But he seemed like such a nice guy…

…sez society scientist Lawrence Krauss about his good mate and convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

Epstein has admitted in court to paying for sex with masseuses whom he knew were underage and served only 13 months for his crime; now that it looks like his extremely dodgy plea-bargain might be overturned and Epstein could serve further time incarcerated, Krauss thinks that it mustn’t really be true, because on several social occasions over several years when he was entertained by Krauss, all the pretty girls Krauss surrounded himself with all looked over 18.

“Jeffrey has surrounded himself with beautiful women and young women but they’re not as young as the ones that were claimed. As a scientist I always judge things on empirical evidence and he always has women ages 19 to 23 around him, but I’ve never seen anything else, so as a scientist, my presumption is that whatever the problems were I would believe him over other people.”

See? His throbbing scientitious lobes tell him that he’s objectively excellent at empirically evaluating the ages of expensively-groomed young women at glamorous events! So that’s that!

He’s not the only society figure publicly supporting Epstein. From other figures in New York (where apparently all that front page news here and in the UK about Prince Andrew’s public disgrace over his friendship with Epstein has hardly even made it to the papers):

“A jail sentence doesn’t matter anymore. The only thing that gets you shunned in New York society is poverty.”

The conventional wisdom among his friends was that Epstein has been victimized by greedy, morally dubious teenage girls and unscrupulous lawyers.

In response to Rebecca Watson from Skepchick contacting him to see whether the quote in the Daily Beast attributed to him was accurate, Krauss not only confirmed it but went much further:

I fully expect that these masseuses knew what they were doing, and were not swayed to do anything with Jeffrey that they were not already doing. That is not to approve of the whole behavior, but lots of peopleI know and like have behavior I don’t entirely approve of.. I know it is not politically correct to say that, because in general this is a very sensitive issue and all other things being equal one should take the side of the young women. But all things are not equal in this case, from my point of view. It is a judgement call, and I will not turn my back on a good friend so easily.

Watson points out in her post that the facts on the public record do not support the hypothesis that the girls were already sexually active for money. Krauss subsequently emailed this:

I will say however, that as a skeptic you might ask yourself whether there might be any motivation to potentially sue a billionaire with whom you may have been involved in one way or another… someone who might rather settle out of court for a large fee rather than have to deal with publicity, sleazy journalists etc? no, that never happens does it? Not very skeptical of you to wonder I think..

Victimised girls being defamed and stigmatised as temptresses, whores, liars and as-good-as blackmailers. No, that never happens does it?

Categories: ethics & philosophy, gender & feminism

Tags: , , ,

9 replies

  1. He is a scientist but it never occurred to him that perhaps his hypothesis needed testing? Hmmmm. So much easier to blame it on women.

  2. If we’re going to throw around accusations of lying, why shouldn’t I be skeptical of Krauss’s claims regarding the ages of women Epstein saw himself with. He already admitted he “wouldn’t turn [his] back on a good friend so easily,” and it’s not like friends never give one another alibis. It’s at least as reasonable as what he’s saying about the girls.

  3. Yes, the evidence *obviously* points to the women that Mr Epstein was happy to be seen with in public being the exact same women he was illegally abusing in private. So scientific!

  4. Yes, why would he need to abuse an underage girl, he had adult women virtually throwing themselves at him /sarcasm.

    I think perhaps this science guy needs to re-examine some of his assumptions about human behaviour. But hey, then he might have to admit he was wrong and that his friend really is an a*sehole.

  5. Wow, ever want to test your best and brightest and most progressive allies, all you need do is throw a very wealthy paedophile their way and then sit back and watch them all reveal their hidden hostile, ignorant misogynist.

    How disappointing.

  6. Based on empirical evidence people believed the world was flat for many years too.

  7. Bassed on empirical evidence a lot of people believed that people believed that the earth was flat ;/

  8. “throbbing scientitious lobes”
    What a fantastic phrase! I may need to steal it.
    Also, Krauss supports the science of morality – a particularly problematic theory (the kind that leads to: “if we can’t find a gay gene then there is no reason not to discriminate against them”).
    But more on topic: I understand a reluctance to acknowledge a friend’s bad behaviour, but to then use an argument dressed up in the legitimacy of science is just another example of people bending over backwards to excuse sexual violence, particularly against womyn.

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