During a segment on CNN, host Ashleigh Banfield delivered a scathing reading of her open letter to the unnamed woman who accused Aziz Ansari of sexual harassment.
Last week, a 23-year-old photographer based out of Brooklyn given the code name of “Grace” gave her account to the trifling website Babe.net. In this story, she called her date “the worst night of my life.”
Ansari then responded saying he was a little “surprised and concerned” that the girl felt like whatever happened wasn’t consensual.
Since then, the accuser and the trashy publication that ran the smear piece have come under heavy fire from many sources, including other publications like the Atlantic and the New York Times.
A few days ago, on her show, Banfield said she had something to say to the accuser, who conveniently was allowed to stay anonymous.
“Dear Grace — not your real name, I’m sorry you had a bad date,” Banfield started. “I’ve had a few myself. They stink.”
“I’m sure it must be weighing on you — it’s hard being a victim. … But let’s take a moment to reflect on what you claim was the ‘worst night of your life,'” she said.
Banfield then went on to give an overview of what happened that night, per the victims testimony:
“Your date got overly amorous. After protesting his moves, you did not get up and leave right away. You continued to engage in the sexual encounter.
“By your own clear description, this wasn’t a rape, nor was it a sexual assault. By your description, your sexual encounter was ‘unpleasant.’ It did not send you to the police, it did not affect your workplace, or your ability to get a job.”
“So I have to ask you: What exactly was your beef?” Banfield said.
She then went on to say that instead of going to the press, which is a clear cry for attention, she should have gone to the police if she felt assaulted.
Banfield also asked the anonymous accuser whether her “bad date” was what led her to feel so “victimized … to the point of seeking a public conviction.”
“But what you have done, in my opinion, is appalling,” Banfield said. “You have chiseled away at a movement that I, along with all of my sisters in the workplace, have been dreaming of for decades, a movement that has finally changed an oversexed professional environment that I, too, have struggled through at times over the last 30 years.
“You had an unpleasant date. And you did not leave. That is on you. And all the gains that have been achieved on your behalf and mine are now being compromised by the allegations that you threw out there — and I’m going to call reckless and hollow.”
And she’s absolutely right. Every time some girl cries “rape” when nothing of the sort occurs, they not only detract from actual victims, but they make it harder for people who are actually assaulted to come forward. If they feel like no one is going to believe them because there are so many attention-seeking fakers, they’re less likely to report heinous crimes.
Watch the segment here: