Tuesday, June 29, 2010

A brief thought about Al Gore's alleged sex assault

Byron York prints plenty of disturbing details from the police complaint against Al Gore, but this is the one I find most infuriating:
Finally she got away. Later, she talked to friends, liberals like herself, who advised against telling police. One asked her "to just suck it up; otherwise, the world's going to be destroyed from global warming."
To that "friend" let me offer up a piece of advice: Go to hell.

Snarky folks at The Corner are treating this revelation as being run-of-the-mill Democratic politics, but honestly the problem here -- as is often the case -- is of power generally. You can see an almost carbon-copy dynamic at play when people angrily defend the Catholic Church against accusations of widespread child molestation. Victims are urged to hush up, to go away, because their truth threatens The Mission of whichever person or movement or institution is involved.

And while it's often true that sacrifices must be made in order to advance a worthy cause, you can easily tell the difference in the worthiness of those sacrifices by asking one simple question: Is the dignity of the individual who made the sacrifice enhanced by that sacrifice? Or is it diminished?

If the answer is the latter -- if a woman is obliged to be silent about a sexual assault -- than the person, or movement, or institution is almost certainly unworthy of the sacrifice. I don't want the allegations against Al Gore to be true -- but that's mostly because I don't want the woman in question to have been victimized. Shame on her supposed friends for valuing her dignity so cheaply.

1 comment:

Notorious Ph.D. said...

This story, if it is true (and like you, I don't want it to be) is an example of yet another problem that seems to plague liberals more than conservatives: the disjunction between the ideals they (we) espouse and the unwillingness to walk the talk when the result will be inconvenient. And often, it's women who get thrown under the bus.