This post was originally published at The Daily Blog on 28 April 2013.
So. Another All Black is accused of assaulting his partner. And once again, the rugby establishment is pretending there’s no big deal, and the mainstream media are acting like his mother is some kind of objective witness, like someone who wasn’t there and didn’t see it is in some kind of position to judge the seriousness of the issue because, well, he’s her boy. And an All Black.
The point I want to particularly examine is the idea that it’s OK for Savea to continue playing because, well, his rugby bosses “involved” his partner/victim in the decision.
Like that’s just a casual conversation.
Like there’s no pressure on her to back down, to minimise what happened.
Like there’s no precedents for her to look at and understand that odds are good Savea will walk free even if he’s found to have assaulted her.
Like her mother-in-law hasn’t already undermined her case and set the “she’s just being hysterical he’s a hero” propaganda ball rolling.
Like we haven’t just had a really clear international example of the shit that gets dumped on women assault victims when their attackers are prominent sportspeople with the weight of an entire community’s idolisation on their shoulders.
And like he’s not an All Black, a hero of the nation, whose every sporting achievement has to be shouted from the rooftops.
No no no, this was totally a discussion between equals, with no power dynamics or social pressure on her at all.
It is simply fucking obscene that Steve Tew or whoever else was involved in that decision thought it would be appropriate to (a) put the pressure of that decision on her and (b) exploit her involvement to justify their decision to let him tour.
But then I guess Tew’s words say it all:
NZRU chief executive Steve Tew said Ms Rodgers had been involved in the decision to allow him to play.
“After all she was the victim,” he said.
Yeah, after all.
Now, obviously the case is still before the courts and no details have been released, so I’m just going to give this final tip to Julian Savea’s parents: sit down, shut the fuck up, and do some background fucking reading on the screeds of abusers and criminals whose parents thought they were a lovely lad/girl who’d never do anyone any harm.
October 3, post by Eddie on The Standard:
Key broke law on radio show
Prime Minister Moonbeam clearly broke the law on Friday on the radio show that he chose to run instead of dealing with the downgrade crisis. The law is clear: Key wasn’t allowed to make political statements.
First, Key promised to “talk to someone important” about Coronation Street moving time … That was, of course, a political promise to act in his capacity as Prime Minister. And it was clearly intended to encourage people to vote for him and his party.
October 4, unauthored post at The Standard:
When things look black
A clever billboard from Labour. Apparently it has Kiwiblog’s knickers in a bunch, so it must be good!
Pay attention, kiddies: a non-explicitly political manoeuvre designed to nevertheless build support in a crucial pre-election period by leveraging off popular current events is illegal when it’s John Key on the radio, but not Labour on a billboard.
Though as Idiot/Savant notes, Labour’s own official policy on the former is that it would’ve been fine if they’d given Phil Goff pseudoelectioneering airtime too.
[TW domestic abuse and rugby violence apologism]
My, has it really been 3 years since I last wrote about our fucking sick misogynist boys-will-be-boys violence-excusing rugby culture?
This time it’s Shaun Metcalf, whose soulful puppy-dog eyes probably helped him get his “second chance” at being on the Warriors team after a tragic mistake, an exuberance of youth, and terrible accident …
Oh wait, no.
In 2004 Shaun Metcalf was 16 and fucking a 15-year-old girl – possibly cheating on his “long-time partner” with whom he now has six-year-old twins – and when said 15-year old girl got pregnant, he and his mates responded really poorly, by, oh what was it?
LURING HER TO A FUCKING PARK IN ORDER TO KICK HER IN THE STOMACH IN ORDER TO INDUCE A MISCARRIAGE.
Just, you know, average adolescent shit, boys-will-be-boys stuff.
But it’s okay, because let’s all forget Young Men Being Fucking Thugs Apologism 101: “Let’s not let this terrible
deliberate calculated assault mistake ruin a young man’s life!”
Cue everyone’s favourite “oh but they’re boys so they’re different” quote machine, Celia Lashlie!
‘We can all get caught up in the emotional image of young men booting a young woman in the stomach to cause her to abort her baby, but these were two young people … she got pregnant, he was way out of his depth, and he did a really cruel and dumb thing.
”He was caught in the moment, and what he did was the equivalent of a young man putting a noose around his neck because his girlfriend tossed him out. He has to be allowed to move forward and put his life together, and I think the ability of the NRL and the Warriors to take this young man in and help him do that is role modelling and something they should get credit for.”
WHERE DOES ONE FUCKING BEGIN.
“She” didn’t fucking get pregnant on her own, Celia, and it’s really awesome how your shitty sloppy language manages to buy into all kinds of tropes about evil bitches ruining men’s lives by having evil functioning uteri.
“Cruel and dumb”? That’s one way of putting luring a woman into a situation so you and two of your mates can stomp on her stomach.
“Caught in the moment”? Pretty long fucking moment, Celia, what with the calculated decision and the gathering of the bash-buddies and the luring of the victim and the stomping on her stomach in an assault specifically designed to induce miscarriage.
“Equivalent” of what the fuck now, Celia? Shaun Metcalf didn’t try to commit fucking suicide, he deliberately set out to cause internal injuries to a woman he’d chosen to stick his dick into.
But hey, enough about Celia Lashlie’s blatant victim-blaming and abuse-apologism.
Because the fucking cherry on top is of course fucking rugby culture and our wonderful fucking wilful ignorance about the obvious fucking paradoxes involved.
NZRL chairman Selwyn Pearson said ”…What he did was disgusting and abhorrent but you don’t get life for murder, and I consulted a lot of experts who all said that the best thing for the boy in terms of his rehabilitation was to get back into sport.”
Point 1, Selwyn-of-the-vomitous-comments-which-I-haven’t-quoted-because-there-is-not-enough-fuck-in-the-world: He’s not a fucking “boy”. He’s 23.
Point 2. Yeah, it’ll be fucking awesome for Shaun Metcalf to get “rehabilitated” by thugby culture. He’ll apparently be surrounded by people who know that spousal abuse doesn’t have consequences for All Blacks, and rape charges are a great Women’s Day opportunity, and teaming up with your mates to violate a vulnerable woman is practically part of the job description, and will eternally be excused because “well she shouldn’t have …”
Gosh. I can’t think why people might not be pleased to have this hero-worshipping bullshit crammed down kids’ throats …
First antichoicer to imply it’s illogical for me to be outraged by assault against a pregnant woman because I’m prochoice is invited to suck it. The rest of you can fuck right off.
Helen at Cast Iron Balcony has posted a bumper edition of the Down Under Feminists’ Carnival.
Further recommended reading from the starred items on my Google Reader:
Idiot/Savant on Richard Long’s ludicrous anti-MMP bollocks.
Get your write on for the April 7 World Health Day blogswarm, per The Hand Mirror.
Deborah slams fucking Rugby World Cup fucking merchandising in fucking classrooms. (She doesn’t say “fuck” as much as me though.)
A Red No. 3 twofer:
Indeed, many backers of fat shaming are so busy flattering their “good intentions”, that they just cannot process someone disturbing this moral superiority.
I know that seems like an outrageous suggestion, even to some proported Fat Acceptance allies who still wring their hands at all these little fat kids they hear about, but maybe we can try just being okay with that. Maybe we can all try to give that a shot, because flipping out over fat children hasn’t exactly been a very productive strategy. So maybe we can “think of the children” and stop creating a culture that teaches them shame and self-loathing at earlier and earlier ages.
Soooooooooo Hone Harawira. Here’s a Stuff link which vaguely outlines the situation for any non-Kiwi readers, as I can’t imagine there’s a New Zealander with access to the Internet who hasn’t heard about this.
First recommendation: rocky’s two excellent posts at The Standard on the wider foreshore/seabed issue, and ta, rocky, for the link to NZ History Online’s map showing Maori land loss to the present day. That was a nice sobering hit for a Wednesday evening.
First thought: gee, I wonder if that’s the kind of thing a person, whose ethnic group remains at the bottom of the socio-economic heap, and whose language is apparently so terrifying to the ear that non-Maori will just die if they’re forced to find the mute button hear it, might just be a little pissed off about? (And see Zetetic’s comment below – of course not! Nothing to be angry about here! Just a little diversion from that thing Harawira was totally unapologetic about!)
Second recommendation: the sprout’s post, also at The Standard, on why no, Harawira didn’t actually advocate violence and why yes, this is all just a bunch of privileged white wankers* summoning the spectre of Scary Brown People Who Will Climb In The Windows Of Other New Zealanders At Night**.
Third recommendation: Play bingo with any discussion of this story against the classic Wite-Magik Attax. It may help, but probably not.
And now, my own little bugbear.