Matt Damon gave an interview to ABC News last week in which he offered the following observation: "There's a difference between, you know, patting someone on the butt and rape or child molestation, right? Both of those behaviors need to be confronted and eradicated without question, but they shouldn't be conflated, right?" Crazy, right? Minnie Driver, Damon's co-star in "Good Will Hunting," thought so. "There is no hierarchy of abuse -- that if a woman is raped [it] is much worse than if a woman has a penis exposed to her that she didn't want or ask for," she told The Guardian. "You cannot tell those women that one is supposed to feel worse than the other."
Kirsten Gillibrand agrees: "I think when we start having to talk about the differences between sexual assault and sexual harassment and unwanted groping, you are having the wrong conversation," the Democratic senator from New York said at a news conference when asked about calling on Senator Al Franken to resign. "You need to draw a line in the sand and say none of it is O.K. None of it is acceptable."
Of course none of it is O.K. The supposedly petty sexual harassment that so many women have to endure, from Hollywood studios to the factory floor at Ford, is a national outrage that needs to end. Period. But what about the idea that we should not even discuss the difference between verbal harassment, physical groping and rape? Here's a guess: A vast majority of Americans, men and women, would agree with Damon's comment in its entirety.
Another guess: A majority of women would not accept Driver's suggestion that the unwanted sight of a man's genitals, as wrong as it is, is anywhere near as traumatic as the unspeakably violent experience of rape.
One has to look no farther than liberal icon Bernie Sanders -- the most popular politician in America -- who 45 years ago attempted fictional writing with a dumb attempt at dark satire involving "rape fantasy" ... and it was nothing more than that, a dumb attempt at dark satire.
We need to be grown up about these issues, and deal with them as such -- and doing so properly serves (and provides justice for) real victims of sexual assault.
Kirsten Gillebrand used the abuse scandal to further her own political aspirations but it is backfiring on her so now she is trying to sound reasonable. I will never support her for higher office. And I used to be a big supporter. The overall welfare of the population needs to be considered when accusing other politicians of wrong doing and her ambitions caused her to ignore the welfare of millions and I just don't respect that.
The quote from Kirsten Gillibrand doesn't sound like she's trying to be reasonable. She's arguing for zero tolerance and the same penalty for all infractions.
This should have been obvious from the start and these kinds of differences are already recognized in the law. But in American politics innuendo and emotion are bigger than logical discussion of policies to promote Justice, Tranquility, Defense, the General Welfare, or even Liberty.
Law? What law? There's no law at work here other than the instant gratification of seeing someone's professional life ending over accusations.
The assertion in the article is spot on, but that is not what is happening in "the real world". In the "real world", members of Group A forgive the crimes of other members of Group A and eviscerate members of Group B for the same crimes. The same is true of Groups B-Z.
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