Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen writes under the header “Thank you, Switzerland, for freeing Polanski”:
The Swiss got it right. Their refusal to extradite film director Roman Polanski to the United States on a 33-year-old sex charge is the proper dénouement for this mess of a case. There is no doubt that Polanski did what he did, which is have sex with a 13-year-old after plying her with booze. There is no doubt also that after all these years there is something stale about the case, not to mention a “victim,” Samantha Geimer, who has long ago forgiven her assailant and dearly wishes the whole thing would go away. So do I.
Why would Cohen put the word victim in quotes, suggesting that he doesn't believe the word really applies, given that he stipulates that Polanski had “sex with a 13-year-old after plying her with booze”? Does Richard Cohen think that 13-year-olds who are plied with alcohol in order to get them to “have sex” are not victims?
Last September, Cohen referred to Polanski's treatment of Geimer as “seduction.” No, really.
And Cohen isn't the only Washington Post columnist who has downplayed Polanski's crime.