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Roman Polanski


August1991

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Polanski appears to be a pedophile who said this in 1979 after he had drugged, anally, vaginally and orally raped a 13 year old girl.

When I was being driven to the police station from the hotel, the car radio was already talking about it ... I couldn't believe ... I thought, you know, I was going to wake up from it. I realize[d], if I have killed somebody, it wouldn't have had so much appeal for the press, you see? But ... f---ing, you see, and the young girls. Judges want to f---young girls. Juries want to f---young girls-- everyone wants to f---young girls!

--Roman Polanski in an interview with Martin Amis, Tatler magazine, 1979

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kimmy,

If these *are* their values, then these are truly disgusting people. If they really do think Polanski should be treated differently because he directed acclaimed movies, they can join Whoopi in the bottom of the pool, as far as I'm concerned.

However, I don't believe these are really their values. I don't believe they would really stand up for a child rapist and protest the unfairness of his treatment, not unless he were their buddy and their professional peer and likely a guy who still has powerful friends in their industry.

I don't understand you.

From what you're saying - if these people have forgiven him, as the victim has then they're disgusting. But if they're compromising their values to help their careers, or ... not sure what ... then they're not disgusting ?

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Link to a story mentioning the quote:

http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.htm...1#ixzz0SvkM4DR0

Honestly, it sounds like the guy has always seen himself as the victim. Like there's nothing wrong with what he did, it's just that people in America have such puritanical attitudes about drugging and raping 13 year olds. People want to make him pay because they're mad that they didn't get to do it too.

Out of curiousity, can anybody furnish a quote from him where he's ever acknowledged that what he did was wrong?

-k

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However, I don't believe these are really their values. I don't believe they would really stand up for a child rapist and protest the unfairness of his treatment, not unless he were their buddy and their professional peer and likely a guy who still has powerful friends in their industry.
I think Polanski and Polanski's defenders have convinced themselves that this is nothing but a case of statutory rape where a wannabe model thought she could enhance her prospects by offering sexual favours but had regrets after it happened. It is probably worth considering what people would think of this case if the woman in question was 16 or even 18? Would there be as much outrage? I doubt it. In Canada a 14 year old used to be able to concent to sex - is there realy that much of a moral difference concentual between sex with 13 year old and sex with 14 year old? It is not hard for someone who is inclined to view Polanski positively to convince themselves that no crime occurred. Edited by Riverwind
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Guest American Woman
It is probably worth considering what people would think of this case if the woman in question was 16 or even 18? Would there be as much outrage? I doubt it.

Sex with an 18 year old isn't illegal, so the charge wouldn't be the same, hence the "outrage" wouldn't be the same.

In Canada a 14 year old used to be able to concent to sex - is there realy that much of a moral difference concentual between sex with 13 year old and sex with 14 year old?

This didn't happen in Canada. Furthermore, it allegedly wasn't "consensual." But yes, there is most definitely a "moral difference" between doing something that's legal and doing something that's illegal.

It is not hard for someone who is inclined to view Polanski positively to convince themselves that no crime occurred.

People can "convince" themselves of a lot of things. Doesn't make it any less wrong.

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Guest American Woman
Were you alive in those days?

I was alive, and as you know, I have very strong feelings about the convictions of those involved in the murder of his wife and unborn child. However, stress does not make one sexually attracted to 13 year olds, and it in no way minimizes what he did -- and running made it worse for himself.* The U.S. has trying to get him back ever since he fled the country, and has made news on and off ever since he fled, so it's not been a forgotten incident.

*The maximum sentence he could have faced was 50 years, although prosecutors had said at the time that the typical sentence was 16 months to three years in prison.

Edited by American Woman
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I think Polanski and Polanski's defenders have convinced themselves that this is nothing but a case of statutory rape where a wannabe model thought she could enhance her prospects by offering sexual favours but had regrets after it happened. It is probably worth considering what people would think of this case if the woman in question was 16 or even 18? Would there be as much outrage? I doubt it. In Canada a 14 year old used to be able to concent to sex - is there realy that much of a moral difference concentual between sex with 13 year old and sex with 14 year old? It is not hard for someone who is inclined to view Polanski positively to convince themselves that no crime occurred.

Let's not forget that he was 44 years old at the time, and in a position of authority as well.

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Sex with an 18 year old isn't illegal, so the charge wouldn't be the same, hence the "outrage" wouldn't be the same.
But the age of consent in Tonga is 20. My point is the age of concent is an arbitrary line drawn by governments that there is no universally accepted definition of what the age of concent should be. You can argue that legally speaking he committed a crime but his defenders are not arguing that there is no legal case - they are arguing that the law should not be enforced in this case because it is simply a legal technicality. It is worth looking at it another way: the facts of this case suggest sodomy was involved and that was a crime in many states 20 years ago. Would you argue that he should be jailed for committing an illegal act of sodomy? If not you cannot argue that he should be prosecuted because the law-is-the-law. You are admitting that some moral/ethical filter needs to be applied before enforcing any law.
People can "convince" themselves of a lot of things. Doesn't make it any less wrong.
Of course, but there are lines that rational humans will not cross. For example, if the victim was 10 years old you can bet that no one would be defending the slimeball. All I am saying is there is a grey area in this case that allows otherwise rational people to convince themselves that Polanski should not be prosecuted.
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Let's not forget that he was 44 years old at the time, and in a position of authority as well.
This is the reason why I think the guy should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law and the fact that the victim has forgiven him is irrelevent. Polanski's "defense" is rediculous if you think about it because it rests entirely on the premise that hollywood has a culture where 13 year old girls feel they need to prostitute themselves to get ahead. If we take him at his word then jailing him should serve as a deterent for all the other sexual predators disguised as movie directors. Edited by Riverwind
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Guest American Woman
But the age of consent in Tonga is 20.

And when a crime is committed in Tonga, that information is relevant. however, it's not any more relevant in the U.S. than Canada's laws are.

My point is the age of concent is an arbitrary line drawn by governments that there is no universally accepted definition of what the age of concent should be.

Doesn't matter. The fact that the legal drinking age in Bostwana is 16 has no bearing on Canada's drinking laws.

You can argue that legally speaking he committed a crime but his defenders are not arguing that there is no legal case - they are arguing that the law should not be enforced in this case because it is simply a legal technicality.

That "legal technicality" would be "breaking the law," and law's are not reduced to legal technicalities just because some don't agree with them.

It is worth looking at it another way: the facts of this case suggest sodomy was involved and that was a crime in many states 20 years ago. Would you argue that he should be jailed for committing an illegal act of sodomy?

It actually wasn't a crime in California at the time, unless it was with a minor, as are all sexual acts. The sodomy charges were evidently dropped, but had they not been dropped, and he had been found guilty of sodomy, then that would have been included in the sentencing.

If not you cannot argue that he should be prosecuted because the law-is-the-law. You are admitting that some moral/ethical filter needs to be applied before enforcing any law.

There is no room for "moral/ethical filters" outside of a courtroom when a minor is involved since a minor cannot give consent.

Of course, but there are lines that rational humans will not cross. For example, if the victim was 10 years old you can bet that no one would be defending the slimeball.

Many people would say that a "rational" 44 year old man would not have sex with a 13 year old.

All I am saying is there is a grey area in this case that allows otherwise rational people to convince themselves that Polanski should not be prosecuted.

"Otherwise" is the key word there. Heaven help us if it becomes 'ok' for 44 year old men, in positions of power, no less, to have sex with 13 year olds. I see nothing at all "rational" about that.

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There is no room for "moral/ethical filters" outside of a courtroom when a minor is involved since a minor cannot give consent.
There are no laws where you would feel that enforcing them is an injustice? Pot possession? Three-strikes? Death penalty? Sodomy? I find hard to believe that you would consistently take the position that an unjust law should always be enforced and that people who question the enforcement of a law which they feel is unjust are somehow committing a moral/ethical offense.

Keep in mind that the discussion in thread is not only about Polanski - it is about the people who have done nothing more than defend Polanski.

Laws are intended to enforce society's moral/ethical norms and often people have differing opinions on what those norms are. If your argument is nothing but the 'law is the law' then you have no argument.

"Otherwise" is the key word there. Heaven help us if it becomes 'ok' for 44 year old men, in positions of power, no less, to have sex with 13 year olds. I see nothing at all "rational" about that.
If the sex was consenual then there are many who would have no problem with it. I don't happen to agree that a 13 year old would agree to sex with anyone other than someone close to her age unless there was some sort of cohersion/inducement (e.g. if you don't have sex with your career is over...).
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Guest American Woman
There are no laws where you would feel that enforcing them is an injustice? Pot possession? Three-strikes? Death penalty? Sodomy? I find hard to believe that you would consistently take the position that an unjust law should always be enforced and that people who question the enforcement of a law which they feel is unjust are somehow committing a moral/ethical offense.

Keep in mind that the discussion in thread is not only about Polanski - it is about the people who have done nothing more than defend Polanski.

As I said, any law involving a minor needs to be settled in the courts. If some feel the law is unjust, then they have every right to put effort into trying to change the laws. In the meantime, minors need the protection of the law/the courts.

Laws are intended to enforce society's moral/ethical norms and often people have differing opinions on what those norms are.

Right, people do have differing opinions. That's why we have laws, to make it clear what is, and isn't, legal in spite of what one may think.

If the sex was consenual then there are many who would have no problem with it.

And many Muslims in the Arab world have no problem with men marrying 10 year old girls, so I'm not sure what your point is.

I don't happen to agree that a 13 year old would agree to sex with anyone other than someone close to her age unless there was some sort of cohersion/inducement (e.g. if you don't have sex with your career is over...).

Whether you agree or disagree is irrelevant to what actually happens. But if you don't agree that a 13 year old would have sex with someone older, I'm curious-- That young boy (I believe he was 12) who had sex with his teacher -- do you believe she threatened him?

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The age of consent in Canada just a few years ago it was 14 before being raised by the newly minted Conservative Party led by PM Harper.

Even then I couldn't imagine having relation with a girl of 14 then or even now a girl of 16 which is the new age of consent. The whole thought disgusts me. People who want to have sex with young girls or boys are equally disturbed and deserve to be locked away forever.

Adults that would prey on a child for sexual favor is an individual I'd...well I'll just leave it at that.

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Right, people do have differing opinions. That's why we have laws, to make it clear what is, and isn't, legal in spite of what one may think.
And differing laws are why there are procedures for extradiction and why some people might not be extradited even if the technically committed a crime in another juristiction.
And many Muslims in the Arab world have no problem with men marrying 10 year old girls, so I'm not sure what your point is.
They also chop off hands for theft. Would you insist that someone be sent back to Saudi Arabia for dismemberment because the 'law is the law'.

I am trying to make it clear that there is a grey area in this case and the only proven charges (based on Polanski's plea) was sex with an underage person. This is why I am not so quick to condemn the celeberties who have rushed to his defence even though I do think he should be charged and do not defend his actions myself.

Whether you agree or disagree is irrelevant to what actually happens. But if you don't agree that a 13 year old would have sex with someone older, I'm curious-- That young boy (I believe he was 12) who had sex with his teacher -- do you believe she threatened him?
12 for a boy could have been cohersive how most teenage boys are programmed to seek sex wherever they can get it so they would not have to coehersed. Some girls also go the groupie route and I guess a girl as young as 13 might choose to have sex with an older person for some imagined 'slice of fame'.
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I think Polanski and Polanski's defenders have convinced themselves that this is nothing but a case of statutory rape where a wannabe model thought she could enhance her prospects by offering sexual favours but had regrets after it happened.

I think you're saying that people who are emotionally invested in a situation will often find ways to rationalize their position. And I agree.

It is probably worth considering what people would think of this case if the woman in question was 16 or even 18? Would there be as much outrage? I doubt it. In Canada a 14 year old used to be able to concent to sex - is there realy that much of a moral difference concentual between sex with 13 year old and sex with 14 year old? It is not hard for someone who is inclined to view Polanski positively to convince themselves that no crime occurred.

I agree that the age of consent is a kind of arbitrary line, but 13 is awfully young for me to be willing to be forgiving on that count.

There are lots of 16 year olds who are more physically and emotionally mature than lots of 18 year olds. But I don't think you can say that about any 13 year olds. Thirteen is just too far from adulthood.

-k

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Actually...the LA District Attorney at the time and the Judge had the (I agree) generous plea bargin removed and was looking for hard time...which is why Polanski fled.

That's not quite correct.

At the time the plea bargin, it was made completely clear to Ponanski that there were no guarantees with regards to sentencing. Polanski may have ASSUMED that he would not receive any substantial jail time, but even under the plea bargin it was up to the judge to decide on the sentence.

From the plea transcript (At: http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years...nskiplea8.html)

Gunson: “Do you understand that at this time, the Court has not made any decision as to what sentence you will receive?”

Polanski: "Yes"

...

Gunson: “Mr. Polanski, do you understand that at the time of probation and sentencing, the prosecutor may argue that you should be sentenced to State Prison, or be incarcerated in the County Jail?”

Polanski: “Yes.”

Now, there WAS an issue where the judge may have engaged in ex parte communications with a prosecutor. (I say "may", because any evidence of this was rather, shall we say, shakey.) However, this should have been dealt with through the court system. (Not to mention the fact that this was revealed until years after Polanski had fled, something that Polanski wouldn't have known about at the time)

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but I'm just wondering why now? Did Roman Polanski just screw-up and get off at the wrong airport gate? Also...there are some posters that state: "What about the girl??" I say "what about the girl, indeed." She wants the whole thing dropped as she'd have to have this all dredged-up again...and no doubt have to reveal her end of the bargain...which was no doubt large and green.

Even if she does want the whole thing dropped, that's not really up to her. The law is supposed to provide not just restitution, but also retribution and deterrence.

That is correct.

I'd also like to point out while the girl is the direct victim, she is not the only one who was adversly affected by his crimes. Many people suffered indirectly, from the taxpayers who had to fund his initial arrest/incarceration/etc., to people who unfortunately have to negatively restrict the movement of their children.

Whenever a crime occurs, EVERYONE suffers to some degree.

So why now? Apparently because he went to a country that didn't feel like shielding him from extradition to the US. From what I have read, it appears that the US has made numerous attempts to have him extradited over the years, so I don't think the suggestion that there is some ulterior motive or that this is from out of the blue is credible. They've been trying to get him back for some time, and yeah, sounds like he should have stayed in France.

True. In fact, they had made attempts as recently as 2007, when he visited Israel. (Unfortunately, the U.S. was not able to get all the relevant information to Israeli authorities in time.)

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/film/ro...e-director.html

Its quite possible that the reason why the prosecutors had a renewed interest in the case is that Polanski himself (through his lawyers) was attempting to get the charges dropped. Had he simply sat in Europe, molesting the children there, then the U.S. authorities may not have even bothered to ask Switzerland to arrest him.

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Guest American Woman
And differing laws are why there are procedures for extradiction and why some people might not be extradited even if the technically committed a crime in another juristiction.

He's been extradited, so that's no longer an issue.

They also chop off hands for theft. Would you insist that someone be sent back to Saudi Arabia for dismemberment because the 'law is the law'.

I'm referring to American law since that's what's at issue here. Comparing our laws to Islamic law is a whole different topic.

I am trying to make it clear that there is a grey area in this case and the only proven charges (based on Polanski's plea) was sex with an underage person. This is why I am not so quick to condemn the celeberties who have rushed to his defence even though I do think he should be charged and do not defend his actions myself.

But there is no "grey area." The law clears up any grey area that might otherwise exist by making it clear that an adult having sex with a 13 year old is illegal.

12 for a boy could have been cohersive how most teenage boys are programmed to seek sex wherever they can get it so they would not have to coehersed. Some girls also go the groupie route and I guess a girl as young as 13 might choose to have sex with an older person for some imagined 'slice of fame'.

A 13 year old girl might have sex with an older person to feel empowered, too; or to feel 'grown up.' Bottom line, whether she agrees to it or not, a 13 year old cannot legally "consent" to sex with an adult just like an adult cannot legally make a contract with a minor.

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Guest American Woman
If I was that kid I'd probably think I'd been blessed.

This is the general reaction from men. Doesn't make what she did right, though, does it?

Switch the genders in the Polanski case and I bet it wouldn't even register.

The woman in question in my post spent more than seven years in prison; and the boy was actually 13, not 12 as I originally thought.

Edited by American Woman
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This is the general reaction from men. Doesn't make what she did right, though, does it?

No it doesn't. Its still hard to imagine the boy felt anything but lucky but I suppose over time he might come to feel he'd been interfered with in a manner that left lasting regrets and issues. I think its pretty clear that immersing people in sexuality at too young an age can cause lasting pysho-sexual dysfunction. I think this is reflected by the fact we live in a society that celebrates sexuality and is deeply steeped in sexual imagery but is also very unforgiving of those who give into their self-indulgance.

The woman in question in my post spent more than seven years in prison; and the boy was actually 13, not 12 as I originally thought.

I seem to recall a case where the 'boy' and teacher got together after she was released, is this it?

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Guest American Woman
No it doesn't. Its still hard to imagine the boy felt anything but lucky but I suppose over time he might come to feel he'd been interfered with in a manner that left lasting regrets and issues. I think its pretty clear that immersing people in sexuality at too young an age can cause lasting pysho-sexual dysfunction. I think this is reflected by the fact we live in a society that celebrates sexuality and is deeply steeped in sexual imagery but is also very unforgiving of those who give into their self-indulgance.

I agree, but it's one thing to celebrate adult sexuality, and another for an adult to involve a child in their sexuality. That's one of the reasons I have a problem with baby/toddler pageants because the little girls are made up to be 'sexy.' I do think too many kids these days think "looking attractive" means "looking sexy."

I seem to recall a case where the 'boy' and teacher got together after she was released, is this it?

Yes. They ended up getting married. link

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I agree, but it's one thing to celebrate adult sexuality, and another for an adult to involve a child in their sexuality. That's one of the reasons I have a problem with baby/toddler pageants because the little girls are made up to be 'sexy.' I do think too many kids these days think "looking attractive" means "looking sexy."

Right, but it's not just the sex. In general, the law takes a dim view of any adult in a position of power taking advantage of a minor or vulnerable adult.

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Guest American Woman
Right, but it's not just the sex. In general, the law takes a dim view of any adult in a position of power taking advantage of a minor or vulnerable adult.

You're right, which is why I pointed out earlier that an adult cannot enter into a legal contract with a minor, either; and the law doesn't make exceptions in that regard. A contract with a minor is never legal/binding, so I don't understand why some seem to think it's a "gray area" when it comes to having sex with a minor; that the law shouldn't be enforced without question.

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You're right, which is why I pointed out earlier that an adult cannot enter into a legal contract with a minor, either; and the law doesn't make exceptions in that regard. A contract with a minor is never legal/binding, so I don't understand why some seem to think it's a "gray area" when it comes to having sex with a minor; that the law shouldn't be enforced without question.

I agree, and can only think that perhaps these individuals are making judgements based on the recent debate in Canada on age of consent and the proliferation of such incidents in popular media. It wasn't long ago when Woody Allen was excoriated for hooking up with his majority age adopted daughter, and I specifically remember this Polanski incident as being very despicable (at the time).

Back then, directors even caught hell for such things as Brooke Shields in "Pretty Baby" or "Blue Lagoon".

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