[TW for sexual assault and total asshattery]
In the parallel media universe of the right-wing blogosphere, this is the single biggest story of the week. Maybe the month, even. A union thug viciously attacked an innocent young woman, in broad daylight. And it’s all on camera!
Or, like, a guy pushed a camera that was 6 inches from his face, wielded by someone engaging him in a heated argument. You be the judge!
Video is embedded at Salon‘s site. When I first saw the video, I assumed her hit her, like with his fist, because Michelle Malkin made it seem like we were lucky that Ms. Hale wasn’t in the hospital. I don’t ever think that anyone ever should touch someone else in any way that is aggressive ever. I am not advocating that or calling for that or supporting that. And I really wouldn’t even have a problem with Ms. Hale taking to the internets and spreading this around and yapping it up about this union guy (if I did, I would be on here everyday complaining about Beck, Hannity, O’Reilly, Limbaugh, or Malkin then, wouldn’t I?).
This is time is different. Because Ms. Hale goes WAY TOO FAR in trying to make her point about how terrible this entire episode was. She compares herself directly with LARA LOGAN and sexual assault victims who are blamed for their sexual assault.
But this IS NOT in any way remotely similar to what happened to Lara Logan in Egypt. And to say that it is – well, that’s reprehensible, disgusting, and completely downplays, even disregards, the brutality of the sexual assault and beating that Ms. Logan was very lucky to survive. But Ms. Hale says it anyway:
This just can’t be tolerated anymore. It’s one thing to be called a violent teabagger. It’s another to be called a violent teabagger while you’re being assaulted. They’ve been comparing themselves to the Egyptians ousting Mubarak. Looks like they’re not too far off, given that they share the tendency to assault women with cameras.
In addition, it’s disgusting to me that the first response I received from the Left was rationalization. “You were too close, respect personal space” and “well he obviously didn’t want to be filmed!” – essentially, it’s the “her skirt was too short” defense.
I’m not sure who Ms. Hale thinks she is fooling by insinuating that she and her colleagues were not there to trying to incite anger in the protesters. Otherwise, why were they there? Simply to film some people yelling some things, people who they openly and happily disagree with? To tell the story of the plight of the blue collar worker? No. It was on purpose to cause something like this to happen so they could post it everywhere. And all the better that it was a “5′1 female in a dress” who can stand in as the ultimate victim of “thuggery.” (Why else would Ms. Hale need to tell us that? Unless she somehow thinks it will make us MORE enraged at what has happened – the union guy didn’t just push anyone’s camera away – he pushed a FEMALE. And not just a regular ol’ female – a female in the most feminine clothes ever – a DRESS!).
Ms. Hale, you were NOT brutally sexually assaulted. You were NOT separated from your crew for minutes in a huge crowd as multiple men harmed you in multiple ways. You did NOT need a group of women backed by 20(!) soldiers to save you from your attackers. You were NOT simply there to record what was happening. In all these ways, you are NOT Lara Logan.
As Alex Pareene says at Salon:
Because these people are completely fucking shameless, the woman from the video has compared herself to Lara Logan. I am not making that up. I wish I was making that up. But I would actually not make that up, because it would seem beyond the pale to accuse conservative activists of being so horrible, so desperate to play the victim, so morally depraved, so deep into their persecution fantasies that they’ve lost all perspective on the rest of the world.
For the sake of actual sexual assault victims and for the love of Lara Logan, Tabitha Hale, shut the fuck up.