Shards of truth

  1.  From Bari Weiss, “The Limits to ‘Believe All Women’, The New York Times:

I believe that it’s condescending to think that women and their claims can’t stand up to interrogation and can’t handle skepticism. I believe that facts serve feminists far better than faith. That due process is better than mob rule.

Weiss puts her finger on an issue that has troubled feminist legal scholars for decades:   How to change the law so that it recognizes women’s lived experience, while also  avoiding the inadvertent reinforcement of noxious gender stereotypes — for example, that women are weak, overly dependent, irrational; unable to claim their autonomous space in the public sphere without crutches.  It’s a delicate balance, and a difficult but necessary debate.

2.   From Katie McDonough, “‘Believe All Women’ Isn’t a Thing”, splinternews.com:

“Trust but verify” is just another way of saying “believe women”, which is another way of saying “don’t reflexively disbelieve women.”  Increasingly, in painful fits and starts, we’re seeing what it looks like to do that.”

McDonough gets this exactly right — women (and other victims of abuse) have the right not to be reflexively disbelieved, no matter how prominent or powerful their abuser. Victims have the right to be heard, and in the past that right has not been honored.  Victims have been reluctant to come forward because they knew they would not be heard, or heard impartially.   Amazingly, that now seems to be changing before our eyes.

 

 

 

 

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

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