You shouldn’t have to choose between freedom of speech and the safety of women.

December 19, 2010 at 9:44 am (politics, women's issues) (, , , )

I wanted to repost this absolutely visceral and hard-to-read but important-to-read post at Tiger Beatdown by Sady Doyle about Julian Assange and the allegations against him.  I repost it in shame, because this whole Assange arrest hoopla worked on me.  I dismissed the rape charges against Assange as being a weapon in the fight to bring him down by any means necessary, but I was wrong.

Read these recaps of the whole thing for more info.

There are women behind these charges, real women who could be your friends, your moms, or your sisters, and their names were leaked by both Keith Olbermann and releaked by Michael Moore from a frankly offensive article in the Herald Sun. Moore went so far as to completely poohpooh the charges completely, saying:

What they say he did… his condom broke during consensual sex; that is not a crime in Britain. This is all a bunch of hooey, as far as I’m concerned.

They’re so busy trying to protect free speech, apparently, and pat Assange on the back for his heroism, that they’ve completely lost all empathy for the women who have experienced this trauma.

Olbermann issued a bit of an apology via Twitter, saying

Rape has touched my family, directly and savagely, and if anybody thinks I have addressed it without full sensitivity, then that assessment is the one that counts, and I apologize. But these accusations that I “revealed” an accuser’s identity by retweeting Bianca Jagger’s link, or that I ‘shamed’ an accuser by asking a question about the prosecution of a man governments are trying to bury, or that I do not ‘understand’ charges that have yet to be presented in their final form, reflect exactly the kind of rushing to judgment of which I’m accused, and merit the same kind of apology I have just given.

And then he quit Twitter, saying he’d return when the “frenzy” has died down.

I have nothing really to add on this topic, I just want it to reach as many people as possible, and instead of throwing another two cents into an already overflowing pot, I will just keep learning and reading and making sure that Sady Doyle’s words get to as many people as possible.  Please go read her post now.

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