Fair warning, this is the kind of political post that results in everyone being mad at me and private message hate mail from both sides filling up my inbox. but it needs to be said.
Republicans are accusing Democrats of being hypocritical on their support of sexual assault victims because they’re not being more supportive of Tara Reade’s allegations against Joe Biden, while aggressively demanding Trump answer for the massive collection of allegations against him.
Democrats are accusing Republicans of being hypocritical in demanding Biden step down from the Presidential nomination and face charges while dismissing far more, and more recent, allegations against Trump.
For the most part they are both right.
For a moment, lets set aside the fact that Trump has openly admitted on many occasions in live audio and video interviews and recordings that he is an unrepentant habitual sexual predator. We’ll come back to that.
Let’s also set aside, for a moment, that opening learning that Ms. Reade had filed a formal complaint with the Senate committee back when the alleged Biden incidents occurred, he asked for all the reports and investigative documents from it to be produced now for review. We’ll come back to that.
Let’s also, for a moment, set aside the argument over whether Ms. Reade’s specific allegations are “credible” or not. We’ll come back to that. Sexual harassment, sexual assault, and rape are serious allegations and should be properly investigated when claimed.
Our society has a history of re-victimizing, terrorizing, and traumatizing those who do come forth, (male and female, adults and children) and our internal mechanisms have a way of screwing up our own memories of trauma, so it isn’t surprising that the “story” of the incident changes over time.
This is why every case should be properly and thoroughly investigated to determine if there is merit to it, and if so, what legal action is appropriate in response. Regardless of the age, gender, sexual identity, political affiliation, marital status, religion, citizenship status, etc…. of the victim or the accused.
However, until proven, it also shouldn’t end the career of the accused, especially when the probability of an ulterior motive for the allegations is readily apparent. This doesn’t mean the the allegation should be dismissed, merely that the investigation needs to be thorough in all its aspects.
Democrats were quick to turn on Al Franken when it would have been politically expedient and beneficial for them to defend him.
Republicans have been quick to attack victims at every opportunity accusing any of their own, they essentially put Dr. Christine Blasey Ford through a public federal trial and deconstruction of her life for daring to speak about her experiences with (now) Justice Kavanaugh. They made up every possible excuse to disregard evidence and avoid any real investigative inquiry into the credibility of her allegations.
Now, we must add the historical and continuing problem of sexual assault allegations being disregarded by authorities and poorly investigated as a whole, especially when the accused is a prominent and powerful, or the victim is a person of color and the accused is White. Or worse, all of that. Knowing this, we must often accept the fact that justice will not be attained through our legal system, and we must rely upon investigative journalism to root out and expose the truth as best it can.
Then we must rely on the public society to make a collective decision of the merits. But to properly do that, they have to know the credibility of their news sources and vet the data.
The victims then have the option of civil court to gain some semblance of justice and retribution. In the case of celebrities, the pubic can turn them from famous A-listers to infamous has-beens almost overnight.
In the case of politicians, we are left with the ballot box as our last means of speaking out against them and their actions.
So, lets come back to those three things we set aside. I don’t know if Tara Reade’s accusations hold merit or not, I do believe they are credible complaints of sexual harassment, at the least, and possible sexual assault at the worst. And if guilty Biden should be held accountable, and if not it shouldn’t prevent him from pursuing the presidency, regardless of how we feel about him as an actual candidate.
We should be more inclined to believe the more serious collection of allegations against Trump, Not because the victims are actually more credible, but because of Trump’s own oft confessed and extremely well documented and publicized history of sexual predator behavior.
No level or rank or authority or fame should shield a person for the consequences of being guilty of this behavior, but unproven allegations also shouldn’t end their career.
The accuser should be given the benefit of the doubt and their claim investigated. The accused should be given the benefit of the doubt as to their guilt until there is sufficient reason to do otherwise. And then the punishment should be appropriate.
If your morals are situational and can be suspended for personal benefit, they’re not actual morals, but emotional weapons.
We aren’t likely to see any kind of justice levied against Trump or Biden if they are guilty, so we’re stuck with having to evaluate the information available and making the best informed decision we can.
So, do some research between now and November and make a choice.
Understand though, no matter what you decide, no matter who you vote for, as long as both of these men are alive come inauguration day, one of them is going to be president. There is no aspect of their lives, not even this one even if they are both actually guilty of what they have been accused, in which they can be seen as equally dangerous or problematic over the next 4 years.
A third party vote for a non-viable candidate, and a refusal to vote at all, are both in reality a vote cast in favor of letting decades of Republican gerrymandering, voter suppression efforts, and the problematic Electoral College decide for us, which we will be stuck with.
And I can guarantee that we will all end up feeling assaulted with no recourse of justice if we leave the decision up to them.