“For Love of Country” Judicial Jump-the-Gun?

 

In the last few weeks, several allegations surrounding sexual misconduct have come into public view. From Harvey Weinstein to Louis C.K., many stars and celebrities have been pushed into the limelight recently to address allegations brought forth by women who say that they’ve been mistreated and even abused by these men. I don’t doubt the allegations surrounding sexual assault, but I do think that there are moments when the media goes too far with these claims that are unsubstantiated in a court of law.

 

The whole point of our Judicial System as established by the Founding Fathers was to ensure that all citizens who were charged with crimes would have the opportunity to a fair trial, with a jury of their peers. The Founding Fathers did this to ensure that there would be no tyranny in our Judicial System, just as they created our Democratic Republic to ensure that there would be no more tyranny of monarchical rule. Yet, as more and more cases of sexual assault splash across the media, our legal system moves farther and farther away from those principles of judicial review, and even the belief that every man is “innocent until proven guilty.”

 

Under the Obama Administration, Title IX protections were significantly ramped-up (without Constitutional basis) to include legislation about sexual misconduct and sexual assault. Today, Title IX legislation is all over college and university campuses, and sometimes, to an objectionable degree. Of course, we need to protect women from being harassed and assaulted, but we also need to protect the men who are wrongly accused of assaulting women. For, just as Brock Turner committed a heinous crime, so too were members of the Duke University Lacrosse team wrongly accused of a heinous crime when a woman “cried rape” after a house party in 2006.  Since the Trump Administration took office back in January 2017, I think that Betsy DeVos has made strides towards ensuring those who are wrongly accused (because many are) receive justice. For example, DeVos made it a priority to meet with wrongly-accused students back in July, which was a really important way to show support for those men who are all-too-often dismissed for their stories. The stories published by Stop Abusive and Violent Environments (SAVE), an organization that tries to help those wrongly-accused in a system that seems to forget about their rights as citizens and as members of our Republic, shed light on how damaging and dangerous it can be to get rid of due process on college campuses.  

 

So, while we must make sure that people are not attacked, and that we punish the attackers who commit despicable acts of violence against women, we also need to make sure that we honor the legal and judicial codes our forefathers laid out to guide this great nation. I think that advertisers and consumers have every right to exercise their free speech and stop financially supporting a person who has been accused of sexual assault, but I also do not believe that unsubstantiated stories about incidents. The tragic “he-said-she-said” incidents that have damaged the lives and reputations of so many men wrongly and falsely accused should indicate to the entire nation that above all, we must remain steadfast to our American judicial process.

 

Sincerely,

 

A Concerned Citizen

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