Now, sexual assault is always wrong (if people 'want' to be assaulted then it is consensual and no longer assault, so I know that I'm not including some of the more rough 'play' out there, but that ain't my bag either) and it is horrible that these events took place. That all of the girls concerned were able to go far enough beyond their comfort zones for such things to happen (the articles weren't terribly clear about what the assaults were beyond confirming that they didn't go beyond heavy petting - which I suppose is a mercy) is pretty bad. These were all legal minors in the UK. I would have though that this news would have been the real story, the shocking bit.
|The attacker: Gemma Barker. Posed as six different 'lads' online|
and dated one victim twice under different pseudonyms.
Assault is bad enough, but there's a chilling undercurrent here!
The 'cross-dressing' was limited to wearing baggy clothes to hide her frame (so no major attempt to bind a fairly well-developed chest according to the published pictures) and keeping the hood up to hide her hair. She posed as a male on facebook to talk to her potential victims. This is considered deeply disturbed? Every male geek who ever posed as a woman on the internet is now potentially a sex-offender! Or is it because she's a female? Are they not allowed to have such urges?
|The victims. One of them, the one who was said to be suicidal|
after learning that her attacker was a female, dated the attacker
twice under different names - both times being attacked. Terrible
but something isn't adding up right...
To my mind there are several angles on this: were the assaults only reported when the 'boy' turned out to be a cross-dressing girl? What makes the fact that the assailant was a cross-dressing girl any worse than the assailant being anyone who lulled someone else into a compromising position and assaulted them? Why does the reveal that someone you love is a different gender than you thought make that love invalid? Surely the fact that the attacker was unrepentant in court and emotionless and stuff makes that invalid, it has nothing at all to do with gender.
However, I know that I concievably come under two of the headings raised in these articles: cross-dresser and autistic (not actually but close enough for my wife to joke about it) and so anything I say about "love is love" is necessarily tied up in my bias.