Rape

Nate Parker's Campus Rape Acquittal: For The Birth of a Nation Star, Innocent Is Still Guilty

'Believe the victims' mantra is incompatible with the principles of justice and forgiveness.

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Parker
JC Olivera/Sipa USA/Newscom

In 1999, Nate Parker—then a member of Pennsylvania State University's wrestling team—was accused of rape by a female student. Two years later, he was acquitted. Fifteen years after that, he is a celebrated up-and-coming filmmaker: he co-wrote, directed, and starred in The Birth of a Nation, a forthcoming movie about Nat Turner's 1831 slave rebellion.

Eighteen-year-old Parker was no one of consequence, but 36-year-old Parker is quickly becoming famous, and so the media has seen fit to revisit the accusation. The Daily Beast published a long story about the case, and even interviewed friends and family members of the accuser, who is given the pseudonym "Jennifer." (Her real name is known to reporters, but I will continue to call her Jennifer.)

Jennifer isn't alive to discuss what happened to her. After struggling with mental illness for years, she committed suicide in 2012. Jennifer's tragedy contributes to a striking juxtaposition: in the wake of the assault, the victim lost her mind and her life, while her attacker thrived and became famous.

Of course, Parker maintains that their sexual encounter was consensual, and notes that he was cleared of wrongdoing. He recently told Deadline:

"I stand here, a 36-year-old man, 17 years removed from one of the most painful … [he wells up at the memory] moments in my life. And I can imagine it was painful, for everyone. I was cleared of everything, of all charges. I've done a lot of living, and raised a lot of children. I've got five daughters and a lovely wife. My mom lives here with me; I brought her here. I've got four younger sisters."

"Women have been such an important part of my life. I try, every day, to be a better father to my daughters, and a better husband… The reality is, this is a serious issue, a very serious issue, and the fact that there is a dialogue going on right now around the country is paramount. It is critical. The fact we are making moves and taking action to protect women on campuses and off campuses, and educating men and persecuting them when things come up. … I want women to stand up, to speak out when they feel violated, in every degree, as I prepare to take my own daughter to college."

The details of the accusation are public knowledge. Parker had been spending time with Jennifer, a freshman, who later admitted that she was interested in him, though she did not want to have sex with him. Parker started kissing her and tried to pull her underwear down: she said no, firmly, and he stopped. She then decided to perform oral sex on him instead.

That encounter isn't in dispute. The real trouble came next evening, when Parker met Jennifer at a bar around midnight. According to The Daily Beast, Parker was late for the date, and Jennifer had already consumed several drinks. They agreed that she was too intoxicated to go back to her dormitory room, so instead, she went home with Parker.

Two other people were present for what came next: Tamerlane Kangas (a friend of Parker), and Jean Celestin (a friend and roommate, and fellow wrestler). Kangas was never charged with a crime, and thus his testimony was key. According to Kangas, both he and Celestin looked into Parker's room and saw Parker having sex with Jennifer. She wasn't moving, he said.

Celestin suggested going into the room. Kangas refused, and Celestin went without him. Celestin then joined in the sexual activity, according to Kangas.

Celestin put the matter differently. He claimed that he was already in the room when Parker and Jennifer started having sex, and that she took Celestin's arm, encouraging him to participate.

Parker and Jennifer had sex again the following morning. Afterward, she was deeply confused about what had happened the night before. She scarcely remembered any of it, and claimed to have been black-out drunk. She could picture another man having sex with her—Celestin—but wasn't sure who he was. And Parker wouldn't tell. Jennifer eventually tricked him into divulging Celestin's name by faking a pregnancy scare. She went to the police and accused them both of raping her.

The case hinged on whether Jennifer had been too intoxicated to consent to sex. Parker said she remained conscious and gave no indication that she didn't understand what was happening. "You were all for it," Parker told Jennifer, during a subsequent telephone conversation.

Parker was acquitted. Celestin was not. He was sentenced to six months in prison. He later sought a retrial, and the case against him was dismissed. The guilty verdict was expunged from his record. It's unknown how much time he actually served, according to The Daily Beast.

Celestin remains friends with Parker, and is listed as a co-writer of The Birth of a Nation.

This creates some difficulties for liberal feminists who, because of intersectionality, really want to support a black filmmaker, particularly when they one has created an important movie about the mistreatment of black people throughout American history.

"Is it possible to root for a talented black filmmaker amid contentious details about his past with women?" wondered Jezebel's Clover Hope. "Certainly, it's left us perplexed."

In a sense, the Parker situation is similar to the recently-resurfaced accusations made by Juanita Broaddrick against Bill Clinton, who she claims raped her 30 years ago. Many left-leaning feminists believe that all sexual assault victims deserve to be believed, no matter what. Hillary Clinton herself has said this. But in the Broaddrick case, this thinking, taken to its logical conclusion, is damaging to Hillary's presidential aspirations: Broaddrick has accused Mrs. Clinton of covering up her husband's misdeeds and trying to keep Broaddrick quiet.

"Believing the victim" is similarly uncomfortable in the Parker situation. Can we admire the art while disliking the artist? Does Parker deserve forgiveness for something that happened so long ago? Should his dirty laundry even be re-aired at all, given that he was acquitted by a jury? Should Jennifer's subsequent suicide undermine Parker's accolades? Should Celestin's involvement in the film be a matter of public concern?

These are not easy questions. In fact, they are even harder to answer than they seem. That's because there's another dimension to this story: key to Parker's defense was his lawyer's contention that racism was motivating the police's handling of the case. Parker and Celestin are black men—Jennifer was a white woman.

The defense also argued that the police essentially gave Kangas no choice but to throw his friends under the bus. An officer threatened to arrest him unless he was more forthcoming about the night in question.

Some lawyers who follow sexual misconduct disputes in higher education suspect that black men are overrepresented among the accused. This shouldn't really come as a surprise. Men of color are disproportionately likely to be thrown in jail for various crimes; the criminal justice system struggles to grant justice to black people; because of systemic racism, police officers, prosecutors, judges, and jury members might be more likely to look at a black man and automatically presume he is guilty.

There's actually something of a tension here among progressives who simultaneously advocate for criminal justice reform in the abstract—particularly when it comes to non-violent drug offenders—while stridently condemning men (often black men) accused of rape to suffer lengthy prison sentences, ruinous financial consequences like expulsion from college, and endless public shaming—even if the accused was ultimately acquitted. Freddie de Boer explodes this tension in a terrific piece:

That leaves us with a question: if an acquittal is insufficient to prove Parker's innocence, what would such proof look like? Is exoneration even possible? And what do we do with people who are accused of crimes like sexual assault and domestic violence when their cases never go to trial? The current progressive impulse seems to be to simply treat them as guilty regardless, and permanently. Yet this strikes me as unambiguously contrary to the spirit and philosophy that contribute to our drive for criminal justice reform. How can we make such reform possible if we condemn huge groups of people to the status of guilty despite never being found guilty of any crime? And if such crimes carry existential and disqualifying moral judgment for life even for those only accused, how can we bring those imprisoned and released back into normal adult life?

The reality of racism makes this even more complex. As it is in all aspects of the criminal justice system, race is implicated in Parker's story. As they are for almost all crimes, black men are arrested, tried, convicted, and incarcerated for sex crimes out of proportion with their numbers in our country. We know, for a fact, that our criminal justice system casts black men with a level of suspicion that it inflicts on no other group. The presumption of guilt in cases of sexual assault cannot fail to be influenced by the same powerful racial inequalities that afflict our system as a whole. And we have reason to believe this is especially true in sex crimes.

De Boer's piece is worth reading in full. He argues persuasively that liberals who are serious about criminal justice reform have to start admitting to themselves that dismantling the prison-industrial complex will by necessity involve forgiving and releasing a lot of people who committed violent crimes of a sexual nature. How will we be able to show compassion for them if we aren't even capable of forgiving someone like Parker—who might have been innocent, and indeed, was declared so by a jury—decades after his alleged crime took place?

I can understand, of course, why Jennifer's family is unable to forgive Parker. Her sister Sharon choked back tears as she told The Daily Beast, "He's probably going to get an Academy Award. It eats me up."

At the same time, it doesn't strike me as fair to blame Parker or Celestin for Jennifer's death. The article notes that Jennifer suffered from bouts of depression even before the alleged rape took place. Before her death, she was confined to a mental institution. She alternately believed she was Satan, or Jesus Christ. She accused her sister of kidnapping her and was clearly suffering from mental illness.

It's perfectly possible that Jennifer's ordeal with Parker and Celestin exacerbated her issues. But it's also possible she would have taken her life 11 years later anyway—that her illness would have progressed regardless.

There isn't anything wrong with journalists looking into these matters again. Perhaps there's even more to be learned about what happened that night in 1999. But there's a very good chance the public will never know more about Jennifer's alleged rape than they do now. Her story had a very sad ending, but it doesn't seem quite right to me that Parker's much happier ending is ill-deserved, or something to lament.

If we must always "believe the victims," then sure, Parker is a rapist who got away with a terrible crime and is now living the good life, even has his victims lies dead and buried. But then there would be no need for due process at all: we would simply imprison everyone who was accused. This would not be a just and civil society, it would be the court of the Queen of Hearts. We recognize that this kind of thing would be immoral and impractical—that everyone deserves a chance to prove their innocence, that some of these people are indeed innocent, and that those who persuade a jury of their innocence are, well, innocent.

NEXT: Jill Stein CNN Town Hall, Turkey Frees Prisoners to Make Room for Alleged Coup Plotters, UFO Crosses Moon: P.M. Links

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  1. “How will we be able to show compassion for them if we aren’t even capable of forgiving someone like Parker?who might have been innocent, and indeed, was declared so by a jury?decades after his alleged crime took place?”

    What, exactly, does Parker have to be forgiven for?

    1. uhhhh uhhhh patriarchy????

      / sjw

      1. Not made up enough!

        1. As I’ve observed before, being a SJW must be the worst possible existence, as you have to always be looking for the worst in everything. Look at that list of -isms!

        2. Kyriarchy. I finally found a social system I can get behind. Thanks.

    2. His white privilege that got him acquitted.

    3. Obviously Mr. Suave means he needs to be forgiven for his fornication in college.

      /sarc

    4. Being found “not guilty” does not mean you are necessarily innocent, it means either you are innocent or there was not enough evidence to convict you.

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  2. I’m glad you mentioned Clinton because not only did Clinton get a pass, the feminist played blame the victim and with Paula Jones it was what’s a little rape of trailer trash by an important man like Bill. Fuck them.

    1. I still remember how pissed I was by the “trailer park trash” meme. I had family who were living in trailers at the time, and I still resent the sneering assumption by cocktail party leftists that such people are trash and liars.

      1. ‘hood thug’ = racist, trailer trash = punching up. We all know how much power you trailer dwellers exert and what elaborate systems of oppression you’ve constructed to keep down those of us who live in structures firmly attached to the ground.

  3. This creates some difficulties for liberal feminists who, because of intersectionality, really want to support black filmmaker

    These words, put together in a sentence. We deserve whatever we get as a country.

    1. “Is it possible to root for a talented black filmmaker amid contentious details about his past with women?” wondered Jezebel’s Clover Hope. “Certainly, it’s left us perplexed.”

      Jesus Christ. Do you think he did it? If so, why would you root for him? If he wasn’t a “talented black filmmaker” but a bus driver, would you feel differently? What the fuck is happening here?

      1. Seriously! Isn’t whether he’s guilty or not the only thing that matters? What does his race/occupation/talent at said occupation or anything else have to do with it?

  4. This guy escaped charges, but his buddy who he is still so close to that he actually co-wrote the film with him did not escape charges. So there was evidence of a crime that put a guy in jail. And nobody denies that they were both there. So exactly how one person in that situation is a rapist and the other is not, is beyond me. He also allegedly intimidated the girl, which lead to the dropping of the charges.

    This is not the same as a case where there is no evidence and a kid’s life is ruined.

    1. I think Celestin was convicted of misdemeanor assualt and battery.

    2. “So there was evidence of a crime that put a guy in jail. And nobody denies that they were both there. So exactly how one person in that situation is a rapist and the other is not, is beyond me.”

      Durr, because she consented to sex with Parker but not Celestin.

      Not saying that is what happened, just that your incredulous rejection is baseless. There are a myriad of ways in which a 3 party sexual encounter could occur that would result in a rape charge against only one of the parties while the other remained innocent.

      1. My incredulous reaction to the court case is not baseless. Because that’s not what happened. She gave consent to neither of them, yet only one went to jail.

        1. Wow, you were there in that room with them? Shit, you probably should have come forward 17 years ago to testify.

          1. I believe in evidence, which sent one guy to jail.

            This idiotic conflation with cases where there is no evidence of rape does a disservice to the men who get accused of crimes without evidence.

            1. The once-evidence that sent one guy to jail, was later not-evidence. “He later sought a retrial, and the case against him was dismissed. The guilty verdict was expunged from his record.”

              1. Because the victim refused to testify again.

                He did not win an appeal by disproving the rape.

                1. He did not win an appeal by disproving the rape.

                  He won based on lack of evidence.

                2. And might not the “victim” have refused to testify because she a) had decided rape did not take place and b) lacked the courage to say so in court?

                  The whole thing is a mess. Most criminal cases are a mess. We suffer from the effect of several generations of (call it) “Dragnet” syndrome, the belief that criminal cases can be catagorically solved beyond a shadow of a doubt in one hour, less commercials.

                3. It’s “Innocent until proven guilty”, not the other way around. The defendant doesn’t “prove” anything.

            2. JayU|8.17.16 @ 6:00PM| block | mute | #

              I believe in evidence, which sent one guy to jail.

              (looks at article)

              He later sought a retrial, and the case against him was dismissed

              Were you dropped on your head as a baby?

              1. Because the victim refused to re-testify.

                1. So, lack of evidence is lack of evidence. The _accuser_ – not the victim – refused to re-testify.

                  1. The victim refused to re-testify evidence that had already lead to a conviction.

                    Maybe in your world of every rape is a fake that somehow means it didn’t happen. But in my world, you know, the real one, the only fact that changed was whether or not the evidence was presented, not whether or not it existed.

                    By the way, the victim was intimidated and had her home broken into.

                    1. So there was evidence of her being intimidated? Her testimony is evidence and his is not? Just admit this shit is messy and we’ll never know. Or admit you *think* he’s guilty and move on.

                    2. Maybe in your world of every rape is a fake

                      Now you’re just flailing.

                    3. The victim refused to re-testify evidence that had already lead to a conviction.

                      Maybe in your world of every rape is a fake that somehow means it didn’t happen. But in my world, you know, the real one, the only fact that changed was whether or not the evidence was presented, not whether or not it existed.

                      In the legal world, which apparently isn’t your world, each trial is held in a vacuum, and evidence that isn’t presented ISN’T EVIDENCE.

                    4. “in your world of every rape is a fake” ” the only fact that changed was whether or not the evidence was presented”

                      oh my, the sophomoric apologetics in the jayu world of feelings

                2. the victim

                  Assuming facts not in evidence?

                3. I’m taking that as a “yes”

                  maybe you should lie down for a while until this feeling of “Being right about something” passes.

            3. I believe in evidence, which sent one guy to jail.

              And acquitted another.

              So? what now?

              1. And OJ Simpson didn’t kill Nicole. We know this for a fact because he would have been found guilty if he had.

        2. Really? You know this for a fact how?

          See I’m not saying she did and I am not saying she didn’t because honestly I have never heard of any of these people before this article came out. I have absolutely no opinion on whether a rape actually occurred in this case.

          Now, maybe you do, maybe you know more of the facts involved than me but to this point your whole argument is that “They both had sex with her and the other guy was convicted of rape and even though he was later acquitted on appeal that proves they both comitted rape”, you are not providing any facts or any evidence, merely asserting that it must be true and I am telling you that your theory is a non sequitor, it is entirely possible that NEITHER guy ever comitted rape, she consented to having sex with both of them and his original conviction was in fact in error or it is possible that only one of the two of them was guilty of acts which amounted to rape (for example, she was still conscious and consented to sex with Parker but had lost consciousness before Celestin joined in meaning he did not have consent.

          So since you claim to know the facts please elucidate us and provide some evidence that you know what you are talking about.

          1. He was convicted based on the victim’s testimony. He was released when she refused to re-testify during the appeal. Her apartment was broken into and she reported being intimidated to the police in between all those things happening.

            1. Because false convictions never ever happen in rapes, right?

              After your mom dropped you on your head as a baby, did she accidentally kick you down the stairs too?

              1. Because false convictions happen is EXACTLY why I’m pointing out why THIS IS NOT THE SAME THING.

                Fucking Christ you idiots…

                1. Um, he was never convicted OF RAPE.

                  And frankly, you seem to be pointing it out because you swallowed one person’s story uncritically.

  5. “Is it possible to root for a talented black filmmaker amid contentious details about his past with women?” wondered Jezebel’s Clover Hope. “Certainly, it’s left us perplexed.”

    The racist proggy scum is confused. Good. I have no sympathy for them.

    1. Not to stereotype but, Is it just me or does it seem like someone named Clover Hope would completely understand a blackout drunk 3-way but be perplexed by complex legal and social issues?

    2. “Judge not by the plausibility of his guilt, but by the color of his skin” – MLK, Jr.

  6. “This guy escaped charges, but his buddy who he is still so close to that he actually co-wrote the film with him did not escape charges.”

    This man was found not guilty in a court of law, but he “escaped charges.”

    So “escaped charges” = guilty?

    He has a close friend who was convicted of a crime, so guilt-by-association?

    By your logic, everyone who has ever been charged with a crime, along with everybody who’s friends with somebody who’s been convicted should be locked up.

    This is utter nonsense.

    1. You’re such a genius that you don’t know what a reply button is.

      But fuck it, let’s continue anyway.

      Nobody denies that both Parker and Celestin had sex with her during the incident. As in, they were both having sex with her at the same time. One of them went to jail for rape. The other didn’t. As in, there was evidence of a rape that sent a guy to jail and the other guy in question was there having sex with the raped girl at the exact same time.

      I’d say he’s pretty fucking lucky he didn’t also go to jail. Seeing how he was involved in what was legally deemed a rape.

      1. What was ‘legally deemed a rape’ was ‘legally turned over, redacted and records expunged’.

        Why is the verdict at one point in the line the only point we choose to believe? There were perfectly “legal” events that happened after that which resulted in the verdict being overturned.

        1. Because the victim was intimidated and chose not to testify at the appeal hearing. Hence the “lack of evidence.”

          1. And you know the victim was “intimidated” how? You saw this or were party to this? You have proof this happened? Maybe the victim was making it up the first time because she was actually crazy, but didn’t want to go through the public humiliation of admitting it and instead simply chose not to testify? That’s actually more plausible than your unsubstantiated allegation of witness intimidation.

          2. Because the victim was intimidated and chose not to testify at the appeal hearing.

            On what are you basing this assertion?

            1. Again – “assuming facts not in evidence”.

              This guy is too dumb to recognize when he doesn’t have a point.

              1. The victim was actually intimidated, but I know this because I’ve looked at the the transcripts of phone calls they exchanged and she recorded. But hey, he was found “Not Guilty”, so that’s all the Reason folks care about. Because as we all know, OJ Simpson didn’t kill Nicole. The knife did it on it’s own.

          3. Earlier it was said that he was asking for retrial, and when she didn’t want to testify again they dropped the charges. Now you are saying she wouldn’t testify at the appeal hearing.

            I do not know about this case, but have layman’s knowledge of the process. An appeal is to show an error in the original trial, that either the prosecution or judge did something they were not allowed to do, and that led to the conviction. If a retrial was granted, then an appeals court found that indeed it was a fraudulent trial. As an appeal is about the process of the trial, I am doubtful she would testify at an appeal hearing.

        2. Because the events that happened afterwards included witness intimidation (proved by phone call transcripts), and her refusing to testify again. Had she done so, he probably would have been sent right back to the pokey. But hey, we all know that acquittal means we need to never suspect the courts got it wrong. That’s why so many people want Casey Anthony to babysit their kids these days.

          1. This is definitely at odds to the Daily Beast story. It references recorded phone calls in the original trial, but not in in the lead up to the new trial (which never happened), and nothing I found about intimidation in regards to testifying at the new trial. Can you link to the transcripts or to any article that references them?

            From the article:
            After hiring a new attorney, Celestin claimed his initial representation bungled the case by failing to object to “hearsay statements” and the illegally-recorded phone calls. He was granted a second trial. It would never happen, despite Jennifer’s determination to testify again. In 2006, a judge ruled previous testimony could not be used in the new trial. Prosecutors ultimately declined to retry the case, saying witnesses were scattered around the world, the Centre Daily Times reported in 2006. “We were really left with a big hole in our case,” then-assistant prosecutor Lance Marshall told the newspaper.

  7. These rape stories are awfully long. Are there pictures or a movie?

    1. I’m sure there are a few movies.

  8. Not guilty doesn’t mean innocent.

  9. that everyone deserves a chance to prove their innocence,

    Had any good fruit sushi lately? You’re eating some right now aren’t you, Robby?

    1. prove their innocence,

      He’s on a roll today.

      1. He’s on a roll today.

        What you did there.

        I see it.

  10. It’s OJ Simpson all over again.

  11. Her real name is known to reporters, but I will continue to call her Jennifer

    SAY HER NAME!

    Why is Robbie disrespecting this poor dead woman by refusing to use her real name? Victim-shaming is the likeliest explanation.

      1. So…SIV = would? That doesn’t seem right

  12. This is what you get when your Criminal “Justice” system is solely focused on punishment

  13. Always believe the accuser? Harper Lee would never have achieved fame and fortune if that was the meme back in the day.

  14. Life is complicated and messy. People are fucked up.

  15. The fact we are making moves and taking action to protect women on campuses and off campuses, and educating men and persecuting them when things come up.

    Did he actually say persecuting? Or prosecuting?

  16. Celestin remains friends with Parker, and is listed as a co-writer of The Birth of a Nation.

    I thought someone already wrote The Birth of a Nation.

  17. tl;dr

    why is the black guy doing a remake of D.W. Griffith?

    1. He wants to make Gus and Silas Lynch the heroes.

      1. I confess: i never saw the O.G. pic. Tho i heard you can sync it up to Dark Side of the Moon and its really trippy.

        1. It’s about a freedman Union officer named Gus raping a southern white girl who then commits suicide.

          Fo’ reals

    2. If it was actually a remake it would make for greater irony. Still, not bad.

  18. that everyone deserves a chance to prove their innocence, that some of these people are indeed innocent, and that those who persuade a jury of their innocence are, well, innocent.

    Conflate much?

  19. “Jennifer’s tragedy contributes to a striking juxtaposition: in the wake of the assault, the victim lost her mind and her life, while her attacker thrived and became famous.”

    That’s assuming your conclusion. Why not assume that her mental illness was already there, and may have played a role in the accusation?

    “Many left-leaning feminists believe that all sexual assault victims deserve to be believed, no matter what.”

    Again that’s biased. Yes, all victims deserve to be believed; the question is how many accusers are really victims! Police are quite right to disregard most accusations of both rape and DV as being non-credible. They are non-credible.

    You should reveal this woman’s name, and even if she were alive you should still reveal it. She is much more likely to be guilty than he is.

    1. You thought the same thing I did. The fact that she struggled with mental illness and eventually killed herself due to it makes her less credible not more.

    2. I also noted this:

      “Jennifer’s tragedy contributes to a striking juxtaposition: in the wake of the assault, the victim lost her mind and her life, while her attacker thrived and became famous.”

      If I’m ever acquitted of some type of assault, and subsequently referred to as “attacker”, while my accuser is referred to as “victim”, somebody’s getting sued.

  20. Is this just another movie that white people who didn’t watch it will love? It’s not even a remake of the original.

    1. Not a remake? Laaaame.

    2. Will there be an edgy race-flipped remake of Django in 50 years or will Cthulhu have put us out of our misery by that point?

      1. Django isn’t that memorable. Better start chanting.

  21. Jennifer’s tragedy contributes to a striking juxtaposition: in the wake of the assault, the victim lost her mind and her life, while her attacker thrived and became famous.

    So we’re just going to ignore the word “acquitted”, are we?

    1. Forget it Jake, its Robbytown.

  22. I saw this guy interviewed about this project. Was not aware of the rape accusations. He seemed pretty creative.

  23. “Many left-leaning feminists believe that all sexual assault victims deserve to be believed, no matter what. Hillary Clinton herself has said this.”

    Didn’t she remove that from her site?

    1. Doesn’t mean she didn’t say it (by proxy of having it on her platform).

      Means she’s trying to repudiate it – or, more aptly, since it was just removed, “get people to forget she said it”.

      An actual repudiation would require a statement to the contrary, not silent removal.

  24. Freddie de Boer explodes this tension in a terrific piece:

    He argues persuasively that liberals who are serious about criminal justice reform have to start admitting to themselves that dismantling the prison-industrial complex will by necessity involve forgiving and releasing a lot of people who committed violent crimes of a sexual nature.

    Good luck with your commie-cosmofag alliance.

    might have been innocent, and indeed, was declared so by a jury

    good god

    1. Men of color are disproportionately likely to be thrown in jail for various crimes; the criminal justice system struggles to grant justice to black people; because of systemic racism, police officers, prosecutors, judges, and jury members might be more likely to look at a black man and automatically presume he is guilty.

      It’s amazing. You can just glance randomly anywhere in the article and there’s extreme retardation.

      1. “Systemic racism” or “knowing the odds”?

        1. or?

        2. Pretty sure it’s just knowing the odds at this point. 7% of the population commits 52% of the murders. I’d say those odds speak for themselves.

          1. Let’s embrace the healing power of “and”, as Glenn Reynolds says.

            It can be – and seems to actually be – true both that black men are to some extent the victim of “systemic racism”, and that a subset of them really do commit a disproportionate amount of a variety of crimes (typically also targeting other … young black men).

            The big problem is when you conflate the two, because then you can’t ever actually help black communities stop all this criminality*.

            (* Even if we, as we should, limit that to crimes of violence and property, rather than ridiculous drug and tax evasion crimes.)

    2. He should have said “he was not proven guilty and may indeed be innocent”, but that would imply Robbie thinks he did it, so there’s no way to win here.

  25. “Believing the victim”

    This assumes we know in advance that the woman is the victim. Not the man who may have been falsely accused of rape.

  26. At this date, we don’t know if the accuser – who doesn’t seem to have the best history of accurately recounting reality – was telling the truth, so why not just admit we don’t know and quit dragging these guys through the mud?

    1. At the same time, the findings of a court of criminal justice are binding on the government in its exercise of power, not binding on the people in their exercise of freedom. Whatever the FBI says, none of us has to treat Hillary Clinton as innocent when we head into the voting booth, nor do we have put money into a person’s pocket if we think they are a despicable person.

      1. OK, but here we have a witness with some credibility problems. Maybe there is corroborating evidence, but she sounds like she had a tendency to be delusional.

        She could still have been telling the truth, of course.

        1. If the guy may or may not have had sex with a blind-drunk girl he’d been dating, back when he was 18, that is the sort of thing which at 36 he’s generally allowed to move on about.

          1. I mean, I’m fairly sure that if he’d copped a plea he’d have been out of prison and “rehabilitated” by now.

            1. Maybe not employed, I’ll grant that.

      2. … whatever the FBI says isn’t even binding on (the rest of) the government. A U.S. Attorney could still bring charges against her. Not that AG Lynch would allow such a thing, mind you.

        Comey’s weasel-tastic statement basically says “we are not going to recommend prosecution of Hillary Clinton because she’s Hillary goddamn Clinton”.

        Totally different ballpark from “acquitted by a jury of his peers” or “overturned on appeal and expunged”.

  27. Off topic of the rape, does anyone have the sinking feeling that the new Birth of a Nation will have the same beneficial social impact that the first one did? And for that matter, that the Nat Turner rebellion had?

    1. Only if they remake it with female comedians

  28. What a bunch of proggie doublespeakbullshit.

    So some dude is signaling extra hard that he is one of the goodthink crowd pushing the narrative but in the past he was the poster boy for rape culture so we just don’t know what to think.

    You stupid motherfuckers deserve yourselves.

    1. Pretty much this. I can’t speak to his guilt or innocence. But it’s pretty fucking funny to watch these people eat their own.

  29. Ah, so if Nate Parker was white man making films about fighting robots, then we don’t have to feel conflicted about things like unproven accusations of rape. Because he’s not making films about inequality and such.

    Bill Cosby was a goofy sounding black dad and made money off jello pudding pops. No civil rights icon is he, so the feminists can “believe” his accusers with an unburdened mind.

    Of course, Cosby was probably guilty, but if he wasn’t, boy would he have been screwed.

    1. “fighting robots?” So you’re going to just ignore the clear anti-gay stereotypes in the portrayal of C-3PO? That’s Not OK.

  30. Nobody knows what happened in this case except perhaps Parker and Celestin. Maybe they don’t even know since they may have been intoxicated too. The author, Soave, libels the accused by labeling them “attackers” and the accuser a “victim” without qualifiers early in the story.

    This isn’t complicated. It’s obvious there was no concrete evidence to charge anybody in this case let alone convict yet they were charged anyway. That happens often, regardless of race, due to an increasingly misandrist justice system. This is an injustice. Unfortunately, we have to accept that many sexual assaults can never be proven and stop persecuting men for he said she said cases. In this case, we have a woman’s word and the vague tainted testimony of another individual against that of two others. That’s all. In addition, the woman was later found to be floridly psychotic and delusional, even falsely accusing her sister. Bringing charges against these men with the absence of evidence is tantamount to rape itself, a horrid injustice.

    1. “It’s obvious there was no concrete evidence to charge anybody in this case let alone convict yet they were charged anyway.”

      Wrong. One of them was convicted, and won his appeal only because the witness was intimidated into not testifying. Read the transcripts of their phone calls that she recorded in the months following the incident, and it’s pretty clear that she either consented to Parker but not Celestin, or that she didn’t consent at all and was taken advantage of.

      But hey, we all know that OJ Simpson didn’t kill Nicole. Why, he was found Not Guilty and everything!

      1. so…. Guilty until proven innocent for all accused rapists?

        You’re throwing in additional evidence not presented in the article. The evidence in the article is completely inadequate for charges let alone a conviction. In fact, the accuser’s later psychosis strongly suggests it was a false accusation. It is highly probable that she had a degree of psychosis at the time of the alleged assault. As for the additional “evidence,” short of an elaborate confession, I doubt it would be sufficient for a conviction. Have you ever fucking heard of the term “beyond a reasonable doubt?”

        You seem too anxious to destroy a lot of innocent lives as long as one or two real rapists are punished. That’s fucking evil.

        As for the OJ case, there was a fucking mountain of concrete evidence of an actual crime and his guilt. There is zero of either in this case. ZERO.

  31. in the wake of the assault, the victim lost her mind and her life, while her attacker thrived and became famous.

    Just a goddamned minute there, Robby. He was acquitted. Calling him “her attacker” is libel.

    -jcr

    1. Is he famous enough to get the NYT v. Sullivan special treatment yet?

  32. “Educating men and PERSECUTING them when things come up.”

    The mask slips?

  33. ” “Believing the victim” is similarly uncomfortable in the Parker situation. Can we admire the art while disliking the artist? Does Parker deserve forgiveness for something that happened so long ago? Should his dirty laundry even be re-aired at all, given that he was acquitted by a jury? Should Jennifer’s subsequent suicide undermine Parker’s accolades? Should Celestin’s involvement in the film be a matter of public concern?

    These are not easy questions.”

    Let me give you a hand then. In order:
    Yes
    Nothing warranting forgiveness happened according to a jury.
    No
    No
    And no.

  34. Don’t stick it in crazy.

  35. Although I tend to be skeptical of cries of “racism” I suspect that being a black man accused of raping a white woman is probably a pretty bad place to be. But this guy beats the odds and gets acquitted, and what do the proggies say? “Ah, acquitted schmacquitted! You can’t prove he didn’t rape her! So obviously he did!”

    1. Well, let’s be fair to them.

      They do the same thing to white men who are acquitted of rape charges, too.

      1. True, but they’re not particularly concerned with how the system treats white men. They are–or pretend to be–concerned with how the system treats black men.

  36. if an acquittal is insufficient to prove Parker’s innocence…

    …Parker?who might have been innocent, and indeed, was declared so by a jury…

    …everyone deserves a chance to prove their innocence, that some of these people are indeed innocent, and that those who persuade a jury of their innocence are, well, innocent….

    Oh, FFS Frushi… A jury doesn’t find a defendant “innocent” they find them “not guilty.” Huge difference. All an acquittal means is that the prosecutor didn’t prove their guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, that’s it. Maybe Parker and Celestin really are innocent and the sexual encounter went down exactly as they describe it, or maybe they went family style on a blacked out/ passed out drunk chick knowing full well she wasn’t able to consent to anything. The prosecutor simply wasn’t able to prove it beyond a reasonable doubt to a jury. This is kind of pet peeve of mine lately.

    The problem is that a lot of the feminist SJW left would like to get rid of the presumption of innocence for rape cases (whether they openly admit it or not). Like it or not the presumption of innocence means that some guilty people will go free, but that’s far better than the alternative that the SJW’s want, which would lead to a lot of innocent men going to prison for rapes they didn’t commit.

  37. there is a difference here between Parker and Hillary. Parker has moved on and not relying on his past while Hillary is always trying to make the case that she has always been for “all women” however history proves otherwise. Parker should be allowed to proceed with his life goals while Hillary should be shunned by all.

  38. Watching the left acknowledge their own mental gymnastics at least once is pretty entertaining. But it’s also a reminder that the feminist crowd goes after men of color a whole lot without a second thought, as if to assert their moral high ground to gain more oppression points
    .
    Look at the attacks on Kanye West on Taylor Swift’s behalf, Amy Schumer’s joke about Mexican rapists (before Trump!), that viral “catcalling” video a while back where the girl deliberately walks through a minority neighborhood, or at the race of a lot of the guys who are being accused of rape on college campuses. It’s easy to sell someone on that “colored guy assaults white girl” narrative that scared white folks for centuries, like at Harvard, where The Hunting Ground accused that guy all over after he was acquitted (he was black and she was white, right? Not 100% sure I remember that one right, but there’s the Middle Eastern guy in Canada recently too)
    .
    Or remember that article Robby had a while back where minority feminists had a safe space on Facebook where they were mostly just safe to stereotype guys of every race. Or the accusations of racism/sexism thrown back and forth between Hillary and Obama supporters in 2008
    .
    Before a prog verbally assaults me I’m only half white

    1. Alright the accuser at Harvard was also black. To be fair I didn’t watch a second of that propaganda

  39. Christopher . if you, thought Maria `s postlng is astonishing… on thursday I got a gorgeous Honda NSX from having made $8819 this-past/5 weeks and-more than, $10 thousand this past munth . without a doubt it is the nicest work Ive had . I started this 8-months ago and pretty much immediately startad bringin home at least $78.
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  40. Based on the transcripts of phone calls made between the accuser and the defendants, it’s pretty clear that either they both raped her, or she consented to Parker (in her drunken state), but did not want Celestin to participate.

    But hey, we KNOW OJ Simpson didn’t kill Nicole (the knife did), so acquittal is always the last word. Meanwhile, some of you Reason folks ought to be charitable and hire Casey Anthony to babysit your kids if you go see this movie. Because we also KNOW she never did anything wrong.

  41. My mothers neighbour is working part time and averaging $9000 a month. I’m a single mum and just got my first paycheck for $6546! I still can’t believe it. I tried it out cause I got really desperate and now I couldn’t be happier. Heres what I do,

    ———– http://www.Max43.com

  42. “…everyone deserves a chance to prove their innocence…” NO, everyone is innocent until proven guilty. Remember?

  43. My mothers neighbour is working part time and averaging $9000 a month. I’m a single mum and just got my first paycheck for $6546! I still can’t believe it. I tried it out cause I got really desperate and now I couldn’t be happier. Heres what I do,

    ?????? http://www.Max43.com

  44. DeBoer’s piece is crap. You quote him as saying, “As they are for almost all crimes, black men are arrested, tried, convicted, and incarcerated for sex crimes out of proportion with their numbers in our country. We know, for a fact, that our criminal justice system casts black men with a level of suspicion that it inflicts on no other group. The presumption of guilt in cases of sexual assault cannot fail to be influenced by the same powerful racial inequalities that afflict our system as a whole. And we have reason to believe this is especially true in sex crimes.”

    What this assumes, implies and tacitly inculcates in readers is the assumption that black Americans AREN’T COMMITTING THESE CRIMES. But overwhelmingly– and, yes, sadly– the evidence is that they are. Black people are much more likely to live around other black people and in Democratic-controlled jurisdictions. If “the system” were actually racist as a whole, the black people who serve as witnesses, cops, prosecutors, judges, and, particularly, jury members, could, one would think, easily spike the justice system’s motion in any given case if they saw racism. Witnesses could (and sometimes do) “stop snitchin'”. Cops and prosecutors could use discretion and not move things forward. Judges can dismiss cases on points of law or evidence. Juries can decide they don’t find this or that testimony credible, or even flat-out nullify the application of law. (continued)

  45. (continued) And what happens? The victims of black criminals are overwhelmingly black too, and so black criminals are being convicted with the enthusiastic cooperation of other black people. And black immigrants from Africa and the Caribbean are much more likely to hold steady jobs, get married, value education, and prosper, and are much less likely to be convicted of crimes– despite having the same color or even darker skin, and despite dealing with exactly the same white people and the same justice system. The Left is not “entitled to their own facts” that contradict these ones.

    DeBoer is of a piece with that flake Coates. Both are intellectual mediocrities and peddlers of the most shopworn guiltmongering tropes catering to the autoflagellistic tendencies of white liberals. Opposing other leftist interest groups or not, they shouldn’t be cited in these pages with anything but contempt.

  46. I have to ask, is this Parker’s film about Nat Turner going to portray as a tragic hero? Or the racist child-murdering piece of shit that he, like, actual was? Or does ‘punching up’ mean you get carte blanche to set infants on fire as part of your quest for collective revenge?

    I find the hero worship of Nat Turner these days a little unsettling. Even calling a ‘rebellion’ is kind of absurd. It was a massacre. We don’t talk of Cho Sung Hoi’s Rebellion, do we?

    1. Richard Pryor had a great bit about this, joking about the brutal regime of slavery —

      “White folks wouldn’t take this shit for a minute, less all 200 years. Give motherfuckers a week and that’d be it — you motherfuckers would be in the streets with guns killing babies.”

      Turner did what any self-respecting individual stripped of human and legal rights in a violent, oppressive regime would do. He formed an army and took out his oppressors. No outsourcing required.

      😉

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