Sunday, December 02, 2012

Most offensive remark of the decade: Male lawyer calls 11-year-old rape victim a "seductive spider"

CLEVELAND, TX -- Victim-blaming is very common when there are trials for sexual assault.

Therefore, I am not surprised that defense lawyers vilify victims of sexual assault.

However, what this trial lawyer said last week was so out of line, it made me weep for this nation.  The latest filth from Texas, Steve Taylor, is the Worst Person of the Week for November 30 because of what he called an 11-year-old girl who was gang raped in 2010.  Feministing and its founder (and ex-member), Jessica Valenti, has more.

Former Cleveland Police Department Sgt. Chad Langdon, who was the lead investigator on the case, also testified that an 11-year-old – due to her emotional immaturity – legally cannot give consent for a sexual encounter.

Taylor questioned why the underage girl had not been charged with anything for choosing to violate that rule, indicating that she was “the reason” that the encounters happened.

“Like the spider and the fly. Wasn’t she saying, ‘Come into my parlor, said the spider to the fly?’ ” Taylor asked.

That even angered the police Sargent of the town.  So much so, that he called out Mr. Taylor's victim-blaming in a special news conference.

Langdon called the defense attorney out on his rape apologia, replying “I wouldn’t call her a spider.  I’d say she’s just an 11-year-old girl.”  Given what we know about Texas prisons (and, well, prisons in general) it’s hard to cheer for a criminal prosecutor.  But I have to hope that the court sees through this victim-blaming BS.

The judge in this case should hold Mr. Taylor in contempt for his remarks.  Furthermore, Mr. Taylor should also be disbarred.

Such remarks and victim-blaming have no place in our courtrooms.

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