Lindsay sums this up well:
Double-X racks up a lot of hits by hiring anti-feminists to diagnose the ills of contemporary feminism. Retaining a psychopath as a friendship guru is the logical next step.
Obviously I’m not Double-X’s target audience. But this surely counts as a new low. Woman was drugged at a club and wakes up on the street, confused, sobbing, possibly abused. Her friends are gone. She manages to get to the hospital. Piecing things together, it turns out that while dosed, she tried to get her friends to help her, but they had better things to do and just abandoned her, knowing — well, it’s unclear, but knowing she was in distress of some form. She writes to Double X’s “friendship advice” columnist to wonder if she was “expecting too much from my best friends.” Here’s how this woman, the shitty novelist (seriously, I’ve read this novel; thanks a lot, Tanya Richardson) Lucinda Rosenfeld, replied:
Wow, that’s a tough call.
A spouse or even a boyfriend? Yes, it would be his or her duty to haul ass to said hospital at 4 a.m. But your single female friends who are already, presumably tucked in their beddy-bies? I have to admit that, if I got a call like yours (or your mother’s) in the middle of the night, I’d do what I could from home, but would be hard-pressed to jump in my car until morning.
Are you fucking kidding me? Have you never been in any kind of trouble in your life? Are you that privileged and pampered and narcissistic? What’s a friend for, after all?
Here’s a little secret. BFFs are great when you’re upset about a boy/sick cat/whatnot. But there are limits to friendship—limits that don’t apply to our romantic partners or close family members. What I fault your friends for is not driving you all the way home the next morning, or at least following you there to make sure you got through the door on two feet.
Here’s a little secret, Lucinda Rosenfeld: you are a horrible human being. Dear everyone who thinks Lucinda Rosenfeld is his or her friend: never ever rely on his wretched woman for anything ever. If Lucinda Rosenfeld has any pets, for their own sake, I hope they manage to escape.
Rosenfeld later sort-of apologized, but managed to make things worse in the process:
Reading through the comments this evening—as I tried to make sense of the outpouring of fury—I was struck by how many readers seemed to be hearing echoes of date rape or sexual abuse in “Drugged’s” story. I have to admit, I did not think of that at the time. There is no evidence in her letter that she was a victim of a sex crime.
Raise your hand if probable sexual abuse was the very first thing that occurred to you when you read this poor woman’s account. But Rosenfeld isn’t actually interested in other people. She’s interested in retracing her thought process and finding… nope, she did everything right. Here Lucinda Rosenfeld signs off:
Finally, to those calling for my dismissal, all I can say is: If you don’t like the column, don’t read it! I sort through scores of letters in search of ones that will provoke debate on the site. Apparently, this one has done exactly that. So maybe I’ve done my job, after all.
She did her job! With a playful exclamation point, silly! What could possibly have gone wrong? How could you be upset by what she wrote? What’s the matter with you? Don’t you believe in provocation and open debate?
What’s amazing is that someone edited this column. Possibly more than one person. No one had a problem with printing this. This is what Double-X wants its website to be.