Do we not live in a country where you’re innocent until proven guilty?
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I agree with you entirely. It is the ideal in the United States to be presumed innocent until proven guilty. Almost all women, and I suspect some significant number of men, have been groped without their consent or permission. Sometimes it is on a date, or in close proximity such as a elevator or subway, or other circumstances. It is never pleasant. We never “ask” for it. But it happens.

In some cases such grouping does not stop when the groper is told “STOP!” Sometimes this turns to sexual assault and physical assault by someone larger and stronger. And you would think that a person would defend themselves. “Why didn’t you fight?” some ask. But fighting often leads to even greater physical and emotional injury.

Then why don’t you go to the police? Go to the rape crisis center! Go to the emergency room. But sometime we are too ashamed and hurt and wounded psychically to even go to these places for the solace and treatment. There is a statistic that only a fraction of rapes get reported. You wash and clean up and hope it ends there and it never gets reported.

Then years later you see your attacker and for for whatever reason (perhaps he is riding high and feels above the law or other codes of conduct) and something snaps. Maybe it is years later and like in the Cosby accusations, you hear a story similar to yours. You feel you have to stand up and say, “Yes. He did that to me, too!” You are not alone.

Maybe the person coming up 20 years later is accusing for other reasons. Maybe these are lies. I don’t doubt false accusations are leveled. However, just because the testimony is old doesn’t mean the crime did not happen.

Witnessing is sometimes the healing that the victim requires just to get some closure.

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