Only George Will Is Allowed to Define Sexual Assault

The venerable St. Louis Post-Dispatch dropped George Will's column after the opprobrium heaped on his latest musings on nonconsensual touching. But he will not be silenced after this violation by the Twittocracy. Victims must speak out. Here's George Will taking back the night.

Will proudly stands by his defining-downward of "sexual assault," scare quotes and all, according to Dylan Byers:

In an interview with CSPAN, Will said the Post-Dispatch's decision simply reflected the paper's desire to keep the uproar over his op-ed going.

"They know how to perpetuate the rabble," the columnist said.

You see, Will's column—in which he lambasts "victimhood" of the new "sexual assault" as "a coveted status that confers privileges"—is not the problem; permissive online culture is the problem:

"[The Internet] has lowered, erased the barriers to entry into public discourse, that's a good thing. Unfortunately the downside is that among the barriers to entry that have been reduced is that you don't have to know how to read, write, or think you can just come in and shout and call names and carry on," Will said.

Indeed, the democratization of online publishing means, regrettably, that anyone is free to challenge a nice old rich columnist who merely wants to defend America from the scourge of "capacious definitions of sexual assault that can include not only forcible sexual penetration but also nonconsensual touching."

"I think I take sexual assault somewhat more seriously than the senators do because I think there's a danger now of defining sexual assault so broadly, so capriciously that it begins to the trivialize the seriousness of it," Will said. "When remarks become sexual assault, improper touching … we being to blur distinctions that are important to preserve if you believe as the senators purport to believe, that this is a serious matter."

You see? Sexual assault is totally different from bad touching. And also, words are completely trivial. As nice old rich columnists well know.

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