Feminism can stand without Jackie
I’m told that this has been a bad couple of weeks for the anti-rape movement. “Rolling Stone just wrecked an incredible year of progress for rape victims,” Arielle Duhaime-Ross wrote at the Verge last week. Since the magazine’s November story about a brutal gang rape at a University of Virginia fraternity began to unravel early this month, feminists have raised alarms that the magazine’s whiff will have devastating effects for past and future victims.
So writes the author. But she disagrees with what she’s been told, and she’s right.
At this point, it is clear that Rolling Stone failed to meet its basic journalistic requirements many times over. There is also compelling evidence that Jackie herself fabricated all or parts of her story. Neither of these scenarios serve to dismantle the anti-rape movement. Journalists have messed up reporting on rape since they began reporting on rape. In addition, there have been false rape allegations in the past, and there will be false allegations in the future. Any successful anti-rape activist or movement must be willing to accept that false accusations are not a “myth” and grapple with how to handle them appropriately. Whatever really happened at UVA one Saturday night in 2012 cannot possibly undermine a social justice movement because any understanding of justice must accommodate the truth.
(in the original, there are links given in support of the claims made in the text quoted.) You can read it all here.