There’s a new propaganda film about the imaginary campus rape epidemic called “The Hunting Ground.” It’s apparently a one-sided tearjerker masquerading as a documentary, and it was “warmly received by its activist audience” at its Sundance premiere, according to one writer. It bills itself as a “piercing, monumental exposé of rape culture on campuses,” even though the preeminent anti-rape group in America has told activists to ditch the phony “rape culture” meme. The New York Times practically ejaculated in writing its “review” of this film.
Institutions of higher learning, fraternities, college sports teams, the justice system — they’re all skewered because they’re all in on it, protecting rapists and everything, don’t you know? With conspiracy theories like that, forget Sundance, this thing should have premiered on the grassy knoll at Dealey Plaza.
Oh, one little thing: the film apparently doesn’t bother to tell the accused’s side of the story for the incidents it chronicles. It “relies on emotional first-person testimony from dozens of men,” and Variety writes: “The absence of testimony from the accused is an understandable omission (though as the Rolling Stone article’s rollback indicates, that can be a problem).”
An “understandable omission?” Oh, sorry, I thought this was supposed to be a documentary, the same way I thought the Rolling Stone article was supposed to be a news story.
Just one little thought: since the incidents the film chronicles are almost entirely “she said-he said” encounters, wouldn’t it have been a good idea to, you know, get the “she said” side of the story? Just a thought.
But, hey, why let the facts get in the way of good old fashioned campus rape hysteria? The facts would have only disrupted the narrative.
Did the film devote time to the lawsuits filed by young women who claim they were wrongly disciplined for sexual assault? Perhaps interview counsel to some of the claimants? Did the film explain how the due process rights of the accused have been severely curtailed when it comes to charges of rape to make it easier to punish the accused (both the guilty and the innocent)?
CNN plans to air this thing. CNN used to be a news network.
What’s the difference between this thing and the Rolling Stone article that didn’t bother to get the accused’s side of the story and that turned out to have more leaks than Titanic? Film carries a visceral impact that the written word can’t, and it will get people a lot angrier about the imaginary campus rape epidemic. That’s the difference.
Make no mistake: the activists plan to use that anger to chip away even more at the due process rights of the presumptively innocent accused of college rape. Innocence Project guru Prof. Mark A Godsey has explained that “the risk of wrongful conviction is the highest when there’s public outcry. Most of the exonerations and wrongful convictions have occurred in rape cases.” This film seems intended to foment public outcry about rape, and as such, it poses a much graver risk to the rights of the innocent than even the Rolling Stone article.