Monday, June 30, 2008

In "he said-she said" dispute over whether sex was consensual, his side doesn't count -- he's suspended

A man accused of a crime is presumed innocent of the charges -- in judicial proceedings only. In the real world, a young man's entire life is often destroyed on the basis of nothing more than the accusation of rape by a female. It doesn't matter that the young man claims the so-called rape was nothing more than consensual sex. It doesn't matter how strong his defense is.

In the story below, college football player Jerrard Tarrant was considered a potential starter for Georgia Tech, but all that is on hold because a young woman alleged he raped her and he has been suspended. There are apparently no other witnesses to the alleged rape, and likely no other evidence. It is her word against his.

The shelf-life of a college football player is brief. If the charge isn't cleared up quickly, he may forever lose his chance at stardom. His life surely is in turmoil right now.

When will we, as a society, realize that there is something terribly wrong with a culture that allows any female to claim she's been raped and, before a single fact has been adjudicated, the male's life is unraveled for the world to see? She, of course, retains her anonymity while his humiliation is a national news story. For what other crime do we hand one class of private citizens (generally young women) the unbridled power to destroy the lives of any member of another class of people (e.g., virtually any male, but generally young men)?

Georgia Tech, you can take the claim "seriously" without punishing the young man prior to a determination of guilt. This suspension is punishment for merely being accused. Or are you bowing to political pressures?

The fact is, a female can transmogrify one of the most basic and profound human acts -- the consensual sex act -- into a vile crime merely by characterizing it as such. And the male is presumed guilty pending the outcome of the case.

Why does this not frighten -- and outrage -- many more men?

Georgia Tech player Tarrant charged with rape, suspended from team

ATLANTA — Georgia Tech cornerback Jerrard Tarrant has been charged with rape and has been suspended from the football team.

The alleged victim said she was raped at an on-campus dormitory April 25 and reported the incident to police that morning, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported Monday.

Charles Lea, a lawyer representing Tarrant, said his client is not guilty of the charges.

Tarrant, 19, was released Saturday on US$40,000 bail, the newspaper reported. The six-foot-two, 185-pound redshirt freshman from Carrollton, Ga., was considered a potential starter at cornerback.

Tarrant has been suspended indefinitely from the Tech football team pending the outcome of the case, Yellow Jackets coach Paul Johnson said in a statement.

"These charges filed against Jerrard are something that we take very seriously. He has been suspended from the team indefinitely, pending the outcome of the legal proceedings," Johnson said.

Georgia Tech campus police said the arrest report was not available Monday afternoon.

Tarrant was competing with Mario Butler for the spot opposite Jahi Word-Daniels. Tarrant also practised as he fifth back and on special teams.

Lea said Tarrant's side of the case will be presented at the proper time.

"We maintain that any sexual activity that took place was entirely consensual," he said.