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Your Views: Sexual harassment should be taken seriously

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letter to the editor
Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Mitt Romney commented that “innocent until proven guilty (of sexual harassment) is for criminal convictions, not elections.” That needs elaboration, as at least one conservative columnist apparently did not understand it.

The presumption of the innocence of the accused leads directly to the assumption that the victim is lying. There are reasons for this in court that are not compelling in other circumstances, particularly in elections.

A false accusation is a terrible thing. So is harassment. Both attack the victim’s self-worth and their value in the eyes of others. It damages lives and careers both ways. At this point, I’m guessing there are a hundred instances of harassment for each false accusation. There are many situations where our society expects a woman to take risks in a relationship, but it is abhorrent that a man should have to do the same. Even under Islamic Sharia law, the word of a man is equal to that of two women. How many women should it take in America?

It is up to each political party to hold its own leaders accountable for sexual or other misconduct. If you are vocal about the other party and excusing of your own, it would be better if you just banged a bucket. Non-stop accusation has worked very well as a campaign strategy, but it has not helped the country.

Even the entertainment industry is taking harassment by its own top people seriously. We should too: personally, locally and nationally.

DAVID RIECK

Janesville

 



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