God almighty, it’s been two weeks since Roman Polanski was arrested, and still we’re getting articles where even the title is a whitewash:
In Polanski Case, ’70s Culture Collides With Today
Manners, mores and law enforcement have become far less forgiving of sex crimes involving minors in the 31 years since Mr. Polanski was charged with both rape and sodomy involving drugs.
How can anyone mention “drugs” in their description of the charges, then continue yammering on about her age as if that’s the only reason what Polanski was accused of is considered rape? I guess we just haven’t been clear enough:
It’s not just about her age. It’s not just about her age. It’s not just about her age.
If a potential partner is too drugged to give consent, it’s rape. If a potential partner is telling you no, it’s rape. In other words, if the victim had been a 35-year-old prostitute, the allegations would still be considered rape.
The way in which 70s culture is colliding with today is that if it hadn’t been for her age, Polanski’s victim probably would’ve been taken even less seriously. “Taking advantage” of women under the influence was not always explicitly against rape laws, and it certainly was “winked at” culturally. A woman’s claim “I said no” could be devalued in court by presenting evidence that she’d consented to sex with other men previously, thus obliterating her right to pick and choose who she consents to be with. That’s the thinking that has, well, not entirely changed since the 70s – it’s still out there, but not as prevalent or legally dominant as it used to be.