High Noon Stand-Off


George Hook

This morning.

In the Times of Ireland.

Lise Hand writes:

The controversy over comments about rape made on Friday by the Newstalk presenter George Hook took an unexpected turn yesterday when the station began a fightback against its critics.

The radio station has decided not to use any contributors from The Irish Times in response to an article by the newspaper’s columnist Fintan O’Toole. On Tuesday O’Toole wrote that he would not appear on Newstalk again, describing it as “flagrantly sexist”.

Although there was no official statement to The Irish Times from the Communicorp-owned station, the ban was acknowledged by a source at the paper and Newstalk producers have been informed. A spokeswoman for the station could not be reached for comment.

Newstalk retaliates in rape row with ban on Hook critics (The Times of Ireland)


In The Irish Times

Kitty Holland writes:

Views, behaviours and individuals that contravened the moral hegemony of 1930s, 1940s and 1950s Catholic Ireland were publicly shamed, silenced and cast out by the thought police of the time. Abhorrent views were censured, stymieing intellectual and social development for decades.

Ireland is, thankfully, a different place now. Some would say our treatment of women has changed radically, but have our underlying social and political attitudes changed so much?

Today’s thought police see themselves as very different to those of 70 years ago. Their agenda is freedom and safety for women and girls.

However, the abhorrent and deeply damaging views of women and girls, articulated by Hook, teenage boys, and our Constitution alike, must be heard. They must be challenged. They must be changed. Simply silencing them will not achieve the safe, free world we want for our daughters.

George Hook should be challenged, not silenced (Kitty Holland, The Irish Times)

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46 thoughts on “High Noon Stand-Off

    1. nefD6

      Sure aren’t all men b@stards, all potential rapists. Best beat the rapist out of them while they’re young.

  1. J9

    Hey Kitty … You should be worried when David Quinn starts agreeing with you! I just heard him on Sean O’Rourke quoting this article.

    1. bisted

      …this could be a good career move from Kitty…a few vacancies at the moment in the standing army of contrarians…they come in lots of flavours but they’re all still contrarians…a reference from David Quinn should swing it for her…

  2. Anomanomanom

    let’s not pretend Hook is the first person to say something like this. The fake outrage is ridiculous. Its obvious who a women, or man, gets rape its the Rapist at fault, no one including hook said otherwise. But like I said before everybody needs to take personally responsibility for their own safety, Because simply some people are scummy enough to lie in wait to take advantage

    1. TheRealJane

      Yes. Everybody should exercise caution to stay safe. This includes not jumping off high buildings, running out in front of traffic, taking drugs, unnecessary surgery, going to unqualified dentists, giving dogs crack cocaine and getting so drunk that you make unsafe decisions. This applies to men and women of all ages and is fine.

      However, telling women that they have a specific duty to avoid activities that are fine for anyone else to perform a special duty of care to avoid rape is a bit different. Especially when these precautions really depend on the perspective of the advice giver.

      1. Anomanomanom

        Giving advice to women or everyone else as you say, I assume you mean men, is perfectly acceptable. If your pretending women should not be more careful then your a bit of an idiot. I don’t have the actual figures but I would assume rape and sexual assault would be higher against females, so its obvious for females to take more safety precautions. In fact its common sense. Of course men and women should be able to do everything equally, including one night stands, but life is not like that.

        1. TheRealJane

          Well, the vast majority of rapes are committed by people known to the victim. Friends, family, husbands, boyfriends. In truth, if women want to be safe, the most productive precaution to take us to avoid any relationship with men. However, the preferred advice is to not be unladylike.

          I wonder why that is?

          The real situation where drunk people are in danger from strangers is young men.

        2. mildred st. meadowlark

          Precisely why is it imperative that women be more careful? Why is that?

          Why is the onus on women to take care that they aren’t raped? It goes without saying that no woman asks for it.

          1. Milo

            Men are more prone to suicide than women, so there are many campaigns urging men to talk, spot the signs, mind your buddy etc.

            Because more women than men get raped, it makes sense that we would urge them to be more careful as the threat to them is bigger.

            Sensible and caring people would do this instinctively. Their first priority would be for the safety of those they care about, not the identity politics relating to such care.

          2. mildred st. meadowlark

            Suicide is something you do to yourself. Last I checked rape was something inflicted on a another person. Comparing the two is pointless.

            As I’ve said before, most girls when they start going out with their friends (and I’m not just talking about the pub or a night out) are warned against the dangers of walking home alone, against strange men on the bus, they are told to watch their drinks, and to stay with their friends.
            To this day, I will text my friends when I’m home safe after a night out and they will do the same.

            So why are we saying that women need to have MORE awareness, when most women are acutely aware how vulnerable they can be to such an attack. Why should the responsibility for such an attack lie with the woman?

          3. pedeyw

            Putting aside the obvious problems with equating suicide and rape, do you not think the major cause of rape is maybe the rapists as opposed to their victims? “Sensible and caring people would do this instinctively. Their first priority would be for the safety of those they care about, not the identity politics relating to such care.” Exactly why there should be more emphasis on educating young men to respect women as equals and you know, not rape.

          4. Milo

            Suicide is given as an example of a phenomenon that is not gender neutral, and therefore not treated as such. It is a similar situTion with rape. Unfortunately it affects women more and to ignore that fact is just wilful ignorance and dangerous.

            Of course educate young men, light the streets, have more cops. But also take care because men are stronger and rapier.

            Why you think showing concern for women diminishes them is beyond me..

            Again I think identity politics are fuzzing the matter. There is a difference between how the world should be and how it is. When it comes to rape, I’d rather be practical then ideological.

          5. pedeyw

            “Why you think showing concern for women diminishes them is beyond me.” Nice straw man there. Mildred asked the the question “Why is the onus on women to take care that they aren’t raped?” Onus being the operative word there. It should not be the responsibility of victim (I hate using that word, sorry) to make sure they’re not attacked. Do you honestly think we need more awareness?

          6. pedeyw

            TO be completely fair Milo, I don’t think you’re wrong (though I could do with less of you implying I don’t care about rape victims, thanks) but we do need a broader societal shift than just awareness campaigns, there’s also a worrying attitude of victim blaming when we concentrate our efforts on how not to be a victim over why you shouldn’t be a rapist, or what constitutes rape.

      2. dylad

        Objectification of women and rape culture is normalised in Men’s Rugby circles, I’m not surprised he came out with something like this. With the exception of Moncrief, that station is garbage.

        1. Andrew

          ‘Rape culture’ is normalised in rugby circles? news to me.
          Can you define ‘rape culture’ ?
          For example the wholesale rape of young British girls in Rotherham, to me that is the definition of ‘rape culture’ and I never read much coverage from Kitty or any of her fellow travellers about it?
          I wonder why?
          When throwing around terms such as ‘rape culture’ you really ned to be clear what you mean and also be consistent on calling it out.

          1. MoyestWithExcitement

            Rape culture is telling a rape victim she’s partly to blame for trusting a man wouldn’t rape her. You’re welcome.

    2. postmanpat

      George Hook should have warned young women not to go home with members of male sports teams full stop , given the worldwide correlation of sport teams and male peer support endorsing sexual aggression. You know what these lads are like when their blood is up. But that would cast a critical eye on sports culture and we couldn’t have that. Sport is above reproach. Judges agree too. Better to question the woman’s decision to go home with any male relative stranger. If Hook had instead amended what he meant to say to mean sports teams, instead if crying and apologizing he might have weaseled out of it.

    1. Nigel

      Kitty Holland is arguing that a disparate group of people in various venues using various media isn’t fine tuning their challenging of objectionable views to her complete satisfaction so tomorrow we’re sending everyone who blames rape victims to work in the Magdalene laundries.

  3. RuilleBuille

    Hook should be shunned by all decent people.

    Quinn, like Hook, got all indignant about HIS daughter but is happy to impugn everyone elses daughter.

    1. martco

      but like in fairness are you only realising that now?

      apart from the off the ball lads and sometimes moncreif when I can the rest of it is “text me on 53106” dirge all of it. so I don’t listen. or try nova. or spotify

      this outrage stuff (albeit allowing me and Roj to put together a potentially major moneyspinner event around the public hanging/stoning/forking/burning) is now more the story than the original story and is completely utterly embarrassing & laughable…oul Hookey is coming out of this looking relatively good!?! wha?

  4. Eamonn Clancy

    Unfortunately there are rapists out there among us, we may not like that fact, but there are sickos out there waiting to prey on women who’ve had too much to drink. Are we in a world now where a man can’t warn women to be careful about this? Really? People are happy saying ” Get pissed, walk down alleyways on your own at 2 in the morning. Whatever happens to you, you’re not to blame.”

    1. Frilly Keane

      ah here
      you’ve now roped me inta this

      I walk where the f I like
      when I like
      and in any condition I happen to be in at that time

      the same way you can

      that doesn’t entitle ANYONE
      to rape or assault or mug me

      and it most certainly doesn’t permit me be held responsible
      not even a smidgen

      I have no objection to going on Newtalk
      if they’d have me like
      I love to talk to George Hook
      I’ve loadsa stuff to talk to him about

      1. rotide

        You certainly have the right to walk whereever you like in whatever condition you like.

        You have the right to knowingly walk into ‘bad area’ flashing a rolex and a wallet stuffed with cash and get mugged. The person mugging you isn’t entitled to do it and certainly deserves punishment for it, but it doesn’t stop you being a complete f-wit.

        Not that any of this ever excuses rape or even begins to get into victim blaming anyone who is raped. It’s just that this whole thing has given people licence to make appalingly bad analogies so i thought I’d add my own.

    2. pedeyw

      Yep. Eamonn, we are. Because believe it or not, rapists are not a force of nature that just happen, they’re humans with agency that make a decision to do an awful thing to another person.

    3. Zoella

      @Eamonn Clancy – You are NOT to blame. You are responsible to do what you can to stay safe but if some sicko pounces, you are not to blame. Christ, has this sage taught you nothing.

  5. Listrade

    I’ve heard this before. The “let them fall by their own words” argument, it doesn’t work for one big reason and that is that the media doesn’t challenge it. So if we allow Hook, as an example, to have freedom to be a controversialist (which is really euphemism for acting like an ignorant pr*ck), then who do we have to challenge him?

    It was Twitter that challenged Myers, not the Irish Times…the ones who edited and published it. Are Independent News going to challenge Hook?

    This is the media that challenges scientific consensus by giving equal airtime to “controversialists”, but never the other way around. On a broader scale, the media failed to challenge the likes of Trump and his rhetoric. Still fail to do so. Failed to challenge Brexit.

    Whether it be vested interest, editorial pressure or just incompetence, the media doesn’t challenge sh*t. So who is going to do it?

    I agree with Kitty. I think the cult of shaming and calls for firing (looking at Fox news asking for an ESPN commentator to be fired or even Munroe Bergdorf) is probably wrong. But I disagree that there is anyone who will pick up the mantle of challenging. The media didn’t report on what Hook said, the media reported on the Twitter storm that followed the comments. That’s a big difference.

    1. Andrew

      The media doesn’t challenge it? It is the ‘media’ both broadcast and print that are ventilating this ridiculous story and presenting mostly a one eyed view. They are deliberately ignoring the vast, vast majority of comments on web articles and forums that have at least a more nuanced view.
      George’s media colleagues have spotted an opportunity and gone for it. Apart from Pat Kenny
      Your comment on the media treatment of Trump is quite frankly bizarre.

      1. MoyestWithExcitement

        “They are deliberately ignoring the vast, vast majority of comments on web articles and forums that have at least a more nuanced view.”

        That is the funniest thing I’ve read today. Thank you for this, you Very Important Intellectual.

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