Reasonable Doughty?

I suggest you read this only after you’ve read today’s articles and posts in the LA Times, LAKi and Hockey Buzz on the alleged off-ice incident involving Drew Doughty. Because I’m not going to recount the story as reported by those fine writers. I hesitate even to write this post. But I have a few thoughts, and this is a blog after all. So:

I keep reading that this is a “he said/she said” situation, so we will likely never know what really happened. This is usually an admonition not to jump to conclusions, in either direction. While that’s sound advice in general, I can’t help but notice that there’s only one person whose reputation is being publicly tarnished in this case, and that’s Drew Doughty.

For some very good reasons, the identities of alleged rape victims are kept out of the public discourse. One of the effects of this, though, is that the anonymous accuser’s reputation is protected while the reputation of the accused is irreparably damaged. It may be irreparably damaged to a small degree (if the accusation turns out to be obviously false) or to a huge degree (if it turns out to be true). But some amount of damage has already been done. Because it will always be possible for someone to say, “only two people know what really happened.” People will continue to say it, even if the anonymous accusation turns out to be manifestly bogus and inspired by all the unsavory, greedy motivations that people leaping to Doughty’s defense have already suggested…the very same motivations the rest of us privately suspect.

Namely, that if you fuck a dumbshit young rock-star millionaire, you can cash in and “only two people will ever really know what happened.”

I’m quite sure Drew is a millionaire dumbass with questionable judgment who naively thinks nothing bad could ever happen to him because he happens to be a hockey god. Given that I believe this, which circumstance would I think is more likely: (a) Drew Doughty is a rapist, or (b) his anonymous accuser is a lying gold-digger?

I don’t really think there’s anything reasonable or impartial about pretending that those two possibilities are equally likely.


  16 comments for “Reasonable Doughty?

  1. DougS
    June 19, 2012 at 10:52 PM

    Well, TMZ is saying that law enforcement has “serious problems” with the accusers credibility, so I suspect this will all go away shortly. 

    At least Drew has plenty of resources with which to defend himself, a relatively friendly community and law enforcement that (so it seems) is trying to be fair. Just ask those Duke University lacrosse boys what it’s like to be falsely accused to rape when when a significant portion of your community is strongly convinced of your guilt, and the local prosecutor is doing his damnedest to score political points by putting you in jail.

    • uvgt2bkdnme
      June 21, 2012 at 7:38 PM

      there’s a fantastic book on that Duke lacrosse case: It’s Not About the Truth by Don Yaeger.

  2. Garrett79
    June 20, 2012 at 12:05 AM

    One of the interesting things, to me, about the scenario was that the accuser claimed that it was Drew and several teammates at his house and that they were making fun of him for not being able to close the deal with her. I really hope this didn’t happen because if it did, then Doughty wouldn’t be the only guy on the team who is a real asshole. And I think we can all imagine what party boys who might have been run out of some other NHL city might have been there with them.

  3. Niesy
    June 20, 2012 at 9:57 AM

    “I can’t help but notice that there’s only one person whose reputation
    is being publicly tarnished in this case, and that’s Drew Doughty.”

    It’s true that his name has been released publicly and hers hasn’t. But I’ve mostly seen fans leaping to conclude that she’s lying, cracking jokes, and calling her all sorts of names.

    The truth is none of us know anything more than secondhand, incomplete reports.

    I would prefer that people not jump to conclusions whatsoever and wait for the ruling. I also don’t think that’s unreasonable to expect.

    • June 20, 2012 at 11:00 AM

      I agree with you. Except that I do think it’s unreasonable to expect people not to try to make sense of what they’ve heard in the privacy of their own minds, and the “sense” each of us comes up with is likely to align pretty closely with who we identify with (and to what degree) in the narrative. It’s absolutely reasonable (or at least desirable) that people not claim to “know for a fact” what happened without in fact knowing anything factual at all. 

      • Niesy
        June 20, 2012 at 11:48 AM

        Everyone attempts to make sense of what we’ve heard, but I see people (and blogs) proclaiming it must be false as if it’s an established fact. There’s a difference. Sadly, some have a few sexist remarks and insults thrown in for good measure. It has been a pretty stomach-churning experience since the news of the allegation broke.

        • June 20, 2012 at 12:10 PM

          I agree. It frequently turns out that agreeing on love of the 2012 Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings does not translate to agreement on other issues. 

    • Niesy
      June 20, 2012 at 11:04 AM

      I’ll also add that according to a recent Justice Department Study (2006-2010), the majority of rapes are not reported to the police (54%). The anonymity policy is in place for a reason. This is part of our justice system.

      If charges are dropped, it will receive a lot of public attention. I don’t think his reputation will be “permanently tarnished” — as is generally the case with pro athletes under accusation, I’d say most of the reactions I’ve seen have been to attack the accuser. I’d even put it at 98%.

      • June 20, 2012 at 11:59 AM

        I’m not sure if you’re disagreeing with me or not. I said very clearly that the anonymity policy exists for good reason. I also think the policy is a net positive by a long shot. But that doesn’t mean it doesn’t work to the advantage of someone who makes false accusations. 

        I seriously doubt that, if the accusation does not result in charges being filed (charges can’t be dropped if there are not charges to begin with), the news of Doughty’s exoneration (to the degree that it will be seen as such) will receive anything but a fraction of the attention the initial story received. Except, of course, that the TV news people will take the opportunity to gleefully repeat the original accusation in all its gossipy detail.

        I also don’t share your optimism that a disproved allegation won’t “stick” to a person accused and subsequently cleared of rape. My experience is that people seem to subscribe to “where there’s smoke…” 

        I didn’t follow the Kobe story from a few years ago, but my dim recollection is that he was accused of rape by a woman who turned out to be a crackpot. You can argue that this hasn’t “really” affected Kobe’s reputation, but I would counter-argue that that’s only because he’s a rich, famous sports hero. If it were just my neighbor three doors down, his whole life would be summarized as “that guy who was accused of rape by a crackpot but who knows what really happened.”

        Having said all that, I would also like to add that there’s a chance Drew Doughty is a rapist and a criminal and if that’s the case he belongs in jail and his career would deserve the devastation that would be visited upon it. 

        So far I don’t see any reason to believe the likelihood of Doughty actually being a rapist is very big. 

        • Niesy
          June 21, 2012 at 12:07 AM

          I suppose I felt some mixed signals in this post, and wasn’t sure. The intensity of the namecalling yesterday and today disturbs me.

          Since you place so much emphasis on how unfair this potentially is to Doughty, I felt like it was a good time to underline why the policy exists in the first place. It not only exists for a good reason — it is also rarely abused. I’m glad you clarified.

          • June 21, 2012 at 9:55 AM

            Don’t lump me in with the idiots. I’m on your side.

        • June 21, 2012 at 12:08 AM

          I’m pretty sure the transcripts of Kobe’s police interviews (on scene, before any handlers were there to shut him up or anything) are still up on the internet.

      • Garrett79
        June 20, 2012 at 1:06 PM

        The thing about rape is that whether the victim’s identity is kept anonymous or not, in order to report it, a woman (or a man, in which case reporting of the crime is even more infrequent) still has to go into a police station and tell a complete stranger a lot of very personal stuff that no one really wants to talk about. Being raped is not the same as being robbed or assaulted or having your house set on fire. It is the most personal and disgusting invasion humanly possible. I’m fairly certain that no one who has been raped wants to have to re-live that experience a second time (and more than that if the case is going to go to trial and you’re going to have to testify) in reporting it to police.

        Let’s not also forget that most police officers are men and that there is an anti-victim bias among cops in rape cases. Cops do not take crimes men commit against woman (rape, domestic violence) nearly as serious as they do other crimes, whether because of societal pressures or because police departments are fraternal organizations and they can see themselves being put in the same situation as the alleged attacker, I can’t say, but it is a known fact.

        Imagine the case of a 25-year-old party girl who the cops might even know as a girl who sleeps around because it’s a small community and word gets around. One night she had a little too much to drink and went home with a sexy rich hockey player. When it turned out that it wasn’t just him there but also some of his friends, she decides against having sex with him and demands to be taken home. He agrees, but thinks she really just didn’t wanna look like a slut in front of his teammates so he continues to make advances. Even the cabbie driving has seen this girl on a few occasions with different guys so he thinks nothing of it as they “mess around” in the backseat. Hell, maybe she was teasing him the whole time to keep him worked up because that was fun for her. He walks her to the door and pushes his way inside with her. She still doesn’t wanna sleep with him anymore, but he has managed to get himself worked up and forces her. Yes, she is a girl with a reputation who has been around the block and might even have been trying to get him worked up but if he had sex with her without her consent, under the law, he raped her. Just because a girl is a slut doesn’t mean she can’t be raped.

        And by the way, I don’t know what the girl’s reputation is in this case. I don’t know what happened on the night in question. Everything I just said was for illustrative purposes only. I am not calling the victim a slut or a liar and I’m not calling Drew Doughty a rapist. As I said before, I hope this didn’t happen, but if it did, I would be very troubled by it.

  4. Saronoff
    June 20, 2012 at 11:03 AM

    Doughty will learn never to be alone with a woman. I remember hearing about all the rules Derek Jeter has when dealing with women. Jeter should teach a course on it, its quite sad and genius all at the same time.

  5. Uni
    June 20, 2012 at 11:27 AM

    Very well put Quisp. You are a man of logic.

  6. June 23, 2012 at 10:41 PM

    I think there are a few of you have lost some perspective. I will preface that rape is an ugly crime that should be punished. Having said that, if there was any meaningful “proof” that DD did this, he probably would have been charged by now. But I doubt that the guy has any difficulty finding women interested in having sex with him, nor does it seem likely that he has the type of psychological profile capable of rape. But I could be wrong and don’t know anything more about DD than most other fans do.

    What we should all agree on, is that at the very least this whole affair represents extremely poor judgment on his part. I am sure a lot of athletes hop in the sack with women they meet, but someone like DD should have a better sense of self preservation. One nighters with women he meets in bars puts him in the cross hairs for this type of trouble. He needs to be smarter than that and I dare say, more mature.

    So let’s put aside the moral transgression part of the discussion until the authorities act, but don’t forget to chastise Drew for being so stupid.

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