Coward Old Universe…

by Jeremy G.

Extradite him, and do it now

Posted by Jeremy Ghez on September 29, 2009

Why do we refer to something that happened more than thirty years ago as a “sex scandal” when it would be called “pedophilia” if it had happened yesterday? This question has been bugging me for the past two days, after the latest twist in the Polanski case. He was arrested on Sunday in Switzerland, and that was enough to make him Hollywood’s darling.

Polanski is a great film maker. Even the girl who he admitted having sex with when she was only thirteen says so, and wants this to end. And I think that many people will understand her. Especially that the courts were not particularly efficient in their pursuit of justice. But a couple of points:

  1. It is not up to a victim to decide if it’s time to stop a judicial process. Justice has a duty to fulfill to protect victims and society. It is up to the judicial system to punish what it considers as a crime, not to anyone else.
  2. The courts mishandled this case badly. But Polanski’s decision to flee the United States was the true source of delay, not the mistakes of the courts. I find it a bit easy to say that, in the name of time, everything should be forgotten.

On France 24 tonight, during the daily talk show, one guest argued that when he decided to leave the United States for Europe in 1978, Polanski probably heard again his father’s words when he was being taken to Auschwitz — “Run Now.” Please tell me this is not the only argument that we’re left with on the other side.

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