Friday, March 31, 2006

By request, some thoughts on Duke...

A certain Fahren has requested a bitch’s thoughts on the alleged gang rape at Duke. This is a difficult subject…the subject of rape…and is only complicated by race, class and campus politics. But a bitch has some thoughts and my ass is never one to avoid expressing them.

This bitch believes that an individual should not be convicted in the press. That’s one of those very lofty ideals that is constantly challenged by the incredible capacity of humans to perpetrate violence on each other in ways that leave little or no doubt on the table. But a bitch holds to that ideal and will make every effort to hold to it here.

A bitch also believes that rape, much like abuse and molestation, is a crime whose perpetrators all too often bank on the social stigma associated with it as a mechanism to get away with it. This bitch is in awe of the women, men and children who have the courage to prove the criminals wrong…to challenge those social stigmas that victimize the victim and absolve the victimizer…to stand and demand justice within the law.

The individuals who where at that house on the night of the alleged gang rape are adults. They are not kids. They are not boys trying to grow into their social responsibility…they are adults. If a bitch had a dollar for every motherfucking ‘white boy’ and ‘black man’ reference that pops up in the press my ass would own Duke. Gang rape is not a youthful indiscretion or a casual accusation and shame on anyone who stumbles into that pile of bullshit.

This is an opportunity to address some shit. A bitch is deeply troubled by the lack of coverage being given to the separate incident of racial harassment that happened in association with that same house on the night of the alleged gang rape. A student called 911 and reported being shouted at and taunted with racial slurs while passing the house in question. So, mayhap there is something amiss in the house of Duke? And, rather than fall into public relations fuck up move number 2 (pontificating about what you have done right rather than point out how you will address all the fucking shit you have done wrong), Duke might want to take the opportunity to discuss it’s role in the community, the expectations of student behavior and what appears to be an outbreak of tired assed Strom Thurmondesque ‘black women sure are hot & I bet they really like it’ sexualized racism.

To expand upon this, there is the history of the sexualization of black women that southern towns know all too well. A history of rape, assault and abuse that a bitch is pretty sure Duke would rather not dig up. This incident has done that for you, Duke. It’s on the table and you can either let it rot or address it. Let it rot and the smell will stay with you for years…just ask Syracuse about that shit. Address it and you might actually achieve the social atmosphere you’ve spent the last several days trying to spin the media into thinking you already have.

And as for the suspension of the team...playing sports at college is a privilege and not a right. All collegiate teams and organizations represent institutions when they are on campus and off campus. Since scholarships are often involved, a bitch supports the notion that athletes have expectations and be held accountable to them. This bitch is still trying to understand how a Native American war game became a rich white man’s sport in the first place. At any rate, folks need to cease acting like the team is being punished…the administration giveth and the administration taketh away. Just ask some of the students on academic scholarships who have to maintain a certain grade point average.


My thoughts are with the victim and she doesn't need an indictment or a conviction for this bitch to have her back.

Lawd, a bitch is fed up with seeing Rape 101 pop up in college course guides year after year.

Maybe someone should address that with the same enthusiasm they put behind recruiting a motherfucking lacrosse team.


air_force1 said...


I read your blog every day because I think a lot of the points you make are interesting. While I am a conservative and disagree with most of the things you say, I still admire that you put your opinion out there to be discussed as not many people will. However, this is the only time that I was sort of offended reading your column. A girl was raped, which I feel next to child molestation is the worst thing possible. Turning this into a hate crime I feel is irresponsible. If a racial slur was hurled at a black person walking by, that is a shame and needs to be dealt with as a separate issue. These MEN/animals did a horrible thing. But I am pretty sure it would have happened to any female who was there, regardless of color

Tiger Lilly said...

Something is amiss with this whole situation. FIrst, I believe her. As a black woman who dated and dealt with sexual abuse at the hands of a wealthy white male, I have seen first hand the type of internalized bullshit that makes some people believe that 1. we like it anyway and 2. we are lesser women so no one is going to believe us/give a flying fuck.

What I think is going on here, especially since all of the MEN were willing to give DNA samples up front, is that the three who did this aren't on the team. I believe it happened to her just the way she said it did. But I have a feeling this is going to turn out really fucked up. And, of course, it is going to make us look like we are either liars, whores or just plain crazy...or some combination of the three. I feel like fucking somebody up right now.

EB said...

I love you more and more with each post...

Very good point with the "white boy and black man" comment. It would be interesting to find the statistics (by race) regarding juveniles being tried as adults.

Sexual assault on college campuses is a silent epidemic. A few of my colleagues and I gave out a survey in February regarding rape/assault... surprisingly (or maybe not surprisingly) there had been FIFTY assaults in the past year on this little campus of 1500 or so. Compare that with the campus police statistics of two rapes and five assaults over the past SEVEN YEARS.

People are silent about this for many reasons, and I honestly don't blame them. If it were me and I knew that a large segment of the public was going to think, "oh, boys will be boys..." there's no way in hell I'd say anything to anyone.

If this is true, I hope they're all put away for life. Gang-raping someone is sociopathic, as far as I'm concerned, and I doubt these privileged white MEN will be easily rehabilitated.

fahren said...

Duke is the Harvard of the South. They basically own Durham, nevertheless this scandal has not gotten tbe attention it should. Hopefully if enough people start blogging about it, it won't get swept under the rug. Thanks ABB.

fahren said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Ginger said...

Holy shit, ABB, you rock. Testify!

"What I think is going on here, especially since all of the MEN were willing to give DNA samples up front, is that the three who did this aren't on the team."

Tiger Lilly, they didn't volunteer the samples...the police secured a warrant to get them. A lot of the players have also retained counsel. Doesn't make them look good, if you ask me. I hear that the DA is also planning to go after the members of the team who didn't participate in the rape, but didn't stop it.

Shark-fu said...

air_force 1...

Thank you for your comment and please allow a bitch to reply.

1. When a bitch thinks something is a hate crime a bitch calls it a hate crime. This bitch did not call this gang rape a hate crime.

2. If you re-read the post, you will see that a bitch specifically dealt with the racial slurs as a separate incident.

3. Addressing the historical sexualization of black women does not in any way negate the horror of this crime...sorry, but a bitch doesn't see it that way.

Thanks for your thoughts.

Anonymous said...


you might want to check out the den of the biting beaver, she is in the very beginning stages of forming an anti rape education coalition (ok, there's not a name yet, liek i said, very beginnings) but this is an opportunity to organize and change the diaolgue of rape. it is framed and owned by men - time to reeducate our date rape is more common than stranger rape...and yet, girls don't get this, they get that they should watch out for the scary boogie man...anyhoo, you might dig it, she's got a good site. trying to get as many women to add their input as possible. she gives a link at the top of her page that takes you to a forum...i think it's roedepot...look down a couple of sections and you will see discussion area...

Anonymous said...

ABB - I think I love you. You rock. I agree with your points so fully, I have nothing to add.

This, however, is completely orthogonal to any of your points, and I hope I do not de-rail the conversation with it: does basketball have its origins in native american play? I thought it was invented by James Naismith (a white dude) based on a canadian game from his youth (Duck-on-a-rock), taught to a bunch of New England college kids (being New England in the 1890s, I presume also a bunch of white guys) so they had an indoor game to play, since the outdoors were too chilly for their little white asses. Could you be thinking of soccer?

Shark-fu said...

Lacrosse, my friend...lacrosse.

Check this out for more information about the history of lacrosse.

ms. jared said...

i appreciate your words and manner of speaking them very, very much.

thank you.

xoxo, jared

Txfeminist said...

"...the lack of coverage being given to the separate incident of racial harassment that happened in association with that same house on the night of the alleged gang rape... "

Yes, exactly.

Additionally, the defense attorneys seem to be using the separate 911 call/incident to confuse the timeline on the rape incident too.

You are so on the money when you state this incident needs to be dealt with, and separately.

This is a great post. Thanks to Ms.Jared for the link to it.

Anonymous said...

What happened at Syracuse?

Ancrene Wiseass said...

Well said as always, ABB!

However, I've got to take issue with you and air_force1: I think this was a hate crime. Why?

The rape itself was preceded by multiple verbal assaults of a racist nature: news reports explicitly state that the women left the house initially because they were subjected to racist slurs combined with implied, sexualized threats as soon as they began dancing. A neighbor heard men spilling out onto the lawn not only demanding their money back from the fleeing women, but yelling things like "thank your Grandpa for my cotton shirt!" at them.

This atmosphere of racial hatred was not only so generalized as to extend to the young woman who just happened to be passing by and made the 911 call, but also was particularly directed at and enacted upon the dancers. For at least one of them, that enactment involved beating, strangulation, and rape.

It's the toxic combination of racism, sexism, classism, and a sense of entitlement based on socioeconomic and athletic prowess that makes this situation so horrifying.

And isn't this a pretty tried-and-true form of racist hate crime in American social history, anyway? Black men get lynched; black women get sexually brutalized. This seems like a pretty classic case to me.

HeoCwaeth said...

ABB, de-lurking to say thanks for this thoughtful post. I would also agree with Ancrene Wiseass that this rape seems to have been a hate crime. Frankly, I think all rapes are hate crimes. However, this one is recognizably doubly so, for the reasons AW gives. These cretins were looking to punish this woman for being a black woman, and for thinking she had the right to leave without their permission.

BaltimoreLenore said...

"Maybe someone should address that with the same enthusiasm they put behind recruiting a motherfucking lacrosse team."


Killer B said...

Definition of a hate crinme. Right on, ABB. If you were a survivor of sexual violence, wouldn't you feel that it was a hateful crime? I am disgusted when people debate this. A tragic thing happened, and it happens every day. Understanding the causes for and reasons behind these actions are important in the struggle against the acts, but deciding that it's one kind of crime and not another doesn't do much for anyone.

Disgusted in St. Louis said...

Thank you ABB for your thoughts in this great post. Also, thanks to Fahren for the request.

I have been amazed and appalled by the amount and type of coverage Faux News Channel has devoted to this. I am NOT a FNC viewer, but skipping through channels past the "48" on the local cable, I have spotted the numerous "lawyerly debates", which always results in spontaneous nausea and turning off the TV to shut out the hate proganda.

Mary said...

Time for an update by the ABB on Duke. New info - and it ain't good.
I'm from a college town and I know all about the protected status of 'some' students.
At the Weasel News I'll totally cede the floor if you weigh in.

mrs_enid said...

Thanks for this post. I truly appreciate being able to read insightful commentary on this case specifically and the underlying issues of race, class and gender. Thank gawd that bloggers are picking up the slack and discussing what's really going on, since the mainstream media won't.

Anonymous said...

I am so-o-o glad to have found your website. Finally, a place for me--a totally pissed, black bitch. Can someone advise me as to how I can possibly process this recent bombardment of vengeful, hateful backlash that has come upon Black America lately, particularly against us women? It began with the extraordinarily agonizing tragedy of Hurricane Katrina's aftermath. I've been pissed to the umpteenth power since the inept handling and seemingly intentional demise of New Orleans during that fiasco. Now, we're forced to witness the obvious difference between how Black victims and White victims of rape are perceived and depicted. How much more evidence is needed? I don't EVER recall there being so much corroborating information in hand before a Black man is arrested. The accussation has always been sufficient if it were made by a White woman.
America's fixation on race and it's neurotic inferiority complex with everything brown, and especially black, is damn-near killing me. The venom with which we are handled is almost visible it's so blatant. Whites(in general) can't see how differently the system works for us in EVERY aspect of our lives and why we are outraged?!
I have take a pause regularly to assess what's happening and give myself time to remember the underlying intentions of the powers that be: Keep us divided and bickering over "hot button" topics so that they can accomplish the goals in their well planned scheme. You know, "dumming down" America, forcing imperialism, a global market of cheap labor, and the erasure of the line between religion and government.
Sisters PLEASE don't mistake what I'm saying. I'm not suggesting that we not take issue with the hostile environment that's been thrust upon us--Black women in particular. What I'm saying is that we must remember that there is an active attack on US ALL right now and the only way we can effectively deal with it is by banding together with others outside the Black race. It's often easy to disregard our voices and to then discount an issue as just our issue. However, the voice of the collective, crossing racial lines, is not so easy to ignore. Truth be told, we've always known that business and politics are each other's favorite sloppy bedmate. We've become too acclimated with the underside and uglier face of the American experience. White America (the majority anyway)is just now getting a mere taste of what's been common place in our communities since times untold--unfair, unreasonable, inequality usually due to lack of financial means, or America's favorite excuse--race.


Anonymous said...

What happened at Syracuse? I went there in the late 1990's don't remember any campus outrage over rape.