Hart: Let's take a breath on race to condemn media-hyped allegations

Hart: Let's take a breath on race to condemn media-hyped allegations

December 1st, 2017 by Ron Hart in Opinion Columns

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When news breaks of a sexual allegation or an event like the violence in Charlottesville, Va., there's a breathless race — before any due process or facts are vetted — to denounce the event.

Not only must you denounce and condemn a purported, media-hyped event, you must do so very quickly and in terms that please the media. It is their way of saying: If you do not condemn our "news" that we decided to cover quickly enough, strongly enough and without facts (just use ours — trust us), then you are as bad.

I'd not be surprised if, after Black Friday sales are reported, CNN tries to get Trump to admit all sales matter. And how can Wisconsin's football team be in the NCAA championship with an almost all-white starting team? Shouldn't we condemn that? It seems wrong.

Condemnation also is a pious way for the media to substitute their righteous indignation for their dubious morality.

Ron Hart

Ron Hart

Photo by Contributed Photo /Times Free Press.

All this happened during Thanksgiving as America enjoyed its favorite contact sport: politics payback. Democrats lead Republicans in sexual complaints 14 to 7, with plenty of time to play.

It was recently uncovered that 264 congressinal employees have settled misconduct cases, costing us taxpayers $17 mil. In the private sector you lose your job and pay lawyers. In D.C., our representatives quietly stick us with the bill and keep their jobs.

Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., skated on his prosecution of financial impropriety, charges brought by our government when he crossed Obama on Cuba. And Judge Roy Moore is fending off sexual misconduct charges. Call me old, but I remember when Republicans did financial crimes and Democrats did sex crimes. It's good to see "diversity."

The media and Congress have about a 13 percent approval rating. Roy Moore, who leads the country in most proms attended, probably thinks 13 is an OK number. Yet the U.S. Senate candidate from Alabama has bowed up to his curiously timed allegations, tweeting "Bring it on." It is unclear if it was defiance toward his accusers or his favorite high school teen cheerleading movie.

So he won't have to denounce or be denounced, Sen. Al Franken refused to answer any sexual questions on the counsel of his legal adviser, Kevin Spacey — this on the weekend that Charles Manson died. Manson was beloved by the left because he only killed rich people; it's not like he sexually harassed anyone or voted for Trump.

Leftist stalwart Charlie Rose got multiple allegations of sexual impropriety heaped on him. Like Bill Cosby did, I feel it will come out that Rose took advantage of women after putting them to sleep with his long-form TV interviews of obscure guests.

Who would have thought a few years ago that Tom Cruise and Michael Jackson would become the least creepy guys in entertainment?

Let's all take a breath on all this condemnation of just allegations. I want to be very clear: violent crimes such as assault, rape and anything underage must be prosecuted. But this has become public pillorying for allegedly boorish behavior by rich and powerful men just hitting on women. Many are conflating caddish behavior with a crime. Let's reason through this.

I've taught my daughters to be strong and sensible, and empowered them to fend off the inevitable reprobates. They can walk by a construction site and not crumble at catcalls.

My daughters ought not to be excluded from an office lunch, dinner, golf or drinks because the men fear they might go to human resources. In the PC world of say-nothing corporate communications, imagine how stifling it would be to a woman's career not being privy to real business info exchanged over drinks. To exclude women from such opportunities just empowers the "good ole boy network."

And do you blame men for not inviting women out in this environment? Risk their careers? Their reputations? One wrong word, one joke that didn't work, one angry complaint to human resources, and you may be fired. The risk is not worth it.

In our victimization society, we've conflated true physical crimes with anything that offends someone. We are all such victims now that I am surprised the government doesn't issue us our own crime scene tape and chalk.

Contact Ron Hart, a syndicated op-ed humorist, author and TV/radio commentator, at Ron@RonaldHart.com or Twitter @RonaldHart.

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