Serena Williams interview

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by centerstage01, Jun 19, 2013.

  1. centerstage01

    centerstage01 Well-Known Member

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  2. BigB08822

    BigB08822 Well-Known Member

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    It sounds like she puts her focus on "why was a 16 yr old that drunk at a party surrounded by boys and no adults?" I think she stops shy of placing blame on the girl. When Serena was 16 she was pro or soon to be. I think it's fair to say she has no clue of a typical teenagers upbringing and how that includes, from time to time, unsupervised parties with lots of alcohol. I really think that was her focus.
  3. hydro

    hydro Well-Known Member

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    This sounds like a total ratchet job to me. She's not even commenting on it to the journalist, but to a friend on the phone someone. She's not making a statement, but trying to work through an opinion and understand the situation. And then suddenly she's quoted as having blamed a 16-year-old girl. Pretty ridiculous, IMO, to even publish something like that.
  4. my little pony

    my little pony snarking for AZE

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    she's not blaming the girl but she shouldnt have been drinking. she's not blaming the girl but she was too young to be at a party. she's not blaming the girl but she may or may not have been a virgin. and those poor boys will be home in 1 to 2 yrs.

    i dont know, it sounds like she is blaming the girl to me.
  5. orbitz

    orbitz Well-Known Member

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    Whether you disagree with what Serena said or not, sometimes I think it is refreshing to hear what a person really thinks instead of saying something that is PC to appease the majority of the public.
  6. my little pony

    my little pony snarking for AZE

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    yes, when i read her "apology" where she called the convicted rapists "the accused," i felt like this was something new and great. you never hear people blame the victim anymore.
  7. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

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    Serena has published a statement on her official site: http://serenawilliams.com/blog/statement-2/
    "Serena Williams still doesn’t know how to apologize": http://ftw.usatoday.com/2013/06/serena-williams-apology-steubenville/
  8. morqet

    morqet Active Member

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    Yeah, it allows me to revise my opinion of who is an idiot and who isn't.
  9. milanessa

    milanessa engaged to dupa

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    What she "supposedly" said? And she's still calling them the "accused" instead of convicted scum.
  10. RFOS

    RFOS Well-Known Member

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    I don't think she phrased it in a good way, but both the girl and the boys made did make really bad decisions, and I think it's important not to ignore how bad the girl's decisions were as well, if one is to learn from the situation both sides need to make better choices. The girl's bad decisions in NO way justify or lessen the even worse, and utterly cruel and disgusting, actions of the boys, and I don't think they should be used to try to sway people's opinions in that direction (is that what people mean by "blaming the victim")? I've never seen anyone argue that the perpetrators weren't responsible for their own actions also.
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2013
  11. my little pony

    my little pony snarking for AZE

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    calling them boys infantilizes them and mitigates their actions. has anyone questioned why they were drinking? does she also think her sister was to blame for being shot because she was in a bad neighborhood?

    sorry rfos, but "both sides need to make better choices?" she chose to get drunk with kids from her school. they chose to rape her over an extended period of time and a lot of people glorified it on social media. putting the two together as "bad choices" makes it sound like you think the bad choices are somehow equal in severity. if the same football players passed out at a party and were sodomized, i wonder how many people would blame them for being there and for drinking with people they thought they knew?
    Coco and (deleted member) like this.
  12. RFOS

    RFOS Well-Known Member

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    I definitely don't think the "bad choices" were AT ALL equal in severity and specifically said that. The guys' behavior and the glorification of it are absolutely beyond vile, inhumane, and make me feel sick. The girl could have made better choices by not getting really drunk (though I remember now that there was discussion that she may have been drugged, which makes the actions of the guys even more disgusting). I don't think it's a good choice for anyone to get that drunk (if she did make that decision on her own), though obviously lots of people do it. Personally I wouldn't consider it immoral or say she's "morally" to blame for anything, and CERTAINLY not her rape (which the guys certainly are). She in no way deserved any of that and I feel terrible for all she's been through. I can't even imagine what it must be like. :(

    I'm also probably not "normal" because I'm usually a cautious, non-risk taking person (which certainly hasn't served me well in some areas, such as relationships :shuffle: ) and have never been drunk (all combined I've probably had the equivalent of a few drinks in my life, mostly comprised of small sips. I don't like the taste of alcohol and never saw the point of getting drunk or trying to acquire any kind of taste for it, specifically because I knew that various bad things would be more likely to happen (whether doing something stupid myself that I wouldn't normally do, or learning to like it too much, or ending up in a bad situation where I was drunk and didn't know what happened, or having to drive when I had had even a little bit to drink beforehand). It was a risk I didn't want to take, and I don't think I'm morally better for making the choice I did, but am glad that I did.
  13. my little pony

    my little pony snarking for AZE

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    people who know each other of all ages drink together without anyone getting raped. underaged drinking with people you know doesnt equate to getting raped. she wasnt raped and held for over 6 hours because she was drunk or because she was dressed "wrong." she was a victim of a crime because some criminals thought it would be funny and cool to violate someone and film it. could she have fought off all of them sober? probably not but it doesnt matter. if you get robbed in a bad area, do people go easy on the thief because you should have known better? no, they dont.
  14. RFOS

    RFOS Well-Known Member

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    I didn't say it did. No one deserves to be raped under any circumstances and they shouldn't have to worry about being raped regardless of whether they get drunk or not. It's sick and unfortunate that it happens to anyone, but it does.

    And they shouldn't. They shouldn't go easy on the rapists based on whether the rape victim willingly got drunk at a party either, because the rapists' actions were equally despicable and wrong either way. I'm not advocating any difference in their sentencing or treatment in the media for that reason.
  15. milanessa

    milanessa engaged to dupa

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    Really? There's no equal about it. I know you're not defending the rapists but the way you're phrasing some things is a little discomfiting.
  16. RFOS

    RFOS Well-Known Member

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    I meant that the rapists' actions would've been equally morally wrong had the girl been drunk or sober. (I hope that was understood and that it was clear that I was NOT equating the girl with the rapists). If you disagree, then I'd be interested to hear why. Either way, I'm sure we agree that both are really really bad, regardless of whether they are exactly equal in badness.

    I also absolutely don't think the victim should be made to feel shame for being a victim even if she made a bad choice by getting so drunk (and it may not have been fully her choice if she was drugged). That would be just cruel and benefit no one. Hopefully she is recovering and doesn't blame herself at all for the incident.
  17. BigB08822

    BigB08822 Well-Known Member

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    I don't like this idea that we can't ever learn from our own mistakes. Yes, the criminals are to be held responsible and what they did was absolutely awful but if we can't learn from our own mistakes, then what good does it do? I went out to a bar one night, had way too much to drink and left my credit card laying around. It was picked up and used all over town the next day. Someone stole my card and used it illegally, what they did was wrong but I still have to look back and tell myself that I could have made better choices too. It doesn't in ANY WAY let those people off the hook or mean "i brought it on myself." I don't know why people can't see that. The victim is still the victim and no one is saying you deserve it or your attackers should be let off. We're just saying, please learn from your mistakes, you can only help yourself from that.
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  18. my little pony

    my little pony snarking for AZE

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    :wall:

    anytime you say, "i'm not blaming the victim but..." you are blaming the victim. it makes it hard to change the culture when the victim has to be perfect.
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  19. RFOS

    RFOS Well-Known Member

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    I think Brian summed it up really well above, better than I did. Victims don't have to be perfect and NO ONE, perfect or not, ever deserves to be a victim of crime (especially such a heinous and traumatic one as this incident) but that doesn't mean they should NEVER look at their own behavior at all if something bad happens or is done to them and at least evaluate whether there's something they should do differently in the future. In some cases, there might not be, but in other cases there might be. I don't see that the same as "blaming" at all, but maybe you do. Obviously, we all have to take some risks and everyone has a different threshold. Getting really drunk is a risk I personally have chosen not to take, both out of personal dislike of the taste of alcohol and not wanting to put myself at a needlessly (in my opinion) higher risk for a variety of negative outcomes. That doesn't mean that I think those who do choose to get drunk DESERVE for those bad things to happen to them.
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2013
  20. RFOS

    RFOS Well-Known Member

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    I just re-read Serena's comments more closely and I do find them inappropriate, since she did seem to think that guys were less to blame because the girl was so drunk and brought up that she might not have been a virgin, which is totally irrelevant, and she also pretty much ONLY focuses on the girl's behavior and not the guys'.
  21. RFOS

    RFOS Well-Known Member

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    Just found this depressing article (but haven't read all the links within the text). :(
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/soraya-chemaly/steubenville-50-cases-of-_b_2876606.html

    The aspects of the culture that contribute to this are terrible and I'm upset that I've been associated with it. The culture is disgusting and there are no excuses to be made for treating people that way. The perpetrators don't deserve more sympathy because they happened to be good at a popular sport (which to me is one of the most disgusting aspects of the treatment of the case). I'm offended as a male with the implication in the article that some assume that young men just couldn't possibly refrain from doing such a thing in that situation. However, I have anxiety that if I drank too much I might do something bad that I would never do if I hadn't been drinking, which is why I choose not to. When all parties involved are drunk seems to be when a lot of this kind of terrible stuff happens and overall I'm glad I stayed away from that culture, even though I might have been more "popular" in high school and college if I had been the type of person that could get into it (which I think is also sad, but a different issue completely). No one, male or female, deserves to be the victim of ANY crime and no one is perfect or is expected to be. I don't equate simply acknowledging that victims (whether male or female, whether a victim of rape, credit card theft as in Brian's case, or anything else) aren't perfect and could maybe learn something from the situation with blaming the victim.

    P.S., I enjoy discussion of issues like this and hearing other viewpoints and don't mind people telling me if they think I'm wrong and why (who knows, if your argument is good enough, I might change my mind) but I do mind being accused of blaming the victim. I hope I've made it clear that I try to distance myself physically and morally from the culture of rape, machismo, and biased treatment of popular people as much as possible. I am a person who always tries to be objective, maybe even to a fault. This is not a rhetorical question, what would you suggest I do to make a positive difference?
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2013
  22. my little pony

    my little pony snarking for AZE

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    i don't even think it needs to be stated that all people should exercise good judgement and try to take precautions regarding their safety. but when someone is raped and in someone's first reaction, they wonder how she could have or should have acted differently, ideologically we haven't come that far. the last time you read about a robbery, did you ponder that it was their fault for not having a security system? probably not. if that is the case, then yes, you are blaming the victim to an extent. blaming the victim means we falsely believe we can control whether or not it happens to us and we cant. even if you walk around with your own security guard, most people are raped by people they know, like 90%.

    the problem with this way of thinking is that no matter how many precautions people take, there will still be rapes. focusing on women's actions will not end rapes.
  23. duane

    duane New Member

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    She shouldn't have been drinking, especially to the point of passing out.

    She was too young to be at a party, especially one where there's drinking and who-knows-what-else.

    Here's where I have a problem with Serena's comments. Whether or not she was a virgin is totally irrelevant. And regardless of her bad choices, the crime of rape should be punished. I hope they serve the maximum sentence.
  24. Vagabond

    Vagabond Well-Known Member

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    I have been misquoted in the press, so I can readily believe that she may have been misquoted. If she has, however, it is incumbent on her to speak up and state what she actually did say. Otherwise, given the nature of the remarks attributed to her, it looks like she really did say what was reported.

    I wonder whether Serena Williams' strict upbringing (as a Jehovah's Witness) informs her views of those people, particularly young people, who do drink alcohol or, for that matter, have premarital sex. Does anyone have any thoughts about this?
  25. RFOS

    RFOS Well-Known Member

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    I agree that consideration of how a rape victim could have acted differently should (ideally) be secondary in people's minds when they hear of a story like this, because any "mistakes" she may have made are trivial next to the severity of actually committing rape. No, my first reaction to someone getting robbed wouldn't be to "blame" them or hold them at fault for not having a security system, but it is something they probably would want to consider afterward. In fact, I'm sure being a victim of a rape or robbery is so traumatic that many live in fear afterward and might take so many "precautions" that they can't live a normal life, and that is really sad. Therefore, trying to prevent such crimes is very important and changing the culture and attitudes that lead people to commit those crimes should be a major focus. If there's anything to be gained from this whole situation is that it has brought these issues into the public consciousness and there have been a lot of good discussions and articles about it that address some problematic tendencies in our culture and hopefully will help bring about at least some small change.
  26. Coco

    Coco Well-Known Member

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    While that seems to make sense, what happened here is she did what literally MILLIONS of teenagers do every weekend and they don't get raped or attacked so viciously.

    So basically, people who talk about how she shouldn't have been drinking or shouldn't have been at the party are missing the point.

    The Titanic should have had more first aid kits. I bet a lot of people got scrapes and cuts in the all the chaos that must have erupted after the boat hit the iceberg, you know?

    First of all, she was with her peers, so how can anyone say she was too young to be there? Are you really saying that all 16-18 year olds should never be allowed to socialize without adult supervision? Because that's what you're saying when you say the young lady in Steubenville was too young to be at that party.

    As for drinking, you can't say that teetotaling women are never raped. Implying that if she'd just gone to the party and avoided alcohol, she would have been fine is just false.

    Depending on what websites you believe, in the Steubenville case there is evidence that she was drugged and that the whole attack was planned by her ex-boyfriend because he wanted to 'ruin' her. A drug can be slipped into a pepsi as easily as a beer.

    There's a very real issue of all teenagers being capable of making better choices. But to bring up this young lady's choices in the face of such a vicious attack BY A GROUP OF PEOPLE is just so ... WTF!

    If you want to prevent rapes, FOCUS ON CHANGING THE RAPISTS' AND BYSTANDERS' BEHAVIOR!
  27. RFOS

    RFOS Well-Known Member

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    Thankfully most don't.

    No, of course they can socialize, but all of them were too young to legally drink AFAIK. I realize millions do it but that doesn't make it responsible behavior. :shuffle:

    I didn't imply that teetotaling women couldn't be raped, of course they can be (unfortunately). We have no way of knowing whether it's true or false that she would've been fine if she hadn't been drinking. But even if she hypothetically would have been, that still IMO doesn't make her to "blame" or lessen the perpetrators' blame. I'm thinking maybe we're using the word "blame" slightly differently and that's contributing to a misunderstanding.

    I hadn't heard the ex-boyfriend story, but that is absolutely despicable if true. I had heard that she possibly was drugged. :( There's so much utterly vile behavior all-around that it it's difficult to comprehend.

    How do you suggest doing that, other than obviously controlling one's own behavior and trying to help in some way if one ends up in a situation like that? I luckily never have, but am very upset by the perpetrators' and bystanders' behavior in this and (all too many, as the number of links in that article shows and that's just a sampling :() other cases.
  28. orbitz

    orbitz Well-Known Member

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    Lets take the rape of out this situation for a moment ... You really believe that every single weekend "millions of teenagers" are getting so totally wasted at parties where they completely pass out?
  29. morqet

    morqet Active Member

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    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/jun/19/serena-williams-rape-comments-what-learn

    I think this is a good article.

    You teach men that women are not objects for their gratification, that consent is not the absence of a no, but instead an explicit yes, that they can't take advantage of a woman in a vulnerable position, and that their actions will not be excused or that they will be considered less culpable because their victim was not in a position to look out for themselves. You don't do it by approaching a case like this one and making it all about the woman's behaviour. It's not on the woman to spend every moment of her life thinking "should I do this or will it place me in a vulnerable position where someone will take advantage of me", it's on the man to understand that there is no justification for rape, whether the victim had been drinking, or wearing a short skirt, or flirting or whatever. There's no excuse.
  30. RFOS

    RFOS Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the link, I agree it is a good article. And I agree with the rest of your post. If I ever have kids I will certainly try to instill those values.
  31. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

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    ^^ This (although it's not clear whether she's speaking to someone on the phone or just off-hand to Rodrick while watching the news report).

    The original Rolling Stone article by Stephen Rodrick is definitely a hatchet job.
    http://www.rollingstone.com/culture/news/serena-williams-the-great-one-20130618

    Serena Williams is a very talented and accomplished tennis player which obviously doesn't equate to her being in touch with the harsher realities of every day life, despite the fact her family originally hails from a tough inner-city neighborhood and one of her older sisters was murdered while visiting a friend back in the hood. Escaping untimely death herself after her foot injury and blood clot seemed to focus Serena more on what tennis and indeed life means to her.

    But that doesn't make Serena an expert on the subject of rape or indeed at all savvy about the best way to conduct herself while being mercilessly scrutinized/ interviewed by an overeager journalist out to score a coup. Why did Serena's off-hand, ill-thought out and uninformed remarks on the rape news story need to be included in the hyperbolic article in such lengthy detail, other than to further add to the writer's muck-rake portrayal? It was a penultimate below the belt "gotcha" by Mr. "the story speaks for itself" Rodrick.
  32. duane

    duane New Member

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    Coco, your comment is all over the map. First you suggest that what the girl did is no big deal; that "MILLIONS of teenagers" do it every weekend. Then you suggest that teetotaling women get raped too, so her passing out drunk probably wouldn't have prevented the rape anyway. Then you suggest she was drugged.

    When it comes to rape prevention, it's crazy to think consideration of the victims' actions shouldn't be an issue. A woman who drinks to the point of passing out is putting herself in a potentially dangerous situation, and based on the statistics of acquaintance rape, more so when she's among peers.
    BigB08822 and (deleted member) like this.
  33. jenny12

    jenny12 Well-Known Member

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    I think Serena got the short end of the stick in the article, but I do feel she approached victim blaming in her comments. The coverage of the Steubenville case was depressing to me since most of it focused around sympathy for the boys and slut shaming for the girls. Of course, young women should be cautious about their behavior, but I don't think that should be considered an equal issue to boys who think they have the right to use a girl any way they please. There needs to be more focus on teaching boys how to act appropriately with girls instead of focusing on telling girls how to modify their behavior so they don't do anything to lead on those so-called poor boys who can't help themselves.
  34. elka_sk8

    elka_sk8 Well-Known Member

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    ITA, couldn't have said it better myself.
  35. topaz

    topaz New Member

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    Coco she is teenager and add in being drunk is a combo for bad decisions and for bad situations to happen, period.

    And Coco, thousands of teenagers DO GET RAPED because of being drunk/intoxicated and being too impaired to make safe decisions.


    I read a study that estimated that 30% of sexual assault cases involve alcohol.
  36. Rex

    Rex Well-Known Member

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    There seems to be this rare strain of Foot-in-Mouth Disease that is affecting people in the public eye...
  37. orbitz

    orbitz Well-Known Member

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    I'm sure "regular" folks say a lot of inane stuff too. They just don't get published.
  38. AragornElessar

    AragornElessar New Member

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    There's an article over at CBC Sports talking about another part in the article where Serena is talking about another player and who that player is dating. While there's no ID, many are saying it's Sharapova and Maria certainly believes it, as she lashed out at Serena during her pre Wimbledon interview today. On the mini iPad and don't know how to link it, but it's easy to find over there.

    Serena's pre Wimbledon Press Conference goes tomorrow. Why do I think there won't be as many questions about Tennis...
  39. DAngel

    DAngel Active Member

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    What about the 70%? Do they also happen because the victims didn't make safe decisions?
  40. Latte

    Latte Well-Known Member

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    I have never liked Serena. She has threatened to kill people for calling her for a foot fall, thrown fits when she didn't like her balls called out, and so on.
    She is a very angry woman underneath it all. I have nothing against her sister Venus. She seems much more level headed and mature. And better personality.