The feminist case for naming names in sexual assault cases

Google ‘Mark Pearson’ and the first thing you will learn about the 51 year-old artist is that he was accused of a sex attack. You can read all about how at Waterloo Station Pearson supposedly sexually assaulted a woman before striking her. Then, if you have time, read on: and you’ll also discover this never happened. That a jury, shown CCTV footage proving the incident never took place, acquitted Pearson this week.

Yet while now, and perhaps forever, Pearson’s name will be linked to a crime he did not commit, what we will never know is the name of the women who falsely accused him.

  • Justin St.Denis

    I followed the Pearson case. Ridiculous! In any other country, Mr. Pearson would be in a position to sue the Transit Authority as well as the accuser, who is allegedly an “older actress of some repute”. Pffffffffft!

    • Exile1981

      And obviously insane given that she accused him of reaching up her dress, down her yoga pants and then slipping his finger past her panties to penetrate her during the 1.6 seconds it took him to walk past her. All while he had a paper in one hand and a cofee in the other and his stride never wavered.

      That would be some tallent.

    • V10_Rob

      What other country would that be? I’m serious.

      Prosecuting women who falsely cry ‘Rape!’ and destroy an innocent man’s life is a rare (or at least under-reported) event across much of the West. Particularly when it comes to high profile media circuses, like the Duke lacrosse team or Matress Girl, where the fabrications are discovered but authorities demure at charging the liar. Because of their high profile, it sends a loud and clear message that false accusations will not be punished.

  • kkruger71

    Although I can see the new problems that would arise from it and the way government could abuse it, I’ve always said I had a problem for the accused, and even charged, to be named in any criminal case. No matter the crime, even if they’re found not guilty their name has been tarnished and many people will continue to view them with suspicion for a long time after.
    However watching the way backroom deals have been cut and the abuse of the system by federal, provincial, and tribunal courts over the last 20 years, I am strongly wavering in that thought. Not that I think anything has changed for the wrongly accused, but the need to see justice being done seems more important now as the system abuse seems to be increasing and my faith that people involved in the system are trustworthy is plummeting.
    As for naming the accused, not sure that’s the best way to go either. I just really think the government should start being more proactive in going after people who falsely accuse. Sure many cases can not be proven, especially rape cases where it’s often a “she said, he said” situation, but there are many cases that went public where someone was found not guilty because it’s been proven the accuser and/or other witnesses lied to the police. If that is proven, those people should be charged and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

  • roccolore

    For months people knew the names Colin Finnerty, Reade Seligmann, and David Evans. It was many more months before anyone heard the name Crystal Mangum.

    • kkruger71

      And even then, you say Duke Lacrosse, many people will know about the case, but not know they were found not guilty. You say her name to people and I’ll bet at least 90% of people will give you a blank stare.

  • V10_Rob

    Feminists and the like insist that we have to automatically believe people claiming to have been attacked, and that any attempt to punish false accusations will harm real victims and make them scared of coming forward.

    Maybe. But not holding liars to account leads to outrageous injustices like this one, and encourages others to make life-destroying fibs on a whim without a single worry about any consequences to themselves. Anecdotal statistics from police sources peg false accusations at about one quarter of all reports.

    As a result, my (and many others’) first reaction when we hear about a sexual assault is to think “There’s a good chance it’s a total BS”, or “She’s probably lying.” By NOT prosecuting liars, it’s created the opposite of what feminists want.

    The Jian Ghomeshi trial just underscores it. On the first day the accusations made the news, I said “That’s pretty lurid, and a media celebrity is just the kind of narcissist I could imagine doing it. But I also wouldn’t put it past a jilted girlfriend or 2 with thwarted showbiz aspirations to want revenge. I’m waiting for the trial.”

  • A little-known verse from the poem “I Am A Sincere Man” (Yo Soy Un Hombre Sincero) by the 19th Century Cuban poet José Martí. The song “Guantanamera” was later derived from the poem:

    I have seen a man live
    With the dagger in his ribs
    Without ever saying the name
    Of she who has killed him

    (trans. rj)

    And for the listening enjoyment of militant feminists — men have been forgiving you for centuries (Guantanamera by José Feliciano):