Bullish fighter Michael Avenatti, who takes on Trump and wins and wins and even if he loses an argument keeps winning the war, was just forced to make his account private on Twitter due to bots and Trump trolls he attributed to his representation of women regarding Kavanaugh.
“I was just forced to make my account private because the bots and Trump trolls are out in full force due to my representation re Kavanaugh. I will change this back as soon as I am able,” the lawyer wrote on Twitter (I can still see his tweets because we follow each other.) Technically he is still on Twitter, but if you make your tweets private only the people you follow can see them and the people who were already following you unless you block them, so in effect he’s been significantly silenced.*
This is a story because it demonstrates the force of the hatred thrown at victims who come forward.
If you add in the already traumatized soul of a victim to this kind relentless, seething hatred, you can see why victims don’t come forward and why it’s imperative that we change the way we treat women, men and children who come forward with allegations. Since only 2-10% of rape accusations are false and of those they very rarely lead to convictions or wrongful jail time. Only 35% are reported to the police according to the US Bureau of Justice Statistics, so mathematically it does us no harm to listen with respect.
It does us no harm to do no more harm.
Additionally, most “fake accusers” are teenagers whose parents are doing the accusing to get the girl out of trouble and fake accusers are “primarily motivated by emotional gain. Most false allegations were used to cover up other behavior such as adultery or skipping school”.
No one would willingly subject themselves to having a Trump mob come after their lives just for a political purpose. Conservatives are trying to hold hearings with social media companies complaining that they are being targeted and kicked off of social media. The truth is, they are targeting others and the social media companies have been dragged through the mud for tolerating the hate and allowing it. While both sides can be ugly on social media, only one side threatens Jews with pictures of ovens, sends pictures of women being raped to a rape victim while laughing about it, threatens rape by proxy (a favorite of Trump trolls during the 2016 election that drove me personally off Twitter for a while), and more.
Conservatives right now are doing the bidding of their leader, Donald Trump, and he is not a nice person. He is not a civilized person. The fact that many others don’t want to hang out with these types of people in the public sphere, with Nazi sympathizers for example, is not targeting; it’s called society shame the unacceptable. This theory is in fact a conservative theory, it’s their excuse for why we don’t need regulations and laws. But suddenly they’re not fans because suddenly they are the undesirable element.
The point here isn’t that Kavanaugh is guilty. We do not know if he’s guilty or not. That’s why we need a fair and thorough FBI investigation, for all parties.
Kavanaugh denies his guilt. But we have his buddy, whom many accusers have named as being complicit, who refuses to testify and whom Republicans are letting off the hook for no reason other than to protect him from lying under oath.
We have alleged victims who have had to move from their homes. Who are not safe. Again, if their allegations are correct.
This is monstrous and wrong. We need to change as a society. We do not treat victims of robbery this way. What is it about the privilege some men feel to take whatever they want to which we are all kowtowing.
Enough. Enough of letting predators and bullies and horrible people silence those who are trying to do what they see as the right thing, trying to stand up for themselves, or trying to save the nation from having an alleged rapist on the Supreme Court.
*Update 9:92 PM: This story has been updated to clarify and correct how Twitter “private” mode works. When you go private, the people who were already following you can still see your tweets, but the general public can’t. Earlier the article incorrectly stated that only people you follow can see your tweets.
Ms. Jones is the editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.