Serena on Steubenville
Towards the end of a routine Rolling Stone interview, Serena Williams: The Great One, appeared to sympathize more with the Steubenville rapists than the victim:
We watch the news for a while, and the infamous Steubenville rape case flashes on the TV … Serena just shakes her head. “Do you think it was fair, what they got? They did something stupid, but I don’t know. I’m not blaming the girl, but if you’re a 16-year-old and you’re drunk like that, your parents should teach you: Don’t take drinks from other people. She’s 16, why was she that drunk where she doesn’t remember? It could have been much worse. She’s lucky. Obviously, I don’t know, maybe she wasn’t a virgin, but she shouldn’t have put herself in that position, unless they slipped her something, then that’s different.”
To answer her question, Yes I think the rapists got what they deserved (thanks in part to Anonymous). But at the same time I agree that women should be careful of drinking too much at parties. I am aware of the ideal belief that women should be safe no matter what, but I tell my own children that ideal isn’t all that practical in the real world. If Serena had said only that she might have raised fewer eyebrows. And I don’t agree that she – the victim – was all that lucky.
After a great deal of blowback, Serena spoke to the victim and her family and released a statement in which she hinted that she didn’t really say it the way it was printed:
“I am currently reaching out to the girl’s family to let her know that I am deeply sorry for what was written in the Rolling Stone article,” the statement said. “What was written — what I supposedly said — is insensitive and hurtful, and I by no means would say or insinuate that she was at all to blame.”
But she did say that.