Building straw men does not help victims

If we are going to navigate the thorny issues surrounding sexual assault and provide support to victims, then we need to honestly engage in the arguments made instead of setting up weak straw men to knock over. One such straw man was used at Vox last week:

Trump and others appear eager to pit men against women, implying that taking claims of sexual misconduct seriously means unjustly ruining men’s lives.

No, that is not true.

No one is saying that taking sexual assault seriously means ruining men’s lives. We can sympathize and seek justice for victims of sexual assault and victims of false allegations. This is not a zero-sum game. Men have sisters, mothers, cousins, nieces and daughters. Does anyone think that President Trump would not take it seriously if his daughter was sexually assaulted? Of course men take sexual assault seriously.

The writer at Vox is either lying or completely hysterical. Does she really believe that either men worried about false allegations would not be upset and would not take it seriously if a female loved one was sexually abused? Does she really think that those who have a slightly different take from her actually believe that sexual assault must not be taken seriously? If that is the case, her own arguments cannot be taken seriously, because they are based on hysteria rather than reason and logic.

No, it is much more likely that the author is simply lying. She knows that Trump and others are capable of believing two things at once, and that those two things do not cancel each other out. She is instead attempting to smear those legitimately concerned about false allegations so that she can silence them. This is an attempt at censorship through intimidation. It will not work.

One thought on “Building straw men does not help victims

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s