Just to make the point–do we understand that by their 18th birthdays 1 in 4 females will likely have been sexually abused. Also disturbing is 1 in 6 males will likely have been sexually abused–by a female perpetrator. I mentioned this only because it is wrong to assume that it is only men who assault EVERYONE else. It is abhorrently wrong in either and any case. I hope that we can all agree to this fact.
I was tuned in to a late night news show last week and one of the guests-a female guest-said something that I fully understood and totally agreed with. She said, “enough of the public outings.” Could all the people who have been assaulted please come forward at the same time. She went on to say that there needs to be another kind of process put in place where justice is done and the assaulted women (no men have come forward yet to join the growing line of people) have a chance to say, very clearly and without fear, how they were treated years ago and how the effects of that crime changed their lives. Assault of this kind, apparently, has happened or is happening in almost every walk of life. We are seeing men being accused from the entertainment world, the music world, which isn’t surprising to me, sports figures, business and spiritual realms. It seems like people aren’t safe no matter where they go and no matter who they are around. It got me to thinking about what is the true motivator that is driving this whole movement. I understand the freedom to speak part. I can see the how threat of disclosing the “secret” could end their career before it started and so the victims remain quiet, I understand the relief and the attempts to vanquish the horrible dark experiences that haunt some folks to this day. But I can’t help but think that revenge plays a large part for some in speaking out and the gratification of regaining some semblance of control after all this time.
My concern is that the rule of law seems to be passed by in many cases. As unfair as it may be regarding the behaviour and the seeming disregard for people’s human rights the law is still the law today. Many people have not been formally charged or had any time in a court of law. Many have not had a chance to describe their side of the story. I’m not naive enough to believe that every person who denies culpability is actually not guilty. But if we start to believe that anyone who denies guilt must be guilty then what’s the point of having a legal system in the first place. It is supposed to be a place that allows each to state their piece and then an independent body of jurists tries to determine who is guilty or not guilty based on evidence. Sometimes I think this would be a good spot for lie detector test. What compounds the problem is it has always been argued that old crimes prove to be very challenging because evidence disappears or witnesses pass on.
My greater concern is that there is so much collateral damage done when people are found guilty by public opinion before due process has been done. For example: John Doe, when a younger man, perpetrated a crime of assault 20 years prior. He did it on one occasion and has not been involved in anything like that since. He goes on to have a successful career, gets married and has three kids. He has always been a good father and partner. Unfortunately those credentials don’t mitigate the circumstances. He is outed in public and because of the rush to be seen as doing the right thing he is terminated from his job, his wife becomes a person non-grata and his kids are now a target socially and at school. These people had nothing to do with what went on and yet their lives are permanently altered for life as well as the father’s. The father’s–OK but the others didn’t have a choice in the matter. They are guilty by association and nothing more.
So how does the victim of 20 years prior get her justice, which she deserves, and have a chance to live her life with more dignity and respect for herself ? If we continue to find guilty those who have been accused but not had a chance to address their accuser in a court of law our democracy, in my mind, is and will be called into question. Another way must be decided upon wherein ALL people are granted the same rights. Remember as well that there is a strong possibility one of the accused is truly innocent of all charges–but who and in which case?
If someone is found guilty by a group of their peers then they get what is deserved as well. Having said that if I knew that someone had assaulted my mother or wife or daughter the world would not be big enough for a perpetrator to hide in. But I would have to know they are guilty.
In closing would or could someone please explain to me how an ill suited low life like Trump can strut around like some peacock bragging about how he has assaulted many women yet he escapes the legal consequences and makes a mockery of the US legal system every day. How is he truly above the law. It astounds me even more how any self respecting woman could vote for him and sleep at night.
Anyways, that’s how I see things.
All the best, and thanks for stopping by—Jim
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