Because of this whole Assange sex crime circus and the alleged feminist conspiracy taking place against him, or rather Wikileaks (which is not synonymous with Assange and important to keep in mind), it seems that there are several misconceptions about feminism. Feminists all over the place are being painted out to belong to a certain club that by proxy have taken a position against Assange and have accused him of committing the sex crimes that he is accused for. It is essential to separate between accusing Assange and simply pointing out that serious accusations should be taken seriously, which is what feminists have been doing. There is a lot of confusion over rape laws, consent and such things, and I have myself been guilty of assuming certain things about rape and the legislation surrounding it. What is important to note is that there is no such thing as "Sex by Surprise", it is an inappropriate euphemism that seems to have been (mis)communicated to Assange's attorney.
The entire circus upsets me, because it seems that feminists everywhere are getting the blame for Assange being accused of these crimes. It is as if people think our alleged man-hating, left-wing agenda is the perfect weapon for bringing down this popular man. It is also funny how this is alleged to have been in co operation with CIA as a joint international feminist/CIA/US-and-its-supporting-regimes crack down on Wikileaks, as Joan Smith at the Independent points out. Feminism usually is not associated with neo-imperialism, neo-liberalism or any such thing apart from being its opponent. That feminism and these ideologies now would co operate to bring down Wikileaks is quite far-fetched to say the least. That is not saying that one feminist could not have CIA ties, but it is probably not due to her feminist views that she would, then, co operate with CIA.
I expect a huge backlash against rape survivors, feminists and also women all over the world when this case is over. The statistics speak against Assange being sentenced to anything - Sweden has appallingly low conviction rates for sex crimes. I fear that once this is over those of us who spoke up against trivialising sex crime charges and smear campaigns are going to get this thrown in our faces in some sort of "I told you that a lot of women falsely accuses men for rape, just for revenge of some sorts." I also fear that this will lead to rape myths being reinforced in society and that it will belittle people taking women or men accusing someone of a sex crime. This is a plea not to let this happen. Any case should be considered in court on its own merits, and that is where the final verdict should come from.
Self-identifying as a feminist does not rob me, nor anyone else, of the capability to rational thought, nor does it make us by default 'radical' or 'militant.' Feminism is a broad approach that includes people from all over the political spectrum, although perhaps over-represented by people with certain political leanings. Point being, we are all individuals whose view-points and arguments deserve to be considered with the same respect and regard as anyone else's.
What we do have in common is an advocacy for women's rights. This does not, by proxy, make us man-haters or in any sense make us think that men's rights in the area where they are discriminated are just as important. Neither does it make us think that there should not be people advocating these rights as well. In fact, some feminists do, and some chose to focus solely on women's questions, some include sexualities, some have other issues they also advocate. It is a broad concept, and generalisations about what all feminists think about an issue based on one, or two, or some self-identifying feminists will often be wrong.
See this as a plea not to trivialise sex crime accusations both in this particular case with Assange, but also after this case is over. And please, do not drag an entire theory into this smear campaign, because that is simply not justified.