More of the rape story involving a U.Va. coed has fallen apart. You can read about it here in the Washington Post.
The Post won’t come right out and say it but they leave a pretty good trail of bread crumbs as to what they think happened.
The long and the short of it is that the alleged victim, Jackie appears to have created a person out of whole cloth with the apparent goal of making another student jealous. It is a convoluted story, but piecing it together it goes something like this; Jackie had a crush on “Randall” (and these are pseudonyms) which he did not reciprocate. But he did like her as a friend.
He and her other friends were intrigued about an upperclassman that Jackie said had a crush on her and she gave them the phone number of that person. Randall and the other guy exchanged some texts where it was made clear that Jackie was spurning the older guy in favor of hoping Randall would come around. Apparently this did not make Randall jealous enough to change his mind about Jackie and she ultimately went on a date with the older student. This was the date where she claimed she was raped by the upperclassman and several other boys whose number varies with the telling. After which she phoned Randall and other friends to come to her aid.
But her date appears to have been a fictitious, or at best, a composite person. The photos attached to the texts were of an old classmate of Jackie’s from high school who had moved away 6 years ago and not been back since. In contradiction to what Jackie claimed, he was not a member of any fraternity at U.Va., he did not attend there, he was not a lifeguard, and he did not exchange any texts with Randall. Nor did the name Jackie gave for her date did match the photo. No one by the name Jackie gave is on record as being a student at the University of Virginia.
So how do we make sense of all of this? Who was exchanging texts with Randall?
Putting it all together it seems most likely that Jackie was writing the texts all along as a way of making herself seem more desirable to Randall. This is reinforced by the fact that after the alleged rape the assailant is supposed to have texted Randall passing along praise that Jackie had for Randall. What sort of rapist does that? What purpose would be served by doing such a thing unless Jackie or someone she directed was the one writing the texts?
It is also worth noting that while the Rolling Stone claimed Randall would not answer questions, citing “loyalty to his frat” he says he was never contacted and would have been glad to answer questions. There is an obvious way this could have happened if the Rolling Stone got the contact information for Randall from Jackie.
There should also be an obvious way to check all of this out since there is a phone number associated with these texts and the owner of it can be tracked down. I suspect the speed with which the Rolling Stone backed off the story when the first, much more minor discrepancies were revealed indicates that they realized what was coming.
If the police are really investigating the case as they claim then they could either confirm or put to rest the speculation about this scenario rather quickly. It is probably also significant to note that with these latest revelations Jackie has chosen to lawyer up.
We don’t know for sure whether something happened to her that night or not. We pray nothing did. But despite the best efforts of a good many people (with the notable exception of The Rolling Stone) none of the details of her story have been verified and most of them have been shown to be false. Despite what some would have us believe charges of rape are always taken seriously and we will continue to do so even if this particular case proves to be a hoax. That is as it should be.
But there is a bit of a witch hunt mentality in the air these days where those who doubt a given case are accused of being rape apologists just as those who doubted charges of witchcraft were once considered to be in league with the Devil. This is not healthy and is the result of certain groups trying to keep everyone divided as a way of gaining political power.
Each case is individual and should not be imbued with any unwarranted, larger significance. But then when rape rates are falling and you want to gin up a panic all you are left with is anecdotes or with trying to make cases into something they are not. You can define rape and sexual assault down, or you can go shopping for instances that fit the narrative you want to promulgate as The Rolling Stone reporter did.
The only hitch is that when these agenda driven journalists go out to find instances of what they claim is a widespread problem they never seem to be able to find one that is actually illustrative of the problems they claim are so ubiquitous. There is a reason for that. Police aren’t hunting black men down in droves and there is no rape culture in the US. If you go looking for those sorts of stories the best you are likely to find are ones like Ferguson, Trayvon Martin, Lena Dunham or the U.Va. rape story. And that is something to be thankful for because it shows that the worst abuses are very, very rare — so rare in fact that journalists can’t find them when they need them.But who needs the truth when you can can control the narrative without it?