The blood-lust of some Polanski critics is almost as tiring as the absurd antics of his defenders. "He deserves to have his nether regions removed with a rusty scalpel by a drunken, near sighted, baboon" isn't exactly moving the conversation forward. Brendan O’Neill zooms out. He gets much wrong, but maybe there is a small kernel of truth in this:

L’Affaire Polanski has become a Culture War that dare not speak its name, a pale and dishonest imitation of the debates about values and morality that have emerged at various times over the past 50 years. As a result we are none the wiser about the legal usefulness of 30-year-old arrest warrants or contemporary extradition laws, as desperate political observers have instead turned Polanski into either a ventriloquist’s dummy or a voodoo doll for the purposes of letting off some cheap moral steam.

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