Celia Wandio, a student at the University of Toronto who wants to astound the public with her irrational flailing against the presumption of innocence as it pertains to rape, the violation of the holiest of holies, a vagina. To set the stage, she points to Jian Ghomeshi, Bill Cosby, and Paul Nungesser (of Columbia Mattress Girl fame), only one of whom has even been charged for a crime. Ms. Wandio implies that by pointing to that ancient and venerable idea, that a man should not be deemed guilty by law without proof qualifies as “victim-blaming.”
Ms. Wandio is shocked and aghast that someone would side with a person accused of a crime against an accuser because no accuser would ever accuse a person of a crime with bad intentions, or by mistake. She rather snidely reminds the reader that “innocent until proven” is a standard for the legal system, therefore she is entitled to believe any accusations she wishes. It is a shame that the University of Toronto never taught her that the presumption of innocence, in addition to its great age (going back to Roman times). If every accuser were presumed to be factual, why, I could accuse Celia Wandio of killing JFK, or being a terrorist, and then, because my accusations were presumed factual, the burden would shift to her to disprove my claim.
As if reading from the standard Outer Party Feminist script, Ms. Wandio waves off the men who have had their lives and reputations destroyed by hiding behind “case studies” (with no reference to their methodology, sample size, or analysis) and claiming that the number of falsely accused is so small as to not be worthy of consideration. She also deftly ignores the reason that the presumption of innocence and the production of inculpatory evidence are enshrined in the case law and statutes of nations with common law tradition: there is an inherent disparity in power between the State (which has the power to deprive the accused of life, liberty, and property) and the accused. The State has the advantages of time, resources, and force, force being the most important of the three. In less civilized countries in history, where there was no presumption of innocence, the State needed no more to condemn a man than to officially proclaim his guilt and his punishment. Even in our common law-based legal system, the accuser, by way of the State, has the accused at a severe disadvantage in terms of the resources it can expend to prove guilt.
But not even findings of legal guilt are satisfactory “justice” to Ms. Wandio. Perhaps she would like to hearken back to the days when men were executed for rape. Or better, when lynch mobs dragged “accused” rapists out of the jails to be tortured and murdered. She plays around with the truth of the matter of rape, but is too indoctrinated to directly address the problem with a rape accusation: in the absence of other evidence, physical or testimonial, the only pieces of evidence in a rape trial are the accusation of the accuser, and the denial of the accused. She seems to lament that men are not dragged off to prison on the mere say-so of an accuser, except when they are.
Ms. Wandio unsuccessfully tries to paint rape accusers in general as being “persecuted, blamed, and harassed” for making accusations, while failing to address the fact that a person accused of rape, or any felony in particular, suffers often irreparable harm to their reputation, especially in the age of the internet, where a simple search of the accused’s name will retrieve the story of the accusation, regardless of the veracity of the complaint.
After slamming the presumption of innocence, the legal system, the victims of false accusations, and society in general, Ms. Wandio retreats to the motte and claims she is not suggesting that the accused by punished without proof. Her definition of “justice” for rape accusers includes therapy (which costs money), “provisions for their immediate physical safety (more money), alternate living arrangements (more money), financial aid (it’s right there in the name), and “allowing them the agency to tell their stories how they want, and actually believing them”, regardless of the lack of facts, or the inherently defamatory nature of accusing someone of a violent felony. In short, Ms. Wandio wants to reach into someone else’s pocket and be free to demolish reputations without having to prove that those be accused actually did the thing they are accused of.
This is why people look askance at the ravings of the Feminist acolytes against the so-called rape culture and their empty claims that they are in favor of equality. When they are actually held to the same standards as men, and must prove their claims are factual before something is done, then the standards are wrong. But the standards must only be tweaked just so that in this particular instance (rape) the accuser does not have to prove anything and the accusation becomes the fact.