The 18,437 Perpetrators of Steubenville

steubenvilleThe brutal gang rape of a 16-year-old girl by members of the Steubenville, Ohio football team has rightly shocked the nation – a nation, by the way, which is routinely shocked by gang rapes committed by athletes in the same way that Claude Rains was “shocked” to find that gambling was going on at Rick’s Café Americain in the movie Casablanca. Really? Athletes gang-raping a girl so drunk that she’s passed out. What a surprise!

In one of the more ironic twists to this story, though, the internet hacker group Anonymous posted a 12½ minute video of an Ohio State freshman, Michael Nodianos, an athletic scholarship student, laughing and joking about the rape. Nodianos has become the poster boy for teenage male douchery. He’s been so hounded on social media, and in real life, that he’s now dropped out of school and seems to be hiding out at his parent’s house. His nickname will probably become synonymous with depraved insensitivity. If you laugh at a joke about, say, the Rwandan genocide, someone will say “Hey, don’t go all Nodi on me.”

Surely, it makes sense to hold such a clown in contempt.  But remember that Nodianos was not at the party where the girl got raped, was nowhere near it and was only taped at a party, drunkenly performing for other guys. Focusing on him may distract us from other, more important groups of grown men who should be held accountable.

As I found in my interviews with more than 400 young men for my book Guyland, in the aftermath of these sorts of events –when high-status high school athletes commit felonies, especially gang rape– they are surrounded and protected by their fathers, their school administrations and their communities. These out-of-control, rapacious thugs are our school’s heroes — “our guys,” as the gang rapists at Glen Ridge High School in New Jersey were called nearly two decades ago. The players themselves hold to a code of silence, the omerta of sexual assault: No one ever rats out a fellow bro. The parents, the school and the community circle wagons in a culture of protection around the boys.

It’s often the girl herself, and her parents, who are vilified and receive death threats for daring to expose the crime in the first place. Raped boys, too, dare not complain: A few years ago, after rookies on the Mepham High School (Long Island) football team were sodomized with broom handles, golf balls and pine cones in a pre-season hazing ritual, the rookies’ parents got anonymous death threats for standing up for their brutalized sons.

The two players who are charged with raping the girl, and the several other players who allegedly participated, are surrounded in a protective bubble. Their fathers steadfastly stand by their sons. Their coaches wonder what the girl might have been wearing and why she got so drunk, suggesting it might have been a case of buyers’ remorse–as if she wanted to pass out and be urinated on and have an iron rod shoved inside her, but then perhaps thought better of it in the sober light of day. The police apparently covered up the crime to protect the boys. And, of course, the community rallied behind the boys, fearing that–gasp!–“their” football team might have a dark cloud hanging over it.

So it’s a distraction to spend another minute on Nodi the Buffoon. What needs to happen instead is that the players be immediately suspended, pending the outcome of their court date. All colleges considering recruiting them should receive information about these criminal charges. Coaches? Fire them, not for what their players did but what they, the coaches, said about the crime.  The era of asking what she did to bring this on herself is over. Police who covered it up? Same. Cancel football season–again, not because of what the players did but because the community needs to heal, and that requires more than a return to the status quo.

At the moment, we’re hearing a chorus of adults saying “boys will be boys”–surely the most depressing four words spoken about members of my gender. Haven’t you noticed that we always say that when boys have done something really bad? We shrug our collective shoulders in resignation–nothing we can do about it. How come we don’t say, “Oh wow, a man walked on the moon–boys will be boys!” Or “A man won the Novel Prize–boys will be boys!” “A man is working to cure cancer … ” you get the idea.  It’s a pernicious type of male bashing to assume that boys can do no better than be wild rapacious animals. We can do better than this–and we can insist on better from boys as well.

Listening to Michael Nodianos laugh about the raped girl, enumerating the different ways he “knew” she was “dead,” brings to mind a related recent incident–the actual death of a young woman in India who had also been brutally gang raped. The young men committed that crime for one reason: because they thought they could get away with it. Because they thought their neighbors, the police and the courts would never hold them accountable.

So did the Steubenville 2. They did what they did because they felt entitled to, because they knew they could get away with it. Because they knew that their coaches, their families, their friends, their teammates and the police department–indeed, the entire town would rally around them and protect them from the consequences of what they’ve done.

Because the Steubenville 2 is really the Steubenville 18,437 (I’ve subtracted the girl victim and her parents). Until the community rallies around the victim and not the perpetrators, the shame of gang rape is on them all. All.

The global public outcry in India has begun to change their public conversation about gang rape. Citizens of Steubenville have a moral existential choice about where they stand. Whose side will they be on?

Photo courtesy of erjkprunczyk via Creative Commons 2.0.

Comments

  1. Genius article and very well said. Thank you for speaking up about what’s really going on here.

  2. thinking man says:

    Thanks for subtracting out “the girl victim and her parents”. Shows you haven’t followed the case very closely. Jane Doe lives in West Virginia across the river, the Ohio River.

    Catchy title for your piece, but it’s a cheap shot nonetheless. The city let me advise you is very divided over this case. We can’t at the same time be divided (for one day’s headline) and then suddenly we’re all of one mind the next day.

    Writers who have said Steubenville is like every other place in America are much closer to the mark than are you. Each place has unique characteristics, and no place is perfect, and I agree with the idea that our culture needs to change fundamentally in our attitudes and treatment of women.

    But now your “18,437″ title is showing up on Twitter quite a bit just as you suspected I would guess. The wagons of power are circling in Steubenville – as they do everywhere – but many people in the Ohio Valley were just as shocked and sickened as the rest of the world to see that photo and video.

    It has been a wake up call for all of us. Rape culture, athletic privilege, political corruption do not stop at Steubenville’s door, and you know better than to act as if it does.,

    • I think that the author was making a point by subtracting out the victim – which in this case I personally feel is justified at the expense of factual accuracy.

      If you read the article again, you’ll see that the author explicitly makes the point that this sort of thing happens all over the place, not just Steubenville.

      It just so happens that the rape that took place in Steubenville – along with the media and online attention – make for both an interesting case study and a poster-child for how our society views rape.

    • Just what is the town “divided” over?

      Being drunk makes a person incapable of consenting to sexual activity. There are no ifs, ands, or buts to this story–the young woman was was incapable of giving consent, so, by definition, she was raped. Multiple people saw it. Multiple people did nothing to stop it while it was happening. Multiple people–people in authority–have engaged in blaming in the victim.

      Steubenville may be no different than any other place in America–but they had the opportunity to show the rest of us that they could distinguish themselves and do the right thing. They failed. And for what? So they could have a winning FOOTBALL TEAM?!?!?!?

      Decent people should not be “divided” or “torn” over this. They should hold the perpetrators accountable, fire the authorities who blamed the victim, and hold any of their family members, friends, or neighbors who made excuses for those boys, or blamed the girl, up to shame and ridicule. If they don’t, they are aiders and abettors of rape culture–and they should be told that at every opportunity.

      • So true!!! 20/20 on ID ran this story again tonight and I still was sick to my stomach and absolutely so angered by the boy’s, (I should say what they are, Rapists), parents attitudes that they could even say, “that’s not our son.” And the football coach should be ashamed of himself!!! I don’t care what kind of a football team he had, he had an obligation as a teacher, to Jane Doe and to his school to be morally accountable. Really!! Did you look at the pictures, watch the videos! I have a 17 year old son and love him more than life itself and try to instill in him good, morale, respectful, qualities for him to become a successful and compassionate person in society. I’m not saying he is perfect, but I can say if he would do wrong then he did wrong and would have to pay the consequences for his actions. We as parents have to stay abreast of what is going on in our children’s lives! We need to take the time out of our hectic schedules and sit and TALK with our children! Make them feel that they can come to us with any problem. My heart goes out to Jane Doe and hope that her life is on track and hope she knows that she is loved! Where has the compassion gone?

    • I disagree with the statement Steubenville ” is like every other place in America.” I have lived in several parts of the country and I worked in Steubenville for a few years in the 1990s. I moved away to get away from that place. While it seems the current police chief has done a superb job of improving conditions there, way more improvement is obviously needed. It would help if the people in power were ousted, but this is a county that saw their sheriff indicted and acquitted of federal corruption charges in 1990 and promplty re-elected him.

      • Concerned about Facts says:

        Apparently the realities of the law are of no concern to you… as you stated… “this is a county that saw their sheriff indicted and acquitted of federal corruption charges in 1990 “.
        Your point being that the Sheriff was INDICTED? You total ignore that fact that the Sheriff was tried by a federal court jury and found NOT GUILTY of all charges.
        Since the Sheriff was found Not Guilty, one could conclude that there was no EVIDENCE to convict him of the crimes for which he had been indicted. Anyone knowledgeable about the law will tell you that a Good Prosecutor can get a ham sandwich INDICTED… but he has to PROVE the allegations in order to get a conviction.

        • Sorry, but in most places a Sheriff who stands trial for corruption will not then stand unopposed for repeated subsequent elections. And you also conveniently ignore that the City of Steubenville was only the second ever place to be prosecuted and found guilt of corruption, as an entity, in charges brought by the State Department. How the police handled domestic violence cases (linked strongly to rape – most domestic attacks on women involve some degree of sexual contact at some stage) was an area specifically addressed.

          The prosecutor first handling this rape case didn’t recuse herself for two weeks, despite her own son allegedly being at these parties and definitely being on the football team and great buds with the accused kids. That’s when the best opportunity for collecting evidence exists, particularly the ability to check hair samples for roofies and to obtain all electronic gadgets expeditiously and without warning. Neither happened, which just stinks.

          People don’t suspect Steubenville has problems with corruption. They know it does.

    • I think the whole point of the article was to point out the everytown nature of the situation. It was not to condemn Steubenville as is evidenced by the references to New Jersey, India and other places. The writer also repeatedly uses “we” in her depictions. This doesn’t read as a condemnation of Steubenville alone but as part of a global culture.

    • Gwen E Mugliston says:

      How egregious of you “Thinkingman” to equate Steubenville with all or many or some other towns. After all “I” must never accept responsibility even if “I” alone performed a heinous act. Some towns somewhere must cherish their women meaning the citizens have accepted responsibility for their actions. Accepting responsibility is a major issue with many men or so I have observed. Perhaps it is with women, too, but it seems our society makes women accept the most basic responsibilities at the birth control level and leaves you men to screw whoever you can get into the right position and then escape the responsibility of conception. Pretty basic for sure. Women must be responsible until there is reliable birth control for men. I love it that paternity testing is DNA based…no one lies with that. Rapists deposit their DNA and that is tested, too. Good. I say hang DNA identified rapists. WE don’t need their genes in this society.

    • What in the hell is there to be divided over? You wouldn’t be “divided” if it were your daughter.

    • Every Citizen of Steubenville is just as Guility unless they are in the streets calling for the dimissial of every person in the police department and courts who has not faught to put these rapist in jail.
      Not a town I would every want to be a part of. If even 40% of the people of this town think this is ok this is ONE SICK group of people.

  3. Is it possible for the coaches and police to be fired? Perhaps with enough pressure via petition? Or is that just wishful thinking? I agree that more people need to be held responsible for the environment that doesn’t see rape as abhorrent and forbidden under any circumstance—I’m just wondering what, if anything, can be done on a practical level to make that happen.

    • Sure coaches & anyone on the police force CAN be fired. The question is/was will they be? Answer, no. In fact the coach got a new teaching contract if I’m not mistaken. The coach & police chief/force are hired/fired by the school board & town council in most localities. Except for some bashing that continues on Twitter, it looks like much of the drama has died down. I just wonder how long it’ll be before something else happens there? What I’ve seen/read is more of the same mentality & bashing that has been going on ever since this happened.

  4. Thank you so much for an incredible article!

  5. Exactly. Thanks for writing this.

  6. I understand what you mean by “They did what they did because they felt entitled to, because they knew they could get away with it,” but I think you diminish the magnitude the problem and give the boys too much credit by suggesting that any thought was involved.

    If I think about doing something that’s wrong–lying to a friend, or the IRS, or worse–I may choose to proceed based on whether I think I’ll get caught, whether I can endure the guilt if I don’t, and whether I can face the consequences if I do. I doubt these boys did anything close to thinking about it–”If we rape this girl, no one will find out, and if they do find out, they won’t do anything about it.” I think it never occurred to them that they were doing anything wrong–making them sociopaths, if my understanding of that term is correct.

    • I agree with Kimmel on the entitlement aspect – rapists feel a quasi-religious sense of entitlement. They do not respect people’s boundaries.

  7. Kimberly Caterino says:

    Thank you for writing this and illuminating the bigger picture, a much more comprehensive view of the problem(s). Patriarchy – bro culture – (whatever we name it– the system that gives men/boys inherent rights/privileges) brings no one to psychological good health or healing. And good for you for speaking on behalf of men or boys who don’t relate to or agree with “boys will be boys” behavior or labeling. Guyland is now on my list to read.

  8. Marcus Urlich says:

    Another layer of confusion has been added to this drama: such as paragraph #3, and beyond. Nodianos clearly was aware of what was going on, otherwise how could he describe in such detail? You mention the “Steubenville2″, with such finality. And in subtracting the girl and her mother from the population count, they never should have been counted to begin with–they lived across the river—in another state—called WEST VIRGINIA! Additionally, you mention her drunken state, assuming she DRANK herself into that state, when she herself said she was never aware of being in those surroundings, because she got into a car with some of the Steubenville gang, was handed a drink, and remembered nothing beyond that point. Accuracy matters. Do an accuracy check, and don’t use this girl’s tragedy to make your living. Perhaps rape needs another definition.

  9. I have to say that I’m a little disappointed by the overly inflammatory slant your piece has taken. The bit about subtracting the girl and her family really showcases the fact that you haven’t done your due diligence as a reporter/writer and it also shows the laziness of this generation of reporters and writers. If you had followed this case and/or researched it AT ALL past the video that you obviously watched, you would know that the girl was visiting from out of town. That is basic knowledge that a ten second google search would have revealed.
    This could have been a great article. Next time do your research and don’t lump everyone from an entire town in with the perpetrators and those who would choose to shield them. Bad form. I was going to share this, but I don’t feel right about it with the inaccuracies and bias presented.

  10. Well said! I do believe that mass of people and social pressure COULD change things for the better. People power works. Pressure on men would cause to change their minds on subjects like easy girls and rape. People need to hear, again and again, that raping someone who cannot defend herself (drunk or passed-out or threatened or physically weaker) is a SIN and a CRIME.

  11. Thank you for an excellent commentary.

    “Until the community rallies around the victim and not the perpetrators, the shame of gang rape is on them all.”

    I would like to extend that to say until WE rally around the victim and not the perpetrators, the shame of gang rape is on US ALL.

    Be mindfuller.
    http://mindfuller.tumblr.com/tagged/steubenville

  12. We are all residents of Steubenville. We have the choice to become defensive, and “circle the wagons,” or to be accountable for the rape culture we all have participated in creating and benefit from. Very well said, Michael – yet again!

  13. Sarah L. Rasmusson says:

    Thank you, Michael for this amazing piece. For drawing a global connection to the gang-rape in India. For asking that we hold entire communities accountable for raising boys with this privilege. Thank you for acknowledging Anonymous. Thank you for reminding us that American culture cares more about f-ing football than it does about half of its population (girls and women). Could I ask, though, that you stop using “brutal” in front of “gang rape” – it’s as much as a dreadful cliche as the “shock” of gambling in American Cafe i Casablanca!

  14. Great article. I’m sure you know that many from Steubenville don’t support the rapists however many of them don’t voice their opinion either. Whether they are scared or whatever their reason, that leaves only a small amount that actually stand up for what they believe in. Proof of that was the protests. About 1000 total were at the first and 2000-2500 at the 2nd. Take away at least half of the people there who weren’t from Steubenville and that’s the outspoken numbers. So your 18,437 perp count isn’t far off in my book because the cowards that don’t say anything because the are scared are guilty as well.
    That brings me to one of the comments, no, no one will be fired, those in power are rape supporters and cover up specialists. In order to clean it all up, school officials, law enforcement, judges, the prosecutor, coaches and more would have to be fired, but for those changes to happen the whole community would have to be involved, not just a few hundred.
    Only two are charged for the rape of a 16 year old young lady, and they are being tried as juveniles. The most they are facing is a slap on the wrist, but I won’t be surprised if they walk completely. By next football season everything will be back to “normal” in Steubenville and sad to say, more crimes will be comitted by athletes and be covered up.

  15. Janice Hobbs says:

    Dr. Kimmel, once again you have hit the nail squarely on the head. I hold you in such high esteem. Thank you for proving that feminism is not dead.

  16. You are right. I have followed this story since KnightSec brought it to twitter and have yet to see any Leadership from Steubenville in the way of morals or justice. Steubenville has been all about victim blaming, cover ups and protecting their Rape Crew. Makes me sad for small town America.

  17. Excellent article. This is not just a Steubenville issue. We see the same thing with rapes at Notre Dame and most certainly with Penn State and the Sandusky fiasco.

    The communities circle the wagons around the star athletes or athletic program. More than one victim has committed suicide because of the harassment they’ve gotten for reporting the crimes. First they’re victimized by a person or persons and then they’re victimized by the system and the community.

    It’s a sickness we have with raising these athletes to “god” status and for some reason having to find our sense of pride in a sports game instead of ourselves and our community.

  18. Bravo for this article. My only question: Is it a proven fact that the victim was drunk? I believe that I have read that while she was drinking that Rohypnol or Ketamine or some other date-rape drug had been used. Do you know if there is any basis in fact that her drink had been spiked?

  19. Texas Aggie says:

    I’m disappointed at the people who nitpick about whether the victim was a local or from across the river. What difference does it make? To get all bothered about that is just inexcusable. It’s like you are excusing these creeps for the way they treated that girl because the author of the article got an unimportant detail wrong. If she hadn’t been raped and the author said she had, then getting bothered is ok, but focusing on where she lives??? Ignoring that she was brutalized??? Please!

  20. I did not hear of this story until the beginning of this year. I checked into it because I know that the University run by the the Franciscans is also in that town. I learned instead that it happened at the high school. I do not think that the writer of this article can include the the faculty or students of this highly esteemed college in the number as I highly think that they found this rape incident highly abhorable and detestable. They would condemn this incident. it would go against the franciscan charism of love and peace.

  21. It’s incidents like this that make me more shocked and frightened that Congress has YET to the pass the ‘Violence Against Women Act!’ No woman deserves to be raped, blamed for being raped, and suffer the consequences of no support whatsoever.

    http://act.weareultraviolet.org/sign/vawa2013?referring_akid=287.290763.66dfJd&source=twitter

  22. I do not live in Ohio so I do not know if Governor Kasich can appoint a special prosecutor. If he can (and I suspect that he can), pressure should be brought to bear on him to do so. That would take the power from the rape supporters in Steubenville. I also wonder what the very conservative Catholic college in Steubenville has had to say, if anything.

    • Same here, I do not know if they made a public statement or said anything at Mass but it probably was a big shock and ptayers were said. I do not live in S. and did not hear of this until recently as I could not follow news that week that it happened. The majority of the students were probably taking summer break. Did not hear of any protests but these rape incidences have been happening increasingly and it is calling for activism of some sort.

  23. If you are trying to say rape is a horrible crime that can happen in any city in America, then just say it. But you should have checked your facts a lot better since Nodianos was actually at 2 of the houses while the victim was there as testified by witnesses at the Probable Cause hearing. And as other commentors said, the victim and her family are from WV, not Steubenville. Don’t know where you got “an iron rod ” but that was NEVER mentioned Anywhere Ever. Agree with commentor Sarah that you stop using “brutal” and “gang rape”. Next time, do some research and get your facts straight instead of adding false rumors to what is a horrible crime committed by some horrible perpetrators, instead of labeling a whole entire town.

  24. sheila0604 says:

    The victim was in the same location where Nodianos taped his disgusting video. If you watch it, listen closely. One of the other boys in the background says “Yo, why isn’t she waking up, man? Shouldn’t someone go check on her?” Then a couple of minutes later someone (or possibly the same boy) says “I’m going to check on her” and leaves the room. I’d like to know where the PARENTS were at these houses and why they weren’t held accountable for allowing underage drinking at their homes? It was reported that there were 30-40 people at these parties yet not ONE person stepped in to help the victim nor did they report it. This happened in the summer, yet it has only all came to light now because of Prinnie’s blog and the group Anonymous’ involvement. It’s sickening how people in Steubenville are more concerned with the media emerging on their city than they are the rape of an innocent young girl. I’m sure there are many wonderful people who live there, but so far all I have seen are people blaming the victim! Shame on them, and shame on all those students who watched while this young girl was victimized everywhere they dragged her.

    • TruthSeeker05 says:

      Again. Totally false.

      The prosecution even admitted in court that the video was “inadmissable” and “irrelevant” to this case. He was NOT at the location were the alleged acts took place. He was babbling about things he had seen earlier in the night and stuff being posted on Twitter.

      Stupid? Absolutely. But, just because there is a drunken baffoon teenager doesn’t mean you get to make up whatever story you like best. The authorities have spoken on this and it was resounding. This is no longer something which even warrants discussion.

  25. Sorry AR, even Govenor Kasich is passing the buck on this one. I emailed him and the two OH Democratic State Senators and this was the only real response I received:

    Thank you for contacting the Office of the Governor. The Governor has asked that I respond on his behalf.
    Your comments on the events that occurred in Steubenville have been noted by the Governor’s staff. However, this investigation falls under the purview of the Attorney General Mike DeWine. He can be reached at (800) 282-0515.
    Again, thank you for contacting us and please feel free to reach out at any time.
    Elliott Keefer
    Public Liaison
    Office of Ohio Governor John R. Kasich
    614.644.0925
    Elliott.keefer@governor.ohio.gov
    http://www.governor.ohio.gov

  26. Jay Warren Clark says:

    Diana is the “virgin goddess.” Do you see her, or the negation of her power, integrity, in this kid’s name, no-Dian-os. Interesting, eh? JWC

  27. Elizabeth Titus says:

    Thank you for this article! I am a mentor with the Afghan Women’s Writing Project (AWWP), and the stories I help the brave women in Afghanistan tell the world are shocking and disturbing. Afghanistan is the most dangerous country in the world (Reuters).

    And yet.

    How different is it in America?

    Violence against women is GLOBAL, and that includes the U.S.

  28. TruthSeeker05 says:

    Talk about informed. There is a reason bloggers like this one are so roundly despised by professional journalists, although they’ve also done a miserable job with this case. This person wants to lecture an entire city on a rape and doesn’t even know the most basic facts. Namely, that the girl was from neighboring Weirton, WV, not Steubenville.

    Uninformed nonsense. If you are still giving credence to things said on sites like Local Leaks, which have been totally debunked as manufactured narratives with no basis in truth, you haven’t been following this case and should refrain from commenting until you have a firm grasp on the facts. For instance, the probable cause transcript is out there for anyone to read and what Jane Doe’s lawyers are asserting has very little resemblance to the contrived, made for TV ridiculousness that blogs that this one perpetuates.

    There have been so many nonsensical claims — made with no evidence — that having a logical discussion about the case has become almost impossible.

    For instance, when reviewing the arguments by the prosecution — whose job it is to stand in court and fight for Jane Doe with facts — there has never been any allegations or charges made about a date rape drug. They have conceded that she was extremely inebriated due to consumption of alcohol on her own accord. Keep in mind that eye witnesses at the only event that might be considered a “party” (the first stop) included her own best friends.

    There are rumors that she was “dragged from party to party and raped.” In fact, when you read the testimony in the probable cause hearing and look at arguments made by prosecution, this is also not a part of it. They group of kids went to three parties that night. The first one — with around 50 people in attendance — is not one of the places wherein prosecution is alleging a rape transpired. Same goes for the second stop, where there was something like eight people there.

    The two places prosecution are alleging a rape happened are in the car on the way to the third “party” and at the third “party.” That final “party,” btw, only had something like five kids there.

    Not quite what has been portrayed by bloggers and in the media, right? But, read the prosecution’s argument and you will see the massive gulf which separates the REAL allegations from the sensationalized nonsense all over the place.

    There has also been ZERO official allegations of police corruption or special treatment for the defendants or anyone else. I find it interesting… For months, people cried that there were things being hidden by local officials and that “shining a light” was all that was needed to show it. In fact, the state of Ohio has been investigating this case since August and there have been no additional charges for anyone other than the initial two boys arrested by the local police.

    But, that wasn’t enough. Somehow, the state was also tainted by a high school football team. They needed the FBI involved. Well, the FBI has been involved in this case for a couple months now. Still, no additional charges. Nothing that would indicate some giant city-wide cover-up.

    There are people who so badly want their chosen narrative to play itself out that they will not accept anything less… Even though they really know nothing about the city and nothing about the people they’ve shamelessly convicted in their own minds.

    So, if this trial plays itself out, state investigators and the FBI don’t make any additional arrests and don’t file any additional charges, will they agree that there was a false narrative driving this case? What would it take to convince them, if anything?

    Let’s not get it twisted… I want justice here as badly as anyone else. If it is proven that the alleged victim was raped, I hope the boys responsible are punished accordingly. This is not meant to minimize ANYTHING allegedly done by the two boys. If evidence is provided in a courtroom that they did these things, they should be harshly punished. But, the claims made by people who have absolutely no clue what they’re talking about and simply took their cues from other bloggers or outdated media accounts need to look again at what we now know.

    In addition, if there was city-wide corruption in this case, I would like to see those involved to also be punished. Problem is, there has been no proof of this and there is no reason to just blindly believe it without evidence.

    I want justice, but I’d also like to know what REALLY happened and I am focusing on what we know and what can be proven… Not on casting blame blindly across the whole city and just hoping something sticks.

    Don’t be a shill for the media and bloggers. Ask questions. Be critical. Do your own research. Otherwise, you are just doing someone else’s bidding. Start with the probable cause transcript and go from there.

  29. Okay people listen to yourselves your focusing on who lives where. Im horrified that their are 18,437 persons and not 1 free thinking individual among the 18, 437.

  30. I disagree with the idea that everyone in Steubenville should be held accountable for the despicable actions of these few. How about the nerds who were no doubt themselves bullied by the same brutes (and egged on by the cheerleaders, no doubt) who read about it in the paper the next day, and were just as sicked by this act as the rest of us are? Might as well mention as a side note that nobody cares about their plight, of course; the plight our outcasts endure every day. When they are beaten up daily and even killed, they feature in no newspaper articles crying out for them.

    Of course, by extension, we are all perhaps a little bit responsible for letting shit like this happen, in every town, every day. But what does kicking the blame around accomplish exactly? Dilute the blame from the perps? Shouldn’t we be holding the perps, and their direct enablers, accountable?

  31. Anne m carroll says:

    It’smarch, the trial is about to begin and it’s been way too quiet here after all the national exposure in Jan. Nothing has changed, no one else charged. Can you cover the story again as we fear people are of the mindset “if we pretend there is no problem, there is no problem.”
    PLEASE follow up, everyone was interested 2 mos ago, now it’s just old news.
    We need the national coverage of the WHOLE STORY of what really goes on here, esp re: the incestuous connections between all the officials in local gov’t, school. LE etc
    By the way, i speak for many of the residents outraged by this hideous crime and what many perceive as a cover-up to protect a select few. Have done what I can, being permanently disabled. do not appreciate you lumping us as all guilty, You’re out of line there.

  32. AlistairS says:

    This problem isnt particular to Steubenville, the US, or even occidental world all together. It is common to the whole mysoginistic civilization we live in. We fight for women’s rights, mainly talking about women having to be “equal” to men in rights, but truth be told, rape doesnt just concern women. Its not a problem of women against men. Its a problem of men. Men rape. They rape women, men, children and goats, and whatever else they can rape. Not all men, obviously, but many. And as long as the culprit of rape, is the victim, this wont change. We teach women, children to be afraid of rape. We mock men who have for some reason been subjected to it. Was he gay? Well, he obviously wanted it then. Was she wearing a short skirt and had a few drinks with you in a bard? She obviously was asking for it. Can the child rationally say “no” to what you are doing to him? No? Well, then he obviously consented to it. And at no point we tell men – it doesnt matter, how the victim behaved, what he was wearing, how old he/she is, the gender. What matters is that it wasnt consensual, thus you must pay severe consequences for your act. Full stop. No, wibbly-wobblying around it.

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