Our own Kris Kotarski in the Calgary Herald:
Why do people who really should know better twist themselves into impossible positions trying to justify a famous man's crime?
That the Polanski hoopla is a reflection of our society is obvious, although the important lesson here is not the one that is being pushed by the Washington Post. This has little to do with Hollywood's moral core or the divide between “virtuous” America and “decadent” Europe, and even less to do with the divisions in American politics that the Post covers so well.
Too many people–liberals, conservatives, Americans, Europeans–have spoken up in a child rapist's defence for this to be a simple left/right, liberal/ conservative spat. This is a symptom of a much older illness, an echo of a time when the ruling elite could do whatever it pleased to the commoners, and when certain people could simply do no wrong.
This was not a “liberal elite” (another curious phrase from our present political lexicon)–this was the aristocracy and the clergy, who had separate rules of engagement for their own kind, and separate rules for the commoners. There were kings, lords, commoners, and slaves. And whether it was murder, rape, theft or cruelty, there was one standard for the elite, and another for the masses.
Today, everyone insists we're all equal before the law, but who are we kidding?