Posted June 19, 2013

Serena Williams apologizes for Steubenville rape comments

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Serena Williams apologized Wednesday for comments about the Steubenville rape case. (Rindoff/Charriau/Getty Images)

Serena Williams apologized Wednesday for comments about the Steubenville rape case. (Rindoff/Charriau/Getty Images)

Serena Williams apologized Wednesday for comments that appeared to cast blame on the victim in the Steubenville, Ohio, rape case.

Williams released a statement on her website:

“What happened in Steubenville was a real shock for me. I was deeply saddened. For someone to be raped, and at only sixteen, is such a horrible tragedy! For both families involved — that of the rape victim and of the accused. I am currently reaching out to the girl’s family to let her know that I am deeply sorry for what was written in the Rolling Stone article. What was written – what I supposedly said – is insensitive and hurtful, and I by no means would say or insinuate that she was at all to blame.

I have fought all of my career for women’s equality, women’s equal rights, respect in their fields — anything I could do to support women I have done. My prayers and support always goes out to the rape victim. In this case, most especially, to an innocent sixteen year old child.”

Rolling Stone profile of the tennis star published online Tuesday night included the following scene:

“We watch the news for a while, and the infamous Steubenville rape case flashes on the TV – two high school football players raped a drunk 16-year-old, while other students watched and texted details of the crime. Serena just shakes her head. “Do you think it was fair, what they got? They did something stupid, but I don’t know. I’m not blaming the girl, but if you’re a 16-year-old and you’re drunk like that, your parents should teach you: Don’t take drinks from other people. She’s 16, why was she that drunk where she doesn’t remember? It could have been much worse. She’s lucky. Obviously, I don’t know, maybe she wasn’t a virgin, but she shouldn’t have put herself in that position, unless they slipped her something, then that’s different.”

NGUYEN: Sloane Stephens says Serena Williams uses mind games to intimidate foes


75 comments
ryribs
ryribs

She is a disgusting pig and next time she gets drunk maybe she should get raped and video taped. Then we can see how she feels about making a mistake

cuttyr8
cuttyr8

she is a moron plain and simple. if a white women said the same thing,  could you imagine the outrage.. tired of the bs in this country

GinaNecaise
GinaNecaise

If People cant forgive paula dean for what she said then u shouldnt forgive  sarena williams.

shawn4law
shawn4law

Truthfully,, she shouldn't have taken the comment back. She expressed her opinion and who gives a flying **** about anyone who disagrees!!! Hell I agree with her initial comment...who raised this girl to think it was okay to get so drunk that she could get violated in this way? Obviously Serena was raised in a household where her parents instilled values and it helped her to become the person she is today. I'm sure there a lot of people who actually agree with her comment, but because we want to be politically correct, we choose to jump on her for having said it. This country is going to the dumps because we condone the bad decisions people make. Regarding the guys who raped her, they deserve every ounce justice which the system places on them. They committed a crime and should pay for it. However, Serena was right, she shouldn't have gotten herself so drunk that she couldn't ward off potential danger.

rob48
rob48

It's out of your mouth, shame to be so heartless. Only reason this 'apology' came about was because her publicist told her she better back track her comments.

K-Jun
K-Jun

Too late, fool, you said what you really meant the first time. Not surprised by her initial assessment as one of the rapist is of her color. Gawd, but this woman is stupid, stupid. Hope you never win another championship, big butt. 

FCC
FCC

you are a fool serena.  simple as that.  typical "entitled" athlete detached from reality.


CucamongaKing
CucamongaKing

Back Track.

Horrible what she said.     The odd part is PEOPLE use to say the same things about african Americans, "well don't you know your are never suppose to date white women".     It is always bizarre when a historically victimized group  jumps the the defense of the abuser.

AlSharpton
AlSharpton

Serana was right. No apology was necessary, only for satisfying the ignorant news media. Everything she said was something that every parent should take to heart, not blame someone else for their lack of parenting. 

JmarkMa1
JmarkMa1

If this were a ghetto girl and not Serena Williams NONE of you; especially men; would back her. 

Women that are raped don't deserve it.  Anyone making even any type of comment that they do is a fool and as ignorant as it gets.  

JmarkMa1
JmarkMa1

wow; all the Serena sycophants are out today.  How many times has she and venus been hypersensitive to things said about their race or their style.  She said an ignorant and stupid thing on an interview that she wanted to do.

Athletes should be seen and not heard.  I could care less what Serena Williams thinks or says.  Just play tennis. 

KeysSteven
KeysSteven

Poor, one possible sleazy and some malicious judgment calls reported in this blurb by SI. Serena choosing to open-up to a Rolling Stone reporter on the Steubenville rape case ('12), making what is arguably a haphazard, somewhat callous assessment of that crime and then apparently not qualifying her comments, are all poor decisions.

Whether the RS person encouraged deviation from normal interview questions (personal life / sport / clothing line), hoping to get something dicey, we can't tell from this report.  It has a bit of that feel.  If yes, and then didn't run their final draft past Serena before going to print, that's a sleazoid reporter / editor.  But in fairness, maybe RS got informed consent.  

Painful lessons learned: always consult with family, friends or prof'l counsel before planned interviews. 

westcoasttiger
westcoasttiger

This is what interviews have come down to - gotcha journalism.  No wonder so many athletes are wary of writers.  If one reads the entire statement, it's obvious Serena covers all the bases by admitting she may not know all the circumstances but headlines choose to cherry (no pun intended) pick a line from a train of thought.  It's clear the boys are guilty of rape but it's becoming more apparent that too often people fail to take responsibility for themselves and wind up with horrible consequences.  One thing leads to another and this is what Serena is suggesting.  She's a gifted athlete and an independently-thinking woman who focused on her life path.  Too many young people walk to close to the fire and get burned.  I don't think Serena needed to apologize but in this stupid world today, no one is allowed to make a judgement call.This is what interviews have come down to - gotcha journalism.  No wonder so many athletes are wary of writers.  If one reads the entire statement, it's obvious Serena covers all the bases by admitting she may not know all the circumstances but headlines choose to cherry (no pun intended) pick a line from a train of thought.  It's clear the boys are guilty of rape but it's becoming more apparent that too often people fail to take responsibility for themselves and wind up with horrible consequences.  One thing leads to another and this is what Serena is suggesting.  She's a gifted athlete and an independently-thinking woman who focused on her life path.  Too many young people walk too close to the fire and get burned.  I don't think Serena needed to apologize but in this stupid world today, no one is allowed to make a judgement call.

hoffyboy9
hoffyboy9

Her parents "instilled values" & helped her "become the person she is today"...really???Do you remember the major Serena played in a few years ago (3-4) when a court line judge called a foot fault on Serena & she not only threatened the judge & tried to intimidate her by telling the court judge (an official) that "I'll stuff this ball down your f***ing throat and choke you." Look it up! NBC caught it live and replayed it over and over.Yeah, Serena is sooooooo sweet & demure.Serena is another ignorant athlete who thinks she can do & say anything she wants because her talent is athletic. And she thinks there should be no repurcussions for anything she does or says. Look at her history. She acts like an ignorant thug. If she didn't have an intelligent publicist working for her, she would NEVER have apologized & "act" like that quote wasn't what she said or was taken out of context. When Serena speaks, her true intelligence level & her true thoughts come out.She, anyone, has the right to speak their own mind. But please don't act like just because she says something it is fact & don't try and defend her. You show your own level of intelligence when you do that.Nobody knows how the rape victim was raised unless they were in that home. And lastly, teenagers make stupid choices every day, so is what you're saying that if she got drunk she was fair game for making a stupid choice?Shame on you & shame on Serena!

hoffyboy9
hoffyboy9

Her parents "instilled values" & helped her "become the person she is today"...really???

Do you remember the major Serena played in a few years ago (3-4) when a court line judge called a foot fault on Serena & she not only threatened the judge & tried to intimidate her by telling the court judge (an official) that "I'll stuff this ball down your f***ing throat and choke you." Look it up! NBC caught it live and replayed it over and over.

Yeah, Serena is sooooooo sweet & demure.

Serena is another ignorant athlete who thinks she can do & say anything she wants because her talent is athletic. And she thinks there should be no repurcussions for anything she does or says. Look at her history. She acts like an ignorant thug.

If she didn't have an intelligent publicist working for her, she would NEVER have apologized & "act" like that quote wasn't what she said or was taken out of context. When Serena speaks, her true intelligence level & her true thoughts come out.

She, anyone, has the right to speak their own mind. But please don't act like just because she says something it is fact & don't try and defend her. You show your own level of intelligence when you do that.

Nobody knows how the rape victim was raised unless they were in that home. And lastly, teenagers make stupid choices every day, so is what you're saying that if she got drunk she was fair game for making a stupid choice?

Shame on you & shame on Serena!

Dosse
Dosse

@FCC LOL entitled?? She has worked for every penny she has. What have you done?

Dosse
Dosse

@CucamongaKing lol we all know you're a racist, what do african americans have to do with this...they get raped and make verbal blunders too don't act like the two should never meet.

CucamongaKing
CucamongaKing

@AlSharpton YOURE an idiot.     The breakdown in parenting comes from raising a rapist boy WHO has such low opinion of females that he sees them as only sexual devices.   What a great mom they must of had.

CucamongaKing
CucamongaKing

@JmarkMa1 SHE is a ghetto girl and I do not mean that despairingly    She was raised in Compton which is largely considered a ghetto.

The USA has become a place that generally hates the poor for some reason, unless it is Lincoln poor than that is okay.

southaustin
southaustin

@JmarkMa1 WTF ??? You have like 50 comments on a thread that's all about what Serena  said and then you're saying that you couldn't care less what Serena Williams said. You sound like one of those creepy stalker types that calls a woman 300 times a day and then claims that you're not that in to her. Dude you need a shrink in the worst way. 

JmarkMa1
JmarkMa1

@KeysSteven or just don't say stupid things.  It's ok if you want to be a sycophant, but get real.  No one made her do this article.  She did it for publicity. 

The lesson is that athletes should be seen and not heard. 

JmarkMa1
JmarkMa1

@westcoasttiger totally disagree; you talking about her in glorified statements show what athletes are. 

You back her because she's a celeb athlete so she can do no wrong.  That's sick.  She said an ignorant and stupid statement and should be called on it.  She didn't say one line; she went on about it.  

Iowa
Iowa

@westcoasttiger Perfectly stated. The exact same happens with anyone who says anything against 'gay rights', if someone says they, say, disagree with homosexuality, the media will frame it as that they automatically 'hate' gay people. Not a big fan of Serena Williams, but there was absolutely nothing wrong with what she said. "Women's rights" does not include the right to get drunk off one's rear end and think that nothing bad can ever happen, just like a man's rights does not guarantee that he can do the same thing. She spoke reasonably and fairly, but the media-which sadly always caters towards the extremist liberal groups-somehow made it sound unreasonable. Anyone who has any critical thinking skills can see there was nothing wrong with what she said, but unfortunately too many people don't want to use those skills.

CucamongaKing
CucamongaKing

@Dosse @FCC She lives in a bubble and may not see how her comments play... Get with the program.

KeysSteven
KeysSteven

@JmarkMa1 @KeysSteven "(S)ycophant?  Had to Dictionary.com that one: "a self-seeking, servile flatterer; fawning parasite."  I'll bet you're pleased, JM.  Don't be.  Poor usage.

Serena didn't "do this article," your friends at Rolling Stone "did" it.

Patrick42
Patrick42

@JmarkMa1 That is BS. You have done nothing but blame her because she is an elite athlete. What she said was right. And I have 3 daughters. Maybe you think its ok for a 16 year old to get drunk but I don't. And obviously neither did Serena. That being said the boys who raped this young girl and all that watched should be castrated.

CucamongaKing
CucamongaKing

@Iowa @westcoasttiger Youre ignorant, SO naturally you would not take offense, or for that matter even be aware of what was wrong with the statements, inherently you are ignorant.   Catch 22

shawn4law
shawn4law

@CucamongaKing @Dosse @FCC Hahaha!!! I just signed onto the website and saw your comment...they are cracking me up!!! If I were dosse, I'd just shutup and walk out the room with whatever amount of self respect I have left. You shut him down!!! LOL!!!

CucamongaKing
CucamongaKing

@Dosse @CucamongaKing @FCC CIAO Dosse, got a game I am playing in an hour and gotta drive to it.    YOU keep being you.   I had a ton of those guys in my PhD program.   They talked non stop and never said anything......it's just boring!   Ciao!

CucamongaKing
CucamongaKing

@Dosse @CucamongaKing @FCC Gosh......seems like an argument BUT just filled with some more air......KEEP on telling your drunk peers you are smart......they buy it.

CucamongaKing
CucamongaKing

@Dosse @CucamongaKing @FCC POOR Dosse always the guy who comes in late AND tells everybody a cheap version of wisdom.     Got those 7 catch phrases that make it appear like you are saying something WHEN really it is just air.

All your words, and yet nothing said, bet that impresses your girlfriend

CucamongaKing
CucamongaKing

@Dosse @CucamongaKing Sue your college.

You have no clue what my standards are, MY standards are I would never blame the girl for getting raped by an animal.    I guess that is where my standards are.    I guess I am holding her to MY standards.

Dosse
Dosse

@CucamongaKing @Dosse ok how about this...it is always bizarre when a someone holds a person belonging to a minority to moral standards above ones own aka racist.

CucamongaKing
CucamongaKing

@Dosse @CucamongaKing DOSSE......you missed my point.   I was using a metaphor to disparage a lack of intellectualism......YOU were just being you, playing with your tonka trucks

CucamongaKing
CucamongaKing

@Patrick42 There is a nice ignorant approach.    You must be of the camp that the best pregnancy protection is abstinence, that no teen follows.

First blame goes to parents raising monster boys.      A minor portion of the responsibility goes to society and parents for not informing their girls to never get drunk in the presents of more than likely monster boys WHO are ever where RAISED by guys like you