Dankprofessor’s Weblog

A weblog examining sexual politics in higher education and beyond.

On Roman Polanski

On Roman Polanski

By

Barry M. Dank*

There is no question that what Roman Polanski did to a 13 year old girl in the 1977 was wrong, and illegal. But it is also wrong to drag Polanski back to the US 31 years after the crime and have him spend an unspecified amount of time in prison. What possible good would come about by Polanski doing time for the crime? Obviously, it would not function to rehabilitate him or change him in some way. The fact that Polanski has had a stellar film career and apparently lived a law abiding life for 32 years after the crime is indicative that the case for changing Polanski is simply irrelevant.

Then there is a case for punishment. Polanski did something illegal and he should be punished. Of course, Polanski has been punished. He did 42 days at the Chino Men’s prison under the legal guise of being psychologically evaluated; his stay at Chino was for the purpose of punishment as viewed by the presiding judge. He has been socially stigmatized as a child rapist and has lived in a self-imposed exile. Just as in the cchild sex situation Polanski’s decision making was screwed up when he decided to flee from a possible 16 month sentence and ended up living for 31 years in a situation in which he could be arrested and extradited back to Los Angeles .

But the 42 days and a 31 year exile as punishment dwells into insignificance as compared to the trauma and punishment he experienced as a child surviving the mass murders of the Holocaust while losing his mother to the Nazi murderers in Poland and to the trauma and punishment he endured when his pregnant wife Sharon Tate and his baby to be and his two friends were barbarized and murdered by the Manson gang.

But  many have argued that this insanity Polanski went thru simply had nothing to do with his illegal sex with a 13 year old girl. For example, Ellen Snortland in an open letter to Roman Polanski states: “I assert that the statutory rape in 1977 will plague you until you make some type of sincere public amends. Backing an ‘end violence against women and girls’ film would be an astonishing act of atonement. Consider it. Talk to the lawyers.” Somehow Snortland avoids dealing with the fact that Polanski was intimately familiar with violence against women, that both his mother and wife were murdered, such is simply of no relevance to her.

To argue that his past traumas have relevance to Polanski’s illicit sex with a 13 year old girl in 1977 does not mean that I am excusing Polanski or condoning child abuse of any sort.

What I do argue with is the notion that Polanski’s criminal act should be fragmented off from the rest of his prior life.  To advocate that one should not look at Polanski past as it related to his actions in 1977 is a form of know nothingness.   Being horrified by what Polanski did in 1977 should not close us off from the horrors experienced by Polanski.

I think it is a safe to assume that very few persons would not be adversely affected by the killings of their mother, their wife and their unborn child, as well as being at the scene of mass murder as a child. In fact, some who have been through such extreme situations become psychologically numbed and live a robotic life. Others may be plagued by depression, feelings of alienation and aloneness and anger.

As a person who has worked with Holocaust survivors and Parents of Murdered Children, I know that almost always survivors go thru periods of tortuous survivor guilt. No matter that they are morally and legally innocent, they all too often experience the burden of feeling- ‘I should have been able to do something’, or as Polanski stated in 1985- “Sharon’s death is the only watershed in my life that really matters. Before she died, I sailed a boundless, untroubled sea of expectations and optimism. Afterward, whenever conscious of enjoying myself, I felt guilty. A psychiatrist I met shortly after her death warned me that it would take me “four years of mourning” to overcome this feeling. It has taken far longer than that”.

Polanski’s filmmaking demonstrates that he was intimately familiar with the nature of survivor guilt. Such was quite apparent in his 1976 film THE TENANT, a film which he both directed and starred. This was the last film he made prior to his involvement in the child rape. I believe that this film can provide a partial understanding of Polanski’s psychological state around the time of the crime.

For this film Polanski insisted that he play the role of the protagonist. The viewer saw Polanski playing the role of a French citizen of Polish background (Trelkovsky) living alone in Paris gradually descend into madness. The Polanski character was plagued with feelings of survival guilt, and a complete ungluing of a sense of self as he gave full vent to his feelings of paranoia. Ultimately he buys a gun, has fantasies of killing others but eventually he commits suicide by jumping out of his apartment window. He ends up killing himself in the same manner that the prior tenant of the apartment had killed herself.

Viewers who understood this film and were aware of Polanski’s history “knew” that Polanski chose not only to direct the film but to play the major role because to a significant degree he was playing himself. Polanski and Trelkovsky both had lived alone in Paris, both were French citizens of Polish background; and both felt alienated and alone in their immediate environments. Both had gone thru experiences that separated them off from others, from others who could not possibly understand them and the horrors they had gone thru.

One of the most jolting scenes in the film is when Trelkovsy is sitting in a park looking quite morose and viewing a child playing. He stands up, walks over to the child and slugs the child in the face and then walks way. This image of Trelkovsky sitting in the park came to visually represent Polanski; it was used as the cover photo for his 1985 autobiography and as the photo for the DVD jacket of the documentary, ROMAN POLANSKI; WANTED AND DESIRED.  The usages of this photo by Polanski illustrates the blurring of Polanski’s identity with that of Trelkovsy’s.

polanski

On the other hand, some people believe that all we need to know about Polanski is that he is a pedophile, his sexual preference being children and adolescents.  However, looking at Polanski’s life then and now one can immediately discern Polanski’s attraction.  His present wife, Emmanuelle Seigner is 33 years younger than himself; Samantha Geimer at the time of her victimage was 31 years younger than Polanski.  So Polanski’s ongoing sexual preference is for those who are significantly younger than himself.  Maybe this preference is a defense mechanism used by some who have experienced catastrophic loss.  Such a preference could function to diminish feelings of powerlessness and helplessness in “intimate” relationships; of course, such feelings are illusionary. But for Polanski whose specialty is illusions he could see this as simply being an extension of his role of Director.

Polanski in the 1970s was a man on the fringe; his art saved him for a time but not all the time as evidenced by the rape in 1977. But also during his entire adulthood, Polanski has engaged in extraordinarily creative filmmaking. And his filmmaking may be viewed in part as representing a survivor mission, as a way of his expiating his guilt and his creation of a “monument” to those he loved and to those whose deaths he could not prevent.

In his autobiography Polanski stated: “In moments of unbearable personal tragedy some people find solace in religion.  In my case the opposite happened. Any religious faith I had was shattered by Sharon’s murder.  It reinforced my faith in the absurd.”

To now drag Polanski back in, to put him into a prison is absurd. Over the last 31 years Roman Polanski has freed himself from his psychological prison as evidenced by his devotion to his wife and 2 children.  I fear that Polanski may see his only way out as being the same way out he created in THE TENANT- suicide.

Barry M. Dank is an emeritus professor of sociology at Cal State Long Beach.  He lives in Tubac, Arizona.

© Copyright 2009 by Barry M. Dank

October 7, 2009 - Posted by | rape, Roman Polanski, sex, The Tenant, Uncategorized, violence

43 Comments »

  1. “What possible good would come about by Polanski doing time for the crime?”

    I can tell you what possible harm can be done if he doesn’t face justice: people, especially foreign nationals, will feel that they can commit heinous crimes with no repercussions simply by fleeing.

    “Obviously, it would not function to rehabilitate him or change him in some way.”

    Rehabilitation is only one purpose of our legal system’s punishments. Another important function is “deterrence”, as in deterring other child molesters.

    “Of course, Polanski has been punished.”

    Neither Polanski nor his fans get to choose his punishment. Not even his victim does. That’s not how our justice system works.

    “He has been socially stigmatized as a child rapist…”

    That’s because he is, and it was his own doing.

    “…and has lived in a self-imposed exile.”

    It’s hardly self-imposed.

    “…exile as punishment dwells into insignificance as compared to the trauma he experienced when his pregnant wife Sharon Tate was barbarized and murdered…”

    I actually know people who have been victimized by the Manson family. Should I call them and let them know that because of their suffering, they’re entitled to drug and rape a 13 year old? That’s what you’re arguing.

    “…and the trauma he experienced as a child surviving the mass murders of the Holocaust…”

    I also know people who were affected by the Holocaust. To my knowledge, none of them are child rapists, nor do they believe they’re entitled to become one.

    “The life of Roman Polanski should be celebrated in the same manner that we just recently celebrated the life of Senator Edward Kennedy.”

    Those who wish to “celebrate” Polanski are free to continue doing so while he’s behind bars.

    Basically, your entire “different read” on Polanski is almost line-by-line absurd and irrelevant.

    And finally, “dankprofessor”, your blathering is hardly a “different read”. It’s almost word-for-word the same mindless drivel that any of Polanski’s supporters have offered up.

    Comment by anon81552 | October 7, 2009 | Reply

  2. Here is the grand jury testimony of the victim:

    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/polanskicover1.html

    She recounts asking to be taken home and resisting his advance numerous times.

    And here is Polanski’s plea:

    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2009/0928091polanskiplea1.html

    He admits to having sex with a girl that he knew to be under the age of 13, and pleads guilty to a felony.

    Comment by anon81552 | October 8, 2009 | Reply

    • Odd, Mr. anon81552, that you directed readers to smokinggun, but failed to point out the one report written by the probation investigator. Or were you unaware of that report? It may not reinforce your preconceptions. But it’s written by a third party without an axe to grind.

      Comment by Jack Butler | November 29, 2009 | Reply

  3. I WILL PUT MY RESPONSE TO MY CRITIC IN CAPS.

    I STARTED OUT IN THE VERY FIRST SENTENCE BY STATING THAT WHAT POLANSKI DID WAS WRONG, ILLEGAL AND DISGUSTING.

    What possible good would come about by Polanski doing time for the crime?”

    I can tell you what possible harm can be done if he doesn’t face justice: people, especially foreign nationals, will feel that they can commit heinous crimes with no repercussions simply by fleeing.

    IF FOREIGN NATIONALS WILL COME HERE BASED ON WHAT HAPPENED TO POLANSKI, THEY ARE ALREADY HERE; THEY HAVE HAD 31 YEARS TO COME. IN ANY CASE, WHAT POLANSKI DID WAS NOT SOME RATIONAL CONTEMPLATED CRIME; LISTEN TO HIM DISCUSS IT IN THE
    INTERVIEWS I HAVE POSTED.

    “Obviously, it would not function to rehabilitate him or change him in some way.”

    Rehabilitation is only one purpose of our legal system’s punishments. Another important function is “deterrence”, as in deterring other child molesters.

    YES, DETERRENCE IS ANOTHER POSSIBLE FUNCTION OF THE CJS. BUT EVERY STUDY HAS SHOWN THAT FOR DERRENCE TO BE EFFECTIVE
    IT MUST OCCUR IN AN IMMEDIATE SENSE. WAITING 31 YEARS DOES NOT FACILITATE DETERRENCE. IN ANY CASE, THE LA DISTRICT ATTORNEY WAS NEVER INTERESTED IN DETERRENCE; IF SO, THERE WOULD NEVER HAVE BEEN A PLEA BARGAIN FOR POLANSKI. AND THERE WOULD NEVER BE PLEA BARGAINS IN THIS SORT OF CASE, BUT THE NORM IS PLEA BARGAINING. IF THEY WERE REALLY INTERESTED IN DETERRENCE, NO PLEA BARGAIN AND ONCE POLANSKI WAS GONE THEN A LAUNCH OF A CONCERTED AND CONTINUING EFFORT TO GET POLANSKI.

    “Of course, Polanski has been punished.”

    Neither Polanski nor his fans get to choose his punishment. Not even his victim does. That’s not how our justice system works.

    OFTEN, NOT THE CASE. DAs BARGAIN WITH OFFENDERS AND MANY TIMES OFFENDERS GET THE LESSER PUNISHMENT THEY WANT. IN ANY CASE, POLANSKI WAS PUNISHED, BUT NOT AS MUCH AS YOU WANT.

    “He has been socially stigmatized as a child rapist…”

    That’s because he is, and it was his own doing.

    I AGREE.

    “…and has lived in a self-imposed exile.”

    It’s hardly self-imposed.

    “…exile as punishment dwells into insignificance as compared to the trauma he experienced when his pregnant wife Sharon Tate was barbarized and murdered…”

    I actually know people who have been victimized by the Manson family. Should I call them and let them know that because of their suffering, they’re entitled to drug and rape a 13 year old? That’s what you’re arguing.

    OF COURSE YOU SHOULDN’T DO THAT. NO ONE IS ENTITLED TO RAPE ANYONE. BUT ASK ANYONE WHO KNOWS ANYTHING ABOUT CRIMES OF VIOLENCE- THEY KNOW THAT THE VAST PREPONDERANCE OF PERSONS
    WHO AS ADULTS WERE VIOLENT CAME OUT OF ABUSIVE CHILDHOODS.
    REDUCE CHILDHOOD ABUSE AND TRAUMA AND YOU WILL REDUCE VIOLENT CRIME.

    “…and the trauma he experienced as a child surviving the mass murders of the Holocaust…”

    I also know people who were affected by the Holocaust. To my knowledge, none of them are child rapists, nor do they believe they’re entitled to become one.

    I KNOW SUCH PEOPLE AS WELL. I ONCE TAUGHT A COURSE ON THE HOLOCAUST. MY ISSUE IS NOT CHILD RAPE PER SE, BUT VIOLENCE AND ANTI-SOCIAL BEHAVIOR. THERE IS A HUGE LITERATURE ON MASSIVE PSYCHIC TRAUMA WHICH MANY HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS WENT THRU; PEOPLE DO NOT COME OUT OF THESE SITUATIONS UNAFFECTED.
    YES, POLANSKI RAPED AN INNOCENT YOUNG GIRL; POLANSKI’S
    INNOCENT WIFE WAS MURDERED SO WAS HIS MOTHER. I KNOW THAT YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND THAT VIOLENT OFFENDERS OFTEN PICK OUT PEOPLE WHO THEY SEE AS INNOCENT SINCE THEY SEE THEMSELVES AS
    BEING INNOCENT AND HAVE A REVENGE DO UNTO OTHERS PSYCHOLOGICAL SCENARIO. IT IS HARD FOR THE NAIVE TO UNDERSTAND THIS; SEE THE WORK OF ALICE MILLER IF YOU ARE
    SERIOUSLY INTERESTED IN VIOLENCE.

    “The life of Roman Polanski should be celebrated in the same manner that we just recently celebrated the life of Senator Edward Kennedy.”

    Those who wish to “celebrate” Polanski are free to continue doing so while he’s behind bars.

    Basically, your entire “different read” on Polanski is almost line-by-line absurd and irrelevant.

    And finally, “dankprofessor”, your blathering is hardly a “different read”. It’s almost word-for-word the same mindless drivel that any of Polanski’s supporters have offered up.

    LABELING MINDLESS DRIVEL DOES NOT HELP IN SERIOUS SITUATIONS
    SUCH AS WE HAVE HERE. NAME CALLING JUST FACILITATES AVOIDANCE AND DENIAL AND THE NAME CALLER FEELS GOOD FOR A COUPLE OF MINUTES.

    Comment by dankprofessor | October 8, 2009 | Reply

  4. In her short ‘blurb’ regarding “The Tenant” back in 1976, NYT Film Critic Pauline Kael characterized the film as “too subtle for mass audiences”.

    A RELATED FACEBOOK GROUP –
    Name: Roman Polanski Should Be Pardoned!
    Category: Common Interest – Beliefs & Causes
    Description: This is a group for individuals who believe Roman Polanski should be granted a legal pardon (executive clemency) by the governor of the great state of California (The Honorable Arnold Schwarzenegger).

    Comment by DICKERSON3870 | October 12, 2009 | Reply

  5. “I STARTED OUT IN THE VERY FIRST SENTENCE BY STATING THAT WHAT POLANSKI DID WAS WRONG, ILLEGAL AND DISGUSTING.”

    And then you spend the rest of your article minimizing what he did.

    “IN ANY CASE, WHAT POLANSKI DID WAS NOT SOME RATIONAL CONTEMPLATED CRIME; LISTEN TO HIM DISCUSS IT IN THE
    INTERVIEWS I HAVE POSTED.”

    First of all, it’s not a requirement that his crimes be premeditated. He’s still culpable.

    Secondly, whatever the convicted felon has to say is not particularly credible.

    On the other hand, his testimony and interviews with authorities are credible.

    In his testimony and interviews with authorities, he admits the following:

    – He took topless photos of a minor.
    – He provided a minor with alcohol and drugs.
    – He had sex with a girl that he knew to be 13.

    See his interview here:

    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2008/1203081roman18.html

    And his plea testimony here:

    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2009/0928091polanskiplea1.html

    All of those are currently, and were in 1977, crimes in California.

    In addition to that, he fled the country, which is a federal offense.

    None of those facts are in dispute. Both the victim and the convicted felon agreed on all of those points at the time of the crime.

    “IF THEY WERE REALLY INTERESTED IN DETERRENCE, NO PLEA BARGAIN AND ONCE POLANSKI WAS GONE THEN A LAUNCH OF A CONCERTED AND CONTINUING EFFORT TO GET POLANSKI.”

    The DA’s office has provided documentation that they made attempts to capture the fugitive on numerous occasions since he fled justice.

    See:

    http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-polanski-prosecutor29-2009sep29,0,465846.story?track=rss

    “OFTEN, NOT THE CASE. DAs BARGAIN WITH OFFENDERS AND MANY TIMES OFFENDERS GET THE LESSER PUNISHMENT THEY WANT. IN ANY CASE, POLANSKI WAS PUNISHED, BUT NOT AS MUCH AS YOU WANT.”

    It has nothing to do with what I want. It has to do with the rule of law.

    He was not punished according to the rule of law. The rule of law required, and Polanski agreed, that he show up for sentencing. He did not.

    “I KNOW SUCH PEOPLE AS WELL. I ONCE TAUGHT A COURSE ON THE HOLOCAUST.”

    Congratulations. Unfortunately, the Holocaust has zero to do with whether or not people who rape children should show up for their sentencing.

    “YES, POLANSKI RAPED AN INNOCENT YOUNG GIRL; POLANSKI’S
    INNOCENT WIFE WAS MURDERED SO WAS HIS MOTHER.”

    In the US, at least, there isn’t a debit & credit system where you’re allowed a certain number of crimes in return for past suffering.

    “I KNOW THAT YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND THAT VIOLENT OFFENDERS OFTEN PICK OUT PEOPLE WHO THEY SEE AS INNOCENT SINCE THEY SEE THEMSELVES AS BEING INNOCENT AND HAVE A REVENGE DO UNTO OTHERS PSYCHOLOGICAL SCENARIO.”

    No, you do not “know” that, you presume that.

    And, the fact that Polanski had “tragedy” in his life may be an explanation for his behavior, but it is neither an excuse, nor a reason that he shouldn’t have showed up for his sentencing.

    “IT IS HARD FOR THE NAIVE TO UNDERSTAND THIS; SEE THE WORK OF ALICE MILLER IF YOU ARE SERIOUSLY INTERESTED IN VIOLENCE.”

    I’m familiar with Alice Miller’s work, and have a number of her books.

    Taking up a condescending attitude isn’t going to strengthen your case.

    “LABELING MINDLESS DRIVEL DOES NOT HELP IN SERIOUS SITUATIONS SUCH AS WE HAVE HERE.”

    Fair enough. That was a shortcut, and lazy. I’ll be more specific.

    Your opinion piece is full of misrepresentation, proof by assertion, false analogies, rhetorical questions with no answers, irrelevant points, and a number of other flaws and fallacies.

    I will admit, the exploration of *why* a person like Polanski would rape a child is interesting. I think that’s a topic worth exploring.

    However, to take the leap from “this is what contributed to him committing an evil act” to “expecting him to face justice, as he agreed to, is cruel & absurd” is, in itself, absurd.

    “NAME CALLING JUST FACILITATES AVOIDANCE AND DENIAL AND THE NAME CALLER FEELS GOOD FOR A COUPLE OF MINUTES.”

    I see. I guess calling me “naive” and saying that you “know that I don’t understand” doesn’t count, right?

    I certainly agree that Polanski is our generation’s finest child molesting director. However, that doesn’t excuse him from facing sentencing, as he agreed to do 31 years ago.

    Our justice system already takes into account a perpetrator’s background, contributions to society, and likelihood to re-offend.

    Polanski has been convicted of a felony (a plea of “guilty” is the same as a conviction) and admitted to several more. He agreed to face sentencing, and did not.

    It’s not up to his fans to decide whether or not he has “suffered” enough, any more than it’s up to me.

    However, he has a legal and moral obligation to face sentencing.

    Comment by anon81552 | October 14, 2009 | Reply

  6. I see you’ve posted two interviews with the perpetrator, as well as the favorable parole report.

    I’m not sure why you haven’t posted the victim’s grand jury testimony (which was under oath) or Polanski’s plea testimony (which was under oath, and during which he confessed to unlawful intercourse, aka “statutory rape”) or the police report detailing the initial interview with Polanski where he admits to supplying the girl with drugs & alcohol, and doesn’t refute or deny any of the accusations against him.

    They’re all available online and are easy to find.

    Let me know if you need help finding them!

    Comment by anon81552 | October 14, 2009 | Reply

  7. Oh! I just noticed another couple of omissions.

    I don’t see a pointer to the interview where he claims that “judges”, “juries” and “everyone” want to “f—” young girls.

    I also don’t see anything about how, after the parole report that said he was “unlikely” to re-offend, he immediately started (or continued) a sexual relationship with 15 year old Nastassja Kinksi.

    Just trying to help helpful!

    Comment by anon81552 | October 14, 2009 | Reply

    • anon81552: Polanski had a sexual relationship with Kinski before the probation report. She was legal in France. So, it wasn’t a re-offense. But, it might not have met your standards. But to call it a violation of the law would be incorrect. Just trying to be helpful.

      Comment by Jack Butler | November 29, 2009 | Reply

  8. (My new comments are in parentheses.)

    “I STARTED OUT IN THE VERY FIRST SENTENCE BY STATING THAT WHAT POLANSKI DID WAS WRONG, ILLEGAL AND DISGUSTING.”

    And then you spend the rest of your article minimizing what he did.

    “IN ANY CASE, WHAT POLANSKI DID WAS NOT SOME RATIONAL CONTEMPLATED CRIME; LISTEN TO HIM DISCUSS IT IN THE
    INTERVIEWS I HAVE POSTED.”

    First of all, it’s not a requirement that his crimes be premeditated. He’s still culpable.

    (True, but the premeditation becomes relevant in determining what the person will be charged with, what the person is guilty of, usually the more serious the act is considered the more serious the charge and the conviction. Of course, in LA everything can be bargained almost all of the time. Of course, bargained justice may not be considered what you or I consider justice.)

    Secondly, whatever the convicted felon has to say is not particularly credible.

    On the other hand, his testimony and interviews with authorities are credible.

    (You appear to contradict yourself in the prior two sentences, why is he credible in one context and completely not credible in another context. I am not thoroughly informed as to the context of the interviews. It MAY have been a scenario- tell them what they want to hear and we will see to it that you do not do prison or serious prison time. I expect that Polanski was being advised by an attorney at that time and was being told what to say; of course, he didn’t have to say what his attorney wanted him to say. But, and this is of utmost importance, people in jail almost always want to get out of jail, so if there is a deal getting them out of jail sooner rather than later, they take the sooner option.)

    In his testimony and interviews with authorities, he admits the following:

    – He took topless photos of a minor.
    – He provided a minor with alcohol and drugs.
    – He had sex with a girl that he knew to be 13.

    See his interview here:

    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2008/1203081roman18.html

    And his plea testimony here:

    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2009/0928091polanskiplea1.html

    All of those are currently, and were in 1977, crimes in California.

    In addition to that, he fled the country, which is a federal offense.

    None of those facts are in dispute. Both the victim and the convicted felon agreed on all of those points at the time of the crime.

    (Again you assume that in this process both the charged and the victim are not manipulated by the DAs attorneys. I don’t know the nature of the manipulation. But manipulation almost always goes on. You give no recognition to this possibility- this is one of the reasons I call you naïve.)

    “IF THEY WERE REALLY INTERESTED IN DETERRENCE, NO PLEA BARGAIN AND ONCE POLANSKI WAS GONE THEN A LAUNCH OF A CONCERTED AND CONTINUING EFFORT TO GET POLANSKI.”

    The DA’s office has provided documentation that they made attempts to capture the fugitive on numerous occasions since he fled justice.

    (The numerous times I believe was 7 times over a 31 year time period; if the LA DA office was serious about getting Polanski,
    he would have been apprehended 30 years ago. They got Polanski when they wanted to get him.)

    See:

    http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-polanski-prosecutor29-2009sep29,0,465846.story?track=rss

    “OFTEN, NOT THE CASE. DAs BARGAIN WITH OFFENDERS AND MANY TIMES OFFENDERS GET THE LESSER PUNISHMENT THEY WANT. IN ANY CASE, POLANSKI WAS PUNISHED, BUT NOT AS MUCH AS YOU WANT.”

    It has nothing to do with what I want. It has to do with the rule of law.

    (Well, I am responding in part to what you want. As for the rule of law, sounds good in principle but it is generally not practiced in LA; there is little justice in the criminal justice system. You hold the law as sacrosanct, fine, but the people who apply the law don’t see it that way in general; for one thing the public doesn’t give them the money to apply the law in a serious manner, and after a year or so in the system, the most idealistic become cynical about what is going on.)

    He was not punished according to the rule of law. The rule of law required, and Polanski agreed, that he show up for sentencing. He did not.

    “I KNOW SUCH PEOPLE AS WELL. I ONCE TAUGHT A COURSE ON THE HOLOCAUST.”

    Congratulations. Unfortunately, the Holocaust has zero to do with whether or not people who rape children should show up for their sentencing.

    (Putting it in your terms, you are right. But I have been attempting to deal with Polanski as a person who had gone thru horrendous situations- his mother murdered, his wife and baby to be murdered and his two good friends murdered because he asked his friends to stay with his wife when he was in London. Few people understand the nature of survivor guilt, how tortuous such guilt is; I believe that this guilt which is of a pathological nature structured his life through the 1970s, and was integrally involved in the rape of this young girl. I am not using this as an excuse but rather as an explanation. )

    “YES, POLANSKI RAPED AN INNOCENT YOUNG GIRL; POLANSKI’S
    INNOCENT WIFE WAS MURDERED SO WAS HIS MOTHER.”

    In the US, at least, there isn’t a debit & credit system where you’re allowed a certain number of crimes in return for past suffering.
    (My prior comment dealt with your statement. It appears that you are not interested in explanations.)

    “I KNOW THAT YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND THAT VIOLENT OFFENDERS OFTEN PICK OUT PEOPLE WHO THEY SEE AS INNOCENT SINCE THEY SEE THEMSELVES AS BEING INNOCENT AND HAVE A REVENGE DO UNTO OTHERS PSYCHOLOGICAL SCENARIO.”

    No, you do not “know” that, you presume that.

    And, the fact that Polanski had “tragedy” in his life may be an explanation for his behavior, but it is neither an excuse, nor a reason that he shouldn’t have showed up for his sentencing.

    (Of course it was in his interest for him to appear in court, but you see Polanski as in some sense as being rational, I don’t.)

    “IT IS HARD FOR THE NAIVE TO UNDERSTAND THIS; SEE THE WORK OF ALICE MILLER IF YOU ARE SERIOUSLY INTERESTED IN VIOLENCE.”

    I’m familiar with Alice Miller’s work, and have a number of her books.

    Taking up a condescending attitude isn’t going to strengthen your case.

    “LABELING MINDLESS DRIVEL DOES NOT HELP IN SERIOUS SITUATIONS SUCH AS WE HAVE HERE.”

    Fair enough. That was a shortcut, and lazy. I’ll be more specific.

    Your opinion piece is full of misrepresentation, proof by assertion, false analogies, rhetorical questions with no answers, irrelevant points, and a number of other flaws and fallacies.

    I will admit, the exploration of *why* a person like Polanski would rape a child is interesting. I think that’s a topic worth exploring.

    However, to take the leap from “this is what contributed to him committing an evil act” to “expecting him to face justice, as he agreed to, is cruel & absurd” is, in itself, absurd.

    (I think it is equally absurd to argue that Polanski has never been punished. Do you think that the time he is spending in a Swiss jail is not punitive? That 43 days in Chino’s men’s prison is not punitive? He is being punished. I fear that he may see suicide as his only escape.)

    “NAME CALLING JUST FACILITATES AVOIDANCE AND DENIAL AND THE NAME CALLER FEELS GOOD FOR A COUPLE OF MINUTES.”

    I see. I guess calling me “naive” and saying that you “know that I don’t understand” doesn’t count, right?

    I certainly agree that Polanski is our generation’s finest child molesting director. However, that doesn’t excuse him from facing sentencing, as he agreed to do 31 years ago.

    Our justice system already takes into account a perpetrator’s background, contributions to society, and likelihood to re-offend.

    Polanski has been convicted of a felony (a plea of “guilty” is the same as a conviction) and admitted to several more. He agreed to face sentencing, and did not.

    It’s not up to his fans to decide whether or not he has “suffered” enough, any more than it’s up to me.

    However, he has a legal and moral obligation to face sentencing.

    (The legal system is based on coercion as for him having a moral obligation, such is debatable, but I will not debate that subject now.

    As for the role of others, you, his fans, et.al., in having a say in Polanski’s outcome, whether we like it or not the 13th juror can and often does play a role.

    One final note or question, why do you choose not to use your real name in this discussion. Of course, you have no legal obligation to do so, but is there some ethical obligation involved?)

    Comment by dankprofessor | October 14, 2009 | Reply

  9. “True, but the premeditation becomes relevant in determining what the person will be charged with, what the person is guilty of…”

    Yes, but we aren’t at the point of sentencing yet.

    Premeditation has nothing to do with whether or not Polanski is a convicted felon who fled justice. It’s a red herring, thrown in to mitigate the seriousness of what Polanski has done.

    Premeditation or not, Polanski admitted to having sex with a girl he knew to be 13, and jumped bail. He is therefore subject to arrest, extradition, and further court action.

    “Of course, bargained justice may not be considered what you or I consider justice.”

    Again, a red herring to mitigate what Polanski has done. Casting aspersions on the practice of “plea bargains” has nothing to do with the fact that Polanski is a convicted felon who jumped bail.

    Secondly, whatever the convicted felon has to say is not particularly credible.

    “You appear to contradict yourself in the prior two sentences, why is he credible in one context and completely not credible in another context.”

    You’re right, I left out one important qualifier. It is a fundamental legal principal that when someone lies, they tend to do so to get themselves *out* of trouble, not *into* trouble.

    To suggest that Polanski’s admission to having sex with the girl isn’t credible is disingenuous. Neither Polanski nor his supporters are arguing that he didn’t actually have sex with this girl.

    The fact that Polanski had sex with a girl that he knew to be 13 years old is stipulated by the victim, Polanski, and his supporters alike.

    “I am not thoroughly informed as to the context of the interviews. It MAY have been a scenario- tell them what they want to hear and we will see to it that you do not do prison or serious prison time.”

    Yes, and it MAY have been a scenario where the one-armed man did it.

    Again, there is *no* disagreement at this time by anyone as to whether or not Polanski had sex with this girl.

    “But, and this is of utmost importance, people in jail almost always want to get out of jail, so if there is a deal getting them out of jail sooner rather than later, they take the sooner option.”

    Again, in the past 31 years, Polanski has never disputed that he had sex with this girl.

    “Again you assume that in this process both the charged and the victim are not manipulated by the DAs attorneys.”

    Again, you are asking us to believe that Polanski was “set up” and hasn’t bothered to mention this to anyone for the past 31 years.

    You, yourself, wrote: “There is no question that what Roman Polanski did to a 13 year old girl in the 1970s was wrong, illegal and disgusting.”

    So, pick a position. Either what Polanski did was wrong and he shouldn’t be punished, or Polanski didn’t do it after all.

    “I don’t know the nature of the manipulation.”

    This is amazing. You’ve gone from conceding that what Polanski did was wrong, to saying that manipulation “MAY” have happened, to asserting that manipulation did, in fact, happen.

    “You give no recognition to this possibility- this is one of the reasons I call you naïve.”

    You’re absolutely right. Maybe Polanski really didn’t do it. Maybe he was framed, but for some reason confessed to it, and then “forgot to mention” that he was framed for 31 years.

    How naive of me.

    “The numerous times I believe was 7 times over a 31 year time period”

    So, the argument morphs again.

    First, the DA’s office “never” tried to arrest him.

    Now, you concede that they did, but it wasn’t enough times to satisfy you.

    “…if the LA DA office was serious about getting Polanski,
    he would have been apprehended 30 years ago.”

    The LA DA’s office doesn’t have infinite resources to chase a globe-trotting escaped felon all over the world. Especially when he tries to avoid countries with an extradition treaty with the US.

    “They got Polanski when they wanted to get him.”

    What relevance does this have with whether or not Polanski is an escaped felon who should now face justice?

    Your original thesis is that Polanski has “suffered enough” and should be “celebrated like Kennedy”.

    “As for the rule of law, sounds good in principle but it is generally not practiced in LA; there is little justice in the criminal justice system.”

    This is just more argument by assertion.

    “Putting it in your terms, you are right. But I have been attempting to deal with Polanski as a person who had gone thru horrendous situations…”

    If the thesis of your original piece had been “Polanski is a tragic figure” or something similar, I wouldn’t have taken exception to it.

    However, your thesis was “hasn’t Polanski suffered enough? He should be celebrated, not punished!”

    Many incarcerated criminals have had terrible tragedies in their lives. It doesn’t mean that they’ve “suffered enough” and should be set free.

    “…and was integrally involved in the rape of this young girl.”

    So now we’re back to conceding that he really did have sex with this girl? I’m getting whiplash.

    “My prior comment dealt with your statement. It appears that you are not interested in explanations.”

    I’ve already conceded a number of times that his background contributed to his psychopathology. I’ve also said several times that it’s irrelevant with regards to whether or not he should be expected to be held accountable for his crimes.

    It appears that you are not interested in explanations.

    “I think it is equally absurd to argue that Polanski has never been punished.”

    I have never argued that he “has never been punished”.

    If he’s spent a single hour in jail, he’s “been punished”. If he’s had a stern talking to, he’s “been punished”.

    The question is not whether or not he’s “been punished”, the question is whether or not he’s faced justice in the way that *he agreed to*.

    Polanski agreed to appear for sentencing *in exchange for* the dropping of five felony charges.

    That is, Polanski received something of great value in return for his agreeing to the lesser sentence, and then decided to unilaterally break that agreement.

    “Do you think that the time he is spending in a Swiss jail is not punitive?”

    That is *his* choice. Polanski is the one choosing to fight extradition. Polanski is the one who could have tried to resolve this issue for the past 31 years.

    “The legal system is based on coercion…”

    If Polanski didn’t want to be “coerced”, he was free to face trial on all six of the felony counts.

    Considering he admitted to several of the counts, and to this day doesn’t deny several others, I don’t think he would have fared very well.

    There are always apologists for any criminal, regardless of how heinous the crime, who seem to think that the justice system, instead of guaranteeing a “fair trial”, is supposed to guarantee “getting away with it”.

    “…as for him having a moral obligation, such is debatable, but I will not debate that subject now.”

    Of course, why should you? Why debate whether or not fleeing justice is moral, when you can muddy the waters by talking about the “terrible tragedy” in his life, and question whether or not he actually had sex with the victim at all?

    “As for the role of others, you, his fans, et.al., in having a say in Polanski’s outcome, whether we like it or not the 13th juror can and often does play a role.”

    There’s no 13th juror in this case, because there wasn’t a 12th juror or even a first juror.

    Polanski pleaded guilty to a felony. He is, therefore, a convicted felon. He is a convicted felon who jumped bail.

    The question of whether not a convicted felon who jumped bail should face justice is an uncontroversial one. For some reason, when you throw in “Oscar winning”, “Holocaust survivor”, “murdered wife” and some other characteristics, there are suddenly people who try to concoct an explanation as to why the rules don’t apply to him.

    “One final note or question, why do you choose not to use your real name in this discussion. Of course, you have no legal obligation to do so, but is there some ethical obligation involved?”

    This is a fascinating question.

    Are you seriously arguing that Roman Polanski, an admitted and convicted sexual felon, has no “ethical obligation” to appear before a judge, as he *agreed* to, but ask if a person has an ethical obligation to provide their identity when posting in a public forum?

    Let me ask this: is it your position that a man should be able to have sex with whomever he wants, regardless of age, with no consequences?

    I really want to know.

    Because, questioning the “ethics” of keeping one’s identity to oneself while denying that a sexual criminal’s evasion of the law isn’t unethical seems to imply that.

    Comment by anon81552 | October 16, 2009 | Reply

  10. “One final note or question, why do you choose not to use your real name in this discussion. Of course, you have no legal obligation to do so, but is there some ethical obligation involved?”

    I just thought of one circumstance that might make it “unethical” for me to comment anonymously.

    If I were a representative of, say, the LA County DA’s office, or connected to the case in some other way, then anonymously publishing information about the case might be considered unethical.

    Is that what you’re getting at? Or are you questioning the ethics of commenting anonymously in general?

    Just to be clear, neither I nor anyone I know are connected to this case or any similar case in any way.

    Comment by anon81552 | October 16, 2009 | Reply

    • anon81552: Your name is….?

      Comment by Jack Butler | November 29, 2009 | Reply

  11. By the way, I notice that your “Polanski links” still don’t contain Polanski’s admissions of guilt or the victim’s testimony.

    I’m bringing this oversight to your attention, because I’m sure you wouldn’t want it to appear that you’re being intellectually dishonest by only presenting facts about the case that support your own point of view.

    Hope this helps!

    Comment by anon81552 | October 16, 2009 | Reply

  12. You take a legalistic position throughout your response. And there is much that I cannot disagree with you as to the legal facts- yes he jumped bail and yes he admitted to sex with a 13 year old girl,
    but no I do not think he is a convicted felon.
    But I also know this, and I assume you know this, that throughout the legal system there is discretion-police disecretion, prosecutor discretion, judicial discretion. The criminal justice system is not a robotic system.

    If one could look at the year 1978, the year Polanski jumped bail, I expect that you will see a large number of cases in which persons jumped bail, and a signicant percentage of persons who have not been pursued and apprehended. I expect that Polanski is the only person who jumped bail in 79 and has been arrested in 2009 or 2008, etc, etec. Criminal justice agents decide what and who is worth pursuing or de facto what represents justice although many times justice doesn’t even enter into it.

    My bottom line that the type of discretion that should be practiced at this time re the extradiction of Polanski is that US authorities simply drop it. I have already outlined why I think that the system should simply let Polanski go. The core of why I believe this is not that Polanski is a celebrity that merits special consideration by the CJ system but rather my position comes out of my experience with Holocaust survivors and Parents of Murdered Children. I believe and I feel I know that Polasnski went thru hellish experiences with the killing of his mother then of his wife and child to be and then his two dear friends who he asked to stay with Sharon while he was in London. Polanski had been psychologically scarred and up to the time of the rape, his films, particularly, THE TENANT, revealed how the nature of such scarring can lead one to be mired in guilt and pathology. This man has been punished enough, now for the State to come in and sentence him to spend time in prison is just too much. Yes, he made a mistake by fleeing in 1978, but it would be a mistake ethically to extradite him now; in my opinion the ethical thing to do now is to drop the extradiction. This is also what the victim wants. But if the DA and whatever other authorities are involved choose not to do so, such, of course is legally correct, but is not in my opinion the humane thing to do. Such is the nature of my ethics.

    Or maybe one can put it in these terms- as an inocent person, as a son, a husband and a friend, Polanski has been horribly punished. But now we will punish him as a convicted guilty person; we are not concerned as to what occurred to him previously. My response- Enough! He has been punished enough. There is no gain here for anyone except for those who gain some sort of personal gratification from said punishment.

    Comment by dankprofessor | October 16, 2009 | Reply

    • i would like to commend both Dr Dank and ” anon81552″ for reducing the ad hominum elements of the discussion and attempting to argue the merits.

      I have to say that I don’t feel that I would “gain some sort of personal gratification” from punishing RRPolanski more appropriately. I do think that it would be the right thing to do, and send a message that celebrity is not above the law.

      I agree that the LA legal system is badly flawed; in fact I believe the American legal system is badly flawed period, in this way: in general, the poor go to jail, guilty or not, and those rich enough do not, guilty or innocent. This is because the rich overpower public proscecutors, having vastly more resources; and public proscecutors overpower public defenders, having vastly more resources, relatively speaking.

      Nonetheless, the question is what is the right thing to do regarding Roman Polanski, leave him alone or punish him further? Prosecutorial misconduct is not a defense; it is a separate issue.

      On the question of should Roman be (further) punished I have to believe that 43 days under psychiatric observation at Chino Men’s Prison is NOT an sufficient punishment for seducing, drugging with alcohol and quaaludes, and then orally, vaginally, and anally raping a 13 year old human female. Not to mention that flight from justice should also be punished.

      Finally, I note that the conclusion by Roman’s defenders that there was no premeditation is contradicted by the evidence. Since Vogue Hommes denies that it gave Roman a photo assignment it appears that Roman made the “photo shoot” up to get a young girl alone and naked or semi-naked. I also note that the uncontradicted testimony of the girl at the time is that she said “no” over and over; tried to leave several times; and made up a story about asthma to excape the seduction.

      Comment by David | October 25, 2009 | Reply

  13. While I agree with the injustice of Polanski’s persecution 32 years after his crime when no efforts were made previously to arrest and prosecute him. (He’s had a house in Switzerland for 12 years).

    As a criminal defense attorney, who knows Holocaust survivors, that experience, however awful, certainly does not excuse Polanski’s behavior in any way.

    Also, the murder of Sharon Tate a decade earlier likewise does not.

    The problem is he’s being used as a police tool to obscure the fact that L.A. has the worst record anywhere of prosecuting or pursuing sex offenders (other than the 76 Polish and French ones).

    Comment by Cedric | October 26, 2009 | Reply

  14. It may not excuse in a formal legal sense, but the background of the individual can be employed to diminish the penalty. In any case, my focus has been on explaining rather than excusing.

    Comment by dankprofessor | October 26, 2009 | Reply

    • dankprofessor wrote: “It may not excuse in a formal legal sense, but the background of the individual can be employed to diminish the penalty.”

      It was. The probation report bent over backwards to talk about what a great guy he is, how unlikely he was to re-offend (although he went straight from jumping bail to sleeping with a 15 year old) the contributions he’s made, his “difficult childhood”.

      This man committed crimes that could have resulted in *years* of prison. Instead, the recommendation was extremely lenient

      “In any case, my focus has been on explaining rather than excusing.”

      Well, I see that you’ve removed the suggestion that we “celebrate him” like Ted Kennedy. That’s good.

      Comment by anon81552 | October 28, 2009 | Reply

  15. He underwent a psychological evaluation though, and the media was critical of his lack of reaction to Sharon Tate’s death. It really doesn’t explain pedophilia.

    Also, I think it’s really dangerous to invoke his brilliant filmaking since artists have to live on the fringes. One, there are plenty of authors, e.g., Kafka, Wallace Stevens, etc. who had completely quotidian and boring lives, but made amazing work. Nor does one need to call upon creativity through acting out behavior of one’s characters. For instance, Lolita is an amazing piece of literature, but Nabakov wasn’t a child molester.

    Also, toward explanation, it’s pretty impossible to know why someone develops such a disorder. Knowing victims of molestation, and having (unfortunately) worked for a firm that defended the L.A. Archdiocese, I think priests wind up doing it because of suppressing their sexual instinct. But most priests don’t molest, most people whose parents survived the holocaust did not become criminals in any way, and most people whose wives were murdered didn’t engage in the activities themselves.

    This is why insanity is never used as a defense, and it’s definitely not true in Roman’s case. It’s obvious he knew what he was doing, and obvious it was wrong, no matter what his past was. (For instance, there are plenty abused children, rape victims, and crime victims who go on to better lives).

    Finally, there’s no linkage to his brilliant filmmaker and this action. Tons of ‘outsider’ filmmakers exist who did not engage in criminal activity. Godard, Wim Wenders, The Cohen Brothers, Aronofsky, Scorcese, Jim Jarmusch, Errol Morris, and innumerable others. Many of whom have addressed serious and disturbing subject matter in their movies as well. Just as while I still like Mad Max and Braveheart, Mel Gibson’s obvious anti-semetism makes me seriously dislike him as a person. And while I respect Tom Cruise as an actor, I think Scientology is ludicrous.

    I just don’t think there’s any explanation for his behavior other than that he did something profoundly wrong to an underage girl. And I think he should have been sentenced to more time then. But 32 years later, when our city is broke, and yet spent 6.5 million on MJ’a funeral is an obvious political move, and a really sickening one, since it was only done AFTER the victim filed papers asking to dismiss the suit.

    That’s the problem with our system. We don’t rehabilitate. We incarcerate and then let people back out, with the same skill set, more knowledge about crime, and a felony record. And we put people in jail for being drug addicts. This stuff is absurd, since these crimes don’t hurt others. But regardless of what Polanski experienced, it has nothing to do with what happened more than 3 decades after the Holocaust and over a decade after his wife and child were murdered.

    It’s just that it gives the lock the guy up and cut off his balls group more flame to the fire when you connect his misdeed with his art, or in anyway try to explain it through his troubled past.

    Comment by Cedric | October 26, 2009 | Reply

  16. Cedric, See my comments in CAPS

    He underwent a psychological evaluation though, and the media was critical of his lack of reaction to Sharon Tate’s death. It really doesn’t explain pedophilia.

    NO NEED TO EXPLAIJN PEDOPHILIA SINCE THERE IS NO EVIDENCE THAT POLANSKI WAS OR IS A PEDOPHILE. MEDIA HAS ALMOST ALWAYS BEEN CRITICAL OF POLANSKI. THERE IS NO FORMULAIC RESPONSE TO THE KIND OF SITUATION POLANSKI WENT THRU. IT VARIES FROM BECOMING NUMBED TO HYSTERIA.

    Also, I think it’s really dangerous to invoke his brilliant filmaking since artists have to live on the fringes. One, there are plenty of authors, e.g., Kafka, Wallace Stevens, etc. who had completely quotidian and boring lives, but made amazing work. Nor does one need to call upon creativity through acting out behavior of one’s characters. For instance, Lolita is an amazing piece of literature, but Nabakov wasn’t a child molester.

    OF COURSE WHAT YOU SAY ABOUT NABAKOV IS TRUE, BUT HAS NO BEARING IN REGARDS TO POLANSKI. POLANSKI INSISTED ON PLAYING THE LEAD,TREVOSKY, IN THE TENANT. THE CHARACTER’S BACKGROUND IS EERILY SIMILAR TO THAT OF POLANSKI. THE FILM FOCUSED ON SURVIVOR GUILT WHICH 1N 1985 POLANSKI INDICATED IN HIS AUTOBIOGRAPHY HE STILL SUFFERED FROM. I SAW THIS FILM WHEN I WAS WORKING WITH HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS AND PARENTS OF MURDERED CHILDREN WITHOUT ANY FOREWARNING AND THE FILM WAS CHILLING, IT BLEW ME AWAY. IT WAS SO TERRIBLY ACCURATE AS TO WHAT SOME SURVIVORS HAVE GONE THRU. MY BELIEF THAT POLANSKI SAW HIMSELF PLAYING HIMSELF IN THE FILM IS INDICATED BY THE PICTURE OF POLANSKI AS TREVOSKY, POLANSKI USED THIS PICTURE TO APPEAR ON THE JACKET OF HIS AUTOBIOGRAPHY AND THE DVD OF WANTED AND DESIRED USES THE SAME PICTURE. OF COURSE, THIS FILM WAS HIS LAST FILM PRIOR TO THE 1977 “STATUTORY RAPE”. I COULD GO ON AND ON AND I WILL BE RESEARCHING POLANSKI INTERVIEWS IN REGARDS TO THE FILM AND RELATED MATTERS.

    Also, toward explanation, it’s pretty impossible to know why someone develops such a disorder. Knowing victims of molestation, and having (unfortunately) worked for a firm that defended the L.A. Archdiocese, I think priests wind up doing it because of suppressing their sexual instinct. But most priests don’t molest, most people whose parents survived the holocaust did not become criminals in any way, and most people whose wives were murdered didn’t engage in the activities themselves.

    WHAT YOU SAY IS LITERALLY TRUE, BUT ISSUES TO DO WITH POWERLESSNESS ARE CORE FOR BOTH GROUPS OF SURVIVORS. THEIR FEELINGS OF POWERLESSNESS IN REGARDS TO BEING UNABLE TO DO ANYTHING; THE AGONIZING GUILT ASSOCIATED WITH SUCH POWERLESSNESS IS COMMONPLACE. AND IN THE SEXUAL/INTIMACY AREA WHERE THE SURVIVOR LOST A MATE OR LOVER, OR ONE WHOLE FAMILY, NOT BEING IN A SITUATION OF POWERLESNESS BECOMES OF KEY IMPORTANCE. THE FACT THAT POLANSKI DATED TEENS ILLUSTRATED THIS; HIS POWER WAS PARAMOUNT. HE PROBABLY FELT MORE SECURE IN THESE SORTS OF SITUATIONS WHICH OF COURSE WAS ILLUSIONARY.

    This is why insanity is never used as a defense, and it’s definitely not true in Roman’s case. It’s obvious he knew what he was doing, and obvious it was wrong, no matter what his past was. (For instance, there are plenty abused children, rape victims, and crime victims who go on to better lives).

    I AGREE ABOUT THE DEFENSE OF INSANITY. POLANSKI WAS NOT INSANE IN LEGAL TERMS OR ANY OTHER TERMS. OF COURSE, THERE
    ARE PEOPLE WHO HAVE COME OUT OF ABUSIVE SITUATIONS WHO HAVE GONE ON TO BETTER LIVES- I WOULD PUT POLANSKI IN THAT CATEGORY. BUT THE OVERWHELMING PERCENTAGE OF PERSONS WHO COMMIT VIOLENT CRIMES WERE ABUSED IN THEIR CHILDHOOD. THE KEY TO DECREASE VIOLENT CRIME IS TO DECREASE THE PERCENTAGE OF ADULTS WHO WERE ABUSED AS CHILDREN. TO SAY THAT MANY PEOPLE WHO WERE ABUSED DON’T ABUSE AS ADULTS AVOIDS THE REALITY OF THE BACKGROUND OF MOST VIOLENT CRIMINALS. I COULD GO ON AND ON, BUT…

    Finally, there’s no linkage to his brilliant filmmaker and this action. Tons of ‘outsider’ filmmakers exist who did not engage in criminal activity. Godard, Wim Wenders, The Cohen Brothers, Aronofsky, Scorcese, Jim Jarmusch, Errol Morris, and innumerable others. Many of whom have addressed serious and disturbing subject matter in their movies as well. Just as while I still like Mad Max and Braveheart, Mel Gibson’s obvious anti-semetism makes me seriously dislike him as a person. And while I respect Tom Cruise as an actor, I think Scientology is ludicrous.

    I AGREE WITH EVERYTHING YOU SAID IN THE PRIOR PARAGRAPH. I WOULD ALSO SAY THAT NONE OF THE ABOVE HAVE GONE THRU THE HORRORS THAT POLLANSKI HAS GONE THRU.

    I just don’t think there’s any explanation for his behavior other than that he did something profoundly wrong to an underage girl. And I think he should have been sentenced to more time then. But 32 years later, when our city is broke, and yet spent 6.5 million on MJ’a funeral is an obvious political move, and a really sickening one, since it was only done AFTER the victim filed papers asking to dismiss the suit.

    I AGREE WITH YOUR POLITICAL ANALYSIS OF THE SITUATION, BUT I DO NOT AGREE THAT POLANSKI’S BEHAVIOR IS UNEXPLAINABLE.
    IF WE BELIEVE A PRIORI THAT SOMETHING CANNOT BE EXPLAINED THEN WE WON’T BE EXPLAINING IT

    That’s the problem with our system. We don’t rehabilitate. We incarcerate and then let people back out, with the same skill set, more knowledge about crime, and a felony record. And we put people in jail for being drug addicts. This stuff is absurd, since these crimes don’t hurt others. But regardless of what Polanski experienced, it has nothing to do with what happened more than 3 decades after the Holocaust and over a decade after his wife and child were murdered.

    WASN’T THE MANSON KILLINGS IN 1969, THIS MAKES IT ONLY 8 YEARS AFTER THE MURDER OF SHARON AND BABY TO BE AND HIS TWO GOOD FRIENDS. 24 YEARS AFTER THE HOLOCAUST IS NOT A HUGE AMOUNT OF TIME FOR SURVIVORS. DO YOU THINK THAT THEY CAN JUST WALK AWAY FROM THIS AS THE YEARS PASS BY, MAYBE SOME CAN. BUT I WILL TELL YOU THIS- IT WAS ABOUT 1980- AND I WAS ATTENDING PARENTS OF MURDERED CHILDREN MEETINGS FOR PARENTS WHO HAD “LOST” THEIR CHILD WITHIN THE LAST COUPLE OF YEARS TO LAST WEEK. SO ON TUESDAY ATTENDED THE POMC GROUP AND THEN ON WEDNESDAY I ATTENDED A HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS SUPPORT GROUP, AND THE SORT OF THINGS THAT WERE BROUGHT UP IN THE HOLOCAUST GROUP WERE QUITE SIMILAR TO WHAT WAS BROUGHT UP IN THE POMC. SOMETIMES IT WAS IDENTICAL. THE WOUNDS WERE STILL QUITE OPEN FOR THESE SURVIVORS.

    It’s just that it gives the lock the guy up and cut off his balls group more flame to the fire when you connect his misdeed with his art, or in anyway try to explain it through his troubled past.

    YOUR LAST PARAGRAPH DOES NOT MAKE SENSE TO ME. I CONSIDER THE SITUATION TO BE JUST THE OPPOSITE. I ATTEMPT TO HUMANIZE POLANSKI, TO GET BEYOND THE LABELS. I WANT PEOPLE TO LOOK AT THIS MAN’S LIFE AND MAYBE, JUST MAYBE, SOME WILL LOSE THEIR DESIRE TO TREAT HIM AS TRASH. TO AVOID HIS TROUBLED PAST IS ABSURD; POLANSKI BROUGHT HIS PAST TO THE 1977 SEXUAL ENCOUNTER. I DO NOT UNDERSTAND WHY IT IS RADICAL OR UNSEEMLY TO CONNECT POLANSKI’S PAST WITH HIS ART; YOU CAN’T SEPARATE THE TWO.

    WE BOTH AGREE THAT POLANSKI SHOULD GO FREE. I AGREE WITH YOUR POLITICAL ANALYSIS OF THE SITUATION. MY SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGICAL ANALYSIS IS NOT IN CONFLICT WITH YOUR ANALYSIS AND WHAT I EXPECT ARE YOUR VALUES

    Comment by dankprofessor | October 27, 2009 | Reply

    • dankprofessor wrote: “NO NEED TO EXPLAIJN PEDOPHILIA SINCE THERE IS NO EVIDENCE THAT POLANSKI WAS OR IS A PEDOPHILE.”

      What???

      Are you, perhaps, trying to play on the distinction between pedophilia (attraction to prepubescents) and hebephilia (attraction to adolescents)?

      If so, this is just semantics.

      The Polanski case is about unlawful sex with a minor child. While “hebephilia” might be more clinically correct, it’s just semantics.

      As far as hebephilia is concerned, there’s plenty of evidence that this applies to Polanski. His rape of this child, his relationship with Nasstasja Kinski, his statements about how “everybody” wants to “f— little girls”.

      As far as committing a sexual crime against a minor, which is the real issue here, there’s no question about that, either.

      “THIS FILM WAS HIS LAST FILM PRIOR TO THE 1977 “STATUTORY RAPE”.”

      There’s no need to put “statutory rape” in quotes. It was, in fact, statutory rape. You don’t need to minimize it by referring to it in a way that implies it wasn’t really statutory rape.

      “YOUR LAST PARAGRAPH DOES NOT MAKE SENSE TO ME.”

      Clearly.

      “I ATTEMPT TO HUMANIZE POLANSKI, TO GET BEYOND THE LABELS. I WANT PEOPLE TO LOOK AT THIS MAN’S LIFE AND MAYBE, JUST MAYBE, SOME WILL LOSE THEIR DESIRE TO TREAT HIM AS TRASH.”

      This is astounding to me. Polanski was offered an extremely generous plea agreement, and he failed to live up to his end of the agreement.

      He was facing years of prison time. Years. In part, because of his “artistic contributions” (often movies about rape, like “Tess”, “Chinatown” and “Rosemary’s Baby”) he was offered an extremely lenient sentence.

      And then he jumped bail anyway.

      To say that expecting a felon to live up to his end of a plea agreement is “treating him like trash” is way out there.

      “I DO NOT UNDERSTAND WHY IT IS RADICAL OR UNSEEMLY TO CONNECT POLANSKI’S PAST WITH HIS ART; YOU CAN’T SEPARATE THE TWO.”

      You’re having a completely different discussion.

      I haven’t seen anyone deny that his past doesn’t offer insight into why he violated a 13 year old girl and makes movies about sexual crimes against women.

      “WE BOTH AGREE THAT POLANSKI SHOULD GO FREE.”

      Amazing.

      “Believing that Polanski should go free” is the definition of “excusing” him.

      You keep saying that you are just trying to “explain” Polanski, not “excuse” him. But that’s not the case, is it?

      Expecting an admitted child molester to go free is excusing him, by definition.

      Here’s what Cedric said in his summary: “It’s just that it gives the lock the guy up and cut off his balls group more flame to the fire when you connect his misdeed with his art, or in anyway try to explain it through his troubled past.”

      I agree. I don’t know why you’re having trouble understanding the point that he’s trying to make.

      As with many issues, there is a continuum of opinion on this topic. There are two extreme fringes, and a moderate middle.

      One fringe says, “this guy’s an artiste, he’s a Holocaust survivor, he’s suffered enough” and ignore his legal obligations.

      The other fringe says, “let’s (literally) string him up, he should die in prison” and ignore the legal reality.

      Then the moderate middle says something like “well, this guy jumped bail and has been on the lam for 30 years, he should probably pay the piper and face some sort of reasonable penalty.”

      By minimizing what Polanski has done, you inflame some of the moderate middle, and push them into the fringe who want him strung up.

      I understand that you might not think you’re minimizing what he’s done, but that’s how your position reads.

      You insist that you’re not “excusing him”, but then you say he should go free and give all the reasons why.

      To a reasonable person who believes that sexually molesting a 13 year old is immoral, that position is pretty hard to swallow.

      Comment by anon81552 | October 28, 2009 | Reply

  17. Let’s take a look at another controversial case involving extradition for a crime that took place long ago.

    What are your feelings about the John Demjanjuk case?

    Polanski is a convicted and admitted felon, who jumped bail.

    Demjanjuk is an accused criminal, who has not been convicted of anything.

    For years, people insisted that he was “Ivan the Terrible”, which he denied. He was sentenced to death. Finally it was shown that he was not.

    Then, they insisted with the same vigor that he was, in fact, another Nazi war criminal.

    This has been going on for 23 years.

    So on the one hand, we have an admitted and convicted felon who has served, so far, 40 days in a hospital.

    On the other hand, we have a man who was wrongfully accused and sentenced to death, and then has been accused again of being someone entirely different. He’s an alleged criminal.

    Now, if Demjanjuk is guilty of what he’s alleged to have done, it’s awful.

    However, these are *allegations*.

    In the Polanski case, we’re talking about factual guilt.

    So, what do you think? Is the Demjanjuk case a terrible miscarriage of justice?

    Comment by anon81552 | October 28, 2009 | Reply

  18. So It ‘s more then ONE MONTH ,Roman Polanski is in jail & THE GLOBAL DISCUSSION goes on .
    The PROBLEM is that ON ONE SIDE we have LAW on the other SO CALLED WORLD which has no THE INFLUENCE on the LAW 8 DEEPLY INSIDE there IS ONE who IS ACCUSED .This ONE PERSON has no THE INFLUENCE on SYSTEM ON JUSTICE as It ‘s applied TO HIM & HAS NO INFLUENCE on THE PUBLIC OPINION – what ‘s A SITUATION for somebody WHO due TO HIS PROFESSION was MOSTLY IN QUITE REVERSE one AS THE DIRECTOR!!!
    Foe the PROSECUTERS the THING is CLEAR ,they don ‘t evaluate FACTS ,they don ‘t ASK – they USE THE LAW ,Its ARTICLES which WERE MOSTLY developed NOT BY THEMSELVES but others THROUGH the TIMES hidding THEMSELVES BEHIND THE WEAPONS READY TO BE DIRECTED into THE OBJECT .
    The LAW is MPERSONAL in CHARACYER ,public OPINION could SEEM PERSONAL as people WHO TAKE PART in THE Polanski ‘s DEBATE are IN THEORY separated INDIVIDUALS who JUST use THEIR RIGHTS supported by FREE SOCIETY means TO SPEAK from THEMSELVES ,yet IN THE REALITY so CALLED PUBLIC OPINION is NOT QUITE PERSONAL in CHARACTER as WHAT the people JUDGE WAS STAGED for THEM by THE MEDIA as THE DESCRIPTION of EVERYTHING what Roman Polanski did ,HOW HE DID IT & what FOR .So – IN THE REALITY people don ‘t EVALUATE & NAME was REALLY HAPPENED but RATHER what WAS SHOWN & DESCRIBED to THEM ,which MAKES ALL the DEBATE HUGE MESS ,which CONSISTS of EMOTIONS mixed WITH BELIEFS & INDIVIDUAL attitiudes TO SEXUAL MATTERS & the VISION of THE EVENT .
    In THIS MESS there is SOMETIMES the VOICE OF REASON HEARD but WHEN It is we are DEALING MOSTLY with THE PEOPLE who HAVE THEIR INTERPRETATION of THE EVENT & don ‘t FOLLOW THE PICTURE of THE THINGS LAW established or PUBLIC OPINION expressed .Even THE VOICES like THIS do APPEAR they SEEM to be ISOLATED WHISPERS in the TOTAL SCREAM of the MASSES – one is ONLY to read THE COMMENT below THE ARTICLES to agree to THIS PICTURE of SITUATION .
    As we see ,or hear RATHER the IMPERSONAL VOICES ,those MECHANICAL in STYLE ,of SYSTEM OF JUSTICE & PUBLIC OPINION DOMINATE over THE DEBATE ,there is NOT a lot OF PERSONAL VOICES based ON REAL UNDERSTANDING of THE EVENTS & THERE IS ONE VOICE which IS NOT HEARD AT ALL – so WE MUST SEAK instead OF HIM to make ROMAN POLANSKI vouce TO BE HEARD & TO BE LAUDER then THE OTHERS .
    The POWER of VOICE MEANS EXPLANATION of TRUTH as WITHOUT It we will NOT overpower THE MESS which COULD LEAD US to THE WRONG solutions IN THE WAY OF JUSTICE applied TO Roman Polanski & IN THE OTHER WAY not INDIVIDUAL in style but HAVING TO DO WITH SOCIAL VALUES & BELIEFS .
    Saying It in the DIFFERENT WAY all of US will face THE COUNCEQUENCES of nowdays EVENTS in the way OF human culture & common FUTURE .
    This is the way C.G. JUNG thought that every IMPORTANT issue OF THE MORE COMMON then INDIVIDUAL character If It ‘s wrongly SOLVED produces NEXT PROBLEMS which ARE COMMON in CHARACTER as they demand THEIR PROPER solution AGAIN & AGAIN .
    Taking INTO ACCOUNT that in ninties America SUPPLIED THE WORLD with THE GLOBAL SHOW featuring BILL CLINTON secrets OF his DATES with THE YOUNG LADY – the ISSUES of ONE ‘S SEXUALITY ,the TRUTH & SOCIAL VALUES were examined WORLDWIDE without ANY SPECIAL reason INVOLED ,looked SOMETHING IMPORTANT wanted to be EXPERIENCED & UNDERSTOOD by THE PEOPLE .I ,of course ,have my own INTERPRETATION of the events but It ‘s not to be PRESENTED here ,but It ‘s good TO NOTICE that in Roman Polanski CASE we are also dealing WITH similar ISSUES even THE MAIN ACTORS of DRAMA are quite DIFFERENT – the ISSUES INVOLVED in PRESENT CASE are : SEXUALITY ,the TRUTH ^ SOCIAL VALUES ,as well .
    Looks like FROM SOME TIME ON there are THE THINGS which MUST be EXPERIENCED ,LIVED THROUGH & EVALUATED on the MORE GENERAL LEVEL .
    Going back to Roman Polanski case WE MUST measure If ANY HARM happened ,HOW BIG It was & WHO LOST & what WAS LOST ,If anything was ,DURING ALL THE STORY .
    The STORY ,even It ‘s not THE SIMPLE as consisting of THREE PARTS ,must BE CLEARY INVESTIGAATED .The problem is WE ARE NOT behind THE WINDOWS of JACK NICKOLSON VILLA bit somewgere else nut LET ‘S IMAGINE as It goes like IN THE LAYERS ‘ ACCUSATIONS :
    – Roman Polanski brings THE LITTLE GIRL to the PLACE with DARK PLANS in his HEAD & everuwgere else …he gives her champagne to make her EASIER ,he gives her 1/3 of THE PILL which makes somebody a little bit excited ,he insists on her swimming naked in JACCUZZI ,he takes photos of her when she is swimming naked – WE COULD ASK :is she a little bit AROUSED? the question not asked by the judges ,OF COURSE ,as how could they think SSHE COULD BE?….
    When she swims he JOINES HER AS WELL – we could ask WHY HE didn ‘t started IN JACCUZZI – which is a GOOD QUESTION but nobody ASKED IT Eoman Polanski .anyway the girl is back she has her CLOTHES ON but he KISSES HER!!! – do the rapists USUALLY KISS THEIR VICTIMS – one could ASK??? – When It comes to me I never heard ABOUT such AN EXAMPLE but maybe WE ARE DEALING WITH ESPECIALLY PERVERT TYPE in this CASE …Now Roman Polanski touches INTIMATE parts OF THE GIRL by HIS LIPS – we COULD ASK WHY ,JUDGES could ask WHY – as WE KNOW from OUR EXPERIENCE & the TRACES of such behavior which could BE SPOTTED in VARIOUS BOOKS & MOVIES even THE JUDGES don ‘t KNOW It personally such ACTIVITY is ALSO CONNECTED with arousing THE GIRL & making HER EXPERIENCE THE STATE of ORGASM ,which for WILLHELM REICH was the favorite STATE of HUMANITY ,If It was ON in this case – WE DON ‘T KNOW as such QUESTIONS WERE NOT ASKED …so we don ‘t know ,but let ‘s remember THE GIRL is not BONDED ,she doesn ‘t have her MOUTH COVERED by ANYTHING ,she was NOT BEATEN ,she WAS NOT FRIGHTENED by the KNIFE or GUN of any KIND but she doesn ‘t scream ,she doesn ‘t fight ,she doesn ‘t cry!!!!STRANGE THING …or maybe she was hipnotised?If she was SHE would NOT REMEMBER but AS SHE REMEMBERS she was NOT …The MAN – accused :Roman Polanski changes his position & HE GOES STRICKTLY inside HER ,of course we don ‘t KNOW anything about HER INNER REACTIONS but all this is NOT DIFFICULT to ACHIEVE for our ACCUSED when NORMALLY especially when we are dealing WITH the RAPE It is .also when THE GIRL is examined in the hospital there no trace of FORCE on NAY of HER INTIMAATE PARTS …

    Comment by ROCKQUEEN | October 30, 2009 | Reply

  19. continuation …
    but maybe we are dealing with the body of SUCH ,STRANGE KIND ?who knows …Later OUR ACCUSED does OTHER THINGS which BEAR THE names KNOWN from OLD BOOKS ,which MAKES the JUDGES being especially dissguested & AGAIN we DON ‘T KNOW anything on THE GIRL ‘S IMPRESSIONS which is a pity FOR US as the OBSERVERS but we know that this other GIRL ‘S PART ,quite intimate is style DIDN ‘T BEAR any TRACES OF FORCE involved – ALL THIS QUITE STRANGE …also as we KNOW JACK ‘S girlfriend ANJELICA HUSTOM enters the house ,know that Roman Polanski is NOT ALONE – great POSSIBILITY for A GIRL to escape!!!SCREAM!!!CRY FOR HELP!!! – what she doesn ‘t do …. – After ALL THIS is ANYBODY TO BELIEVE in THE TESTIMONY of SAMANTHA GAILEY????
    In this way I covered some part ,really some details OF ALL ISSUE ,the other CONSIDERATION must LEAVE for THE OTHER ONE moment .

    Comment by ROCKQUEEN | October 30, 2009 | Reply

    • I’ll just respond to two snippets.

      “quite intimate is style DIDN ‘T BEAR any TRACES OF FORCE involved”

      This is irrelevant. The charge of rape were “rape by use of drugs”. This doesn’t necessitate the use of force.

      Another charge was “unlawful sexual intercourse”, which also doesn’t require force.

      “After ALL THIS is ANYBODY TO BELIEVE in THE TESTIMONY of SAMANTHA GAILEY????”

      First of all, that’s not her name. But more importantly, we don’t have to “BELIEVE in THE TESTIMONY” of the victim. The testimony of the rapist is also consistent with the charges that were brought against him.

      So, casting doubt on the victim’s testimony is completely meaningless. The convicted felon’s testimony, alone, is enough to convict him.
      —————————————————-
      Last sentence has been deleted due to inappropriate content- the dankprofessor

      Comment by anon81552 | October 31, 2009 | Reply

  20. Uh, just so we’re square: You DO know that Polanski raped a 13 year-old girl when he was 43, right? Because that pretty much trumps everything.

    Comment by julie | November 14, 2009 | Reply

    • So far, it hasn’t. There must be other factors that trump the trump. But for those who like things simple…

      Comment by Jack Butler | November 29, 2009 | Reply

  21. Just what does Polansky’s holocaust history have to do with anything? If someone had a tough childhood, is that a license to commit crimes? His past has zero relevance.

    He has done great artistic work in the past decades. Again, so what? Doing great work is also not a license to be a criminal.

    He committed a crime, confessed to it, and then skipped the country before sentencing. The sentence is still due, end of story.

    Comment by bradley13 | December 11, 2009 | Reply

    • Bradley13 asks- Just what does Polanski’s (spelling corrected)holocaust history have to do with anything?
      So, I will put it this way- you meet someone who is a Holocaust survivor, whose mother was gassed to death by the Nazis and then who started life anew and then his pregnant wife is mutilated and murdered, and you think that such has nothing to do with his present life. You believe that in attempting to understand a person or even understanding oneself, ones past is irrelevant. Such represents the glorification of ignorance to the nth degree.

      Comment by dankprofessor | December 11, 2009 | Reply

      • There’s a difference between explaining *why* someone’s a child molester, and excusing the child molester’s behavior.

        I haven’t seen anyone arguing that his background didn’t contribute to his decision to molest a child. But you keep returning to “prove” that point, even though nobody is arguing that point.

        What I have seen people arguing is that being a Holocaust survivor doesn’t excuse his decision to molest a child.

        If you want to argue that Polanski is a child molester because he survived the Holocaust, that’s fine.

        You’ve said before that you know a number of Holocaust survivors. How many of them have gone on to molest children?

        Comment by anon81552 | December 11, 2009

  22. Polanski is not as you say a child molester because he survived the Holocaust. Polanski went thru psychic trauma as a result of his mother being gassed to death in the context of his family being persecuted by the Nazis and then having his wife and his child to be murdered by the Manson gang. Such traumas can effect ones psyche, including sexual orientation. You seem to have no interest in understanding Polanski’s psyche. Yours is totally a legalistic approach. In any case, the prior respondent had no inkling that there is a difference between explaining and excusing. I do not excuse Polanski. I do believe that punishing him further is pointless, no one gains. But I also understand that many people believe, possibly yourself,
    that when a wrong occurs the wrong doer must be punished.
    Of course, I believe Polanski has already been punished.

    Comment by dankprofessor | December 11, 2009 | Reply

    • You’re just arguing semantics here.

      You say, in the same breath, that Polanski “is not a child molester because of his Holocaust experience, but his sexual orientation (presumably his predilection for molesting children) was influenced by the trauma he went through”.

      Huh?

      So, his background had nothing to do with his decision to molest a child, but it had everything to do with it?

      Can you bottom line your thesis?

      If your point is that his traumatic background contributed to his child molestation, I think that everyone’s in agreement with you.

      Is that the point you’re trying to make, or is it something else?

      Comment by anon81552 | December 11, 2009 | Reply

  23. I may have been unclear re my prior comments.

    My major point is that his traumatic background, including the murder of his wife contributed to his sexual preference for adolescent girls, their very innocence may be at the core of the attraction. Many times people who have suffered as innocent victims pick out the innocent to recreate them as victims- do unto others (not literally) as has been done unto me. When one talks of Polanski as being a child molester, such becomes problematic. The meaning of the term is open to disputation. I would hold that Polanski was prone to acting in his attraction to teen girls during the 1970s and part of the 80s. It is my understanding that he met his current wife when she was 18, and such led to marriage and children and a rather conventional family life.

    Comment by dankprofessor | December 12, 2009 | Reply

  24. to the people on here who are defending the act and that kind of relationship. let me ask you a question that might hit closer to home. If you had a 13 or so yr old daughter and he came home to ur house with her and she told you he was her boyfriend? You would let such a relationship go? You wouldnt report it or care and find it normal?

    Comment by asdasd | January 7, 2010 | Reply

  25. Everyone is acting as if this is only Polanski’s problem.

    He is being made into the scapegoat for Los Angeles and its inhabitants sins.

    There are no saints in this scenario. Everyone played a part.

    You see it takes two to tango. And if you make a mistake and get all tangled up you can tango on out. (A line from Scent of a Woman)

    The thirteen year old Samantha Galley did not run away. Unless she was stupid she would have attempted to run away. She did not.

    The mother Susan Galley sold out on her daughter and did not protect her. Polanski never hid his seductive ways, and also he lived in Paris and London in the 60’s and 70’s. Polanski is not the only male on this planet that slept with willing 13 year olds in that period of time – if not today.

    In addition the Judge allowed Polanski to go off and make a movie. What does that say about the so called crime of consensual sex with an unattended minor. The Judicial system let him leave America after to make a movie!!!!

    Why wasn’t the mother prosecuted for child neglect? Why was it ok for the underage girl to sleep with an American 17 year old but not Polanski. Why was the 17 year old male not charged with the same crime? Isn’t there some discrimination here against Roman Polanski

    People should stop judging Polanski and start judging themselves, or better yet mind their own business and get on with their own lives, including the Los Angeles prosecutors.

    After all enough is enough.

    Comment by Buddy | February 6, 2010 | Reply

  26. I’m with Buddy on this one – and maybe people should read this – and then judge again, because Polanski had never admitted to what the first commentaries so adamantly referred to and love repeating. All he ever admitted to was to have slept with her and that it was consensual, nothing else. Geimer in contrast has wavered in her later recounts more than once and apart from flat-out lying, called it often enough not having been rape before she even started a full on campaign to see him freed. No rape victim ever wants her assailant freed.

    http://novalislore.wordpress.com/

    This will finally also make it clear why he fled, and who in fact the real criminal is here – not only the ‘ambitious’ mother and her double-dealing boyfriend, but the law itself the judge fully exploited for public amusement. I would suggest reading both blog comments too – to see that there are other more intelligent people out there who finally get the idea what the hell has happened then, and is happening again right now.

    Oh, and if you want to argue any if it, do so on my own blog, not here. I will not respond to comments meant for my analysis on the Professor’s own blog here he fully endorsed, nor will he.

    Comment by Novalis Lore | February 15, 2010 | Reply

  27. Thank you for your sensible commentary on this subject. I really don’t understand why people keep getting the facts so wrong.

    I suspect most of them have sex abuse issues in their own backgrounds and that clouds the facts of this case. By joining the witch-hunt against Polanski they’re getting third-party justice against their own abusers.

    I do believe the girl mostly lied. I suspect one of her reasons for wanting the charges dropped is because she knows she lied/exaggerated. I think she had willing sex with Polanski, or at worst, he manipulated her into regular sex. The girl’s mother finds out so she exaggerates, claims it was forced on her. She has a choice either she’s a rape victim or “Mom, I put out to a 43 year old man and I’ve had better.”

    The girl’s own grand jury testimony is full of holes and absurdities. If she had been drugged and drunk as she says she wouldn’t have been able to say “no” clearly as she claims. She wouldn’t have been on her feet for the next several hours. Polanski would have had to drag her in her house.

    And let’s not get started on how supposedly being anally penetrated caused her no pain or discomfort. [roll eyes]

    Here’s the essential problem people make when discussing the situation: the girl says Polanski did it to her in the rear end, Polanski admits he had sex with her, so therefore Polanski admits he did it to her in the rear end… even though he denies that and the medical examination confirms no such thing happened.

    What’s even more depressing is how shoddy and irresponsible the media has been in covering this.

    Why just doing a google news search on Polanski’s name brought up this nonsense:

    http://www.newswire.net/newsroom/index.php/permalink/69064.html

    (How is that news?) So much for independent journalists.

    Comment by ty | May 5, 2010 | Reply

  28. Well now, ty, finally someone who has his, her? brain switched on when discussing this much maligned case. Did you by all chance read my analysis?

    As for that UK ‘rape jury law’ link, I’m glad enough to live in the UK, where no anti-male/defendant ‘rape shield laws’ condemn innocent men being sent into prison hell to get rang raped there, for someone claiming she said ‘no’, without the slightest signs of forcible rape, or some young Hollywood girl crying rape on mom’s ‘advice’ just because she was a minor, after a casting couch session she fully knew would come.

    Many by now think the ‘victim’ should be put on the stand and cross-examined not simply taking her old testimony for granted, withdraw Polanski’s plea to have a fair trial, start from scratch, and finally make clear what really happened, since all her original claims have run more than dry through her own later statements painting a very different picture many never saw either, and want to hear what Polanski has to say about the course of events, since of course the majority still have no first clues about the bare basics, let alone concrete facts or anything from his side. Let alone the judicial mess this case is in ever since day one. As for your ‘newsroom’, link, here’s the original he based it on. It’s nothing but a shameful witch hunt on an international level by now, fuelled by misled agendas and personal issues, fully in the hands of power hungry DAs and right-wing politicians.

    http://www.newswire.net/newsroom/index.php/permalink/69062.html

    Vultures, the lot.

    Comment by Novalis Lore | May 5, 2010 | Reply

  29. Fantastic piece, very empathetic. I don’t know the context though.

    Comment by Sébastien St-Pierre Robert | March 30, 2014 | Reply


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