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Amused Muse

Inspiring dissent and debate and the love of dissonance

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Master's Degree holder, telecommuting from the hot tub, proud Darwinian Dawkobot, and pirate librarian belly-dancer bohemian secret agent scribe on a mission to rescue bloggers from the wholesome clutches of the pious backstabbing girl fridays of the world.

Monday, September 28, 2009

How About A Compromise on Roman Polanski?

UPDATED: More reaction: nuance, schmuance! But how come no one ever prosecuted Ted Nugent, then?
Hey, I just had an idea: how about Polanski agreeing to come to the United States and face this charge, on one condition. And that condition is...

That the members of the press (if you can call them that) any anyone else who publicly blamed Sharon Tate for her own murder in 1969, calling her a "drug fiend," a "Satanist," a cannibal, a wild party girl, and a promiscuous whore while she was carrying her child (according to all witnesses, she wouldn't even drink wine while pregnant), apologize publicly to her memory and to her surviving family, something that these vulgar ambulance chasers never did before they went panting after exclusive interviews with that loser Charles Manson.

Since we're talking about a crime that happened thirty-two years ago, why not face the injustice that happened after another famous crime, forty years ago?

Arguably, those so-called journalists who spat out headlines attacking Sharon without any evidence whatsoever profited more from her death than anyone in the Manson family, despite all their born-again blather in books.

How about it? Let's hear an apology from those smug, self-righteous hacks who coined the blame-the-victim phrase, "Live freaky, die freaky." You know who you are.

Let's hear them express sorrow for heaping pain upon pain at the expense of the Tate family.

Let's hear them apologize for dissing not only poor, generous, beautiful Sharon, but Abigail Folger, who spent her fortune working as an amateur social worker; Steven Parent, a teen-aged hi fi enthusiast who was merely visiting the caretaker at the Tate residence; Jay Sebring, an internationally-known hair stylist and Sharon's ex-boyfriend who kept an eye on her while Roman was gone (oh, there was plenty of yellow journalism surrounding that--"what was he doing there, they must have had an affair, was it even Polanski's kid," etc., when Jay was a friend of Polanski's, too); and Woyciech Frykowski, who yes, did have a drug problem.

None of these people were cannibals or Satanists, but I'm not so sure about the press. Their sad charges -- screaming "It's her fault! All her fault!" as if they were rejects from an audition for The Handmaid's Tale--forced Roman Polanski to deny them (!) at a press conference.

Here is the link. Unfortunately, embedding has been disabled. A clip from the press conference begins at 1:08; however, the beginning gives background.

It just blows my mind. They called her a bimbo and said that she had no acting talent. (Sharon had wonderful comic timing.) They accused her of carrying someone else's child, or of taking drugs while pregnant. They called her a Satanist (and ironically, it was the thankfully deceased Susan Atkins, Sharon's killer, who briefly flirted with that), and they backed it up with "a photograph showing Sharon in a devil cult" that was in fact taken from one of her films. Come on, that was deliberate.

And then, to add insult to injury, the phony "psychic" Peter Hurkos visited the crime scene, "borrowed" some polaroids taken by a Life photographer to spew more slander about "three men who killed Sharon" and LSD and black magic at the house, and then pocketed the polaroids so that he could sell them later to the press. What a slime bucket!

Well, since we're already talking about something that happened thirty-two years ago, why not talk about something else that happened forty years ago?

(Unlike O.J. Simpson, Roman Polanski did search for the real killers--to the point of confronting someone he was sure had committed the crime.)

How about it, surviving paparazzi? How about it, Hollywood? How about it, newspaper and new agencies that were involved? If we're so concerned about one victim, how about your actions toward another?

Since we're so concerned about crime and morality in this country, why don't you do the right thing?

Shimmies to Swallowing the Camel

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Anonymous Jeff said...

Hi Kristine,

I normally agree with much of what you say but this time I think your off base a little. People keep mentioning statutory rape as if to indicate that the child consented. In fact according to her testimony she was "groomed", drugged, raped and sodimised all the time while protesting. As for another trial will there be one as Polanski has already pleaded guilty and just requires sentancing ? To call this persecution because he has evaded justice for so long seems strange. The fact that he is famous should (hopefully)have no bearing on the case one way or another.

September 30, 2009 6:33 AM  
Blogger Kristine said...

Have you been reading what I've been saying?

The victim consented no more than I did. I never said that.

She was "groomed" by whom? Her mother, who made the appointment, and who told Polanski her daughter was of age?

Polanski ran why? Because the judge started bragging that he was going to bring cameras into the courtroom to sentence Roman to life in prison. There are a lot of affidavits taken out against this (now deceased) judge because of unethical behavior, and due to it, the current presiding judge had indicated that he may dismiss the charges if Polanski is extradicted.

When you're a victim, and you want to move on (as this victim does), everyone else is an expert on what happened to you but you. Here is what I had to say about that at Greg Laden's blog.

September 30, 2009 7:20 AM  
Blogger Rev. Barking Nonsequitur said...

The fact that he is famous has a great deal to do with the case I think. This is partly what killed the OJ trial. How to arrive at justice when there is so much publicity, rumor, crackpot theories and political intrigue heaped up on something that happened 30 years ago in a different time and place. People seem very emotional about this case and that just gives more cause for mistrial. I'm tired of people thinking this is just black and white - might as well go back to lynch mobs.

October 02, 2009 12:51 AM  
Blogger Kristine said...

Well, my whole point is, our system is skewed toward the protecting the rights of the accused and even the guilty for a reason.

When people pursue meted-out "justice," they end up creating a system like that of 19th-Century Britain, with death penalties for stealing and indigence, etc.

Alternately, when people create a system that tries to avoid further injustice by avoiding putting innocent people in prison, you have a system that can allow the guilty to go free. However, then you have a system that allows for plea deals. Most cases end up as such.

The fact that the system has not become more responsive to rape victims and that women, like this victim, feel more violated by the system than by the perpretrator, or that many women still don't report rape, is getting lost in the cry for vengeance.

If people weren't so hysterical over this, I would be more inclined to say yes, it's time for Polanski to come back and seek a dismissal, be sentenced to time served, or even do some more token time - but this outcry is unreasonable and I want no part of a mob.

I didn't want Newt Gingrich's head, though I predicted his downfall; and even though I firmly think O.J. Simpson did it, I was disturbed by how personally people took that case (and I wouldn't watch the trial), taking to the streets and screaming at his supporters - Jesus, why does it mean that much? I didn't even know who Nicole Brown Simpson was until she died.

Of course I love Polanski's films - but fuck him. This is about the rights of the accused, due process, and the Constitution. People don't understand that one pleas guilty for all kinds of reasons (like sparing the victim) and that even someone who has been sentenced can seek to have the plea withdrawn. If people want their pound of flesh (and why?), they are going to be disappointed. And then we'll hear the "our legal system is broken!" when it isn't. What is broken is this black-and-white cry for vengeance, which embitters people's hearts since such "justice" becomes an unreachable goal.

Okay, people? Okay?

And I would still like to see an apology for Sharon. Holy crap, talk about an innocent victim. But that would take the public admitting that it is the public that creates celebrities only to tear them down, because it gives people pleasure to do so. I hate celebrity; I wish we just had films, politics, swingers, criminals, and writers without it.

October 02, 2009 11:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is my own contention that Polanski should be hanged, but not by the neck.

October 07, 2009 11:07 AM  

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