The Slow Wheels of Justice

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Roman Polanski has been arrested on his 32-year old statutory rape charge and is scheduled for deportation to the United States.  If the girl had been 15 or 16, I think many of us would rightly say, "let it go, already".  But she was thirteen.  He plied her with champagne and Quaaludes.  And he knew how old she was.  Ick (warning:  link has a pretty graphic description of anal rape.)

His victim now says she has forgiven him and doesn't want him to serve jail time, but at this point, it's not really about her.  We're doing this pour encourager les autres.

The French, too, have forgiven him of course:

"Seeing him alone, imprisoned while he was heading to an event that was due to offer him praise and recognition is awful. He was trapped," French Culture Minister Frederic Mitterrand said at a news conference Sunday. "In the same way there is a generous America that we like, there is also a scary America, that has just shown its face."

You would think we'd busted him for unpaid parking tickets.  The guy drugged a thirteen year old girl in order to rape her.  Perhaps the French have some sophisticated, European point of view on these things that I, with my puritan ancestry, simply cannot rise to.

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Megan McArdle is a columnist at Bloomberg View and a former senior editor at The Atlantic. Her new book is The Up Side of Down.

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