Violence Against Women Act

New VAWA Entitlement Will Worsen Crisis of Unemployment Insurance Trust Funds

It’s no secret that many state unemployment insurance trust funds are in trouble right now.

According to the Department of Commerce’s latest Trust Fund Solvency Report,[1] unemployment trust funds do not meet minimum standards for solvency in 24 areas: AL, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, IL, IN, KY, MA, MD, MN, MO, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, WI, WV, and the Virgin Islands. In addition, nine other states are teetering on the brink of insolvency because they have Average High Cost Multiple ratings of less than 1.10: DC, FL, GA, MI, ND, NH, NM, and VA, and WA.

Under a bill recently passed in the House of Representatives, things could get much worse.

The Violence Against Women Act bill, H.R. 1585, features a new entitlement for unemployment insurance. Titled “Entitlement to Unemployment Compensation to Victims of Sexual and Other Harassment and Survivors of Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, or Stalking,” Section 703 states:

“no person may be denied compensation under such State law solely on the basis of the individual having a voluntary separation from work if such separation is attributable to such individual being a victim of sexual or other harassment or a survivor of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking”

Eligibility to receive such benefits could only require “an attestation that such voluntary separation is attributable to such harassment, violence, assault, or stalking.”

Equally troubling, H.R. 1585 features newly expanded definitions of domestic violence:

“a pattern of behavior involving the use or attempted use of physical, sexual, verbal, emotional, economic, or technological abuse or any other coercive behavior committed, enabled, or solicited to gain or maintain power and control over a victim…” (Section 2)

Which means that any person who has experienced a pattern of “attempted” verbal or emotional abuse could simply quit his or her job – no requirement for involuntary, not-for-cause termination — and then qualify for unemployment benefits merely by providing an “attestation.”

Over 100 thought leaders have noted that H.R. 1585 “would dramatically increase unemployment insurance and thus impose an enormous tax on employers that would result in a loss of jobs.”[2] In CY 2018, unemployment benefits in the United States amounted to $27.5 billion.[3] VAWA’s new entitlement could easily cause payouts to balloon by 10%, costing taxpayers $2.75 billion a year.

Such open-ended eligibility criteria would be unsustainable and fiscally irresponsible. In addition, they would also encourage of the filing of trivial and even false claims of “domestic violence.” That would greatly undermine the credibility of victims of physical, severe partner violence.

VAWA’s unemployment entitlement should be removed from further consideration by the Senate.






Violence Against Women Act Does Violence to the Constitution

A common trick of big-government loving politicians is to give legislation names so appealing that it seems no reasonable person could oppose it. The truth is, the more unobjectionable the title, the more objectionable the content. Two well-known examples are the “PATRIOT Act” and the “Access to Affordable and Quality Care Act.”

Another great example is the Violence Against Women Act. Passed in 1994, the Violence Against Women Act provides federal grants to, and imposes federal mandates on, state and local governments with the goal of increasing arrests, prosecutions, and convictions of those who commit domestic violence.

Like most federal laws, the Violence Against Women Act is unconstitutional. The Constitution limits federal jurisdiction to three crimes: counterfeiting, treason, and piracy. All other crimes — including domestic violence — are strictly state and local matters.

The law also forbids anyone subject to a restraining order obtained by a spouse or a domestic partner from owning a gun. This is a blatant violation of the Second Amendment’s prohibition on federal laws denying anyone the right to own a gun. Whether someone subject to a restraining order, or convicted of a violent crime, should lose their rights to own firearms is a question to be decided by state and local officials.

At least the current law requires individuals receive due process before the government can deprive them of their Second Amendment rights. The House of Representatives recently passed legislation reauthorizing and making changes to the Violence Against Women Act. The most disturbing part of this “upgrade” gives government the power to take away an individual’s Second Amendment rights based solely on an allegation that the individual committed an act of domestic violence. The accused then loses Second Amendment rights without even having an opportunity to tell their side of the story to a judge.

This is a version of “red flag” laws that are becoming increasingly popular. Red flag laws are not just supported by authoritarians like Senators Diane Feinstein and Lindsey Graham, but by alleged “constitutional conservatives” like Sen. Ted Cruz.

Red flag laws have led to dangerous confrontations between law enforcement and citizens who assumed that those breaking into their property to take their guns are private, rather than government, thieves.

The House bill also expands red flag laws to cover those accused of “misdemeanor stalking.” Many jurisdictions define misdemeanor stalking to include “cyber” or online stalking. These means someone could lose Second Amendment rights for sending someone an “offensive” Facebook or Twitter message.

Forbidding someone from owning a firearm because of offensive social media posts sets a precedent that could be used to impose legal sanctions on those posting “hate speech.” Since hate speech is defined as “speech I don’t agree with,” this could lead to the de facto outlawing of free speech online.

Instead of addressing concerns over the inclusion of new red flag type laws in the Violence Against Women’s Act, proponents of the bill have smeared their critics as not caring about domestic violence. As Reason magazine senior editor Jacob Sullum has pointed out, these progressives sound like neoconservatives who smear PATRIOT Act opponents as allies of Al Qaeda.

All decent people oppose domestic violence and terrorism. However, the desire to catch and punish wrongdoers does not justify violating the Constitution or denying anyone due process. When government violates the rights of anyone it threatens the liberties of everyone.

Title IX Title IX Equity Project

PR: Widespread Sex Discrimination Found in College Scholarship Programs

Contact: Rebecca Stewart

Telephone: 513-479-3335


Widespread Sex Discrimination Found in College Scholarship Programs

WASHINGTON / May 20, 2019 – An analysis of sex-specific scholarships at 115 of the nation’s largest universities reveals widespread sex discrimination policies. Among 1,161 sex-specific scholarships, 91.6% were reserved for female students, with only 8.4% designated for male students.

Such sex-specific scholarships violate requirements of federal Title IX regulations, which prohibit scholarships that “On the basis of sex, provide different amounts or types of such assistance, limit eligibility for such assistance which is of any particular type or source, apply different criteria, or otherwise discriminate.” (34 CFR 106.37(a)(1))

The analysis was conducted on colleges in 24 states across the nation: : AL, AK, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, GA, HI, ID, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, WA, WV, WI, and WY.

The disparities were greatest in three states: Alabama (Male-female scholarship ratio: 2 to 81), Florida (Male-female ratio: 3 to 70), and Utah (Male-female ratio: 2 to 86). The only state where sex-specific disparities approached parity was South Carolina, with 12 scholarship programs designated for men and 16 programs for women. Full details are available on the Title IX Equity Project website (1).

SAVE has begun to contact these colleges about their discriminatory policies, urging them to come into compliance with Title IX requirements. When colleges decline to promptly remedy their discriminatory policies, complaints are forwarded to the federal Office for Civil Rights. An OCR Title IX investigation costs colleges $193,750, on average (2).

Last year the OCR reached a Resolution Agreement with Tulane University to correct eight discriminatory programs such as its Women-to-Women Mentoring program (3). Currently, the Office for Civil Rights is investigating complaints of female-specific programs at the following universities: Brown (Complaint No. 01-19-2053), Clemson (Complaint No. 11-19-2081), Michigan (Docket No. 15-18-2272), Rutgers (Case No. 02-19-2068), and Wayne State (Docket No. 15-18-2312).

Currently, 43.7% of college students are male (4), which means there are 129 women enrolled in college for every 100 men. For African Americans, the degree gap is much larger: Black women earned 178.2 bachelor’s degrees in 2017 for every 100 degrees earned by Black men. Digest of Education Statistics, Tables 322.40 and 322.50.

Such disparities are incompatible with long-held aspirations for gender equality.


Victim-Centered Investigations

Don’t let the Facebook censors ‘disapprove’ our campaign for justice

One of the ways we promote our campaign to end “victim-centered” investigations is to place Facebook ads. We’ve been doing this since March when we first started the petition to end these biased methods. You can see the petition here:

Four days ago, Facebook approved an ad promoting this petition. There was no nudity, obscenity, or vulgarity. Simply a plea for justice. Since Monday, we spent $357.88 to promote the ad to a broad audience.

But this morning, we had a RUDE AWAKENING — Facebook send us an email saying they did a “closer review,” and decided the ad “doesn’t comply with our Advertising Policies.” Which specific “Advertising Policies,” they didn’t say. You can see the actual email, below.

This was pretty shocking, to say the least!


We’re not going to let the Facebook censors stop our campaign to end “victim-centered” investigations!


Email received from on May 17, 2019 at 5:34 am ET:


Campus Due Process E-lert

Has Donna Shalala ever heard of the Constitution?

This past Monday, Rep. Donna Shalala (D-FL) appeared at the Education Summit that billed itself as “giving every child an equal chance to succeed.”

But instead of talking about a balanced approach that respects the rights of both complainants and the accused, she only found fault with the proposed Title IX regulations from the Department of Education. “Many of these things that are coming out of the secretary’s office reflect someone that really does not understand the institutions or their experience or the traditions,” she said.

Worse, Shalala predicted she didn’t think “any institutions in this country are going to follow” DeVos’s changes and that Democrats “will try to overturn them.”

Excuse me, Democrats will try to overturn regulations that are rooted in Constitutional due process protections? It’s a sad day when lawmakers who swore to “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States” turn around and vow to remove due process regulations.

Let’s all call Shalala’s office: 202-225-3931.


Campus Due Process

Rep. Shalala Tells Colleges Not To Change

When dreaded Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos withdrew the “Dear Colleague Letter” and its ensuing “guidance,” then issued new regs which were put through the rigors of Notice and Comment as required by law, heads exploded. Providing the accused with minimal due process on campus was tantamount to giving rapists a free ride, activists screamed.

But it begged the question, would any of this matter? Would colleges care what the regs provided, or would they ignore them, continue to apply rules that deprived  males any chance to defend themselves? Absent mandatory language in the regs, or court decisions like Doe v. Baum, who was going to make colleges change?

Appearing at The Atlantic Education Summit, Shalala — who served as president of the University of Miami from 2001 to 2015 — criticized DeVos for her department’s rollback of several Obama-era regulations and guidance documents, including those regarding Title IX.

“Many of these things that are coming out of the secretary’s office reflect someone that really does not understand the institutions or their experience or the traditions,” Shalala said, adding that “she’s a nice person, but boy she really is confused about what we’re doing out there.”

Donna Shalala, currently the congresswoman from Florida’s 27th district, and formerly Secretary of Health and Human Services, served as chancellor of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and president of the University of Miami. Her message to the summit was clear.

During the education summit, Shalala said she didn’t think “any institutions in this country are going to follow” DeVos’s changes and that Democrats “will try to overturn them.”

First, a representative in Congress calls for educational institutions to reject the regulations, despite court after court holding that they violate the constitutional rights of male students. Ironically, claiming “experience and tradition” as the piece DeVos is missing reflects the social engineering that was rammed down the throat of colleges at the behest of two bureaucrats during the Obama administration who circumvented law. Some tradition.

Second, she says what needs to be said, that should the Democrats regain the executive branch, they will “overturn” regulations that comport with the Constitution and return to unconstitutional process. So why bother to change? Or more to the point, hold out until 2020, when the Democrats will repeal the new regs and  restore the old guidance so you can return to depriving male students of due process.

What makes Shalala’s admonition to colleges that they should persist in denying male students due process—that they shouldn’t change despite the new regs, despite the voluminous judicial opinions holding the processes invented by OCR’s Russyn Ali and her successor, Catherine Lhamon, unconstitutional—shocking is that it’s a call for lawlessness. Hardly the only one, and hardly the only side doing so, but lawlessness nonetheless. And it comes as no surprise.

All of this is true, and yet, doesn’t quite address either the situation or mandate. The “arrogance” of the Dear Colleague letters doesn’t mean that colleges, their bureaucracies built around implementation of the letters and the indoctrinated students and faculty who have become adherents to Lhamon’s and Ali’s orthodoxy, will go away.

Even if this letter, issued lawlessly, is withdrawn, that does not mean colleges will change their tune. Sure, they won’t have the Dear Colleague letters to fall back on as an excuse, but that doesn’t mean academia doesn’t actually like, no love, what Lhamon rammed down their throats.

When the old guidance was withdrawn, and new regs proffered for comment, many took for granted that this would mean change, that colleges would end their war against male students for the sexual sanctity of believing their female students. Battles were huge, as activists geared up to perpetuate the lies that women never falsely accused, that there was an epidemic on campus, that women were being raped all the time, provided one left rape to the fertile imagination of empowered co-eds.

Shalala is right, of course. Should the Democrats prevail in 2020, the DeVos regs will be gone in a jiff. But it won’t mean much as long as colleges refuse to change in accordance with the new regs, court decisions or the Constitution. Many have raised the cost of lost Title IX actions percolating through the federal courts, but it’s a price colleges seem happy to pay to keep their female students from feeling uncomfortable. Well, colleges don’t actually pay it, since they pass along the cost to students in tuition.

The battle waged to end the Obama-era guidance was nasty and ugly, and cost a lot of young men their future, but to what end?

 It is a tale. Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury. Signifying nothing.

In a more rational world, perhaps a United States congresswoman would not call upon colleges to violate the Constitution, to act lawlessly for the sake of woman at the expense of men. In a more rational world, perhaps the discussions about why sex discrimination against male and deprivation of due process would make academics pause and think about the harm they are doing.

But there is little rational these days, and so there is no good reason why Donna Shalala shouldn’t take to the podium to implore that colleges ignore the regs, reject the law and persist in their discrimination. To explain why this is wrong seems to be a tale told by an idiot. They’ll fix it in 2020 anyway, when they regain control and petty constitutional concerns will no longer be an impediment to experience and tradition.



The problem with victim-centred justice

Rape cases must be investigated properly for justice to be done.

In particular, campaigners are concerned about how this will affect rape complainants. A spokesperson from the charity Victim Support has told the BBC that giving police access to such personal data would ‘further deter victims from coming forward’. While the complainant can choose not to give consent, this might result in the prosecution not taking place.

The forms are a response to a series of rape and sexual assault trials that collapsed after messages contradicting the complainant were uncovered. The case of student Liam Allan was the most prominent. He was wrongly accused of rape and only spared jail time by the discovery, late in the day, of messages from the complainant which proved his innocence.

The head of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), Alison Saunders, stepped down last year. She had come under fire during her tenure, in part because of this issue of false allegations. In the wake of Allan’s and other trials collapsing following the failure of the prosecution to disclose evidence, she announced a review of all current rape cases.

Labour MP Harriet Harman argues in a piece for Harper’s Bazaar that the new forms should be adjusted so that the decision of the police to ‘mine’ someone’s data can be better scrutinised. This, she says, would ‘protect the victim without subjecting the defendant to the possibility of wrongful conviction’.

She worries that the information gleaned from these forms may be used by the defence as a means to discredit rape complainants. She says defences in rape cases are often concerned with ‘blackening the woman’s character’.

The use of a woman’s sex life, or how she dresses, as a means to discredit her in a rape trial may have been common in the past. But such defences are not being mounted today. A recent rape trial in Cork, Ireland, in which the defence lawyer argued that the fact that the complainant was wearing a ‘thong with a lace front’ proved that she had consented to sex, is a rare exception.

Harman and critics of these new forms are missing the real problem in rape trials today. There is no targeted attempt by police and prosecutors to undermine complainants’ ability to seek justice. Rather, the problems we are facing have been created by victim-centred justice, and a focus on driving up rape convictions which has come at the cost of proper investigation.

It is interesting that the controversy around these new consent forms has centred on rape cases, given they cover all sorts of cases. Is it more or less unpleasant to have a police officer read your groupchat messages if you’ve been sexually assaulted rather than stabbed? Does it become more invasive for police to look at your photos if you’re a woman or a man?

Of course, rape trials are unique in that they often boil down to one person’s word against another’s. But surely this means as much evidence needs to be gathered as possible? For those who have suffered the ordeal of sexual assault or rape, going through an investigation and trial will be deeply unpleasant. But the pursuit of justice is a serious thing, and it must be done properly.

These forms are only a symptom of a system that has thoroughly failed to deal with rape cases in a balanced way. Pressured by a history of injustice towards women, the justice system has embraced the ‘believe the victim’ narrative of contemporary feminism. Indeed, we now routinely refer to the ‘victim’ in sexual-assault trials, before it has even begun, let alone guilt has been established.

We need a justice system that recognises that rape is disproportionately conducted by men against women, but which also ensures that the prosecution of men is just and fair. By resisting measures to make the justice system more transparent and balanced, feminists and victim-support groups are doing women no favours. Worse, they are damaging the idea of innocent until proven guilty, which is something all of us depend on.

Ella Whelan is a spiked columnist and the author of What Women Want: Fun, Freedom and an End to Feminism.


In Too Many Sexual Assault Cases Colleges Lack A Basic Understanding Of Fair Process

Colleges must remember to wait until the facts are in before making judgments in sexual assault cases.

People disagree over a lot of things when it comes to sexual assault on college campuses, but presumably, everybody agrees that a student accused of raping another student ought to get a fair process before he is expelled. The devil is in the details—what exactly is a fair process?

One would think though, that there are certain basic ideas that everyone would agree on. For example, there should be a difference between investigation and prosecution. In other words, when the college authorizes someone to investigate whether or not a rape took place, the investigator should begin with a neutral mindset rather than an assumption that the accused student is guilty.

Relatedly, if the university assembles a panel to hear the charges, the panel should also go into the hearing with a neutral mindset. The university’s position should be neither that the student is guilty or innocent until the university has been presented with the facts. It would be difficult to imagine any principles that are more basic to a fair process.

However, a recent case involving Clarion University of Pennsylvania, a public university, shows how deeply confused universities and their attorneys can be about the basic elements of due process, even in a hearing involving a charge as serious as rape. The case was recently discussed in the blog “Academic Wonderland.” In this case, the rape allegations were investigated by Matthew Shaffer, the university’s Director of Student Engagement and Development. Unfortunately, Shaffer and the university did not seem to be on the same page in terms of Shaffer’s role. Shaffer testified that he was a “neutral party during these proceedings.” However, during oral argument before an appellate court, the university’s attorney was asked by the judges about the fact that Shaffer seemed far from neutral at the hearing, because Shaffer offered his own opinions and did not just stick with the facts. Judge Thomas Ambro asked: “What about the conjecture or the opinion statements if you will by Mr. Shaffer with regard to what he believed happened, whom he believed, etc.? He went beyond the facts didn’t he?”

Counsel for Clarion replied, “He really was in the position of a prosecutor . . .” Judge Ambro replied, “Well that’s interesting because I thought he was the investigator for the case.” In response, the attorney seemed on the verge of calling Shaffer an “investigator/prosecutor” but then clearly thought better of it: “Well it’s an administrative proceeding, he’s an investigator slash . . . I mean he’s the one who presented.”

Judge Ambro was having none of it: “If you are saying he’s the prosecutor, you’re saying he’s not there to just get the independent facts, he’s there to be a prosecutor.”

Things only got worse. The lawyer for Clarion said: “I’m going to concede this. In the record, it does indicate that the normal function of him or someone in the same position was to present the university’s side of the case. It was not presented as this completely neutral thing.” But of course, the role of the university is supposed to be to decide if the accused student committed the rape or not. That is completely incompatible with the idea that there is a “university’s side” prior to the hearing. As judge Morton Greenberg retorted, “Was there a university side of the case before the hearing? I would have thought that there shouldn’t have been, that they should have been neutral to that point.”

In short, the university seemed to be deeply confused about whether they were giving the panel a neutral presentation of the facts or were making a prosecutorial case against the accused student. There was similar confusion about whether the university was supposed to decide upon the accused student’s guilt prior to the hearing.

To make matters worse, there is a very good chance that the accused student will lose this case anyway. That is because he chose not to attend the hearing at all. He made that decision because he was also being criminally charged and if he participated in the college hearing he would be effectively waiving his right to remain silent during the criminal investigation. This is a classic dilemma when there is both a criminal and civil case. To avoid such conflicts, judges in civil matters routinely delay the civil cases until the criminal cases are resolved. But colleges don’t do that because they want to resolve the matter quickly.

Criminal prosecutors are well aware of this dilemma and use it to their advantage in order to circumvent the student’s right to silence. For example, at a 2015 meeting of the International Association of College Law Enforcement Administrators, Susan Riseling, the Chief of Police at the University of Wisconsin at Madison spoke about how to get around the right to remain silent and use Title IX proceedings to circumvent the student’s constitutional rights:

[Riseling] also described a case at Wisconsin, in which the Title IX investigation was the only reason police were able to arrest a student accused of raping his roommate’s girlfriend.

The accused student denied the charges when interviewed by police, Riseling said. In his disciplinary hearing, however, he changed his story in an apparent attempt to receive a lesser punishment by admitting he regretted what had occurred. That version of events was “in direct conflict with what he told police,” Riseling said. Police subpoenaed the Title IX records of the hearing and were able to use that as evidence against the student.

“It’s Title IX, not Miranda,” Riseling said. “Use what you can.”

Riseling also suggested, “Title IX investigators should watch the police’s interview through a television feed, and prompt the detective to ask any additional questions.”

The rush to judgment in the Clarion case was particularly unfortunate because the university held its hearing before the DNA evidence became available. In fact, the DNA did not match that of the accused student and the police dropped all charges. Nonetheless, the student remains expelled.

A final matter to consider is that the accused student is African American. According to the complaint, African Americans are drastically overrepresented among Clarion students tried for sexual misconduct. A future post will discuss the issue of racial bias and sexual assault on campus. For now, it is worth noting that an African American student has been expelled from college by a process that seems confused about the most basic concepts of a fair hearing. He remains expelled even though the charges were dropped by the police as a result of the DNA evidence that the college hearing panel never saw.

Evan Gerstmann is the author of Campus Sexual Assault: Constitutional Rights and Fundamental Fairness (Cambridge University 2019) and is a Professor of Political Science at Loyola Marymount Univ.

I’ve always been interested in how we should balance individual and minority rights with majority rule. After several years practicing law in New York city, I found my true calling as a college professor and researcher. I’ve written about campus free speech, same-sex equality and racial justice for Cambridge University, The University of Chicago, and Harvard University. My latest book is “Campus Sexual Assault: Constitutional Rights and Fundamental Freedoms”.

Sexual Assault Trauma Informed

Trauma Informed Investigations Stole My Son’s Future

If you’d have asked me before my son was accused of sexual misconduct, I would have said that trauma-informed investigations were a good idea. Living through the ’90s as a female college student, then as a woman motivated to be successful in a male-dominated field, sexual harassment, inequality, and forcible rape happened. It still happens today. Then so many victims were afraid to come forward as they are now. However, in our rush for justice, we are bearing witness to the creation of a new class of victims on college campuses and in the criminal justice system: The innocent.

These new victims aren’t given the presumption of innocence. They aren’t entitled to know the accusation against them. Evidence is withheld from them and their lawyers. Police officers ask deceptively leading questions, and school investigators are both judge and jury making life-altering sanction decisions based on the presumption that a ‘victim’ never lies.

In my son’s case, he suffered through all of that and more. We were told to trust the system. That the system works. Hate to tell you, it only works for you if you have the will, courage, and financial resources to fight.

My son was accused of a felony sexual assault punishable up to 40 years in prison. What did he do? He accepted a woman’s invitation to lay on her bed. They were clothed at all times, and consumed no alcohol and no drugs. There was no sex, no fondling, no skin to skin contact, no kissing. She was on top of him and she was in control the whole time. We will never know what caused her to falsely accuse my son of assault.

Her accusation was fabricated and disgusting. All of her statements were lies, used to destroy my son or manipulate the truth. As campus employees, the police officer and the school Title IX investigator worked hand in hand with the district attorney’s office. Not once was my son told his rights. The entire time, I kept asking myself, won’t someone just look at the evidence? Talk to the witnesses? But in the well-intentioned battle against sexual assault, facts become irrelevant, and truth never seems to matter. 

What we witnessed is that once you start from a position of believing the purported victim, you never move from it, despite evidence that proves the accusation to be false. While there is value to treat potential victims with care, something that has often been lacking, if you start by believing, you start by assuming he is guilty.

  • My child endured terribly unfair treatment as a result of trauma-informed methods.
    My son was arrested and spent the night in jail based on a DNA collection warrant. The DNA test results were exculpatory; unfortunately they were ignored by the school and disregarded by the prosecutor.
  • His accuser was interviewed for 75 minutes and nothing was recorded or documented.
  • The Prosecutor continued despite knowing the accuser destroyed exculpatory evidence and lied on a police report.
  • The campus detective, while testifying under oath, stated that he did not use leading questions. Yet when interviewing my son’s ex-girlfriend, the first question asked to her, “Please tell me about the time xxx sexually assaulted you.”
  • The Campus detective admitted on the witness stand he did not follow proper police procedure.
  • Neither investigator nor the prosecutor interviewed the very first person to interact with my son’s accuser after he left her, the responding RA. The RA had evidence that supported my son’s innocence.

Even though all of the evidence pointed to a false allegation, my son was forced to endure four days of a trial. He faced a sentence of up to forty years. The jury acquitted him in less than one hour.

My family suffered significant, irreversible damage. Tears, anger, and heart-wrenching hate is a “new normal.” We do our best to push through the bad days. If the investigators would have done their jobs with integrity, my son would not have lived in fear for over a year in terror of just about everyone and everything.

The prosecutor can claim victory, though. Every time my son undergoes a background check it shows that he was acquitted of felony sexual assault, and he is judged guilty. Getting a good paying job is impossible. He will never get to live as an innocent person should. This is the result of a rush to believe, a lack of objective fact-finding, and the sheer bias with which my son was viewed. He did not break the law, his accuser did. And he will pay for it for the rest of his life.

* A. Pebble is the author’s pen name, used because the author’s son is still recovering from the psychological after-effects of the experience.


Violence Against Women Act

I Survived Domestic Violence. Here’s Why I’m Voting ‘No’ on Violence Against Women Act.

Congresswoman Debbie Lesko represents Arizona’s 8th congressional district. 

 I’m Arizona Congresswoman Debbie Lesko. I’m a survivor of domestic violence from my ex-husband, who I left over 25 years ago.

I am voting ‘no’ on the Democrats’ version of the Violence Against Women Act because it is a radical bill that I believe will actually hurt women more.

This bill, under the weight of federal law, would force domestic violence shelters to take in biological males who identify as women.

This could be in showers. This could be in beds. Can you think of this? We have women that are placed in shelters that have already been abused, some of them sexually abused, but now the federal government is going to require these shelters to take in biological males and sometimes place them right next to these women?

The Violence Against Women Act also requires that prisons take in biological males who identify as women in women prisons.

In the United Kingdom, there’s already been a case where a man who identified as a woman raped two women in prison.

The Democrat version of the Violence Against Women Act takes away Second Amendment rights from people without due process.

When I got an order of protection against my ex-husband many years ago, I went to a justice of the peace and wrote down why I was threatened by him. The justice of the peace gave me an order of protection. My ex-husband was not there. But under this bill, it would have taken away his gun rights. In the case of my ex-husband, he really should have had his gun rights taken away because he was a threat. However, he did not have the ability of due process to defend himself. This is just wrong.

Please don’t be confused by the title of this bill, Violence Against Women Act.

This is nothing but a political strategy by the Democrat Party to put in things in this bill that aren’t bipartisan, that are totally partisan, knowing that Republicans will vote no so that the Democrats can say Republicans are against women.

I’m a survivor of domestic violence. I’m going to vote ‘no’ against this domestic violence act because I don’t believe it will protect women and will actually hurt women more.