Last month’s acquittal of Alex Salmond on multiple charges of sexual assault including two of attempted rape should be seen as a vindication of due process. Alas, it goes without saying that not everybody was happy with the verdicts, including Sandy Brindley, the Chief Executive of Rape Crisis Scotland. It also goes without saying the “victims” were not happy.
In an open letter quoted by Karin Goodwin in The National, March 29, nine of the complainants said they were “devastated” by the verdicts but hoped “shining a light on their experiences” would “protect and empower”.
Brindley said this open letter was a “powerful and important statement.”
Let’s get this straight, nine women were devastated that Alex Salmond will not be spending many years in prison, what at his age could be a life sentence, because the jury did not accept their skewed view that his unwanted and apparently clumsy sexual advances amounted to attempted rape or indecent assault. Is that about right?
Brindley fellow traveller Hannah Rodger took to Twitter to opine: “I applaud these brave women for speaking out at the end of what must have been one of the worst weeks of their lives”.
These women are not brave; they are pathetic. Former ambassador Craig Murray had the perfect response:
“They are not brave women they are anonymous cowards amplifying their lies rejected by a largely female jury.
They conspired to invent the lies including via a WhatsApp group. This joint statement is a continuation of their political conspiracy.”
(Shades of the Ghomeshi conspiracy in Canada?)
The same day Sandy Brindley endorsed these liars, she was given space in a UK national newspaper to air her views on rape, views that are sadly as embedded in establishment thinking as they are demonstrably wrong.
Her Sunday Times article is called Despite #MeToo, it’s still hard to call out the behaviour of powerful men, and as might be expected, peddles feminist rape myths galore. For one thing, it has never been even moderately difficult for women to call out powerful men who behave badly, in the sexual sphere or otherwise. Politicians and other public figures of both sexes are regularly savaged by journalists and sundry commentators. Sometimes they earn far worse than contempt. To give a very recent example, when Sheila Oakes suggested that Boris Johnson deserved to be in intensive care (where he nearly died from the coronavirus), no sooner had she made this ill-advised remark than she was sacked as Mayor of Heanor, Derbyshire and from her post as a paralegal.
Women who are active in politics need to be made of sterner stuff, whether or not they aspire to high office themselves. A woman who can’t put a man in his place for allowing his hands to wander or telling a blue joke can’t be expected to exercise authority, much less delegate it.
Sandy Brindley is more concerned with allegations of actual rape though, something of which Mr Salmond was not accused. In her Sunday Times article she continues with a familiar whine about rape statistics: “Most cases never get to court: in 2017/18, there were 2,255 rapes and attempted rapes reported to the police, but only 247 prosecutions and 107 convictions. There is considerable evidence from research using mock juries that rape myths – that is, false assumptions about rape and how someone will or should react – impact on jury decision-making in these cases.”
Miss Brindley is referring in particular to the twin myths, not the feminist version but the reality. It is longstanding feminist dogma both that the vast majority of rapes go unreported and that false allegations of rape are extremely rare. Rape Crisis Scotland has been and remains in the forefront of promoting both these myths. Let us deal with them in that order.
Why would women not report rape? Because they’re terrified they won’t be believed, we were told. And that the legal process is too much of an ordeal, they fear retribution, stigma, etc. This is also used to explain or rather to explain away purported delays in reporting rape, something which is attributed to rape trauma syndrome, an imaginary condition. This is not to say that women are not traumatised by rape; people of both sexes can be traumatised by all sorts of things, but there is no medical condition known as rape trauma syndrome.
The second reason for delay in reporting rape is said to be tonic immobility. Again, this is a real condition, none of us knows how we will react to especially sudden and unexpected trauma, but the idea that a significant number of rape victims freeze when attacked is bunk. In order to boost this nonsense – and contribute to convicting the innocent – Rape Crisis Scotland made a series of videos three years ago which were advertised with the hashtag #IJustFroze.
In 2010, Kathryn Moore was stabbed by a mugger at Lakeland, Florida. This video was viewed only 183 times in a decade. A woman who is attacked by an armed assailant who is clearly interested only in her money can be forgiven for failing to resist, indeed this is probably the wisest course of action, but most victims don’t freeze. Here is a video of a 12 year old girl in Derby fighting back against a thug intent on stealing her phone. Brave though she was, she would have done better to let it go. (Her attacker received a mere three year sentence). If a 12 year old girl can defend her mobile phone against a bigger, stronger attacker, can not a grown woman defend her honour? Rape Crisis Scotland would have us believe no.
Because rape is a crime that leaves physical evidence, and most women are not the damsels in distress Rape Crisis Scotland would have us believe, to explain away the apparent disparity between the number of rapes charged and the number of convictions actually obtained by the Scottish courts (and courts elsewhere), they also promote the myth that false allegations are extremely rare, and that juries refuse to convict because they adhere to the aforementioned “rape myths”. Here is how Rape Crisis Scotland views false allegations. Pay particular attention to the pie chart.
An example of their dishonest rhetoric appears on the same page: “A study produced by the Crown Prosecution Service in England & Wales in March 2013 revealed that over a 17-month period between January 2011 and May 2012 – when all false allegation cases were referred to the DPP – there were 5,651 prosecutions for rape, but only 35 for making false allegations of rape.”
To Part 2.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.