Ohio rape case judge: You are what you tweet

  • Article by: Amanda Hess , Slate
  • Updated: March 18, 2013 - 6:41 PM

Sunday, two teen-age Steubenville, Ohio, football players were convicted of sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl at a high school party. Starting from the night of the assault last August, their rape case was one of the most widely publicized in American history - largely because the assailants and their witnesses whipped out their cellphones to document the event in real time.

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pumiceMar. 18, 13 2:01 PM

From the article: "Unfortunately, Judge Lipps didn’t warn teen-agers to reassess the attitudes that led to this sexual assault in their community, or the beliefs that inspired bystanders to side with the rapists over the victim." Juvenile bystanders were not the only ones who sided with the rapists. Adults--including adults in the media--pointed the finger of blame at the victim and sympathized with the young men because the promise of their futures has been dimmed.

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eman2001Mar. 18, 13 2:20 PM

Wondering where the juvenile shield laws and newspaper standards of not revealing juveniles's names went in this case. I guess when the pack is hungry for blood, there go the rules.

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NoMasBSMar. 18, 13 3:21 PM

To all young girls out there. Yes you can now safely or not so safely assume that if you go to a party with a bunch of young boys getting drunk and then you get drunk yourself. There is a very good possibility that you'll be assaulted in some way. Leave the social media thing out of it. This stuff has been going on long before anyone knew what the internet was.

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k3k30sMar. 18, 13 3:43 PM

Judge Lipps - hope you're reading this

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getcrazyMar. 18, 13 3:58 PM

"to have discussions about how you talk to your friends; how you record things on the social media so prevalent today; and how you conduct yourself when drinking is put upon you by your friends."---So is the message to not have your cellphone out when you are raping someone or is it to not let your "friends" rape you if you are drinking? I don't get it.

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northhillMar. 18, 13 4:43 PM

The sentence these two received was appalling.They should have been tried as adults and sentenced as adults. An adult convicted of the same offense would have received 20 years in prison.

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jdlellis1Mar. 18, 13 5:07 PM

TMZ - Works dillegently to track people down, invade their lives and privacy and even makes fun (can you say bullying) of people. Reality Televsion - Just when one thinks it cannot get any worse then All Star Wrestling. Entertainers - Fifty Cent, Lindsey Lohen, Charlie Sheen, Kim Kardisian, etc. These are the hero's pop culture places on a pedestal. Why are people surprised at the lack of ethics, morals and values in teenagers.

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LizLoneMar. 18, 13 6:50 PM

@eman2001 If you're wondering where the juvie shield is regarding the release of the rapists' names, you should ask their lawyers. The defense lawyers are the ones who released, with the blessing of the teens, their names. Now as for the girl's name, that was released by... wait for it... Fox News today, without any consent from her or her reps. See- it's that darn tricky word, consent, again. @NoMasBS Here's some rules to stop rape: 1 Don’t put drugs in women’s (or men's) drinks. 2 When you see a woman walking by herself, leave her alone. 3 If you pull over to help a woman whose car has broken down, remember not to rape her. 4 If you are in a lift and a woman gets in, don’t rape her. 5 Never creep into a woman’s home through an unlocked door or window, or spring out at her from between parked cars, or rape her. 6 USE THE BUDDY SYSTEM! If you are not able to stop yourself from assaulting people, ask a friend to stay with you while you are in public. 7 Don’t forget: it’s not sex with someone who’s asleep or unconscious – it’s RAPE! 8 Carry a whistle! If you are worried you might assault someone ‘by accident’ you can hand it to the person you are with, so they can call for help. 9 Don’t forget: Honesty is the best policy. If you have every intention of having sex later on with the woman you’re dating regardless of how she feels about it, tell her directly that there is every chance you will rape her. If you don’t communicate your intentions, she may take it as a sign that you do not plan to rape her and inadvertently feel safe. 10 Don’t rape. And if someone does not follow those rules, it's not a female's fault. It's a crime committed by the perp. Personally me thinks guys need to wear a chastity belt and never leave home without a trusted female relative who can help them control their impulses since as you say, this stuff as been going on long before anyone knew what the internet was.

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pumiceMar. 18, 1311:27 PM

Re: "[A]s you say, this stuff as been going on long before anyone knew what the Internet was." The last campaign season showed that this stuff is far from over. Some would deny the victim the right to emergency contraception and rationalize a resulting pregnancy as God's will.

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crystalbayMar. 19, 13 1:38 AM

CNN's coverage of this case has been utterly atrocious. Even Crowley expressed sadness for the two perpetrators - as did other CNN reporters - without a mention of the trauma to the victim. This is unconscionable in the 21st century. These boys committed sordid and repeated acts upon the unconscious body of a girl and had the audacity to record it on a cell phone, then distribute it. This is how the victim learned of the attack - that's how unconscious she actually was. That CNN had any sympathetic words for these boys is incomprehensible and reprehensible.

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