Saturday, November 13, 2010

Because everyone knows you've got a right

A British backpacker has "defended" himself against the breach-of-privacy charges laid against him for covertly filming a young woman in a 'uni-sex bathroom' at a Queensland resort by saying 'I just wanted to see her naked.'

Spot the weasel word here. Yes, that's right: 'just'.

'Just' as distinct from what? The unavoidable implication here seems to be 'I only wanted to see her naked, which is my perfect right as a man and anyway what's the harm, I didn't rape her or anything so what are you all going on about?'

His lawyer calls his actions 'a lapse in judgement.'

Me, I'm off to the bottle shop to see what Scotland has to offer. Somehow a glass of wine just isn't going to cut it, after that.


Stephen Luntz said...

This is certainly sickening, but I think what he was actually saying was
"I wanted to see her naked myself, I wasn't planning to show the video to all my mates/send it viral."

The scary thing is that this is now sufficiently common behaviour that he thinks it worth noting in his defense that he wasn't planning to do it.

Mindy said...

But he still has the strange idea that he has some sort of "right" to not only see her naked but film her for later. That is the scary part, this idea that somehow her right to privacy is overridden by his "right" to masturbate over her image. Whether he intended to show it to anyone else or not is beside the point.

Kerryn Goldsworthy said...

Stephen, I didn't necessarily mean that my interpretation of what he meant was literally the only one. The point is exactly as Mindy explains it: his imagined right not just to see her naked but to film her naked clearly overrides, in his mind, her very real right to privacy, something he obviously didn't even consider, and that goes striaght to the question of seeing-women-as-objects-not-as-human-beings.

And the idea of any even worse things that he didn't intend to do (and we believe him, don't we? You're right about it being scary that Fevola-like behaviour is so common) being offered as some kind of mitigation is waaaayyy beside the point.

And yes of course he's ashamed. He's ashamed of having been caught.

Bernice said...

There is something too very infantile, childish in the use of 'just'. A fundamental failure to understand the world as apart from the self; the man as sunchild, at the centre of all creation; the anti-Copernican misogyny that so often now finds solice in the libetarian selfishness of modern politics and economy.

I wonder how many times George W Bush uses it in his tome; or Blair or Howard for that matter. "they're just Iraqis" "they're just terrorists" "they're just not useful to me". (and dont bother reading the Bush fable - it is truly terrifying that a person can have so little knowledge let alone insight into their own life, let alone be asked to make decisions about an entire nation)

Kerryn Goldsworthy said...

Bernice, good point about the infantile 'just'. When I was an academic, the small handful of students I actively disliked were the ones who would front up to my office and demand my detailed and prolonged personal attention at the end of a long hard day, or five minutes before I was due to give a lecture, and quite outside the generous office hours I was offering (one of which was after 5 to cater for students with jobs), or the ones who would read the sign on my closed office door saying 'Please do not disturb', and then knock. And if one asked them why they could not come in an office hour, or heed the request not to disturb, they would say, without exception, 'Oh but I was just ...'

The translation of which always, without exception, turned out to be 'But is is convenient for MEEE to see you right this minute!'

Invariably, they were special snowflakes with rich daddies. I know, it hardly needs saying.

Helen said...

I'd just (Ha!) been reading this long, long thread on Pharyngula about the fact that student fraternities in the US still consider it OK to march up and down close to womens dormitories chanting "No means Yes, Yes means Anal, Fucking Sluts". Because it's *just* a bit of harmless fun, and how could it ever be construed as a threat?

Kerryn Goldsworthy said...

Here's something I've never understood: if they prefer anal, why don't they just screw the bejesus out of each other and leave the women, whom they obviously hate, alone?

Anonymous said...

When it come to sex and women, drawing a line is no longer a simple matter. Where on earth does one say ' This is it. Stop here.' This poor guy is dazed and confused. As far as he's concerned there's nothing wrong with seeing naked photos of women because such photos are so freely available. What's the big deal ? There are no standards any more.