Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Roy Moore must now be found guilty

At least they're looking for evidence
This is true.  He lost because he was accused of being a child rapist.  Accusations became conflated, and he was routinely called a child molester, rapist and sexual pervert.  There were, in fact, only two accusations I'm aware of that lent weight to these labels.  One woman said he tried to approach her for sex when she was fourteen at the time.  That was well under the age of consent.  It would constitute statutory rape if I understand the laws correctly.  The other woman said that, when she was sixteen, Roy Moore attempted to sexually assault her.  Whether or not sixteen was the age of consent at the time, it obviously does not justify sexual assault.

Those were the two charges with substance.  That Roy Moore was known for liking and dating girls who were of legal age, albeit in their teens, is irrelevant.  Up until about a month ago, there was nothing immoral or illegal about that.  Liberalism had made it clear that with sex, the only moral standard was consent.  As long as the individuals in question were of legal age and consented, there was nothing wrong

That's not to say people wouldn't raise an eyebrow or two, but nobody ran around calling Jerry Seinfeld a sex pervert or child rapist when he, at 39, dated a 17 year old.  At best there were a few shoulder shrugs, and that was it (Note: I would have paid money for someone to ask any CNN anchor if they thought Seinfeld was a sex pervert).

It shows the power, and danger, of modern liberalism that the Left can suddenly, on a dime, declare what it said to be good to be bad, and immediately and retroactively move to punish those who foolishly listened to its latest morality.  But that's another issue.

As for the two charges, Roy Moore must now be found guilty.  He lost this election for no other reason than he was stuck with the child rapist and sexual pervert label.  Almost no physical evidence was produced.  The most that was produced was that the women actually were in the same city in which Moore lived, and likely knew of him in the late 70s.  One yearbook, with a signature that was admittedly tampered with, suggested Roy Moore had some knowledge of the woman that Moore denied knowing.  Another produced a card with a similar signature.  That is it.  There is no other evidence so far, other than people who all knew each other and who agreed with the accusations, to suggest that Moore was guilty.

No evidence of a pattern of wrongdoing has been provided.  One woman said that he groped her back in the 90s, but that was her statement, there was no evidence she had ever said anything at all, and no way to corroborate her accounts.  Other than that, there is no evidence that Moore had a pattern of such harassing or assaulting behavior over the years.

And yet guilty he was, at least in the eyes of the country.  Many rushed to say, in rebuttal to Larry King's interview with John Walsh, that presumption of innocence is for the courts alone.  Outside of our courtrooms, we maintain the right to sentence and punish without due process, without evidence or proof, and without a trial.  If a person is accused, that's enough. 

Now as we found out with Trump's tweet back at Senator Gillibrand, that is an inconsistent application.  For when Trump insinuated that the Senator would do 'anything' for campaign funds, the backlash was against Trump for 'sex shaming' her.  Note there was absolutely no assumption that he might have been right, and that she might have been guilty of sexual impropriety.  The presumption, the insistence, was on her innocence, and Trump - the accuser - became the party guilty of sexism. 

Therefore it clearly isn't that we've established a standard where any accuser is assumed to be correct, and the accused obviously guilty.  Quite the contrary.  It seems there is no discernible standard for when we now, as a country, are willing to destroy a person's character, reputation or even livelihood based on an accusation.  In one case, an accusation is good enough.  In another case, an accusation may bring guilt on the accusers.  All without the slightest shred of evidence.

Which, of course, is troubling.  It's like The Crucible on acid.  But even that's not the worst of it.  If the accusations against Moore simply fade away, if there is no further pursuit of the truth, if there is no attempt to formally investigate the claims - if it just falls off the face of the press within a month or so - then we will know it was just a political hit job, plain and simple.

Then we will know we've turned a corner as a nation.  We have embraced a McCarthy-like willingness to persecute those who dissent from the establishment, even with no concern for evidence. For this, and the new standards, no proof is needed.  No consistency is needed.  It's enough that non-conformity is stamped out, whatever way possible.  Unlike McCarthy, where the press, the arts, and even the religious community roundly condemned his tactics, now we saw the same rally to support the elimination of Moore based on no discernible evidence or, for that matter, consistency. 

Yes, we know he was a bit wacked.  We know he came off as a conservative stereotype.  I wouldn't have voted for him for that reason.  We know he thrived on controversy - though some controversy was based purely on not following a modern, progressive narrative.  After all, I heard multiple news anchors and commentators call him a religious bigot for his views about Muslims in our government.  I can't, for the life of me, remember the same individuals calling Bernie Sanders a bigot for saying the same thing about Christians who hold to a more traditional soteriology.  Nonetheless, he was and odd one, and most didn't want him to win.  So we grabbed onto the most convenient justification possible: accusations. 

So if the accusations go nowhere, if in a few weeks the issue is dropped and nothing else pursued, then we can rejoice in knowing that we just went where even witch hunters feared to tread.  At least witch trials felt the need to produce some evidence.  We were willing to accept the punishment of a man based only on accusations without a trial at all.  And then, if it fades away, we will know it was only meant to achieve what it achieved, and that was the defeat of a political and ideological opponent.  It was just to put another Democrat in the Senate.

We'll see.  We're not a society with the moral grounding to pursue witch burnings.  To do that, you must know what constitutes being a witch.  Right now, it appears we're content with a society that says a witch is whatever we want it to be at a given moment, based purely on political or ideological convenience.  And at this point, there are plenty of Americans, and leaders, who also seem content with that definition.  Seeing Moore actually found guilty would go far in changing that assessment, at least to me.

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