QotD: “We are going to have to learn how to make room for imperfect victims”

When it comes to sexual assault, victims are often deemed to be not perfect enough: their sexual history too louche, their behaviour afterwards too wild. Yet predators pick off the vulnerable and survivors sometimes process trauma in deeply damaged and self-destructive ways. Instead of these factors being taken as evidence that something terrible has happened, too often they are cited as reasons that the victim should not be believed. The focus is placed on the effect, not the cause.

We are going to have to learn how to make room for imperfect victims, and to understand that the key to their stories lies in their imperfections. Few are more imperfect than Feldman. It was easy to believe the accusations against Weinstein when they were coming from such impeccable sources as Ashley Judd and Angelina Jolie. Things are a little more complicated when abuse allegations are coming from a former child star who does wacky things on TV. Really, you need only to look at Feldman and Haim to know that something, somewhere, went extremely wrong. But that requires you to look at them and not turn queasily away.

Hadley Freeman

One response

  1. Exactly! what ever it takes to defend the male. So, they can twist and judge every single behavior of the woman and turn it against her. No wonder not more women accuse their offenders, rapists, and molesters. She will always end up the culprit. It is very very sick indeed, and shows, that we live in a terrible rape culture, where men’s misbehaving never seems to be judged. No wonder it never seems to change and so many women even have to pay with their life. It just doesn’t seem to interest anybody. It is always: “boys will be boys”. I hope this terrible misjudgment and bigotry towards women will finally finally end. SOON!

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