"The last nine weeks, spent both wrongfully accused and ignored, were frightening for me and my family," says "Barry One"
A man who many presumed was the Republican rapist Lena Dunham described in her book is slamming the star and creator of the TV show Girls, and her publisher, Random House, for taking more than two months to clear his name.
"The last nine weeks, spent both wrongfully accused and ignored, were frightening for me and my family. It was also baffling," the man who has been dubbed "Barry One" said in a statement released Wednesday. "As days turned to weeks, and weeks into months, Random House and Ms. Dunham's silence became unfathomable."
Barry One was called "Barry" in Dunham's book, Not That Kind of Girl, though he issued the statement through his attorney, Aaron Minc, under the name Barry One because it is the moniker given him by John Nolte of Breitbart News, the reporter most responsible for uncovering major discrepancies in Dunham's account of the man who allegedly raped her.
Dunham describes Barry as a prominent Republican at Oberlin College who worked at a campus library, wore cowboy boots, sported a mustache and hosted a radio show. Some of the description, including the name "Barry," matched that of Barry One, which led to him being pursued by reporters and others.
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Weeks after trying to convince Dunham and Random House to clear his name and largely being ignored, the publisher finally said this week it would add a disclaimer to the digital version of the book and future printings that "Barry" is not the real name of Dunham's alleged rapist.
"Why didn't you clear my name?" Barry asks Dunham in his statement released Wednesday. "Why did you wait? Why did I have to set up a legal fund and threaten to sue in order for action to be taken?"
Dunham and Random House did not respond to a request for comment. Barry's full statement is below:
"I want to thank Lena Dunham for confirming that the "Barry" described in her book is a pseudonym. As the sole source of the events in that book, her confirmation was crucial. I am relieved to have my name cleared as best as it can at this point.
"The last nine weeks, spent both wrongfully accused and ignored, were frightening for me and my family. It was also baffling. As days turned to weeks, and weeks into months, Random House and Ms. Dunham's silence became unfathomable. It’s frustrating and ironic to me that Ms. Dunham's recent admission that it was all an "unfortunate and surreal coincidence" echoes my earlier comment to a reporter printed over six weeks ago.
"It also begs the questions, why didn’t you clear my name? Why did you wait? Why did I have to set up a legal fund and threaten to sue in order for action to be taken?
"Surely, had my concerns not been ignored when I quietly and privately brought them to your representatives in October, your story would have remained focused on its true intentions, which I believe are very noble. Unfortunately, because of the delay, my reputation has sustained irreparable harm.
"I hope this case serves as a reminder to writers, publishers, and others with a stake in narrative that they must take special care when releasing nonfiction works featuring criminal acts. Copyright page disclaimers simply aren’t enough. Fact checking must be rigorous, unintended consequences of altered details must be researched, and the use of pseudonyms must be consistent and clear. Importantly, this goes beyond a simple coincidence of a relatively rare name, as has been suggested. I was an outspoken Republican at Oberlin College; I already stuck out like a sore thumb. When such obvious parallels are missed, corrective and restorative action should be taken immediately.
"I want to be very clear: I have absolutely no reason to doubt Ms. Dunham's claim that she was sexually assaulted in college. I hope, too, that her story brings courage and strength to other survivors of sexual assaults. I also hope that my story will serve as an example to those who are falsely accused or incorrectly placed under suspicion of serious sexual misconduct allegations that the truth will eventually come out."