Defining sexual misconduct

- Do American women really want return to the days of the Puritans or do they want the unfettered freedom of today? I would like to know how women's groups square the two.

- The silence from women's groups was deafening then with Clinton, but now that lesser charges have been made against a Conservative Supreme Court nominee, their voices are loud and shrill.

The upcoming extended Senate Judiciary Committee hearing that will delve into allegations of 'sexual misconduct' by Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh 36 years ago are the tipping point for me when it comes to my patience with the hypocritical way women are acting today.

It seems that women (not all women it must be said) are wanting it both ways: to be treated as totally free spirits when it comes to working as sex objects in porn films and as escort girls while enjoying protected status when it comes to their sexual relationships. It appears that women want us to turn back the clock to the fifties and view them as June Cleaver - nurturing mothers and devoted wives - while reserving their right to don black leather and carry cat o' nine tails in the bedroom.

Do American women really want return to the days of the Puritans or do they want the unfettered freedom of today? I would like to know how women's groups square the two. As a man, I am a firm believer in women's rights and don't want to go back to the days when women were regarded as chattel, but women, themselves, need to decide which course they want to follow in the future.

Today, they demand the right to totally unregulated abortions even in the third trimester of their pregnancies, stating that it's their right as women to do so without regard for the rights of the unborn that have no rights. That hegemony over viable fetuses and calling those decisions as justifiable is unbelievable to me, especially when they complain about sexual experimentation with young teenage boys as deserving of society's condemnation...of the boys. How can they justify making accusations of 'sexual misconduct' against men for alleged infringements of their sexual boundaries when many don't clearly define those boundaries? There is a lot of hypocrisy emanating from many women's organizations that want both total freedom for their members while applying a double standard on morality.

No one would deny that there is sexual abuse of women in our society, and real abuses should never, ever be tolerated whether it be perpetrated by men against women or the reverse. Sexual misconduct has been well defined in the workplace (sexual harassment laws) and in other areas, but there continues to be a gray area for our young people, except for attempted or actual rape.

The upcoming testimony by Judge Kavanaugh's accuser of 'sexual misconduct' next week may help us to define just what that kind of conduct is, but one thing is for certain...it will be salacious and, unfortunately, political, because of the Democrats' mad rush to derail the nomination of a highly qualified man to the highest court in the land.

There have been many cases of false accusations (especially rape accusations) in years passed like the Duke Lacrosse team rape case, and they have changed our view of who is the presumed actual victim and what rights both parties have. Unfortunately, these cases have muddied the sexual waters, but that doesn't change our system of affording presumption of innocence until guilt has been proven 'beyond the shadow of a reasonable doubt.'

That's why it is vital that all transgressions be reported promptly and to the proper authorities so that appropriate investigations can be undertaken and determinations can be made. In the Kavanaugh case, the accuser has waited over three decades to come forward. Her testimony should be heard, but there is no accusation of attempted rape, only an attempt to harass her by two teenage boys. That one of those boys is purported to be Judge Kavanaugh should be taken seriously and will be next week.

That leaves an open question as to the accuser's veracity and to her motives for coming out with her charges during the waning days of the nominee's hearings. What is especially troubling is a long-serving female Senator's retention of the anonymous letter outlining these charges for nearly two months and then dropping it like a stink bomb into the proceedings five days before the Senate's vote on sending Kavanaugh's nomination to the full Senate.

The hypocrisy is astounding, but not the political hypocrisy because we've seen it before twenty-seven years ago with then Judge Clarence Thomas' hearing for the Supreme Court to say nothing of serious rape claims made against President Bill Clinton by Juanita Broderick when he was Governor of Arkansas. Add to that the recent assault claims against former DNC Chairman and former Congressman Keith Ellison by his girlfriend and the hypocrisy is unmistakable.

The silence from women's groups was deafening then with Clinton, but now that lesser charges have been made against a Conservative Supreme Court nominee, their voices are loud and shrill. It's high time women choose how they want to be viewed and treated without political bias.

Stephan Helgesen is a retired career U.S. diplomat. He is now a political analyst, strategist and author of nine books and 900 articles on politics, economics and social trends. He can be reached at stephan@stephanhelgesen.com

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