Sabrina Rubin Erdely, Author of Rolling Stone Magazine Article on University of Virginia Rape Offers Apology for False Story to all but the Fraternity
HEY SABRINA, YOU MISSED SOME ONE IN YOUR APOLOGY FOR FALSE RAPE STORY …
Rolling Stone magazine is in full retreat on their now completely discredited University of Virginia rape story where the so-called rape victim, Jackie, was assaulted at a UVA fraternity. The author of the article, Sabrina Rubin Erdely, is now offering an apology and Rolling Stone is asking what went wrong. Hmm, you mean besides everything? Rolling Stone has officially retracted the article, ‘A Rape on Campus,’ as nothing can ce corroborated; however, has the damage already been done? Sabrina Rubin Erdely offered an apology saying, “I want to offer my deepest apologies: to Rolling Stone’s readers, to my Rolling Stone editors and colleagues, to the U.V.A. community, and to any victims of sexual assault who may feel fearful as a result of my article.” Um, and I can’t actually believe I am saying this as I have no love for the fraternity system, but where is Rolling Stone’s apology to the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity where the faux rape occurred? Could it be because the fraternity will most likely sue Rolling Stone for libel?
Rape is a terrible crime unto itself and affects a victim for the rest of their life. But to report such a sensational, false story like this and not have any journalistic integrity, no fact checking, no nothing what so ever, is a crime itself.
Sabrina Rubin Erdely, the author of a now-discredited article in Rolling Stone magazine about a rape at a University of Virginia fraternity, issued this statement:
“The past few months, since my Rolling Stone article “A Rape on Campus” was first called into question, have been among the most painful of my life. Reading the Columbia account of the mistakes and misjudgments in my reporting was a brutal and humbling experience. I want to offer my deepest apologies: to Rolling Stone’s readers, to my Rolling Stone editors and colleagues, to the U.V.A. community, and to any victims of sexual assault who may feel fearful as a result of my article.
“Over my 20 years of working as an investigative journalist — including at Rolling Stone, a magazine I grew up loving and am honored to work for — I have often dealt with sensitive topics and sources. In writing each of these stories I must weigh my compassion against my journalistic duty to find the truth. However, in the case of Jackie and her account of her traumatic rape, I did not go far enough to verify her story. I allowed my concern for Jackie’s well-being, my fear of re-traumatizing her, and my confidence in her credibility to take the place of more questioning and more facts. These are mistakes I will not make again.
There seems to be more missing from the Rolling Stone mea culpa on this false rape article that they published, who is being held responsible for such a miscarriage of journalism? Who got suspended, who got fired … no one. So how are we to believe this will never happen again at Rolling Stone, because they said so? Sorry folks, but as private investigators Sam Spade, Humphrey Bogart, said in The Maltese Falcon, some one must take the fall.
So, there was a massive “failure of journalism” here, but none of the journalists who failed so massively will lose their jobs, and none of the journalistic practices that led to this failure will change.
Somehow, this is so America 2015. Leaders “take full responsibility” for failure, but rarely seem to pay a price for it. As we tell our children, “‘Sorry’ is not a magic word.” That is, it’s great to say “I’m sorry” when you’ve done wrong, but saying the word does not erase the consequences of the deed. You have to show by your actions that you mean it.
The editors who handled that UVA story will remain in place. Unbelievably, even the writer who wrote the catastrophic lies will not suffer any professional penalty at the magazine.