The allegations against Joe Biden concern me, deeply. He’s a man I know, respect, and admire, and who I can’t picture doing any of the things of which he’s accused. But I’ve thought that before, and been wrong. And sexual assault is always wrong. This is the shitty position we are in as women but make no mistake: it’s not because of women. We have to suss out the one truth between two opposites, and either one puts us in an impossible position.
The Biden campaign’s only statement said that he believes every woman should have the right to tell their story, and that the media is obligated to rigorously vet those claims. And of course, I agree. Now, nobody’s asked me, but if he did, I’d advise him to face the allegation head-on, answer every question, and admit any wrongdoing, and to be the example for all men who face these kinds of accusations whether founded or not.
As far as his accuser, I want every survivor to have space to tell their story. But I also don’t want her to be fodder for the machine. And I honestly don’t know what’s next. Believing women was never about “Believe all women no matter what they say,” it was about changing the culture of NOT believing women by default. It was about ending the patriarchy’s dangerous drive for self-preservation at all costs, victims be damned.