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I have nothing invested in Kobe Bryant, in fact, he beat my hometown team in the NBA Finals once. So, no, I’m not a sports groupie as you’d like to contend.

And, while, no, I don’t have any children of my own yet, I do have seven nieces, three of whom are teenagers. One is going to prom today. So, yeah, I like to think that I have some perspective on this issue.

I’d love for you to explain to me about consent. I call the difference between rape and consent “paper thin” because a consensual encounter could take a dramatic turn involving the revocation of consent with little to no warning. I’ll give you an example. A woman lives with her boyfriend, who treats her right and loves her, but one night, after too much to drink, whilst they are having the same vanilla sex they normally enjoy, the drunk boyfriend decides to use the back door. She says no. He continues, not really taking her protests seriously, and tries to guilt her into being okay with it.

That’s rape. That’s how thin the line between consent and rape is. I’m not saying that the line is insignificant, or irrelevant, or stupid, or not worth recognizing… I’m saying it’s thin, as in “extremely easy to cross”.

I'm also saying that you, the writer of the original article, or anyone else declaring that Kobe Bryant is a rapist is EVERY BIT as out of line as me or anyone else saying “No he’s not.” Nobody is right because NOBODY KNOWS!

Our criminal justice system is based on the principle that one is “innocent until proven guilty”, and I’m sorry to offend you, but I haven’t seen the proof in this particular case.

Now, I’m also not saying that he’s innocent either, I fully concede the fact that he was involved in something that happened with his accuser. What that something was, I don’t know, and as such, I refuse to talk out of my ass about it. The accuser refused to testify in court, and accepted a settlement offer. Those are the facts.

Maybe she was raped, and sold out the principles of justice, and rather than having a criminal punished in accordance with the law, she opted instead to take the money and run.

Maybe it was never about rape or justice, and she was in it for the money from the start.

Or maybe it was some sort of misunderstanding, free of malice aforethought, between two people who consented to sleep together at first, but something altered the arrangement.

I wasn’t in the room, so I don’t know, and I won’t pretend to know. I could dream up at least 50 different hypothetical examples of varying shades of gray. Shall I keep going?

I’m presuming that you weren’t in the room either, so I will not listen to you, or anyone else that wasn’t in the room, proclaim to know anything about what really happened. Feel free to speak generally, or hypothetically, but you cannot call Kobe Bryant a rapist without more evidence to support the accusation.

Now, if you’d care to revisit my post, you might find that I’m not really defending Kobe Bryant, I’m actually defending the people who cheered him into retirement. The people who can simultaneously abhor rape, and appreciate world class athletic ability.

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