The bogus Assange rape charges harm real sex-crimes prosecutions

Swedish prosecutors now have a big problem: Sex without a condom is so terrible that scads of law-enforcement officials traveled around the world to bring an offender to justice—but what happens next week, when a woman shows up at the police station to report that her boyfriend kept thrusting after a condom broke during sex? Or how about the wife who wants her husband charged because he put his hands in her PJs while she was sleeping?…

Because as much as I care about fixing rape laws to better respect women’s freedom and equality—and as hard as I’ve fought for more than 20 years to hold offenders accountable as part of that reform work—it hurts rather than helps the cause when prosecutors exploit such a serious topic for unrelated political purposes.

If officials want a piece of Assange, they should charge him with espionage. It might be a tough case in light of First Amendment concerns, but so what? Nobody buys the sex charges anyway and espionage, on these facts, is a more serious offense. Better to try, and to lose, than pursue distracting charges in an unrelated case.