I am not a purist. I am more of a pragmatist or a realist. I have been watching the reactions to Sen. Franken’s incident. (More)
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I am almost 71 years old. I have seen lots of sexual harassment and bad behavior in thirty-plus years in Human Resources. I think it is unwise to try people in the press and conclude that they are innocent or guilty. It is possible to believe the women and also still want an ethics hearing or court process.
One of the reactions to Franken’s incident with Leeann Tweeden is to donate the PAC monies he has given to candidates to various charities. Tammy Baldwin is giving her Franken monies to female veterans. Angie Craig, candidate for MN02, is donating her Franken money to a local sexual abuse center. I have donated to Angie Craig. I am beyond puzzled why she would take my direct contributions but donate the contributions I have given through Franken.
I wonder what this move to purity before any kind of due process will cost us. I am willing to give Sen. Franken the benefit of the doubt. I understand the idea of believing the women. For the most part I am on board with that. I am also not naive enough to think that Leeann Tweeden is not in this to revive her career, get a book deal and appear more regularly on Sean Hannity. I am uncomfortable with Democrats saying he should resign based on what they know right now. They haven’t really heard his side of events. Franken and the USO tour of 2006 is from a different context. Maybe the USO will clean up their acts now but the videos going around seem to indicate that raunchy was the norm.
I really think that we need to figure out how to move forward and change the culture that allows some men to demean some women. Insisting on total purity is not the answer in my mind. Insisting on rules of behavior going forward and reimagining the workplaces where women are treated as equals is.
I want toxic men, abusive men held accountable. I don’t want this new awareness to devolve into a witch hunt. If we try men in the press, is that due process? I want us to create a better future for women and men so we can work together.
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