Say It Ain't So

Illustration for article titled Say It Aint So

We are still hoping this isn't true, but the news is that Christian Bale has, in fact, been arrested for allegedly assaulting his mother, Jenny and his sister, Sharon. The reported assault took place Sunday night at the Dorchester Hotel, and according to People, "Monday – the morning after the alleged incident – Bale appeared on GMTV, a U.K. morning show. Bloggers called the actor grumpy, but a GMTV spokesman told People, 'He didn't seem on edge.' One caveat: it is customary in England for police to arrest a suspect in connection with a crime before questioning him. But…but…Christian's dad was married to Gloria Steinem! He must have instilled a reverence towards women in his son! More on this as the story unfolds…[People]


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I can't speak for anyone else, but I'm hoping that some of the unwillingness to leap to conclusions is based on the fact that this kind of thing is done way too much in the tabloids/media. They leap on something, spin it, and then move on to something else. Facts don't seem to enter into it.

My problem is that the initial report seems deliberately vague and sensationalist. And as it turns out, more than slightly misleading with their use of the term "assault". But plenty of people were willing to jump to the conclusion that either he's a "woman beater" or that his mom and sister and "money grubbing liars" based on nothing.

A person's previous behavior is somewhat relevant in this sort of thing, since being abusive towards women in particular tends to be habitual. Not always, obviously, but generally it's something there's a history of, of some kind. So I don't think it's necessarily excusing something, it's just looking at the lack of any history of it and wondering. I don't think that's unreasonable. This is due partly to his celebrity...they can't do anything without someone trying to report on it, so we're a lot more likely to know if there were other instances of this sort of thing than your average joe.

But I get what you mean. I don't assume anything about anyone I don't know personally, and I obviously don't know him or his family. This seems like an unfortunate situation that was very effectively tabloided. And I honestly hate to see that happen to anyone.