      1. Aw man, I haven’t watched Talk Soup in a while. I used to really enjoy it.

        Also, I need to apologize to Lena Headey.

    4. As I’ve said before, Rand’s heroes may be unrealistic, but her villains are spot-on.

    5. Me too – I used to wonder why anyone would diss Lena Headey… not a huge fan but she’s pleasing to my eyes.

  15. Is it fair to judge people by the company they keep?

    1. yes. I do it all the time. Now does that also make me an asshole?

      1. Posting here pretty much makes you that.

  16. a rising, noxious intolerance toward edgy humor.

    For all I know, she’s as funny Andy Kaufman. That doesn’t make her funny.

  17. -as-

  18. She’s not going to age well, and I’m not talking about her appearance. Her whole avant guard child of privilege shtick is turning tiresome even for those who like her.

    She looks more and more like regurgitated Bret Easton Ellis with a bit of self-indulgent feminism thrown in.

    Yawn.

    1. Her parents have less talent than her and they were relevant in their tiny, artistic world, so I think she will unfortunately always have a voice that the internet will make us hear.

  19. This whole thing actually makes me more sympathetic to Dunham.

    She’s a fucking wierdo freak who really needs to stop hanging out with the moral scolds of the left and right. She’d be so much better as a libertarian.

    Seriously, someone who probed her sister’s vagina at 7 shouldn’t be hanging out with feminist scolds.

      1. A dubious honor coming from you.

        1. Nothing says strong independent libertarian woman comfortable in her sexuality like supporting the criminalization of consensual sex.

          1. Yeah, this. I think Hazel should read a little bit more of Dunham’s work before wishing her on libertarianism.

            1. That’s my point. Lena Dunham should shut up about “correct” sexuality and just be the sexually transgressive wierdo that she really is.

              1. “That’s my point. Lena Dunham should shut up about “correct” sexuality and just be the sexually transgressive wierdo that she really is.”

                Well sure, but you can pretty much make an analogous comment of that type about anyone. Lena Dunham doesn’t just hang around feminist scolds, she is one.

                1. Maybe this experience will cause her to reconsider the wisdom of taking that position.

                  1. One can hope.

                  2. Doubtful.

  20. Maybe she can get a gig with UnPlanned Parenthood.

  21. That broad creeped me out before I heard about her molesting her little sister.

    -jcr

  22. I only read this article because Cathy Young is the author, and I usually find her stuff worth the time to consume. (ok,ok, I’m a big fan.)

    That being said, if I never read anything about Lena Dunham ever again I will die happy.

  23. It’s been clear for a while now that we have a poster who’s only here to bait the commentariat. He’s a Master Baiter.

  24. Not That Kind of Sexual Predator

    by Jim Goad

    As the “brains” behind the inexplicably acclaimed HBO series Girls and the author of the #1 bestselling book Not That Kind of Girl, Dunham is hailed as a cultural pioneer for doing what has become as stale as a yeasty vagina ? namely, she is a female who is congenitally incapable of writing about anything besides being a female.

    In Not That Kind of Girl, Dunham, who ? of course! ? attended Oberlin College, details a bumbling sexual experience with a male “campus Republican” that occurred smack-dab in the midst of the Bush II era. By her own account she offered zero resistance, either physically or verbally, up until the point where she realizes her one-night-paramour isn’t wearing a condom, whereupon she dismounts and tells him to leave, at which point he dutifully leaves.

    Now, nearly a decade later, she has solemnly decided that this seemingly consensual encounter was, in fact, RAPE. For modern feminists, claiming to have been raped, whether it actually happened or not, is the equivalent of achieving the rank of Eagle Scout. As a result of this highly dubious “revelation,” Dunham raked in a wheelbarrow full of invisible feminist-hero poker chips to spend at her discretion.

    1. Unfortunately for Dunham, last week the other Rape Shoe fell with an ugly thud, and now she’s being portrayed as a sexual predator who performed some highly skeevy acts with her younger sister Grace.

      The term “sexual predator” is crucial here, because in Not That Kind of Girl, Dunham used it to describe her own behavior, but now she’s backpedaling and claiming she’s not that kind of sexual predator. Facing a backlash not only from conservative sites but also among her intersectional feminist allies and comrades and sisters, she now insists her use of the term was a poorly concocted joke that flew right over the balding heads of rapidly aging right-wing dudebros.

      In one passage from the book, Dunham describes an incident when she was seven and used her fingers to peel open one-year-old Grace’s vagina, only to find that the mischievous little sprout had hidden pebbles inside of it. Dunham claims that her mother didn’t blink at the fact that she was spreading open her younger sibling’s vadge because it “was within the spectrum of things that I did.” (Then again, her mom is an “artist” whose “work” consists of such things as photos of a nude mannequin with a dog, while her dad was known for painting giant hairy vaginas.)

      1. “because it ‘was within the spectrum of things that I did’.”

        Such shitty parenting. By inference, the wrong behavior was defined by her parents as the things that she didn’t do. That explains so much about her self-absorption and utter lack of principles.

  25. Just exactly how is this ugly fat bitch a TV star?

    1. Full disclosure – I an old, ugly, fat fart who would shatter a camera lens if they tried to put me on TV.

      1. “I AM an old…”
        Apparently, I can’t type either.

  26. More than anything, this is evidence of shit parenting. The episode Lena describes of when she was 7 is just the weird shit that kids do, but it is the kind of shit that parents stop their kids from doing while explaining to their children why that is inappropriate. It is not “cute” or “sexually liberating”, it is bad behavior and it is the parent’s responsibility to curb it. Certainly godawful behavior like bribing your sibling for a kiss or trotting her out as one’s sexual property is well within the purview of a parent to correct. Considering that Dunham did this publicly and the blase way in which she treats these incidents, it’s worth saying that her upbringing was highly deficient.

    I will happily place responsibility on Dunham for damaging her sister’s reputation and propriety, and being so blase about her sordid childhood activities, but the blame for her continued pattern of behavior as a minor falls on her guardians.

    1. You don’t know the worst of it. Ms. Young leaves out a very important passage, probably because of space constraints or expediency, but it is important because it puts Durnam’s relationship with her sister in its proper perspective:

      I shared a bed with my sister, Grace, until I was seventeen years old. She was afraid to sleep alone and would begin asking me around 5:00 P.M. every day whether she could sleep with me. I put on a big show of saying no, taking pleasure in watching her beg and sulk, but eventually I always relented. Her sticky, muscly little body thrashed beside me every night as I read Anne Sexton, watched reruns of SNL, sometimes even as I slipped my hand into my underwear to figure some stuff out.

      1. That is totally fucked up. It’d be different if it was some kind of role playing between adults, but to take that kind of advantage of your sibling? Not to mention, it’s your SIBLING.

    2. ^very much this.

  27. […] most experts seem to agree that it’s within the range of non-abusive childhood exploration.

    Yes, well, the hyperlink added in the original text links to Slate which, I am sure, has no stake in keeping this Proggie pig in the better light.

    Taken together, these excerpts may show that Dunham was a weird kid, as she herself has said.

    And here I thought – silly me! – that RAPE is RAPE is RAPE.

    I guess not. There are certain acts you can commit that should not be considered criminal if you possess certain characteristics, like for instance being a Proggie feminist icon. You see, rape is that thing that can only be committed by patriarchal minions we call “boys” or “men”, and the whiter, the worse.

  28. Also, the most dubious part of Dunham’s story about campus rape?

    Male. Republican. College student.

    At Oberlin.

    No fucking way that happened.

    1. By Republican, she probably meant not a flaming Leftie.

      1. She probably meant he defended Lenin’s NEP policy of accomodating limited forms of capitalism while building up Communism.

        Or that his parents voted for Hubert Humphrey instead of the Peace and Freedom Party.

  29. It’s hard to feel for Lena Dunham since she’s being savaged by the same people she exploits. In fact, it’s hard for me to imagine that she had no idea that what she wrote would be controversial.

    I think it’s safe to assume she put this stuff in the book on purpose, to generate controversy and press–to sell more books.

    I feel greasy even writing this comment, wondering if it suggests I’ve been manipulated by her in some way–to help her sell books.

    Why can’t we talk about hot rods or motorcycles instead?

    1. Dunham writing this book is the literary equivalent of Miley Cyrus twerking.

      1. Easy Rider: Indian Scout Is a Perfect First Bike

        1. I read that article, and I don’t think it’s a perfect first bike.

          It’s a little powerful–I’d start with a little 250.

          It has a belt drive. One of the important things about a first bike is that you get to learn how to take care of your bike, do maintenance and all that stuff. Unless you already know you want to move up to a BMW monster next? How are you going to learn how to fit, lube, etc. a chain?

          Also, it’s pretty. You don’t want a pretty bike as your first bike. You want a beater someone else learned on. the chances of you dropping it in the first six months are very high!

          Oh, and it’s relatively expensive. You can get a Suzuki 250x (standard) for about $4200–out the door! I wouldn’t spend $12,000 on a first bike. Especially if you’re going to be moving up in class in the next 6 -12 months anyway!

          P.S. You’re going to need lots of parts–and to learn to do your own mx. How likely is there to be an Indian dealer near where you live? Even if there’s a dealer there, how likely are they to have the part you need in stock? It isn’t like that with a Honda, Suzuki, Yamaha.

          That is not the first bike I’d buy.

          1. Agree 100%. This is all I needed to read before discounting the author:

            “Damn, I look cool on this thing.”

            You might *look* cool but you’re going to *feel* like an idiot when you lay down and bang up your brand new $12,000 bike.

          2. I started on a Kawasaki Vulcan 750, which is nothing compared to today’s behemoths, but it’s enough to take it out on the highway. I still have that bike and it’s still fun to ride. And ridiculously easy to maintain.

    2. Very good point – look what she laerned from her parents: Shock Sells. Sex Sells.

      See the article OldMexican posted above. He parents are “artists” known for transgressive sexually provocative works of art. So everything she is doing she learned from them.

    3. I think it’s safe to assume she put this stuff in the book on purpose, to generate controversy and press–to sell more books.

      Possibly, but I doubt it. Given her upbringing, this is exactly the kind of broken, decadent behavior that coastal lefties consider normal. It was never curbed because her parents are hyper-sexualized individuals that don’t see it as a big deal when their teenage daughter jerks off in bed with her younger sister next to her.

      I honestly believe Dunham thought this was an amusing anecdote about her childhood, and the surprise at the backlash she’s receiving is completely sincere because she and her social class literally don’t know any better how to behave.

  30. Wait… her 1 year-old sister stuffed pebbles in her vagina “as a prank?” A preverbal toddler? The hilarity that Dunham supposedly possesses must be deeply ingrained in her family genes, almost to the point of being described as instinctual.

    So she claims to have been raped by a guy named Barry, but makes a commercial about voting declaring proudly that she’s forcing a guy named Barry upon the rest of us. Misery loves company, I suppose.

    1. It seems like the pebbles were there because she knew Lena would find them. In other words, she was used to Lena touching her there, which makes all this seem like more than “an exploration.”

      I also find “within the spectrum of things that I did” to be an interesting phrase. Cathy Young and others here seem to be assuming that Dunham’s account is 100% complete. Why assume that? Given the multiple actions she describes, it seems quite possible that she’s confessing just enough to be “edgy,” while leaving some things hinted at but unsaid.

      1. I think it’s more reasonable to assume it was all made up.

        …to sell controversy and books.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZPjdYn0gCho

        1. It seems too odd to be made up, and there is the Instagram picture of her sister dressed up like a biker slut.

      2. I don’t have a vagina, but given that I didn’t seem to have shoved pebbles up my ass I feel it’s likely I would keep the pebbles out of my girly bits.

        This whole thing sounds odd. Given the rest of the behavior described I feel that the truth would be even more disturbing.

  31. Strange then there not lots of parodies of the German movie downfall talking about Lena Dunham besides this one https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o3t6d0wjkXM

    Besides, the parodies of “My first time” made by Steven Crowder and Julie Borowski. I founded this clip where Youtube user Kristen Quintrall do her first time with Gary Johnson https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iKyIxC0j8xw It’s sad to see that clip hadn’t got much more viewers.

  32. How could this piece be written and the fact the “artwork” of Carol Dunham, father of the laughable, untalented, boring Lena, be ignored?

    Do a Google search of his work: I beg of you.

    Carol Dunham’s “artwork” is interestingly vaginal based: I dare you to look at his pieces and not come away thinking “This guy is REALLY into vaginas”.

    The entire Dunham “family” is completely whacked-out and quite entertaining.

  33. Some observations:

    1) How is nobody calling out the fact that she is claiming her one year old sister put pebbles in her as a practical joke? Assuming she had the manual dexterity to do so, one-year-olds do not craft practical jokes. My guess is that the original draft had Lena making the practical joke by stuffing them in, and the editor was like “hey, that’s totally rape… Let’s finesse this a bit.” Either way, Lena is lying.

    2) Her defenders keep noting that she was 7 years old for the pebble incident, and entirely ignore the fact the rest of it happened much later, into the teenage years.

    3) If a teenage boy were caught masturbating with an 8 year old sleeping by him, he would go to jail and have to register as a sex offender.

    4) Per the text, these are only anecdotes that characterize her behavior toward her sister. I would infer that there is much more, and that it isn’t printable.

    5) You don’t have to argue that she should be hauled away to describe her as an abusive pig. I’m not a big believer in the notion that kids over 10 somehow become massively enlightened the moment they turn 18. Some teenagers are bastards, and she was one. Not only that, but she is now in her 20s, and seems to find nothing wrong with her behavior. She sucks at being a person.

    6) Feminism is a farce.

  34. To describe Lena Dunham, and her actions, as “wild overreaction and “sexual-abuse hysteria” is demeaning and shows total ignorance towards child sexual abuse ?especially same-sex sibling abuse.

    That the writer of this article described a photo of child pornography as “happier times” is stunningly dangerous.

    Lena posted a photo of her little sister, then age-five with make-up, fake breasts, and “bad girl motorcycle chick,” with a caption of “that time I dressed my 5 year old sister as a Hell’s Angel’s sex property.”

    1. By “happier times” the author was referring to the time before public perception turned against Dunham.

  35. Lena Dunham has openly admitted, and with self-aggrandizement, that she molested her little sister (in my opinion), and she may very well still have the propensity to be vile with a child because she was not embarrassed about publishing the material.

    What took place, was not “mutual sexual play” or one child “exploring themselves.”

    When a teenager (aged thirteen to seventeen) is deliberately masturbating next to a much younger child, in the same bed as the child, it is child sexual abuse on the younger child. It is a violation of the personal and sexual space of the younger child. Given all of Lena’s own words, she very likely masturbated next to the little girl, with mental sexual gratification from the child being next to her.

    When a much older child is bribing the young child to get the child to “relax on her” and to kiss her on the lips, this is same-sex sibling sexual abuse, and it has the ability to create serious physical and emotional problems in the sibling who was abused ?including making the victim think she is a lesbian when she would not otherwise have become one.

    Lena Dunham wrote in her book as if she is still fantasizing about the child’s vagina, and about the moment she “pried it open, and the child didn’t resist.”

    Anyone who excuses Lena Dunham, like the writer of this article has, is either totally brain-dormant, or is also a degenerate-minded person.

    I speak with authority because I was sexually abused by a much older sister.

  36. Remember when the sixties collage campuses didn’t have all these hang ups about sex. We are going back to the dark ages (oops was that racist).

  37. my best friend’s sister makes $74 an hour on the internet . She has been unemployed for nine months but last month her income was $20027 just working on the internet for a few hours. why not try here…..

    ?????? http://www.payinsider.com

  38. Who is this creep and so-called feminist? When she takes on Islamic doctrine and how women are treated under Sharia law, she’ll deserve some credibility. Otherwise, just get on with your career, become an alcoholic, go to re-hab and do it all over again.

  39. Thanks, Reason, for the fact that I know who Lena Dunham is. You did me such a favor!

    /sarc

  40. If a Catholic Priest had written a book, in which he described fooling around with his little brother’s anatomy, bribing the child for kisses and to lay on him, and that he pleasured himself in bed with the child until the priest was 17 years-old, there would have been a collective hanging by journalists. But because it was a female actress-producer, who supports gay rights and planned parenthood, she wins a Literary Award (Tuesday, she was awarded for her book)..

  41. Another hypocritical feminist skank. Ho-hum.

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