According to the court of law, “innocent until proven guilty” is the law of the land. According to the court of public opinion (i.e. idiots), the opposite yields true. And no one knows that better than Cards Against Humanity creator Max Temkin.
A few months ago, news came out that Temkin was being accused of rape. More accurately, a former classmate posted on Facebook that he had sexually assaulted her and called for a boycott of Cards Against Humanity. That was it.
No police report. No legal filings.
The mainstream media more or less ignored it. However, uber-liberal blogs wrote on it with an obvious slant painting him as guilty and latched onto it.
WHY DOES THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA IGNORE THESE THINGS?
Because they are trained journalists and trained journalists are aware of the ethical nature of blasting out news about a baseless accusation that, without any legal filing or police report, is impossible to verify the legitimacy of the claim. Bloggers, however, are not bound to these absurd things called “ethics” and “rules.” Mostly because they do not even know they exist.
That was back in July. Fortunately, the storm has passed and Temkin has regained normalcy. In fact, he was scheduled to present at XOXO, “an experimental festival celebrating independently-produced art and technology,” per their Twitter bio. The keyword being “was.” Here’s an excerpt from a recent XOXO blog* (emphasis added):
Since releasing our lineup this week, we’ve heard from several attendees and members of our community who are uncomfortable with Max Temkin’s involvement due to allegations of sexual assault that were made against him last month.
We made a mistake. We didn’t anticipate that his presence could make people feel unsafe, could be triggering for victims of sexual harassment or assault, and question whether XOXO was a place where they belonged.
Where on Earth could these “several attendees and members of (the) community” get the idea that this guy is a rapist? Couldn’t possibly be from irresponsible blogs sites that made sure everyone knew about the bullshit claim. Actually, the blog sites only share half of the burden of blame. The other half goes to the mindless idiots who read about it and came to the irrational and illogical conclusion that Temkin is a sexual predator; the people who lack critical thinking skills and yell the #RapeCulture mantra to the point where it holds no meaning.
This is the result of #RapeCulture. Not the actual culture of rape, because that doesn’t really exist. No, I’m talking about the idea and philosophy of #RapeCulture. I always put it in a hashtag, because that is exactly what it is: an Internet phenomenon made popular by a drone-like, bandwagon following. Feminazis—as opposed to real feminists—forcibly shoved that idea down our throat and made it true by repetition (if you repeat a lie enough, it becomes truth). The real #RapeCulture is what the all suffered through as a result. They singlehandedly watered down a real, terrible act that many people have to deal with it. That’s the real crime here.
Temkin was an easy target: a rich, white male. However, many not-so-rich, even non-white, men are falling victim to the #RapeCulture. I am not a rape apologist. I am, however, an apologist to everyone who did not rape, yet was given that title. To claim that no one has ever been falsely accused of rape, is disingenuous at best and a danger to society at worst.
But the tendency to metaphorically throw someone bound into a river to see whether or not they’re a witch isn’t exclusive to rape allegations. It happens all the time with a variety of criminal and immoral acts. When we are right, the circle jerk commences. When we are wrong, we completely ignore it without acknowledging the truth as publicly as we spread the lie. We move on with our lives. The wrongly accused, however, does not. He or she will have that association whenever someone recognizes their name and/or face.
We are quick to demonize law enforcement whenever the screw up. When they get the wrong or unjustly end a life, we go ape shit. Internet vigilante justice is no different. Many times, the Internet hits the target, and many times, an innocent bystander is caught in the crosshairs. Nobody bats an eye when the latter happens, unlike when the police do it. And unlike the police, there is no due process.
Law enforcement can be dangerous, but we can be just as dangerous when we collectively take matters into our own hands. Temkin had his hands up, but we shot anyway.
* Getting real tired of that word. Can’t put out a press release. Nope. A fucking blog.