Well, I’m disappointed, but not surprised. Cognitive dissonance wins against facts yet again! Even really specific instances of perjury that are not open to any kind of interpretation make no dent. Sigh………

He was on a job interview. He needed to comport himself like someone on a job interview. Would you ever in your life dare to make snarky comments to a woman who was interviewing you for a job rather than answering her questions? I would hope not! But for patriarchal — minded people, male anger translates to righteous anger, so I guess that’s why you see nothing wrong with it.

Ginsberg was a successful activist lawyer, and yet has remains one of the most admired justices because of how closely she adheres to interpreting the law from a legal and not an activist perspective. She and Antonin Scalia were best of friends and their families would spend New Years eve together every year.

The only people who are afraid in the wake of this are those who are deeply bought into patriarchal systems. Instead of being able to rape and harass with impugnity like in the good old days when people used to say “what happens behind closed doors isn’t our business” and it was legal to rape your wife. Donald Trump Jr. says he is much more worried about his boys than his girls right now, even though his girls have a 20% chance of being raped and a much, much higher % than that of being harassed, discriminated against, etc., etc. Various national and international health organizations have all identified violence against women as one of the most pressing public health concerns, but Donny is worried about his boys.

The FBI says false accusations happen at about an 8% rate, so let’s just go with that for clarity. This does not illuminate how rarely even falsely accused men suffer any kind of real damage or penalty. That rate is much, much lower.

Furthermore, in the most detailed study ever conducted of sexual assault reports to police, undertaken for the British Home Office in the early 2000s, out of 216 complaints that were classified as false, only 126 had even gotten to the stage where the accuser lodged a formal complaint. Only 39 complainants named a suspect. Only six cases led to an arrest, and only two led to charges being brought before they were ultimately deemed false. (Here, as elsewhere, it has to be assumed that some unknown percentage of the cases classified as false actually involved real rapes; what they don’t involve is countless innocent men’s lives being ruined.)

Donald Trump had something like 16 accusations against him; Clarence Thomas is doing just fine and dandy; Louis C.K. is back working. It took 60 women — 60 to finally bring down Bill Cosby! Brock Turner had two eye witnesses and still only served 3 months. There is no substantive danger of innocent men having their lives ruined by lying women, but there is a real danger that the time when that kind of behavior was considered “boys will be boys” is no longer going to be tolerated and that is indeed unsettling to some men. Those who are not deeply invested in patriarchal norms aren’t particularly concerned about being falsely accused. I have heard and read a lot from men like that, and they join women in being disgusted at how deeply entrenched this notion is that men’s careers and lives are more important than that of their victims, both female and male.

In fact, after the hearing, the rate of calls to rape hotlines has gone up exponentially — somewhere around 140%. Despite the backlash, despite the reminder of how victims are treated when they come forward, a huge surge of people (both female and male) are feeling now emboldened to talk about what happened to them. As with #MeToo, the veil of silence and shame is being ripped and that is what is making the impact.

You saying that this looked like a classic case of false accusation is disheartening, because it’s actually just the opposite of that. It looks nothing at all like a classic case. It’s just perpetuating old harmful myths and is quite counter-factual. I’m sure you won’t bother to read this article and educate yourself about what classic cases actually look like, but if you care about truth rather than myths you should.

“But my research — including academic studies, journalistic accounts, and cases recorded in the US National Registry of Exonerations — suggests that every part of this narrative is wrong. What’s more, it’s wrong in ways that help real rapists escape justice, while perversely making it more likely that we will miss the signs of false reports

At least we agree that the judiciary should not be political. Don’t know how much longer that will be the case however. I was reading something this morning about The Heritage Foundation holding a “workshop” for new judicial clerks to “educate” them. Bragging about well funded donors who want to help indoctrinate judicial clerks into partisanship is about the most disturbing thing I’ve read in a long time, but is right in line with this OPs concerns about moving towards totalitarianism.

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Dispelling cultural myths with research-driven stories. My favorite word is “specious.” Not fragile like a flower; fragile like a bomb! Twitter @ElleBeau

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