One of the biggest news stories that is getting a lot of play over the internet, television and radio this past week is the one about director Roman Polanski's arrest in Switzerland for the 1977 rape of 13 year old Samantha Jane Gailey. He is in a prison in Zurich right now, awaiting extradition, which will hopefully happen soon so that we can bring him back to the United States and maybe throw him a party for being brilliant and amazing.
Well, in several related news stories, there are famous cinema-land people out there defending Polanski as if is a perfectly normal thing to give a thirteen year old girl part of a quaalude and several glasses of champagne and then rape and sodomize her even though she was telling him to stop; that she wanted to go home; that she didn't want to do what he was making her do.
Most notably, here's a clip from The View where Whoopi Goldberg is defending a forty-three year old man having sex with a thirteen year old girl.
"He wasn't charged with rape!" she keeps protesting.
This, my friends, is the time to remember that Whoopi is not that compassionate psychic from Ghost, nor is she the zany fugitive-turned-nun in Sister Act, nor is she the vulnerable Celie from The Color Purple. What Whoopi is? I don't even know if I can describe her, other than to point out that anyone who can say that sex between a middle aged man and a young teenage girl "wasn't rape rape," even though the man in question admitted in court that he gave the girl drugs and alcohol, even though the girl told him no and asked him to take her home to her mother, is just about as sick a pervert as Polanski himself.
Here she is. Try not to throw up or damage your computer monitor with a stapler.
Polanski was, by the way, originally charged with rape. But his charge was reduced to unlawful sex with a minor child as part of a plea bargain. He fled the country and sought refuge in Europe to avoid a trial, and he's been there on the lam for these past thirty-odd years. And he has not been living there in rags and tatters, humbly seeking a crust and a roof. No, he's been swanning himself around as the darling of modern cinema, making films and accepting awards and living the lifestyle of the rich and famous.
Most of the people defending Polanski by saying that he should be freed to go about his busy life as a vile pervert are Europeans whose names I don't recognize. But among the names I do recognize are these folks: actress Penelope Cruz, directors Martin Scorcese and Jonathan Demme and, most amusingly if by "amusingly" you realize I mean "vomiting everything I've eaten since birth," which is a not inconsiderable amount, Woody Allen (yes, the man who divorced his wife, Mia Farrow, to marry his own adopted daughter. And since Mia Farrow was the star of Roman Polanski's celebrated horrorshow Rosemary's Baby, that's just gives one a little frisson of complete yuck, doesn't it?)
Here is the 1977 court transcript of Polanski's guilty plea.
And here is the court transcript of Samantha Gailey's testimony. This is really harrowing reading. If you are the father or mother of a daughter, it will make you want to weep with rage. If you are a parent, it will make you sick to your stomach.
It will make you want Roman Polanski, child molester and rapist, to see the inside of a prison for the rest of his unnatural life, but considering that he's seventy-seven years old now, that isn't yet enough time for justice to be served.
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