For many years, certain men took advantage of their power, influence, or the so – called, climate, created, of considering, a degree of sexual harassment, as acceptable, and normal! For a variety of reasons, including, changing – times, we recently, have seen, a change in this attitude, and perspective, which has, brought – about, what some refer to, as the, Me – Too, movement, where many women, have come forward, and spoken about their experiences, etc! Although, no one, should be, harassed, or abused, and either, spoken – to, or physically, treated, in a way, which offends them, it is important, to realize, the inherent risk, in treating, every potential abuse, as alike, because, in some cases, the degree, and severity, should make it, a separate issue. Many believe, when former – Senator Al Franken, was accused, and, made his personal decision, to resign, rather than fight, his accusers, it created a thin – line, and a degree of greater potential, for others, facing accusations, which, may, or may not, have been deserved, etc. We should strive for a system, where it is fair, to both, the accuser, and the accused, where the former, is comfortable, coming – forward, and the latter, is guaranteed, a fair hearing, and due process, before being, automatically, considered, guilty! With that in mind, this article will attempt to, briefly, consider, examine, review, and discuss, 5 ways, to ensure this fairness, etc.
1. Create a path to fair, thorough, investigation: It is past – time, for there to be, a well – considered, path, or course, to ensure, a fair, thorough, investigation. Women should be encouraged, to step – forward, if they feel, appropriate, but, the rampant press coverage, and accusations, without a thorough, review of the line, between facts and accusations, should be limited! Otherwise, we risk, politically, or other reasons/ motivations, which, might create, the potential, for individuals, being, falsely, accused, etc!
2. Don’t let the media, become the so – called, Court: Our system of government, calls, for any accused, having the right, to Due Process, including the right to face his accusers, and cross – examine them, demand proof (instead of accusations), and receive a fair trial! When, the recent news, regarding, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, spends a disproportionate amount of time, discussing the accusations, even though, we have seen, only the accuser’s claims (but little, other proof, at least, to date), and the media, and certain politicians have piled – on, we are behaving, like a modern – day, type of lynch – mob! I don’t pretend, I know, the facts, or anyone’s guilt, or innocence, I believe, we must wait, until there is a thorough, fair, investigation!
3. Keep politicians out of the discussion: We’ve witnessed, too many opportunistic politicians, who, articulate a message, which might be, motivated, either, by their personal relationships, with the accused, or other political/ personal motivations/ agenda, and/ or, self – interest! These statements must be considered, inappropriate, until, all relevant facts, are investigated, thoroughly, and impartially!
4. Ramifications: We must protect, and balance, the ramifications, of this process, to ensure, both, the accused, and accuser, are entitled to a fair process! Let’s demand, an avoidance of a rush – to – judgment!
5. Minimize politics, and politicians, as part, of the process: Especially, during the earlier stages, we must demand, politicians, don’t, simply, jump – on – the – bandwagon, and attempt to use these situations, as an attempt to assist their personal/ political agenda, etc!
If, we permit, this rush – to – judgment, we diminish, the necessary, desirable, fairness, and due process, of law! Let’s protect both sides, until substantial proof, is gathered, carefully, and thoroughly!
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