*Trigger warning: The video embedded below contains multiple references to sexual assault and rape.*
Making good on threats it made regarding the alleged rape of a 16-year-old girl by members of the Steubenville Ohio high school football team, the hacking group KnightSec, an arm of Anonymous, has released a disturbing video.
Outraged by what they perceived as a cover up of the attack by local and school officials in order to protect beloved athletes and accused rapists Trent Mays and Ma'lik Richmond, KnightSec hacked the Big Red Football team’s website last month. They replaced the site with a warning that they would release personal information about the boys, and others involved, if officials didn’t issue a public apology.
Then on January 1, KnightSec released an extremely disturbing video featuring members of the self-proclaimed “rape crew” from the night of the attack, making jokes about what had happened.
The star of the video, identified as former Steubenville High School baseball player Michael Nodianos, cracks himself up with lines like "She is so raped," and "They raped her quicker than Mike Tyson!"
When someone else in the video interrupts and asks Nodianos, "What if that was your daughter?" he replies, "But it isn't."
In that one moment, showing the capacity for compassion of an emotionally stunted toddler, Nodianos sums up the central problem of the whole situation. The rapists themselves, and their so-called rape crew, think they’re untouchable. The rules don’t apply to them. Given the fact that they photographed the assault, which included urinating on the passed out teen, bragged and tweeted about it, and then joked and laughed about the whole thing in this video, it’s safe to say that they find someone else’s humiliation amusing.
That’s exactly why KnightSec has found a good target in these boys. It won’t really make a difference whether or not they issue an insincere apology. What might make a difference is if they experience humiliation themselves. Judging from their behavior, this might be the only way they’ll ever understand what it’s like to have people pointing and laughing as your world falls apart.