Ched Evans – The Men’s Hero

Click to visit the Siren Stories website and read more work by J.J. Barnes and check out her latest novels.

Click to visit the Siren Stories website and read more work by J.J. Barnes and check out her latest novels.

Since Ched Evan’s rape conviction was overturned something has struck me.  Something remarkable.

Men are THRILLED.  Not just thrilled, they’re championing him as a hero.  They’re determined to force women to agree it was the right choice.  They’re aggressively arguing against women who speak against his behaviour.  They’re hashtagging IAmChed.

Ched Evans.  The Men’s Hero.

So why?

WHY?

Ched Evans is legally not guilty of rape.  So what is he guilty of?  He’s guilty of cheating on his fiancee.  He is guilty of having sex with a teenage girl who was too intoxicated to speak.  He is guilty of entering the hotel room in the dark where his friend was having sex with her, having sex with her himself, then leaving without speaking to her before, during or after.  He is guilty of having his friends film the incident outside the hotel window without her knowledge.  He is guilty of having sex with her without caring whether or not she wanted him to.  He is guilty of using a woman as a sexual object for his own gratification.  He is guilty of having sex with a heavily intoxicated teenager.

So, he might not be a rapist, but he’s a terrible person.

So why are men so caught up in a frenzy?

Because they aren’t lying.  They are Ched.

They’re men who think if a woman gets drunk she deserves what she gets.  They’re men who think if a woman gets drunk they have a right to violate her body.  They’re men who have been accused of taking advantage of drunken women in the past and now feel validated.

They’re men who believe their desire to fuck a woman is worth more than a woman’s desire not to be fucked.  They’re men who believe women are liars and not to be trusted.  They’re men who believe woman are sluts and slags and slappers.

They’re men who, if they had the chance, would have done the same thing.  They’re men who are jealous.  They’re men who want to get a chance in the future.  They’re men who now know it’s okay to target drunk and vulnerable women who are too intoxicated to consent.

They’re men who are happy that sex without consent no longer constitutes rape.

Do you know what I want to say to them?

Fuck you.

Fuck you every time you pretend to be disgusted by Donald Trump whilst you secretly admire him.

Fuck you every time you encounter a drunk woman and think it’s her own fault if someone rapes her.

Fuck you every time you hear that a woman has been abused and you suspect she’s lying.

Fuck you every time your sister or daughter or wife gets offended by things you say offhand but doesn’t bother arguing because they won’t get anywhere.

Fuck you every time you get drunk and feel safe.

Fuck you every time you assume the person you’re having sex with wants it, without bothering to ask.

Fuck you every time a gay man checks you out and you feel violated.

Fuck you.  Fuck you.  Fuck you.

YOU are the reason we don’t come forward.  YOU are the reason so many men get away with it.  YOU are the reason the women in your life don’t trust you.

YOU are the reason we feel ashamed and disgusted with ourselves, rather than with the men who abuse us.

YOU.

This isn’t about celebrating an innocent man walking free.

You don’t celebrate when convicted murderers are found innocent.  You don’t hound and abuse the families of their accusers.  You don’t abuse and fight against those who speak out against the murder itself.

This is about celebrating the validation of every disgusting thought, desire or choice you’ve ever made.

You are Ched.  And I hope the women in your life find out fast.  Because that makes you dangerous.

If you have any thoughts, please let me know.  I’m on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and you can find my details on www.jjbarnes.co.uk, as well as links to the books I’ve written and Podcasts I speak on at www.sirenstories.co.uk

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35 responses to “Ched Evans – The Men’s Hero

  1. “He is guilty of having sex with a teenage girl who was too intoxicated to speak.”

    well then he IS guilty of rape

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    • Not legally. Since he’s been found innocent. Make of that what you will for consent law.

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      • Important to note he’s not been found innocent – he has been found not-guilty. Meaning there was reasonable doubt that he definitely did it. It seems like a very small technicality but I think It’s very important given the rhetoric surrounding this case.

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    • But isn’t the crux of the case, was she or was she not too intoxicated to speak ? The jury decided apparently that she was not, so what makes you so sure that she was ? What irrefutable evidence that what you say took place actually exists ? On the reverse side we cannot be certain that it did take place, or what the new defence “witnesses” claim took place either.

      I don’t say this as a CE “supporter” I’m trying to understand why people have such strong opinions about this case.

      Liked by 1 person

      • For me, I’m mostly responding to the joy and celebration of primarily male reactions. Why is it so fantastic he’s been found not guilty, and what message does it send?

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  2. Lezzer

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  3. Last time I checked, no men I know are ‘thrilled’ and he’d definitely no ‘hero’ of mine. He’s a rapist, end of.

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  4. Time of the month?

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  5. He wasn’t found innocent. He was found not guilty. Huge difference. Excellent piece though.

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  6. There are many confusing things about this case and the testimony that it’s difficult to believe any reasonable person could be utterly convinced absolutely of the guilt or innocence of CE. I’ve heard it said that he was convicted on his on testimony, but since this includes the claim that she asked him perform oral sex on her, responded enthusiastically to this and etc – then I assume you just don’t believe this ? Why not thought ? What I struggle with here is the kind of “I don’t think ‘a woman’ would act that way so I don’t believe him” type commentary. I also think that the case is a bit worrying since the CPS prosecuted on behalf of someone who by definition does not know what happened. So the only account of what happened was from CE and his chums and therefore i don;t see how anyone could be convinced beyond doubt that he is lying ?

    Anyway – thanks for being brave enough to write about it.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This ruling is scary, and I gather he was exonerated based on the prior sexual history of the victim? I thought we’d moved beyond that.

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  8. He was exonerated because the jury could not say beyond reasonable doubt that he did not have reason to believe she consented to sex with him. The prosecution case was that she was too drunk to consent and so the defence produced witnesses who claimed that they had had sex with her which she enthusiastically participated in but then couldn’t remember the next day. That “prior sexual history” does seem to me to be important since it is what the case hinges on. The question of whether it is believable or not is another one all together….

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  9. “Ched Evans is legally not guilty of rape. So what is he guilty of? He’s guilty of cheating on his fiancee. He is guilty of having sex with a teenage girl who was too intoxicated to speak. He is guilty of entering the hotel room in the dark where his friend was having sex with her, having sex with her himself, then leaving without speaking to her before, during or after. He is guilty of having his friends film the incident outside the hotel window without her knowledge. He is guilty of having sex with her without caring whether or not she wanted him to. He is guilty of using a woman as a sexual object for his own gratification. He is guilty of having sex with a heavily intoxicated teenager.

    So, he might not be a rapist, but he’s a terrible person.”

    Happy to agree that Ched Evans is a predatory scumbag and offensively stupid and self-entitled. I’m quite appalled by those celebrating the decision.

    However the case has never been about whether X (as referred to in the court papers) was too intoxicated to speak (not considered by the jury and the only witnesses testify that she was able to speak) but whether her intoxicated state rendered her incapable of informed consent. This is what convicted Ched Evans at the original trial.

    The appeal based on new witnesses that saw the conviction squashed by the Court of Appeal after referral from the Criminal Cases Review Commission focused not so much on her past sexual activity but her cognitive abilities under the influence of alcohol coupled with her repeated memory lapses from intoxication that threw doubt on whether Evans should have recognised a lack of consent. Even though X couldn’t remember performing the following, she did text a friend with perfect spelling, order food at a takeaway and followed instructions from a taxi driver.

    Given that Evans is such a self-entitled and stupid individual that he doesn’t recognise how creepy and predatory his behaviour was, asking him to recognise consent with an intoxicated yet apparently functioning teenager in that situation requires social skills and empathy that he lacks.

    The retrial saw a jury hearing those examples of cognitive ability under intoxication and came to a decision that there was too much doubt as to whether an intoxicated X gave consent or not to the defendant Evans that he could recognise.

    This case is horrible on several levels. That alcohol changes people’s behaviour and decision making is well known as is that people react/present in different ways. The jury was being asked to make a judgement on a situation where three intoxicated people were in a hotel room as to whether consent was possible and understood as consent.

    The problem I have is that the 2012 jury could have heard all the additional witnesses in 2016 and still have convicted Ched Evans. Likewise the 2016 jury could have heard only the original case and still have found Evans not guilty.

    It comes down to interpretation and weight of consideration.

    That’s what annoys me most about those claiming vindication of Ched Evans innocent. First they don’t understand the marginal nature of what was considered. Second, they don’t recognise that Evans behaviour that night was unacceptable regardless of whether he had consent or not.

    Ched Evans is one creepy, stupid, misogynistic, predatory and dangerous scumbag by his own testimony. Anyone identifying with that is also dangerous.

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  10. Did someone just write ‘excellent’ piece? Who writes a blog with so many swear words in it? If you’re not literate enough to vent in other choice words don’t blog. Writer is clearly menustrating to write in such a way and place all men in the same box. Shame on you.

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  11. Thank you.
    Thank you so, so much.

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  12. “He’s guilty of cheating on his fiancee.”
    Wow. Person cheats on partner. Call the police. Seriously, why did you include this? If he’d been single at the time, would you consider his behaviour acceptable?

    “He is guilty of having sex with a teenage girl who was too intoxicated to speak.”

    But that’s just it – the question of how intoxicated she actually was is at the heart of the whole case. The prosecution argued she was very drunk (though even their own witnesses confirmed she was able to speak, walk, understand what was going on etc). The defence argued that although she was drunk she was still very much in control of her actions and decisions. The jury believed there was a reasonable chance that the defence was correct. If he was definitely guilty of having sex with someone unable to speak, then he would have been found guilty of rape.

    “He is guilty of having his friends film the incident outside the hotel window without her knowledge.”

    True. Disgusting behaviour and they should all be prosecuted for voyeurism or whatever the relevant crime is.

    “He is guilty of having sex with her without caring whether or not she wanted him to.”

    How do you know? According to him, she made it very clear that she did want him to. That’s what the whole case was about.

    “He is guilty of using a woman as a sexual object for his own gratification.”

    That’s what all casual sex is, on both sides. You could equally say that the woman used him as a sexual object for her own gratification. Are you criticising her for that?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I did debate whether or not to include him cheating on his fiancee in that list. But not because I think it’s a crime, just because it’s an example of the respect given women. If he respects the woman he’s supposed to love so little then it says something, it wasn’t included because it’s criminal. Indeed, we’ve seen his actions haven’t been criminal.

      Also the facts are very mixed, the case is very complex. He is not guilty of rape, the other activities I list are the things that were put forward for debate.

      And yes, if a woman treated a man as an object I would be critical. Humans forgetting the humanity in other people has caused some terrible tragedies and we all should remember that people are not objects.

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  13. Feminist trash writing. SHE was guilty of using two men for her own sexual gratification. She was VERY vocal in saying so.

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  14. “the other activities I list are the things that were put forward for debate.”

    No, you said : “He is guilty of having sex with a teenage girl who was too intoxicated to speak”

    This is what the entire trial was about. Why are you so sure that the jury got it wrong and that there is no doubt you are right about this ? Do you think that the 15 jurors were stupid ? Lied to ? What ? I personally cannot see how the new evidence is believable but given that the victim could not remember, I can’t logically see what other possible outcome there would be once other “witnesses” were identified. I also think if you feel CE is a liar and lied under oath (which I presume you do) then you should certainly say so.

    CE has not come out of this well, although technically not a rapist, his antics have been exposed for all to see.

    An issue for me here is that feminists are apparently encouraging the position that once accused of something, i.e. once someone goes to the police with an allegation against you, even if they withdraw the complaint, unless you pursue them for a false allegation (in which case you will be called “vindictive”) then the mud will indeed stick. As they are keen to point out, a “not guilty” verdict doesn’t mean that and they will not presume innocence. If this view was more widely held, then the only way to actually establish “innocence” would be to pursue your accuser, but I’m guessing you don’t want this either. You can see why men would be unhappy about this situation surely ?

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    • There’s understanding why men would be unhappy about “mud” sticking to innocence, and not understanding why so many men are being quite so aggressively celebratory about this verdict, when so many women are clearly devastated and afraid.

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  15. Agreed about the celebration. But I guess I’m not getting why the “devastation” exists unless you think that CE is a liar and what he says took place absolutely could not have. And if it could not have – why could it not have ? Because “a woman just wouldn’t do that” ? I suppose this is actually what i think, but I would admit that it’s no basis for a trial to conclude someone is guilty, and that is just my opinion, it’s not fact.

    The reason so many men seem happy about is very simple in my view, it’s because by virtue of having a penis we are all in the same boat as CE. (“Men are thrilled”) whether we like it or not, as far as feminist analysis and writing is concerned, perhaps we might get a derisory NAMALT if pushed. I mean really it’s kind of surprising that you should not be surprised that “men” would happy about this when “men” are the raping scumbags. Maybe there are more men than you would hope that seem to be like this ? But you’ve always just said “men” without distinction. Anyway – that’s just my opinion

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    • If men were being constantly convicted for sexual assault I would understand. But that isn’t the case. Women are constantly given grief and abuse for rape reporting and men rarely get convicted.

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  16. Well I have read everyone’s reasoning on here, my grief is, what gave him the right to go into the hotel room in the first place to have sex with her when she was with someone else and what about the guys that were filming her without her consent, someone obviously set that up.

    In the film The Accused, she was able to get a conviction against all the people in the bar that was egging her rapist on and cheering, why can’t she do the same with the guys filming her

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  17. This case has not altered the law and there is no reason that anyone who is a victim of a sexual assault should fear coming forward and seek a prosecution. I fear that this type of response will be counter-productive and will scare people away from making complaints. I doubt many men celebrate Ched Evans as a role model after this case though I am sure that many are glad to see a miscarriage of justice overturned. Unfortunately had he not been a wealthy individual this may not have happened and I am sure that many people see the injustice in this.

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  18. Hey JJ, this is the first article I’ve read on this (not disinterested, just busy). I thought it was very good, and I’ve seen men celebrate as you say. The point about celebrating murderers was one I hadn’t considered and I thought it was poignant. However, I do caution against the general use of ‘men’. I appreciate what you mean by this as a sympathiser, but as a working class man myself, I know that most others haven’t been exposed to feminist literature. Not all are unreachable, but when they read the generalising term, I guarantee that’s what they’ll latch onto, and the shutters will come down. At the end of the day, if women are to be kept safe, those are the people who have to be won over, rather than those who already understand what you mean.

    One part confused me. You say he isn’t a rapist, but the woman was too intoxicated to consent. My understanding was that legally one needs to gain consent or it’s rape? Am I out of touch on this?

    Was very sad to read through your comments and see that you were vindicated. No sooner had you brought up men abusing anyone who threatens their privilege to assault women with impunity, than you’re abused with the intent of silencing you. For those of you doing so, ask why you’re doing it and see if you can see yourself in what JJ has written.

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    • I understand and appreciate your point with regards to men. I chose not to as I was addressing a primarily male response. Just as “not all white people” have treated black people as subhumans, white people have. I myself have not, but i am aware that as the dominant group I am part of a that collective and recognise the privilege that comes with it. Not all men have, but men have. It’s a choice I made and for the most part i am comfortable with it, though I understand the concern.

      The accounts are that she was too intoxicated to speak, and that is part of the outrage felt by women. It should constitute rape.

      And yes, sadly men (again I use this as a summarising word rather than pointed at individuals) do not respond well when called out on their behaviour by women.

      Thank you for your comment, i appreciate one that is interesting and considered amidst the less so.

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  19. It is wrong to say ‘Not Guilty’ does not mean innocent. We are all presumed innocent until we are found guilty beyond reasonable doubt in a court of law. This is under common law, the United Nations Charter and EU Human Rights. The UK subscribes to these organisations. Ched Evans has not been found guilty. Thus his presumption of innocence remains intact.

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