Stephen Fry: Girls who had sex with rock stars at 14 wouldn't call themselves victims
Stephen Fry has accused establishment organisations of being "so horrified by their own lack of judgement" over DJ Jimmy Savile's sexual abuse offences that they have turned against similar figures in entertainment for less serious offences.
Speaking to Evan Davies on BBC Newsnight about the "huge moral difference" between historical drug use and historical cases of sexual abuse, he made the comments in response to claims he should be arrested after he admitted to taking cocaine at Buckingham Palace and the House of Lords in his new memoir, More Fool Me.
"If people think I should be arrested for historical drug abuse, that's fine. I'm the only person I hurt," he said.
"I do personally see a huge moral difference between invading somebody's physical space, raping them, groping them against their will, having sex with when they're under age, and me feeding my face with stuff that did me harm."
Fry said the case of Savile, a man he described as "an absolutely monstrous, depraved and repulsive piece of work", had left the establishment deeply paranoid about similar figures and their historic sexual activities.
"If you want to talk about rock stars, do we have to name the rock stars that we think almost certainly had sex with 14-year-old children?
"But those 14-year-old girls were so proud of it that they now in their 50s wouldn't for a minute call themselves 'victims'."
He went to say he believes it is wrong to use the term "victims" for those who claim to have been sexually assaulted "before the case has even come to court, before certain figures have even been charged".
"If they're guilty then quite clearly there should be evidence, but they shouldn't be hung out like fly paper to try to attract other 'oh yeah, I think he touched me too when I was that age.'"
Asked whether he was concerned about being accused of such crimes himself, as a public figure in entertainment circles for the past few decades, Fry replied: "I've always thought them pretty repulsive things to do. I've never groped anyone as far as I'm aware. But groping is not the same as penetrative rape.
"Again, things are nuanced and it's pretty grotesque to grope especially an underage child who doesn't quite know what's happening to them.
"But it's not as grotesque as raping them. And the law has to be clear on that. Suddenly, everyone isn't Jimmy Savile just because they may have patted somebody's bottom, you know."
Belfast Telegraph Digital