In the realm of Shystering and chasing ambulances, there is this thing called “The Doctrine of Laches.”
The doctrine of laches is a legal defense that may be claimed in a civil matter, which asserts that there has been an unreasonable delay in pursuing the claim (filing the lawsuit), which has prejudiced the defendant, or prevents him from putting on a defense. The doctrine of laches is an equitable defense that seeks to prevent a party from ambushing someone else by failing to make a legal claim in a timely manner.
Laches is named for Lachesis, the middle of the three Fates, or Moirai. Clotho spins the thread of our lives, Lachesis determines the length of it, and Atropos comes to collect you when you reach the end.
When attorney-type people talk about “equity” they mean “fairness.” When you assert laches as a defense you are saying that so much time has passed that you are being placed at an unfair disadvantage because evidence has been lost or destroyed and witnesses may have died, moved away or forgotten what they saw and heard.
The concept of laches has been codified into statutes of limitation. It is a slam-dunk case of malpractice if an attorney blows a filing deadline. But statutes of limitation apply to legal proceedings, not politics. I think you know where I am going with this.
In recent years were have seen a number of rape hoaxes, including “Mattress girl” and the UVA/Rolling Stone rape hoax. There was the #MeToo fad, and we all remember the Kavanaugh confirmation fiasco. Bill Cosby and Harvey Weinstein were both convicted of sexual assaults. And now we have a woman named Tara Reade who says Joe Biden sexually assaulted her 27 years ago.
For the record: I believe Tara Reade.
But as a matter of policy, how long do we let this insanity continue? Because as sure as death and taxes the Democrats are going to produce several women between now and November who will claim that Trump sexually assaulted or harassed them. And every Democrat within 100 yards of a microphone will announce that they find the accusers credible. Then the day after the election these women will vanish. Until next time.
Sexual assault is a very serious crime. Even in prison rapists are despised – the only people more despised than rapists are child molesters. And they should be despised.
Sexual assault should be taken seriously. But that does not require gullibility or uncritical acceptance of either side’s version of events. And sexual assault needs to be taken seriously by the alleged victims as well.
That means telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, That means victims contacting the police as soon as possible, and not waiting 30 years. That means cooperating with the police and prosecution. That means holding women accountable if they don’t tell the truth.
Last but not least, the news media needs to take sexual assault seriously. That means treating all cases under the same uniform standards.