Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Polanski Update

I posted yesterday that Facts Matter in the Polanski case. Since then, many incredible directors, authors, and others I respect have come out in support of Mr. Polanski.

I am still correct, and they are still wrong -- no matter how wonderful they are in all other ways..

I am embarrassed that they have come out in support of this man's actions, as support for an admitted child rapist is a stain on their reputations. I believe the facts will be revealed. I expect some of them may have signed the petition based on their misperception that this was a charge related to consensual sex. A thirteen year old cannot give consent -- and the court testimony reveals she said no, told Mr. Polanski to stop, and resisted in other ways.

There's much more to this, but I want to repost fact one, a fact you can check yourself and decide for yourself: Go and read the victim's testimony, starting on page 26 and count how many times the 13 YEAR OLD GIRL said "NO" and "STOP" and indicated she did not want to stay or for Polanski to continue.

I think that is rape. You may feel otherwise, but I think that's clear.

Whoopi Goldberg doesn't seem to think so, and she is wrong. As are Salman Rushdie, Milan Kundera, Mike Nichols, Claude Lanzmann and Woody Allen.

I'm aware of what seems to be judicial misconduct regarding the sentence. Please note -- not judicial misconduct while determining the facts. Mr. Polanski admitted the facts of the case.

I think Mr. Polanski should appeal because of what happened with the sentencing. Perhaps he will be given time served, perhaps he will be given a substantial sentence. He does not get to decide -- a judge or jury does.

Even if he were given no further time to serve, the facts of the case will not change: the evidence says he drugged and raped a 13-year-old girl. There were six charges against him, the outcome was a plea agreement to a lesser charge.

I am embarrassed for those speaking out for him. He committed a crime, and fled when he did not like the sentence he would receive. He did not stay and begin an appeal, he did not argue his case in the media, he fled. And now he's been apprehended. It's a matter for the courts, not for film directors and television hosts -- especially if they have not read the facts of the case.

Yes, I've seen the documentary on the matter. As always, I'm for documentaries on difficult issues. Yes, I'm aware his victim does not want him to serve more time.

But the main point here -- that smart people are signing a very stupid petition, calling for the release of a man who fled sentencing and who did not serve the time decided by the state of California for a crime he admits committing -- stands. Mr. Polanski, by his own admission, committed very serious acts. I cannot support his inability to be man enough to stand up to the charges and I cannot support this misguided petition in his name.

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