Is it all in the framing?

Today’s Doonesbury, with Helmet GrabPussy (GP) consulting with the Gröpenführer (GF) about their mutual female-assault travails:

GF maintains it’s all about how you frame things: admit you may have “treated women badly” in your callow youth, offer a non-apology apology to anyone who might have felt ill-used, suggest that your boyish rowdiness might have been misunderstood, but in the end maintain that you don’t remember much of it, so most of the charges are probably trumped up. That is, act condescendingly contrite (and admit to your illegitimate children and brag about how you’ve supported them), while denying almost all of it. In GF’s view, GP’s mistake was in flat-out denying it all aggressively; he should have gone for naughty (but powerful) puppy, not attack dog.

GF lays things out primarily as what you should say, how you should frame your talk, but in fact his advice is about what persona you should project, how you should more generally act, with the wording you use as just one part of the enterprise: beyond wording, the content of what you say is of course crucial, but so are facial expression, tone of voice, stance, gesture, indeed all aspects of kinesics and paralinguistics.

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