I wonder how many of you out there have watched the saga of the rugby league players involved in the group sex incident with a woman in New Zealand and, like me, have been utterly gobsmacked at the way its been portrayed in the media.
The initial TV report on the ABC virtually claimed that it was a gang rape, and the players were vilified for days on end, but then some fairly gaping holes started to appear in the woman’s story. It turned out that in the days following the sexual encounter, the woman had been openly boasting to friends and workmates that she’d gang-banged the guys and was very proud of it. It was only 5-6 days after the event that she suddenly announced that she hadn’t really wanted it at all, and made a complaint to the police. The police investigated and came to the logical conclusion that she was not being truthful, and no charges were ever laid. Her workmates and boss from that time have openly called her a liar, and she has now said she wants it all to go away.
Despite this vindication, when all the evidence about the woman’s willing involvement came to light, the media made no attempt to apologise to the players. In fact, the complete opposite happened and they started to hunt the players with an even greater zeal, but this time on a different tack. It now seemed to be the pre-occupation of every newspaper, radio shock jock and TV current affairs show to try and humiliate the players because they’d had the audacity to have a consensual group sex encounter, despite such things being totally legal.
Most tabloid media people relish the idea of publically humiliating other people. They love nothing more than a story that keeps people watching their show, listening to their station, or reading their paper, and they weren’t going to let the facts get in the way of a good story, especially when it had the taint of illicit sex.
And so they played the moral outrage game. How dare these players ‘cheat’ on their wives they cried. Poor Matthew Johns (one of the only two players to be publically named) was sacked from his job at Channel 9 and was subjected to an interview by a self-righteous Tracy Grimshaw, who seemed to believe that Johns should apologise publically for his ‘adultery’, as if it was any of her business.
From this point on, the media decided to push the ‘group sex is bad’ angle for all it was worth. Many in the media refused to accept that any woman would willingly seek out group sex, or that if she did that there must be something wrong with her. The idea that a woman could desire multiple partners at the same time was something they couldn’t come to grips with, or if they could they just pretended they couldn’t and decided to take the moral high ground. Woman seeking multiple partners were often described as doing it because they had low self-esteem, or that they didn’t really want it and only did it because men pressured them to do it.
It became obvious that most of the moral tut-tutting was coming from journalists who were aged in their 40s, 50s and 60s and that was also part of the problem, because this is a group of people who, outside the swinging scene, have had almost no involvement with group sex, whereas their children aged in their late teens, twenties or thirties are much more likely to have indulged (but they won’t have told mummy and daddy about it, in exactly the same way that mummy and daddy never told their own parents when they started having sex).
Time and again, the overall message was that group sex is slutty, and slutty is bad, and it’s not just from the media. I’ve arranged gang-bangs for literally dozens of women over the years, and one of their biggest fears is that their non-swinging friends (especially their female ones) might find out about it. Peer pressure is a worrying factor for them, and I’ve got no doubt that this is what lay at the kiwi woman’s change of heart. She actively sought out a group session, and made no secret of it, but she then got worried that conservative friends or family might find out about it, so she cried wolf to try and protect her reputation. The really sad thing is that by trying to sully the reputation of guys she’d willingly fucked, she’s managed to trash her own when her lies were laid bare for all to see.