"Be kind to people you love, especially today."
I am invested in this issue because women are my relations. I'm a dad, a son, a husband, a brother-in-law, and thinking, sentient member of the human race! The reasons this keeps happening cannot be solely blamed on the legal system; they start at home. There is a profound sickness within a society that would allow men to perpetrate violence against women with virtual impunity. What is it within men that we see women with so little regard? Too many men don't think there is a problem.
In Canada, we firmly believe in the presumption of innocence as it is a fundamental human right and indispensable for preventing wrongful convictions and upholding justice. However, it is the time to acknowledge that if our criminal justice system does not adapt itself to the reality of cases like the Ghomeshi trial, its legitimacy will be undermined in the eyes of Canadians. Our justice system gains its legitimacy by being effective and fair; and fairness needs to extend to both survivors and offenders.
In his ruling, Judge William Horkins scolded the three complainants for their "deceptive testimony."
Had these complainants been more honest with police and prosecutors -- and with themselves -- perhaps we would have been handed a different verdict. Perhaps if these complainants admitted that they still pursued a relationship with Ghomeshi -- despite the alleged assaults -- they would have disarmed the mighty Marie Henein and left her with less of an arsenal with which to attack.
"Today, and every day, #IBelieveSurvivors."
The judge referenced the fallout after the former “Q” host was fired from the CBC as the “Ghomeshi scandal.”
Many legal definitions of sexual assault, including Canada's, try to balance two things: the rights of the accused to remain innocent until proven guilty, and the rights of the complainants to seek justice in a fair and balanced court of law. However, our laws are strongly biased in favour of the accused because of one little clause.
I read about the way you came forward against a man who you allege has sexually assaulted you. I don't know if everyone who hears about you appreciates the importance of you waiving your anonymity and giving your name and face to the case. For a person as clearly dignified and graceful as you, a captain in the Royal Canadian Air Force no less, it must have been a nightmare. You had everything to lose, and nothing to gain. I don't know if people appreciate the complexity of what you're presenting to them, but statistically, 80 per cent of sexual assaults occur with a person women know.
CBC has replaced one of two senior managers who left the public broadcaster in the wake of the Jian Ghomeshi scandal.