Jian Versus the CBC

Written less than 24 hours after Ghomeshi’s infamous Facebook tirade in which he claimed he was a victim of CBC and fired for no cause, this post wound up getting over 200,000 visits & helped change the discourse in Canada. Today Ghomeshi’s case is waiting to be tried and it’s hard to believe I ever felt the urge to write this.
It’s strange when a shooting can bring my country together and then, just four days later, a radio guy accused of serial aggravated abuse can rip us apart. Weird week, bro.
Last night, I had to brace myself so I didn’t explode in anger and unfriend everyone I felt was jumping to defend a guy who’s doing Scandal Management 101 to the tee.
The problem when you jump to defend the accused is it ends up making the accuser or victims feel like they’ve just been assaulted all over again. That’s easier to stomach when you can say “But HEY, they’re not coming forward, so they can’t be serious.” No, it’s you who can’t be serious. You can’t hear the accused’s spin-cycle and then make your decision then and there — but so many of you already have.
I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s look at this from all the angles.

The Background & a BDSM Primer

Jian Ghomeshi jumped into action Sunday the moment CBC fired him. It was within a couple hours that he had stated there’d be a $50 million suit to defend his good name, and then he posted a long “My dad is dead, my show was wrenched from my hands, and I’ve been a good soldier for the CBC” kinda sob story that masterfully framed the conversation.
(A “good soldier” the week one of our own is gunned down in cold blood? Motherfucker. Don’t even — And 100,000 likes in under 24 hours? I weep for objectivity.)
But here are the allegations he was jumping in front of, according to The Toronto Star:

“The three women interviewed by the Star allege that Ghomeshi physically attacked them on dates without consent. They allege he struck them with a closed fist or open hand; bit them; choked them until they almost passed out; covered their nose and mouth so that they had difficulty breathing; and that they were verbally abused during and after sex.”

Ghomeshi, though, wants you to think this is all about BDSM and how he’s forward-thinking but his bosses aren’t. He “framed” the discussion by claiming he has edgy sex preferences, and the big, boring government broadcaster isn’t hip to alternative sex lives.
Anyone involved in BDSM knows BDSM is not how the public perceives it. People joke about “safe words,” but in the BDSM community, the safe word is sacred. There is a widespread understanding amongst even hardcore BDSM fans that sadomasochism is all about trust and power — except that power is never held by the person with the whip in hand.
In the BDSM world, it’s the person being hit, choked, bound, or whatever else they fancy, that holds 100% of the control. It’s understood that if that safe word is even whispered, fun time is over. Period. No discussion, no whining, no pleading. Over.
Why is it so strict? Because folks in this lifestyle understand that these beatings, the choking, it can all go horribly awry and death is an accident away. That’s why you actually very rarely ever hear of deaths stemming from BDSM practice — there are rules and ethics in play. Always.

You Spin Me Right Round

Ghomeshi and co. (since his Facebook letter was almost certainly orchestrated by the country’s leading “reputation recovery” and “crisis management” PR firm, Navigator Ltd.), decided to frame this whole thing as an invasion of the bedroom and mutual consent.
After all, this is Canada, where “What Happens in Bedrooms Stays in Bedrooms.” This has been thus since 1969, the year itself a cute little joke. That’s when Trudeau declared the government had no business in the bedroom of consenting Canadians. As a result, gay rights took hold here long before they did in most countries, and we’re more sexually relaxed than our southern neighbours will ever be. We can consider ourselves a leader in the bedroom, and that’s awesome.
For that reason, Canadians take bedroom privacy very seriously, and rightly so. I’m a huge fan of sexual freedoms and the right to practice, and love, as you like — as long as it’s with consent and including folks over the age of 18.
So whether it’s Ghomeshi or the victim, this all comes back to consent. And consent is what the alleged victims in this case insist they either did not give, or they rescinded.
That takes us back to the point of BDSM and how Ghomeshi has framed all this.

Consent Can Be Rescinded

If you read the Star’s take on these events, it seems like Ghomeshi is trying to set groundwork for a legal defense, should this escalate to court. The defense he seems to be aiming for will likely include submitting evidence via texts, etc, that he told the women ahead of time he liked it rough. They might have even talked about blindfolding, spanking, and all kinds of other behaviour some say is “alternative” in tastes.
So even the would-be defense, then, would have you believe this amounts to consent.
But that’s the amateur’s take on the BDSM world and everyone should understand that expressing a mutual interest in sex before a date doesn’t mean it’s carte blanche for hours, days, or weeks later. Their exchanges should not be considered evidence of what might’ve happened much, much later.
The nature of the safe word is that it means EVERYTHING STOPS the moment it is said. It doesn’t matter if you’ve paid a million dollars to do what you planned to do next, the safe word is like a giant “void” stamp that makes the entire sexual roadmap null and void.
And anyone who truly embraces the BDSM community gets this. Do you know who doesn’t get this? People who want to use the alternative lifestyle to camouflage their desire to beat, rape, and commit other crimes against unwilling parties.
Because, sometimes, not having consent is its own fetish for those for whom sex is a pathological need.

A Denial Is Always True — WHAT?

Let’s drop the BDSM and alternative lifestyle arguments and get down to the rest of it.
So many folks were babbling on with this argument last night: “But if he really did it, there’s NO WAY he would write such a long thing saying that he didn’t do it!”
Yeah, and Clinton would never have said “I did not have sexual relations with that woman” if he’d slept with Lewinsky. And Richard Nixon would never have said “I am not a crook” if he were guilty.
Are you serious with this? Really? Someone who’s committed a crime would be suddenly so scared of being caught that they wouldn’t tell a lie? I’d like to know what it is you’re smoking, because I want some too, if you please. Sounds fun to live in that land of rainbows and kittens.
If they have committed the crime, then they are absolutely inclined to lie about it. That’s Criminal Behaviour 101 and it makes Ghomeshi’s entire Facebook session a moot story.

But His Voice Is Like Chocolate And I Love Him

Of course, let’s not forget the fans. The people who think Ghomeshi is charming and spins a good yarn. But of course a storyteller couldn’t possibly be a serial abuser. That would never happen.
Just like such a lovely, quirky old guy like Jimmy Savile, the darling of the BBC, a knight of the British Empire, and a popular TV host for DECADES could never be guilty of sexual abuse either. His defenders said he was such a visible persona for so long there was no way he could hide his deviance.
In fact, Savile was so insulated inside the BBC that rumours swirled for decades and allegations of a cover-up even today are so far-reaching it’ll make your head spin. There are at present well over 200 witnesses in the Savile case and yet it was kept quiet for DECADES.
There’s a sticky wicket for those in charge: Do you stand by your star that has made an empire inside your broadcasting corporation, or do you distance yourself?
Before Ghomeshi, BBC was alone in this corporate-star-scandal experience. Perhaps they felt if they cut Savile off, they’d open themselves up to litigation from claimants. Who knows. But now he’s dead and the victims are emboldened by the day, and the ripples are still spreading.
CBC’s left looking across the pond at the Motherland and realizing this case could have cash and legal implications for the BBC for years. Do they want to stick their neck out and defend a guy who, by all appearances, has had a pretty solid case shaping up under the deft hands of one of Canada’s premiere investigative reporters?

CBC’s Walk-Walk-Walkin’ Right Out That Door

As a taxpayer, I think CBC has done the only thing it can do. It’s walked away, likely on strong advice from lawyers who have probably seen the evidence brought forward by acclaimed media/investigative journalist Jesse Brown.
So now the general public’s argument is, “Well, if the Star doesn’t have proof, they should shut up.”
Well, not having hard proof didn’t stop the Star from doing one hell of an investigative case on Mayor Rob Ford and his crack addiction. They went after him like a dog on a bone, and everything they wrote proved so true that the OPP were involved, and still are.
The Toronto Star has a long history of investigative reporting. They do it very, very, very well. In 2012, their massive local investigation led to widespread sackings and reform in the Toronto School Board.
Because this is what good journalists do, and I don’t give a shit what your thoughts on journalism are — there are a LOT of good journos out there who got involved in the industry because they were tired of powerful people getting away with stuff, little guys getting the shaft, and corporations writing new rulebooks as they go along.
There are idealists in journalism, and more than a few can be found at the Toronto Star — and other papers across the country.

And You Would Come Forward?

Next you have the crowd shouting “Well, the victims won’t come forward. If they’re really victims, then they would come forward. Cowards!”
Oh, and you would?
Let’s imagine this. You’re some young girl, about 25, with dreams of making it in journalism or music. You somehow run into Ghomeshi at an event. He wows you with his pretty smile. Next day, he finds you on Facebook and says how he found something you wrote, or heard a song you did, and would love to talk to you about it.
Somehow, you’re flustered and proud, and the exchange gets flirty as it progresses, you say a few things that position you as a fan of sexual escapades, favourable towards BDSM, and yes you’d love to have a crantini at 9.
But then everything goes sideways. Choking, beating, whatever it is. That happens.
In the morning, you wake abused. But you’re still a 25-year-old kid who hasn’t even gotten her career started yet. The guy you were with is a millionaire radio guy who’s the face of a national broadcasting corporation.
First you need to contend with a well-sculpted public persona. Then you need to lose credibility in the press as some nobody-nothing who’s got “everything to gain” (except a career, respect, trust, or friends) from making accusations. Then you need to deal with the cops investigating you, and finally, your mom, dad, and whole family being embarrassed that you’re not only sexually promiscuous, but you’ve explored BDSM and were apparently willing to do it with a guy you only met once.
And all of this is before it ever reaches a court. This is all in WEEK ONE of a drama that could conceivably drag on for years, all with you at the forefront as the evil bitch who’s wrecking the career of everyone’s favourite cultural radio dude.
But, hey, yeah, you, you’re tough enough to do all that. You’re big enough to take on the machine. You’d have no excuses. You’d “trust” that the authorities and the media were going to treat you fairly. YOU WOULD DO THIS.
Is that about right? You’re that big on making a stand that you could handle this — even if you were some naive fresh-outta-school girl dreaming of a new career?
When’s the last time you busted someone at work for stealing supplies? When’s the last time you called someone out for a racist comment? When’s the last time you put your reputation on the line to fight someone in a position of authority? When’s the last time you stood up to anyone about ANYTHING — not to mention in front of police, the media, and an entire country?
Oh, never? Then shut the fuck up about why these girls aren’t coming forward. They’ve more to lose than you ever will.

But How Do I Really Feel?

Every single person giving Ghomeshi the benefit of the doubt and then saying “Why doesn’t his accuser come forward? How dare they?” is kidding themselves that they’re simply “waiting for facts.” They’ve already picked their sides.
I’m opting to believe that a massive broadcaster who has stood by its star’s side through YEARS of industry insider gossip about what a creep its star is, but then finally severs the relationship after an investigative journalist pores over his life for MONTHS, probably had pretty good cause to walk away.
I’m gonna believe a newspaper who’s made their name around the world through high-quality, groundbreaking investigation in the last three years probably decided it was worth the risk of a $50,000,000 lawsuit to expose someone who’s claiming he’s Mr. Good Guy and that it’s all “jilted ex-lover” innuendo — if only for public safety.
I’m choosing to remember people like Phil Spector, who was legendary in the music industry but had a widespread reputation for violence and extreme behaviour, and who couldn’t be touched, until one day he killed someone.
Where I come from, being a pretty, well-spoken man doesn’t mean you can’t be an absolute monster behind closed doors.
If these accusations were levelled against Don Cherry instead, for instance, we’d have had a very different discussion this morning.
It might be “innocent until proven guilty,” but that gives no one the excuse of calling the accusers names, belittling them as having something they’re after, or accusing them of being greedy little whores who just want their fame and limelight.
Oh, and not for nothing, all this discussion is about a man who wanted to “debate” whether “rape culture” even exists. Or have we all forgotten that little explosion from March of this year?

All She Wrote

Talk to anyone well-established in the music promotion business, and they’ll tell you rumours of Ghomeshi’s behaviours have circulated for years, but no one has dared kill the goose who laid the public broadcasting golden egg.
I, for one, can’t wait for this investigation to proceed, and I’m pretty confident that there’s no road back for Ghomeshi after this story breaks wide, wide open.
And I’m wishing for all it’s worth that every woman who may have had this happen to her at his hands will come forward.
Can’t get enough? I did a radio interview on Vancouver’s CKNW (Tuesday, Oct. 28) about both BDSM and consent, and why those claims kind of don’t wash here. You can listen to that on this page at CKNW.

612 thoughts on “Jian Versus the CBC

  1. Mertz

    “The problem when you jump to defend the accused is it ends up making the accuser or victims feel like they’ve just been assaulted all over again.” Sorry, sister, but that right there is an assumption of guilt and negates any claim you may have on neutrality.

    Reply
    1. Steffani Cameron Post author

      Good thing I don’t purport to be neutral, then. I make it pretty clear I’m drinking the Kool-aid when it comes to trusting investigative reporting over a “But you really love me” plea of innocence from someone with a long reputation of doing these things he’s alleged to have done.

      Reply
  2. Jeremiah Bullfrog

    Steff, you’re doing exactly what you implore others not to do – jump to conclusions.
    You aren’t privy to the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
    Maybe in a warped way you want to be able to say you got in early and got it right?
    But you’re no better than the blind supporters in this.
    Wait for all the facts to come out.

    Reply
  3. Sarahxyz

    Jack Nicholson beats escorts and gets away with it and he still is fawned over by many cool dudes and dudettes everywhere. There are many other “blind items” about serious celebrities that have beaten their partners in not so consensual beatings – and they still make music and make films (look them up – they are from credible sources even if they don’t reveal names bc of risk of being sued etc). Dr. Dre beat a woman reporter he didn’t like – he’s still around. Perhaps you need lots of money to get away with such things. Everyone knew Jian was a sleazy creep – who would go out with him in the first place? But the bigger creep is Harper who advocates killing innocents abroad and making Aboriginal people and environmentalists deemed to be terrorists. Violence is violence. The women have every right to go to the police – who will charge Jian and then let the courts decide. Otherwise, lets worry about what Harper is doing to our country in the face of using a sick individual’s shooting on Wednesday to scare the sheeple into more of his shenanigans.

    Reply
  4. Tanya

    Bang on, Steff! You said it. When you take away the “clever PR spin”, therein lies the truth. Or at least the truth starts to unfold. Time will tell.

    Reply
  5. Leslie Smith

    Just wanted to say how much I like your informed article on the Jian/Accuser/CBC drama.
    My take is that everything both Jian and the unnamed accusers have said could be true. A few takeaways:
    A slight tangent:
    1. Jian is rumoured to be a prolific celeb player (and a very bad BSDM ambassador) and if you were to investigate his many past dates as he claims the Star has done, it might be easy to find a few bad dates (it happens even in the Kink scene). Either way serious lines have been crossed, communication has broken down but it is hard to say statistically whether those two things are a trend or an anomaly, without further evidence. I don’t think any in the Kink community would want investigations into their past sexual liaisons, as we all know experiences can get framed by time and other factors. In-the-moment can become in-the-regret for both tops and bottoms, despite all safety measures being taken. I think communication lines do get crossed in the community with inexperienced people that is not out of malice, your take is rather black and white. The only question I have for those three women is, were you clear in the moment (or even afterward) to Jian that what happened was unacceptable?
    Some people are attracted to chocolate, even the bitter kind.
    2. He seems to pick younger fans who may not be experienced (xojane article as only proof) which may another sad kink, making him predatory/creepy. I take him at his word he got prior consent to the kink, (only because it was lawyer vetted/Star mentioned it) so obviously the women thought they could handle it but didn’t fully know what they were getting into, and he certainly didn’t respect boundaries.
    “I got in over my head and that bastard tried to drown me instead of being my lifeguard – I feel stupid it happened to me but I would like to warn others without it destroying my life.”
    3. If those woman said it went beyond their acceptable boundaries, even if they did not explicitly state it at the time, it did. For whatever reasons they want to stay anonymous and not involve the authorities, it is their choice, if they never come forward that is just fine.
    CBC got its walking shoes on late.
    4. The employee incident should have been handled properly by the CBC originally, totally unacceptable that it wasn’t taken seriously.
    Excellent article.

    Reply
  6. @gddub

    1st of all Robin Williams died of auto erotic asphyxiation so kinky acts can be fatal. 2nd I think Jian deserves some praise for being open about his kinky behaviour. Has a public figure of his reach EVER expressed this openly about it?? I am not sure. Yes, it conveniently saves his ass but after knowing a few more facts about what happened we will have a much better idea if Jian is the creep you liken him to. Also for someone who claims not to do celebrity gossip you do it graciously.

    Reply
  7. Adrian

    A truly vital piece of writing – thank you!
    Had some problems getting this page to load, but, I’m very glad to have got through to reading this post!

    Reply
  8. Ann Bemrose

    I’ve been around for a long time. I know a lot about BDSM negotiations and I agree about their importance and about the sanctity of safewords.
    And I also know that people sometimes agree to do things that they imagine might be fun but when things get underway what happens isn’t what they expected. It’s not so much fun, after all. That’s when a safeword should be used, but not everyone will use it. Many people in submissive roles will consider that what’s going on isn’t pleasant but they’re not in danger of being harmed, so they don’t say the word. Sometimes they may be concerned that their play partner will be disappointed if they use the word or that they won’t want to be with them again, and so they don’t say the word. They let things carry on until the scene ends.
    The best thing would be to talk about their discomfort then, but they may not choose to do that at the time, or later, or a few days later. They may not want to upset their play partner. They may feel ashamed of themselves for having gone through with the scene. They may blame the partner for not knowing that they weren’t having a good time. We have to be realistic about this: even in fully consensual encounters many people imagine that the ones they play with can somehow read their minds or bodies and will just “know” what’s working and what isn’t.
    If the other person doesn’t know that they had difficulty with the scene, that they didn’t enjoy it, or that it was fine until X happened, whose fault is that?
    We can negotiate consent as fully as possible, but if all parties are not willing to follow the rules and halt a scene when they need to, they’re not being honest.
    You’ve decided that complaints against Jian Ghomeshi must be valid even though we don’t actually know what happened. You think they’re true because you believe that “everyone knows” he’s a sleezy guy because of “rumours” in the music industry. And it seems that you think that anonymous women should be believed without any evidence just because the rules for BDSM negotiation are so clear.
    The rules are clear, provided that the parties concerned are willing to halt the scene when they need to.
    I think it’s entirely possible that the women may not have told JG they wanted to stop what they were doing or to switch to something else. It would have been reasonable for him to assume that they were consenting to what was going on if they didn’t use the safeword or talk to him after the scene.
    Even vanilla sex doesn’t always go the way the parties hope it will. Sometimes people have needs and expectations that they haven’t declared openly in advance. Sometimes good people, with good intentions, get things wrong. If they don’t make an effort to communicate with their partner(s) about it, they can’t blame the partner(s) for that.
    My questions are about what happened when these women didn’t like what they were doing with JG. Did they use the safe words? Did they ever tell him they weren’t happy? Or did they go home and set the whole thing aside until someone came asking questions, guaranteeing to protect their identities from publication, so that they could write a story about JG?
    If they tried to talk to him and got nowhere, that’s a problem and JG should be held accountable for that. But if they didn’t, and if they weren’t willing to file police reports because they didn’t want to have their consent negotiations made public and they didn’t want other people to know about what they’d done, what did, and do, they want?
    And by the way, you’ve said that no one should be accusing the women “of being greedy little whores who just want their fame and limelight,” even though JG didn’t say that anywhere in his statement. You should not be attributing things to him that he didn’t say.

    Reply
  9. martin dufresne

    There once was a creep named Jian
    Who couldn’t keep it in his jians
    He smiled and he hit
    Saying it don’t hurt a bit
    But they went and turned off his enjian.

    Reply
  10. Douglas

    Great commentary. Very eloquently stated.
    And you might very well be right…
    The only bug in the ointment is that we are indeed dealing with the CBC, which is no longer the CBC we’ve known and loved all these years. The current board of the CBC is almost entirely Harper-appointment, and the majority of appointees are PR-specialists.
    And as we’ve seen with Duffy, Wallin, Brazeau… and especially Helena Guergis, it is not as if this particular government doesn’t have a pattern of cutting people loose with little to no due process (or using personal information against them, ex: Sean Bruyea, a veteran whose mental health medical history was being used to discredit him).
    Helena Guergis, in particular, was vilified based on “information” which came to their attention, allegedly via a private investigator. Her career was ruined… and ultimately there was nothing to it.
    With that said however, The Toronto Star does indeed have a reputation for doing things very well.
    So much so that when I first heard of this story via another publication, my initial bias was that this was just another way for rid the CBC of what attracts Canadians to it, in order to financially cripple it (ex: Gone are Hockey Night in Canada, MacLean & Cherry, Strombo, etc.) so as to later privatize or kill it. But reading the Toronto Star’s version of the story (given how right it was re: Rob Ford) — and the amount of detail to it — the pendulum immediately swung the other for me.

    Reply
  11. dan

    The author here has obviously taken sides which is dubious at best: The CBC had no right to fire this guy: NONE: Their is not even an investigation into the allegations, let alone charges: or I dare say a conviction: only after a conviction should the CBC possibly fire anyone: this is Canada right??????????? 🙂

    Reply
  12. Adrian

    Vital writing! Thanks for your honesty and passion.
    It’s outrageous that the pre-emptive spin of Jian/Navigator PR has sucked in so many with its calculated framing of things.
    Of course, that’s what those folks do – but, still, the stench is high when a press release from a radio personality – who likes to beat up women who say they don’t want to beaten by him – is seeded with lines such as:
    “I have always tried to be a good soldier and do a good job for my country.”
    (as you’ve noted – exploiting a nation’s feelings in a week of tragic shootings of Canadian soldiers)
    You’ve cut through the pr fog – thank you!

    Reply
  13. Rolf Auer

    How would you like it if your means for survival depended on what people thought of your private sex life? Doesn’t something strike you as a little strange, here? Suppose the definition of “normal private sex life” changes and your own private sex life (1) is no longer private (2) is no longer normal (3) is used to decide whether or not you merit gainful employment. How would you feel? Would you feel this to be unfair? Would you feel violated, that is, mentally raped? Hmm? How would you feel? I mean, do you people have brains, and if so, do you use them? Do you know what awful door to totalitarianism you’re opening by judging whether a person gets to live based on something of theirs which is supposedly private, hmm?
    Let me ask you a question: suppose you have your way and Ghomeshi is crucified in the Canadian public eye? Would you want to complete your “moral upstanding good deed” by masturbating in his underwear, too? Because that’s what you’re doing by pursuing this disgustingly idiotically stupid lack of reasoning. I mean, really, why don’t you apply yourselves to a REAL problem, hmm? Stop all wars for ever, as you promised in the Treaty of Versailles, for example. Or, end poverty for ever, for example. Or, fix the environment of Earth that you broke, humans! USE YOUR BRAINS!!

    Reply
    1. Andrew_Waterloo

      Do you even know what’s going on here? Do you realize that all the people you’re trying to needle to death with you’re inane hmmmm’ing already has a sex life that would be considered aberrant to at least one of their employers. Are you forgetting the BDSM is private but also the mainstream kind of private that we make jokes about on major sit coms? Are you really dim enough to believe that this is about weird sex?

      Reply
    2. Chet Biggenston

      As stated in the post; bdsm is a choice and the biggest part of the decision to do it, IS consent. Any mildly intelligent life form is NOT attacking his fetish. They are attacking the fact he goes to criminal lengths to act of that fetish. The way the scenes pkay out, Jian is literally a fuckin’ monster. ANYONE should be able to sense discomfort in a partner, so even if they DIDNT use a pre determined safe word, the fact they were NOT having a good time should have been enough of a signal to fuckin stop.
      The CBC did the right thing. Actually the right thing would have been to look into this shit earlier, BUT in the face of what’s happening now, they made the right choice.
      Anyone who ever takes advantage of a sexual partner in a way that is not totally backed by legitimate consent deserves to be penniless and alone.
      Fuck Jian and fuck you too dude.

      Reply
  14. Marika

    If ones employer found out you were a radical jihad supporter supporting actions such as occurred in Ottawa last week wouldn’t it be grounds for dismissal? Especially if you were vocal enough to make the public aware of it? And even more so if your job was in the public like Jian’s. I’m not offended by Jian’s bedroom practices at all. But, really, did he have to tell everyone like he did with his Facebook post! There is more to this story and I’m thinking it won’t be on Jian’s favour.

    Reply
  15. Andrea Dickinson

    THANK YOU. I couldn’t have said it better myself. As the parent of a young female journalism grad, I very much was thinking all the things you made clear. Well done. We await the unfolding of the story, but also, he’s just a radio interviewer and when push comes to shove, who really gives a shit about him losing his show? Whatever.

    Reply
  16. AnaThema

    I have to believe the women if only because if there’s a 1% chance that they are telling the truth they shouldn’t be victimized again.
    HOWEVER, I am uneasy with the way this is being handled. The victims going to the media instead of the cops, the media going to the readers instead of the cops, and all because in the end they might be “embarrassed”, “mountain to climb”, “hurt their careers”, “be shamed on internet”, etc? Hmmmm … versus “I am the last girl he’s going to do this to”, “oh no you didn’t”, rage, anger, but no … they kept quiet, knowing full well that there would be many a victim after them …. hmmm … as I say very very uncomfortable.
    And if the tables were turned? Being accused by nameless people, with no opportunity to confront and cross examine? Hmmmm
    What I wonder, is what is the end game these women expect? Because at this moment, the only thing being attacked is his reputation. But he can still go out there and assault women to his hearts delight and none of this, story, exposure etc will stop that. Not one bit. So what’s the end game really?
    As I say, very very uncomfortable with the way this is being done ….

    Reply
    1. Steffani Cameron Post author

      The media went to THEM. They did not come forward, the media searched them out. They told their stories but still wouldn’t consent to disclose names or coming forward. That’s very different.

      Reply
  17. Julian

    “When’s the last time you busted someone at work for stealing supplies? When’s the last time you called someone out for a racist comment? etc.” Exactly. Bc I’m the kind of person who stands up and speaks out (probably too much for my own good), and it is hard. Seriously hard. To put your reputation on the line, to say what everyone’s thinking, but nobody has the balls to say, to potentially say goodbye to a lot of people’s friendship. To boot, this is sexual abuse. Which is personal, private, and about the body, the one you live in. That’s pretty close to home. Well written post.

    Reply
  18. CA

    When I read Jian’s facebook account my initial reaction was: he got consent from these women to violently assault them? I don’t know a lot about his proclivities but I do know that intending to hurt someone and hurting them is a crime, consent or not. Thank you for explaining the victims position, I think people need to understand how devastating it would be for them to expose themselves to the intense, and often destructive media attention. I’ve read much about this story and the victims seem to be villainized even before they’ve had a chance to speak.

    Reply
  19. Paul

    He’s a radio guy who signed a contract that has ‘standards and practices’ in it. His off air stuff violated that contract, which is likely how the courts will rule. Second, he’s on middays, when not many people are listening. Put him on in morning drive, and he’ll get smoked. Find another gig.

    Reply
  20. Chris Russell

    I would point out that the only one at present writing about ‘BDSM’ in direct connection with this case is the accused. None of the accusers has referred to any kind of ‘alternative lifestyle’. That’s just the spin the accused has so far tried to float. Trying this thing in the press and in social media only plays into the scenario already set in motion by the accused. I do not advocate the accusers publishing their names in social or mainstream media, but I do advocate filing charges in court, but criminal and civil. That will put the facts on the table. Abuse is not legally consensual. If their was abuse, it needs to be addressed with authority. Imho.

    Reply
  21. facebook_Kaynaydian

    You know, I would have enjoyed this article much more if it hadn’t begun with a comparison of last week’s events at Parliament to Ghomeshi’s sex scandal. To suggest the two are even in the same ballpark is insulting. That being said, the article has a lot of merit.

    Reply
  22. Volantorman

    A David and Goliath situation indeed. Will Jian be able to strike back at the eye of the CBC. Q already is deflating….

    Reply
  23. CJ

    When this broke, I was prepared to say “consenting adults” a leave it at that. The lawsuit was a bluff, and he’d get his job back through a union grievance. Now I am not jumping to Jian’s defense by I am siding with innocent until proven guilty. We have only heard one side of the story, and I’m waiting to hear the other shoe drop, though how they are going to write the story without the women going on the record is beyond me. There’s nothing wrong with consentual BDSM, even taking it to the extreme of writing out BDSM contracts. But until the day when both sides drop their briefs in court, we are stuck with he said/she said. Until that day, and even after, it’s going to show that Ladies, you have to do your research and protect yourself. Know how to swim before jumping into the pool because apparently there are still sharks out there.

    Reply
  24. Rolloff

    It’s amazing to me and to a lot of other CBC listeners how popular a guy with a fake line and oily persona could be to the masses. Those of us who dont pump and preen are always left scratching our heads as to how the fakes find so many willing listeners. The strong silent types who are in it for the long haul should take solace in the Samurai warrior motto “bushi no nasake” – the tender are the brave.

    Reply
  25. Cathy Boyd

    There’s been much said about Ghomeshi these last few days. Some people support him while others think he should be hung. But then again, he might enjoy that. This piece however, sums it up.

    Reply
  26. SJWmothafucka

    “When’s the last time you busted someone at work for stealing supplies? When’s the last time you called someone out for a racist comment? When’s the last time you put your reputation on the line to fight someone in a position of authority? When’s the last time you stood up to anyone about ANYTHING — not to mention in front of police, the media, and an entire country?”
    So physical and sexual assault = stealing paperclips?!?!?!?! WHAT. THE. ACTUAL. FUCK????????? So done with this BULLSHIT. CAN’T EVEN. #RAPECULTUREFAIL #GETSERIOUS

    Reply
    1. Sarah W

      Not to stir up anything, I don’t think she’s trying to compare rape to stealing office supplies. What she’s saying, (as I understand it), is that many people aren’t even comfortable speaking out against something as small as office theft. How much more difficult is is them to speak out when it involves something like this which is so much more serious. And how awful it is that people are calling out the victims for not coming forward, when they probably couldn’t do it themselves.

      Reply
      1. Steffani Cameron Post author

        Thanks, Sarah! That’s exactly it. The blog kept crashing when I tried to re-find this comment. 🙂
        Totally, if people can’t even confront coworkers about theft, how dare they DEMAND abuse survivors confront their abusers?

        Reply
  27. JC

    “Ghomeshi’s defenders are wrong for taking sides when we don’t have all the information yet. However, based on that same lack of information, I conclude that he is guilty”. You make some good points, but you’re ultimately guilty of the same rush to judgment you so vehemently accused the other side of.

    Reply
  28. A D

    You’re ignoring the most important part of his post.
    I, for one, had never even heard of Ghomeshi before this – so this is coming from someone who is utterly oblivious to his star standing or charms.
    Yet, for now, I’m leaning towards “innocent until proven guilty” and all that jazz because of what the CBC hasn’t done: they did not refute the claim that he has evidence, that they have seen it, and that it seems to exonerate him from the initial claims. They initially were helping him defend himself after all, so clearly they had reason to believe in his innocence. This is not victim-blaming, this is not ignoring the fact consent can be taken away, and neither you nor I, or anyone will ever know if he ignored a safe word. This is a corporation that had evidence he was innocent changing it’s mind when the heat grew.
    The actions so far speak more about the CBC trying to shield itself from collateral damage that the court of public opinion might sling it’s way, regardless of whether any crime was committed. If they have new evidence that changed their position, they’ve said nothing about it.
    Unless I read wrong, he also says one of the accusers tried to pull back her claim, but at that point it didn’t matter due to Brown’s lead. What are we to make of that?

    Reply
    1. Steffani Cameron Post author

      They can’t say jack shit because of legal reasons. They DEMOLISHED any sign of Ghomeshi in all CBC stations across the country. They’re making a BIG point by having done that so publicly and swiftly.

      Reply
  29. justmike

    except that in Canada women accusing rape are given a publication ban just for the asking. still no charges. you go ahead and remember Phil Spector. I chose to recall Rachel Marsden.

    Reply
    1. RyanVanHorne

      How is that relevant to this case? Are you paying attention? There is no sexual assault alleged by three of the women. They are saying that he ASSAULTED them. There is no provision in the Criminal Code to protect their identities in case there are charges.

      Reply
  30. Steve S Johnson

    I`m always worried about the slippery slope of accusation from anonymous sources. This opens a can of worms that can slither through all walks of life, especially in the age of open media. Accusation can`t be enough without identified sources! I don`t trust the Toronto Star to guarantee truth any more than I trust Ghomeshi`s judgement in his private behaviour. He hasn`t been charged or accused on any credible level at this point. He may be an quite the idiot but prove otherwise until someone comes clean.

    Reply
  31. IdontlikeJian

    Some good points, and some bullshit. But the minute you try to silence criticism or opinions other than your own, you’ve lost all credibility with me.
    The ‘story’ isn’t that Jian is being charged by police with sexual assault, but that his alleged victims reported to a freelance reporter. They put it in the public domain, and they created the current response. This is not victim-blaming, but fair criticism, because you are not a victim until the offense has been proved. Until then, you are an alleged victim, and you control the path taken – courts or public opinion.
    The saddest part is that the ‘investigation’ you refer to has the potential outcome of Jian seeing $50M, instead of 50 years.

    Reply
  32. Jen Kerwood

    This is well written and has some good points, but it does read like someone who is condemning Jian before the facts have come out. Obviously everyone needs to take any accusation seriously, but that doesn’t mean that they are true. Just as his denial doesn’t prove his innocence, the woman’s accusations do not prove that they are victims. He might not be the nicest guy on the planet, but he certainly doesn’t deserve to lose his job for being an asshole.

    Reply
    1. Steffani Cameron Post author

      There’s more to it than you know, and some women have begun to come forward. This will have a lot more to come, if Jesse Brown and the Star’s implications materialize. Hang in there.

      Reply
      1. ddavid

        your article is rife with “what ifs”, baseless assumptions, and obvious attempts to cloud the argument. please don’t call yourself a reporter…you are just a vitriolic hack using shock tactics. learn how to present a logical argument before you embarrass yourself again. and for the record, i had not heard of jian gh prior to this. but i DO know when someone is presenting a slanted dialogue.

        Reply
        1. Steffani Cameron Post author

          I’m not a reporter, asshole. I’m saying the what-ifs are important because there are no facts to draw from and automatically defending him isn’t fair. Learn how to read.

          Reply
      2. Jen Kerwood

        Perhaps, but it really rubs me the wrong way when people automatically defend the woman in situations like this. As long as they remain anonymous there really is no point to their smear campaign. And considering that The Star wasn’t going to run the story for lack of evidence until Jian was fired, I think it’s unlikely that he will be charged. Like I said, he may have treated these women badly, but I don’t think it’s fair to condemn someone because you perceive that he didn’t do the BDSM thing “right.”

        Reply
      3. Jen Kerwood

        Right now these women aren’t charging him with anything. Say what you will about why they didn’t go to the cops, but the only outcome for this unless they give up their identities is ruining a man’s career. The Star didn’t even post the story until Jian’s comments due to lack of evidence. Just because a woman says she was abused doesn’t make it true. The most important word in your response is “IF” (the implications materialize). I’m not saying they aren’t true, but BDSM and this case are far more complicated than you are making it out to be.

        Reply
  33. enigmachine

    “Us”? I don’t know who you think you’re kidding Steff (author), but Ghomeshi – much to the man’s own chagrin – isn’t that big a deal.
    I’m amongst a very aware set of people at the moment and many of them barely know who he is, if at all.
    Please don’t say he has ripped “us” apart. For starters, he hasn’t ripped anyone I know apart. More importantly, we don’t want observers and visitors to believe that Canada is a country of easily led goofs. The majority of us are not, so I can say it isn’t.
    It’s good to have your break-down, as I may cite it in future, but I don’t need it to know that I am happier with Ghomeshi gone.
    I thought he was an over-dramatic, self-aggrandising, fool. He did make it onto the radio but, judging from the way over-the-top reaction from the radio audience, that’s not as much an endorsement as it once was.
    Some people would have him back. I’m glad he’s gone, as are plenty of others.
    The world keeps turning, so let’s concentrate more on the stories than on the people who tell them.

    Reply
  34. carlo

    For the writer that bemoans a lack of objective thought and criticizes Ghomeshi for framing the conversation, this article is utterly devoid of objectivity and all but says he MUST be guilty. This is as opinionated, uninformed and reactionary as those who believe he couldn’t possibly have done anything wrong.

    Reply
  35. Julia Kristina

    Whoa. Intense. But thanks for this.
    I’m one of those who didn’t want to believe that someone with such a genuine looking smile and buttery sounding voice and who’s programming I enjoy so much could have his values and morals so perverted and twisted and be such a violent creep.
    I typically default to seeing the best in people, which as a Mental Health Therapist tends to serve me quite well, but also makes it all the more painful when I am found to be disillusioned.
    Alas. Thanks again.
    ~Julia Kristina
    http://juliakristina.com/blog

    Reply
  36. F Ratt

    If only the author had described them as women, not girls, it would be more neutral and empowering. I am certain a 25 year old is a young woman, not a young girl. It sets a strange tone in an otherwise balanced sketch of BDSM.

    Reply
    1. Steffani Cameron Post author

      I’m 40, and they might be adults, but they’re barely started in life, and that’s to convey tone.
      And this isn’t about BDSM. It’s about being abused without consent.

      Reply
  37. Britt

    What a well-conceived and articulated article! THANK YOU for defending the silence of the women. Equally important was your presentation of BDSM. It is the bottom who is in FULL CONTROL of the roleplay, Always.

    Reply
  38. Tom Waller

    The point you miss is Ghomeshi has been assassinated. The allegations could all be true and he could truly ‘deserve’ it BUT, assassination is not how a just society settles its scores. If we make it that easy – anonymous allegations – to take someone down, that’s a very slippery slope.
    Asking there to be a complaint or charge on file with HR or the police is not defending Jian, it is defending due process.

    Reply
    1. RyanVanHorne

      Let’s get the order of this down pat before you start saying Ghomeshi was assassinated, or at least his character, which is what I presume you meant. The CBC fired him and did not divulge any details. They raised many questions, but did not disparage Ghomeshi. It was Ghomeshi who bared the details first, and started the narrative of how he was being defamed. If you think that Ghomeshi’s character has been assassinated, then you believe the “jilted ex-girlfriend” story he’s revealing on Facebook. You’re making a judgment of that woman without due process and without know any facts. I think that in order for you to reach the conclusions you’ve reached, there would have to be a trial and Ghomeshi would have to be exonerated. That hasn’t happened yet, so keep an open mind.

      Reply
    2. Steffani Cameron Post author

      Anonymous to us, yes, but CBC may know who. And not just one allegation, but multiple, with similar detail, all of which indicates pattern, not fluke.
      I’m not just pulling shit out of the sky here, I’m going on investigative journalism by a paper risking a $50,000,000 lawsuit. Because hey, I don’t think that kind of risk makes one go “Fuck facts, let’s just make shit up.”
      They’re being cautious. It shows.

      Reply
    1. MOnty

      Perverted and a motherfucker. Which is illegal HOW, exactly? Why is it inconceivable that she enjoyed BDSM, and these allegations are ONLY coming to light AFTER he tried to end the relationship? That’s how I see this.

      Reply
      1. Steffani Cameron Post author

        Right. Because you’re believing his side of it, rather than the investigative journalist. Yes, your shrewd and considered opinions are bound to carry a lot of weight around these parts. We appreciate your weighty thought and thorough dissection of this complicated subject.
        Go, you.
        Of course I’m being completely serious.

        Reply
  39. Danielle Savage

    Thank you for an excellent and insightful article. As a victim of sexual abuse and not by someone famous, I know how hard it is to come forward, to tell your story and have people believe you. And somehow, even when they do believe you, for some people there is still this underlying tone that I did something to deserve what happened to me. Rape culture exists and unfortunately it continues to grow in every aspect of our media and our culture. Thank you for having the guts to write what you did.

    Reply
  40. ThClark

    The operative word is “alleged”….I have questions…how is it these women all came together at the same time? What is there relationship to one another? Why come forward now? If what happened is as they report why are there not criminal charges?
    So I guess at this point all we can say is we don’t have anything even approaching the full story….but to say that would wreck the reactionary pleasure of getting on the horse of moral outrage and judgement.

    Reply
    1. Daisy

      You really don’t get how that happened? Via an investigation. Once an investigation starts you find info that leads to more info and sources. I’m sure when they kept finding women through word of mouth they encouraged them to come forward, stand together, and tell their stories. I believe this is normally how things are and and I’m a bit bewildered that this is a sincere question from you.

      Reply
    2. L

      They didn’t all come out at once. The story came out after a year of research by a reputable journalist. If you read this article (the one that you commented on) you may begin to understand why there were no criminal charges.
      I have no personal interest in any of this (I’m not a fan of the alleged or know the victims), but I am a woman and am interested in both the writer’s p.o.v. and the culture of the voices of the “public” who comment on these articles, as they present some interesting, and often times alarming, misconceptions about victim blaming, and consent.
      I do agree with you that we need to all pause before either jumping to the bandwagon of the alleged, or on the bandwagon of the victims.

      Reply
    3. Steffani Cameron Post author

      Seriously, did you even read this? And you’re still asking these questions? It’s called investigative journalism. The reporters dig. They find sources and go around asking questions. They try to get people to go on the record, but they’ll often talk but say it’s off the record and not to print their name. This is how journalists know the information but can’t name names.
      Lord. Plus, I apparently know a lot more than you about the PR spin, so that’s why we drastically differ here. I took public relations in college. This is Crisis Management 101, what he’s doing. Period.

      Reply
    1. Steffani Cameron Post author

      Because you’re made of awesome! Thanks. I have a few friends offering too, I’m just gonna save the tinkering till I have some time, but the links folks said were broke seem to largely work for me today. I think it was a traffic thing. 🙂

      Reply
  41. Mr. Jelly

    Conjecture and hyped innuendo abounds throughout this mess.
    So much included that has no place here, it’s 75% too long. It is safe enough for her to write this but it’s close to slander or guilt by conclusion.
    The most important failure is that it IS well written but is so one sided that it loses credibility when- “A “good soldier” the week one of our own is gunned down in cold blood? Motherfucker” -is inserted as a distraction from a blatant lack of evidence. I don’t know what exactly has happened yet but this unhelpful post is certainly partisan ranting.

    Reply
      1. CraigMoorhouse

        Steffani Cameron – you can’t think of a challenge rooted in reason to what “Mr. Jelly ” had posted so you through a disparaging remark at him. That only goes to further substantiate what that person is saying.
        A person was fired – his career lays in ruin – all this based on hearsay – no evidence – no due process.
        All Corporations, businesses, places of employment are subject to the same Canadian employment laws. The CBC can set all the silly rules for terms of dismissal it wants – let’s say it makes a rule that everyone with green hair can be subjected to dismissal, such a rule would be meaningless if it runs counter to Canadian employment laws regarding dismissals.
        Sure, I get it – your gut tells you that this person is guilty and he deserves what he got – but that sets a slippery slop precedent that destroys the very fabric of our justice system – and for the justice system to keep women safe it needs to keep everybody safe – blindly. You start giving people “free passes” and others you punish based on your “gut feelings” then it won’t be long before money abuses that precedent and then the justice system will only represent 1% of the population. You may say that is already happening – all the more reason to support and fight for a blind legal system – that strives to keep all women safe by keeping everybody safe -blindly

        Reply
        1. facebook_pauloniusjcanuck

          disparaging remark is redundant.
          Whether or not she has a valid criticism does not validate the previous poster’s message.
          Don’t be daft.

          Reply
      1. A-feminist-man

        I and others would almost certainly agree with you if (and only if) there were such an article on this page. There ain’t. Steffani’s article isn’t well written to begin with. Tripe, bile, and bias is what you can read.

        Reply
  42. Nick

    This was a well written article, but one whose intent is proving Jian is guilty. There is a lack of evidence and sources through out. It is written with a personal bias evident from the first paragraph. Let’s also not forget that this is a independent, unaccredited source. While Jian may be guilty, he could quite honestly be innocent. But the only information publicly available right now are allegations from both sides. I haven’t seen any observational evidence to prove either sides case. This article was to strongly opinionated to be considered a fair or definitive source on this issue, which it is already being shared as. Which is why I am here typing this. Use your head, give it some time and we will know the truth behind this. Until then it’s just angry keyboard warriors debating in the court of opinion.

    Reply
    1. Steffani Cameron Post author

      Oh, don’t take my word for it. Take one of his closest friend’s word for it instead, then.
      I’m not aiming for sources and proof. We had none. I was going on a news story and his rebuttal. His statement had no proof or sources either, so why does it carry more weight than mine? Especially if he’s accused of something, and fired in the face of a threat for $50 mill, by an employer who not only doesn’t care about the lawsuit, but removes every STITCH of imaging or branding of his from EVERY STATION ACROSS THE LAND?
      But hey. You do your thing, bro.

      Reply
      1. CraigMoorhouse

        Steffani Cameron – “Take one of his closest friend’s word for it…” – still nothing but hearsay – no evidence – no due process – it’s convicting with your gut. – it’s the slippery slope that represents an attack on a blind justice system – it will only benefit 1% of any population – women’s rights are weakened when the justice system ceases to be blind.

        Reply
  43. Siri

    I admit I initially believed him when I first read his post and sympathized because I know how grieving a loved one can affect someone’s decisions. But then I heard more of the story and now I think he’s guilty of at least some aggravated behaviour and I hope it all comes out in a trial. But I think we give women far too many excuses to be the victim and I don’t think it’s helping us. We should aim for strong and fearless, no matter what the consequences because, let’s face it, life is hard and not always fair. The above well-written article asks when we ever turned someone in or spoke up about an issue. But this is not about squealing on a co-worker, but about our personal well-being. I like to think that if a man hit me harder than I thought it was possible for any man to hit a woman, I would have picked myself up off the floor and marched out the door to the closest emergency room. I would like to think I wouldn’t have waited around until morning. And you can file a report with the sexual assault squad, but not press charges, just so they have it on record, if you’re truly concerned about the backlash. I fully understand that it can be difficult for women to leave abusive relationships and that there are all kinds of reasons why. But this was not the case here. From the sounds of it, it was a date or two, so the reasons would not apply. I think the problem lies with women being too eager to please, especially a charismatic eligible man (or a woman if you’re so inclined), and a lot of times we end up doing things we really don’t want to do, because as women, we’re taught to be agreeable. Well, we have to stop that, especially when it puts our well-being at risk. I’m not at all blaming these women for what happened to them because I’m sure they had no way of knowing what they were walking in to, but I bet even they are looking back, wishing they had perhaps handled the aftermath differently, with a spirited “fuck you, Jian” thrown in. Because sometimes, provided no physical injuries need attending, the best thing to do is hold your head high, chalk it up to experience, but lay the ground work and file a report with the sexual assault squad so that if another woman comes forward at a later date, they will have a record that he’s done it before.

    Reply
  44. facebook_cosmic.consciousness.9

    Dear Jian Ghomeshi,
    I read your Facebook message, and found parts of it concerning. For example, you state: “We all have our secret life.” You are wrong. You see my secret life almost killed me, and I’m afraid for you. I needed to stop the double life, stop the secrets, and live that way every day, one day at a time. I couldn’t imagine what a public figure and a media star such as yourself are going through during this time. I can’t imagine what your ex-girlfriends are going through either.
    Good luck!

    Reply
  45. Marc

    Dear Miss Cameron
    I have read your article titled “Jion versus the CBC” and I have a few comments to add
    I do agree with you on the fact that we should not jump on Jion Ghomeshi bandwagon just because he is a rich smooth talking radio announcer. I also agree that the CBC had every legal right to terminate his employment. Let’s face it, keeping Ghomeshi on as a radio host would have tarnished their reputation and of course they don’t have the burden to prove beyond a reasonable doubt to take such actions.
    Being said, I would like to advise you, if I may, to be careful of some informal fallacy arguments that seem to be present in your text:
    Faulty generalization
    Phil Spector and Jimmy Savile, are famous people who were accused of crimes, who tried to cover them up and were found guilty.
    Jion Ghomeshi is famous person who is accused of a crime and seems to be covering it up.
    Therefore, Jion Gohmoeshi must be guilty.
    Faulty Authority
    The Toronto Star is an authority in journalistic integrity.
    The Toronto Star claims allegations of sexual assault committed by Jion Ghomeshi.
    The allegations must be true.
    Lastly, I just want to say that you must be careful when writing statements like: “Well, not having hard proof didn’t stop the Star from doing one hell of an investigative case on Mayor Rob Ford and his crack addiction.” I for one question the journalistic integrity of any newspaper who publishes a story without proof. If this is in fact what happened in the Ford case, then The Toronto Star just got lucky that the proof came out afterwards.
    What I am saying is let’s not jump on one bandwagon or another. Finding Ghomeshi guilty in the court of public opinion is in fact a dangerous slippery slope to head down. He might or might not be guilty. Let the police and the court system do their jobs. I think we tend to be overly emotional in these situations and to forget that it is every Canadian citizen’s right to a fair trial and to be innocent until proven guilty.

    Reply
  46. Bonnie

    Fab piece, thanks for writing and sharing. I also felt sick reading his claim to being ‘a good soldier’ – juxtaposed against our actual fallen soldiers mere days afterwards.

    Reply
  47. Nick

    Whoa – you work for the Star or something?
    They do it “very, very, very well?” Is that how Canadians really feel about how the whole Rob Ford thing went down?

    Reply
  48. ImeldaMarcos2

    Excellent take. Except for “the victims won’t come forward!” I’ve been focused with laser intensity through this story on the woman who DID come forward (from Kevin Donovan’s story); the Q show employee; she DID go to her union rep, union rep mistakenly went to Q producer, not Human Resources, and Q producer seems to have made it clear to the employee that nothing would be done. Woman quit her job. I’m hoping that producer has had to quit her job as well.

    Reply
  49. Grace

    A woman DID post on JG’s facebook essay, a comment on her own experience with him. AND she used her real name. I looked to find it again and it may have been deleted. It was posted around 1pm on Monday. I know that because I cut and paste it into an email discussion/debate I was having with someone about this subject.

    Reply
      1. Grace

        I looked at my email. It was sent on monday at 2pm. The comment that I cut and pasted from there said under “about an hour ago” so she posted it around 1 pm. I went back to see if I could find it but it was either gone or too many comments for me to cipher through. I wondered if he deleted it, or she has second thoughts given that her Facebook name was on it. I looked at her FB page and she seems to be under a legit name…so someone has actually posted a true account under their own name.

        Reply
  50. Helen

    Awesome article. Thank you. Are you aware we can post messages of support to these women? I mean somewhere that they won’t have to read 1000 angry comments for every nice one. There should be a website or something so they can see we’re not all totally starstruck

    Reply
  51. Concerned female

    Thanks for writing this and for clearing out so many cobwebs in one swoop. My only concern is your point about denial. People who do wron deny it, yes. But people who are falsely accused also deny it because in that case it’s the truth. My point is denial can’t be taken as proof of guilt.
    Overall, what a fab piece.

    Reply
    1. Steffani Cameron Post author

      Thanks, absolutely, yeah, some denials are as true as all get-out. But my argument was against people who seem to think all denials are true. Clearly, no. In this instance, with multiple accusers, years of back-channel whispering, and all that, this has all the earmarks of deflecting guilt and spinning an angle.

      Reply
  52. Carew

    It’s ironic how you are keen to demonize Ghomeshi before all the facts are in while criticizing others for the lack of objectivity in defending the guy.

    Reply
    1. Steffani Cameron Post author

      It’s called “analyzing the situation.” Funny, I’ve had many journalists and PR experts emailing me and telling me just how apt my takedown is. But you go ahead and tell yourself I’m all biased and evil. That’s cool, yo.

      Reply
  53. Philip Clement

    Steffani – EXCELLENT piece on CBC and Jian!!! Thank you!!! Love the way you cut through! You’ve covered so much territory with your article I can only add one thought in the form of a rhetorical question: ” Ever notice anytime there is a fuck up in your life – you’re always close by?” Jian describing himself as THE victim and 100% innocent (!) – bypasses the obvious: ie that he had ANYTHING to do with the mess he’s in! In the LEAST – he needs to acknowledge his own failure at working through the “misunderstanding” after the fact. “I don’t believe I did anything wrong, but I am utterly sorry for the obvious upset I have been part of, let’s go over what happened, perhaps with a third party, so that we can clear up the past and move on.” That would have been the non-adversarial approach.

    Reply
  54. Jim

    Completely agree with you on the disincentives for women to come forward and speak up or go to police. Look at the hostile backlash that was generated by that US blogger who wrote about someone who was likely this pudgy gnat. (I say that not because I am convinced he is guilty, but because independently of this he is a pudgy gnat). I think your hypothetical case of the 25 year old with visions of a media career is a good one as well.
    Interestingly, it appears at least one woman has come forward and revealed her identity.

    Reply
  55. Ed

    Agree with everything you wrote, but I still wonder why this has anything to do with Jian’s work at CBC. Drag his sorry butt into court if need be, but don’t fire him. There’s no connection.

    Reply
  56. not peter gzowski

    thank you for publishing this opinion. i take personal satisfaction in knowing that now, only the truly obnoxious creeps will continue to roll their eyes and tell me to “get with the 21st century”, whenever i lament the fact that the CBC has degenerated into a forum for inane narcissism since hiring this excuse for a man and radio host. Go away Gian, and take your cheap, pretentious, deep as a shot glass adoring fans with you please..

    Reply
  57. Jaded Diamond

    Fucking brilliant! Honestly this is the best piece I’ve read yet. Why are you not writing for The Star or any other major publication? You have a great style and although I found you quite by accident, I’ll surely keep reading.
    Jian thought he could brush this off easily. Just a matter of putting on his best “I’m sowwy” smirk and denying his evil deeds. Me thinks he just got a cold shower of reality and his abusin’ and a rapin’ days are done for good. Maybe he’ll have a good career–in Iran.

    Reply
    1. Steffani Cameron Post author

      Thank you! I’m working on the writing thing. I’ve been derailed by real life for a few years and put writing on the backburner, but I’ve been rekindling it this year, and I’ll be around. Believe me. Stay tuned, there’ll be a follow-up to this piece at the Vancouver Observer on Thursday. I’ll post a link here so you can find it. 🙂

      Reply
  58. fuckyou

    there is no argument. rape culture DOESN’T exist. it is a figment of your racist, sexist, appalingly predjudiced imagination. it would be nice if SJW’s such as yourself would just stop projecting your insecurites on others.

    Reply
    1. RyanVanHorne

      Thank you for stopping by and attempting to add something to the discussion. Ladies and gentlemen, please allow me to introduce you to the inventor of the new yoga move that is sweeping the nation. Yes, I’m talking about The Rectal Ostrich! I’d ask you to tell us about the wonderful benefits you derive from consistently shoving your head up your ass, but they are evident in your post.

      Reply
  59. Neil

    Hey Jian
    Your gonna need a job, why don’t you go back to Iran where you can punch out girls behind closed doors and get paid for it too. Probly get a premium because you’re such a famous guy. Also you wouldn’t have to keep looking over your shoulder for people that don’t like bullies.

    Reply
  60. QuietSubmissive

    While I find this article well written, I do take at face value as the ‘blog’ that it is. Journalism, although not without its bias, is generally objective and weighs in on both sides. I weigh in here on the side of caution. There are questions and inconsistencies on both sides. The pro-Ghomeshi side can wave the flag of the accusers not coming forward sooner. The anti-Ghomeshi side can champion their cause by trotting the myriad of people who will now come forward with an example of his behaviour. I would like to think I am an intelligent person and am capable of decyphering all the facts to determine my own conclusion. Sadly, facts are lacking at the moment and this will continue to be bogged down in a case of he said, she said for months, possibly years.
    As a member of the BDSM community, I will say this. Something doesn’t wash. For someone to be as into this lifestyle as he claims to be, very little precaution has been taken. Steffani is absolutely right in her assessment of the ‘safe word’. Our current ‘Fifty Shades’ society thinks that this is all a joke and contracts can be washed under the rug if the Dom is hot enough and rich enough. Contracts exist in our world to protect EVERYONE. To layout all the limits on both sides and establish that mightiest of swords, the safe word. I submit to my Dom willingly and trustingly in the knowledge that he will not harm me against my will and will keep me safe within the confines of our mutual pleasure and stop with just one word from me. It seems to me from the details that have come to light so far, that Ghomeshi picks up women and heads straight for the goal post without there being any chance for discussion. From my perspective, as someone who adamantly defends our right to behave as we wish in the privacy of our own bedrooms, that this is not about BDSM at all. It’s about a man who gets off on punching women. Please, please, please, do not paint him with the same brush as our community. The open dialogue is great. It’s about time.

    Reply
  61. john smith

    What is more abusive and damaging. The words of a well trained well educated verbal sadist like the author. Or someone who slaps a potential sex partner on the face or ass to get her love juices flowing or his or both. One soon forgets the slap. Any cut soon heals. But the damage and harm caused by the spoken word such as the words in this author’s diatribe can last forever. What if just what if Jian is innocent. Would the author of this shit repay him in equal measure. And would she. Seems to me she is more of a sit in the bush assassin than an commentator.

    Reply
    1. kaycee

      Well said John Smith!
      What if, just what if Jian is innocent. Would the author of this shit repay him with equal measure?
      *I don’t want to judge here, but I don’t think she (the author) will do such a thing…
      As a female I’d like to point out to the author that no matter my age and no matter if I was trying to make it in whatever industry, I would’ve come forward for this 1 simple fact or reason, if and I mean “if” I am an innocent young girl 20 years younger than Jian then it shouldn’t matter about my being a young embarrassed female trying to make it in the industry. If I am innocent then I shouldn’t worry about what potential employers think of me or my mom or dad or my family and friends think of me. I am a young innocent female trying to make it in the industry and what I was exploring in the bedroom worth Jian, but later decided I didn’t like or want it at the hands of Jian, shouldn’t matter at all!
      What a crock of bull! If that is the writers defense as to Why the other girls didn’t come forward them it’s a pretty lame excuse, the girls were young and embarrassed because they were trying to make it in the industry!
      If you’re raped or abused, no matter what, you come forward!!! You don’t worry about being embarrassed because you were curious about getting Sexual pleasure in a strange way!

      Reply
  62. frynnsk

    We do not have enough facts either way. It is truly a sad situation for all concerned. Brilliantly written piece.

    Reply
  63. kaycee

    What’s the difference of coming out then or now.
    The Writer, who I might say sounds like she was writing about herself being a young journalist trying to make it in the industry, said the girls excuse for not coming forward was bcuz they were young girls trying to make it in the journalism scene or music industry and that they’d be embarrassed if potential employers or their family and friends discovered that they, the girls, were into exploring BDSM and it might ruin their chances of getting employment? Who cares about being embarrassed or not getting a job? Rape or Abuse is Rape or Abuse!
    But I find it funny how these girls aren’t embarrassed Now or worried Now about not getting a job and yet they all come forward Now! What is the difference of Then and Now? Do the girls not care Now that employers or family and friends know they were into exploring kinky sex and BDSM?? If you’re Raped or Abused then you were Raped or Abused! Nothing, especially embarrassed bcuz you’re a little kinky, should stop you from coming forward! Oh wait, you’re Not embarrassed Now, bcuz you’re coming forward Now! What a crock!
    Anyway, in Canada you’re supposed to be Innocent until proven Guilty! Not, you’re Guilty bcuz people feel sorry for the victims that were into kinky sex that supposedly went sideways! Or Not, you’re Guilty bcuz of what an ex jilted fatally attracted lover says to get Revenge bcuz you don’t want her any longer! Or Not, you’re Guilty bcuz the girls didn’t come forward in the beginning bcuz they were afraid they wouldn’t get employment if a future employer found out that they had a Sexual desire to explore BDSM! No, you’re Not Guilty bcuz in Canada, you’re Innocent until proven Guilty!!
    So why don’t we all wait until Jian is tried before accusing him of being the monster that these girls are making him out to be.
    Don’t forget, these girls could’ve yelled out for help and someone indeed would’ve heard them, but they all chose not to yell yet they stayed the whole night or several nights with Jian!!!
    It takes 2 to tango!

    Reply
  64. Philip Clement

    Steffani all credit to you and full respect, not only for the best piece of writing on the subject so far, but for your skill, unshakable integrity, shoot from the hip honesty, humor, and brains dealing with so so many comments from people who not only don’t have a clue, but are convinced their insights have merit. Ignorance is bliss, thanks Steffani for being a Black Belt blister buster. Respect.

    Reply
  65. G.A. Gaebel

    Well written and very well thought out. I couldn’t agree more, especially the “And You Would Come Forward?” section.
    This whole thing is very similar to the Marv Albert scandal of the late 1990’s. In his case, he had a bad habit of biting without consent. He denied and protested like Jian, until DNA tests on Clinton-esque stains proved he wasn’t as innocent as he claimed. That should have been it for his career but, 2 years later… yes, only 2 years… he was back on top, supported by the network (NBC), the jocks, the late-night talk show hosts et al. Ghomeshi’s audience is a different demographic. CBC (public money) is way different than the beancounter culture at NBC. Maybe, in Ghomeshi’s case, the outrage will stick. Let’s hope so.

    Reply
    1. Steffani Cameron Post author

      Yeah, the Marv Albert comparison has come up a number of times, but these accounts are so much more violent in some instances that I really don’t think it’s an apt comparison.

      Reply
  66. Katherine Krige

    You speak more boldly than I, but I hear every word you say. This story is one that our nation didn’t want to have, but I suspect the conversation is too long in coming.
    A nod in your direction.

    Reply
  67. Renee

    Love your blog – Absolutely the hard core truth through and through – The world needs more people that are impartial, truthful and hold their Moral Compass very high. The ignorant opinionated people that think these woman are lying, that all sexual assaults get reported, or are of the “you asked for it”, are delusional. I was a teenager when I was sexually assaulted, reported it and spent a week at the mans trial. On the stand to testify, every part of my being was picked a part, questioned, and twisted. All in an effort to slander every part of me, hoping to redirect the jury’s attention from the real crime and criminal to a child that should be disgraced. Fun Times. I can guaratee you NOT! No victim of a sexaul crime, at anytime has ever said, I want to relive my nightware, while a defense attorney rips apart every part of my character, my honour and my integrity. I was raped while on a business trip a few years ago. I have not reported it to this day. I have a hard time subjecting myself to the torture of a trial. Here are some stats on rape in the US. In Canada its no different.
    OUT OF EVERY 100 RAPES
    40 – Get Reported
    10 – Lead to an arrest
    8 – Get prosecuted
    4 – Lead to a Felony conviction
    3 – Won’t even spend one day in jail
    The other 97 Rapists will walk free.
    It takes an unfathomable amount of courage for a victim to come forward. To those that do, I (we) applaude you, to those that don’t, I (We) understand. No Pressure – No Judgement

    Reply
  68. Renee

    Love your blog – Absolutely the hard core truth through and through – The world needs more people that are impartial, truthful and hold their Moral Compass high. The ignorant opinionated people that think these woman are lying, that all sexual assaults get reported, or are of the “you asked for it”, are delusional. I was a teenager when I was sexually assaulted, reported it and spent a week at the mans trial. On the stand to testify, every part of my being was picked a part, questioned, and twisted. All in an effort to slander every part of me, hoping to redirect the jury’s attention from the real crime and criminal to a child that should be disgraced. Fun Times. I can guaratee you NOT! No victim of a sexaul crime, at anytime has ever said, I want to relive my nightware, while a defense attorney rips apart every part of my character, my honour and my integrity. I was raped while on a business trip a few years ago. I have not reported it to this day. I have a hard time subjecting myself to the torture of a trial. Here are some stats on rape in the US. In Canada its no different.
    OUT OF EVERY 100 RAPES
    40 – Get Reported
    10 – Lead to an arrest
    8 – Get prosecuted
    4 – Lead to a Felony conviction
    3 – Won’t even spend one day in jail
    The other 97 Rapists will walk free.
    It takes an unfathomable amount of courage for a victim to come forward. To those that do, I (we) applaude you, to those that don’t, I (We) understand. No Pressure – No Judgement

    Reply
  69. fan

    I’ll always be the first one to advocate a public lynching (no, not the internet kind–I mean the real thing) when a woman beater or child molester is actually guilty.
    But I always have to ask: why does it always end up being about money? If some guy did that to me, you can bet your sweet safe word I’d use his own rope and any piece of hotel furniture I could find to throttle him within an inch of his life.
    Why do these people always find the nearest reporter and start begging for money?
    Yeah, I loved the man’s show. I’m a little surprised that he came off as such a sensitive guy, and now we’re hearing this about him. If he’s actually guilty, I’ll be there with my pitchfork >:)
    But really… why is he not in jail? Or a little more beat up at least?

    Reply
    1. Thurman Ulrich

      We need to include man beaters and man abusers in there as well.
      And he’s not in jail because no one is charging him. You want to beat up someone who has been accused? What happened to innocent until proven guilty?

      Reply

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