Few things have annoyed me as much as the recent outcry about Roman Polanski's arrest. After I bit my lip and didn't say anything to a customer who was ranting about how Polanski deserves to not go to jail, (13 year olds, back then, they weren't really children the way they are now [forgot to mention the bit where he drugged her first, I guess]) etc, I picked up (by chance) the Globe and Mail from last Tuesday (September 29th). They published some in-support-of-Polanski quotes.
I am going to take this time to respond to them.
Emphasis is added by me.
Debra Winger: "Despite the Philistine nature of the collusion that has now occured, we came to honour Roman Polanski as a great artist ... We hope today this latest order will be dropped ... It is based on a three-decade old case that is all but dead except for a minor technicality"
* By "minor technicality" I suppose you mean the bit where he actually drugged and raped someone. A someone who was still a child. And then, he fled from his sentence? That's called breaking the law. It's not a "minor technicality".
Harvey Weinstein: "Whatever you think about the so-called crime, Polanski has served his time... I hope the US government acts swiftly because filmmakers are looking for justice to be properly served".
* Mr. Weinstein, I am going to deduce, from your statement, that drugging and raping a child is not a crime in your eyes. And he certainly has served a good 30 years, partying, living the good life, travelling, ...oh... wait. That's NOT the same thing as serving time.
Frederic Mitterand (call me English swine, I have no idea how to insert the proper accents to his name): "To see him like that, thrown to the lions because of ancient history, really doesn't make any sense. There is an America that we love ... There is also a certain America that scares us
* Your analogy doesn't make any sense - unless you count pedophiles brought to justice as martyrs. And this isn't crazy wingnut America. This is actually - at last - America, the democracy in play.
Bernard Kouchner: "A man whose talent is recognized aroudn the world, recognized especially in the country that arrested him, that's not nice. This story, frankly, is a little sinister
* Oh, Monsieur! That last sentence, I almost agreed with you! This story isn't just a little sinister, it's really sinister that a rapist is so soundly defended after he drugged and forcibly shoved his dick into an unwilling 13 year old girl.
You know what's even less nice than Polanski being arrested? RAPING A 13 YEAR OLD GIRL.
*The following two "quotes" are from petitions, and the people they are "attributed" to are merely people who signed the petition, not wrote it.
Pedro Almodover: "Filmmakers in France, in Europe, in the United States and around the world are dismayed by this decision."
* Well, I'm thinking that if filmmakers feel that it should be their right to commit heinous crimes, such as raping a child, they should quit beating around the bush and just say it.
Salman Rushdie: "Apprehended like a common terrorist... Roman Polanski now sleeps in prison." "We ask the Swiss courts to free him immediately and not to turn this ingenious filmmaker into a martyr of a politico-legal imbroglio that is unworthy of two democracies like Switzerland and the United States" (Globe and Mail attributes this one to the Huffington Post).
* No, Polanski is not apprehended like a common terrorist. He is apprehended like a common criminal. Which, by the way, he is. And it is actually totally appropriate for two modern, enlightened democracies to apprehend a child molester. It's truly unfortunate that other "modern", "enlightened" democracies (*cough* France) wouldn't do the same.
Seriously, I understand that the man's a great director. I understand that he's a holocaust survivor, that he lost his wife in a traumatic way, that he's a European citizen, and he's had a very hard life and blah blah blah.
That does not excuse the act of drugging up a person and forcing your penis inside of them while they tell you NO.. Sorry. It just doesn't. Polanski deserves to go to jail for it. He's a rich white man, and a celebrity, so he's not exactly going to be dumped into jail the way any other pedophile would be. He's going to get special treatment, and a very short sentence if he even goes to prison.
So, basically, what I'm saying is GET THE FUCK OVER IT. Polanski deserves a hell of a lot worse than whatever he's going to get. He is a PEDOPHILE. Even if she wasn't still a child, he is a RAPIST. He could have accepted his sentence in the '70s, which would have undoubtedly been a comparable slap-on-the-wrist, since the world doesn't take rape seriously when it is committed by rich white men.
Oh, and really, if I run into anyone wearing a "Free Polanski" button, I'm going to ask them, straight up: "Do you support amnesty for all pedophiles, or just the ones who've won an Oscar?"