Monday, November 24, 2014

As between "survivors" and accusers, Jessica Valenti says "we need to side with the survivors"

In a liveblog of the recent debate between Jessica Valenti and Wendy McElroy at Brown, a questioner suggested that the conversation had become unnecessarily adversarial with some supporting the accuser and others supporting the accused.

Valenti responded, “. . . in the society we live in now, we need to side with the survivors. That might not be a fair and equal thing, but that’s how I think it has to be."

This sums up why we need this blog. The very notion that we need to "side" with an accuser (and, sorry, Valenti, accusers are not necessarily "survivors") over an accused is twisted beyond all measure and turns long-settled principles of justice on their head (see, e.g., here). But Valenti is merely mouthing the motivating impulse of the Department of Education's draconian sexual assault policies. The government's hostility to college men accused of sexual assault is palpable.

We've written extensively about Valenti previously. (For example, here.)  She's an endless source of material for this blog.