Open letter to everyone about Brock Turner Case

Subject: Open letter to everyone about Brock Turner Case
From: Trisha
Date: 22 Jun 2016

In the war against campus sexual assault, why are we not talking about drinking? When dealing with intoxication and sex, there are the built-in complications of incomplete memories and differing interpretations of intent and consent. More than 97,000 students between the ages of 18 and 24 are victims of alcohol related sexual assault or date rape. Young women are getting a distorted message that their right to match men drink for drink is a feminist issue. The real "feminist" message should be that when you lose the ability to be responsible for yourself, you drastically increase attracting the wrong kind of attention. So, should the complainants word be enough to convict, even if her recollection of what happened is blurry or non-existent due to intoxication? Alcohol smudges the lens when we try to get a clear portrait of the current problem. To point a finger at anyone's drinking is to risk setting off an alarm: "victim-blamed", "caught red-handed." Since it seems like a lot of people don't understand, conviction: to be found guilty of committing a crime. Brock Turner was not convicted of rape. Therefore he is not a rapist. Before Persky signed off on Brock's sentence, Brock's age, lack of criminal record, the impact of the crime on the victim, the safety of the community, and his expressed remorse were considered. Brock Turner was charged of three felony counts of sexual assault, six months behind bars, three years probation, and he has to register as a sex offender. How is that a slap on the wrist? Go spend six months in jail and tell me how you feel. What if you had to register as a sex offender for the rest of your life? How do you feel now? Still think it's a slap on the wrist? This is a gray case, we will never know what actually happened. There's always three sides of a story: his, hers, and the truth. People only see jail and prison as punishment but it's not. In actuality they are correctional facilities that are trying to fix a persons behavior so they can send them back out into the world as a functional citizen. How does threatening the Turner family or even Judge Persky solve anything? No matter what your reasoning is, death threats and terror-inducing harassment is never okay. Sending Persky death threats is not the way for advocates of social justice and survivors of sexual assault to make their protest felt. The victims letter had no place in the court room. Judge and jury should only consider the facts of the case at hand in determining the defendants culpability. The effort to recall Persky, led by Michele Dauber (professor at Stanford Law and a friend of the victim) would be a dangerous mistake. Judge Persky followed the probation departments recommendations when giving the sentence. Removing Persky from the bench because you do not agree with the sentence he gave, you are setting a dangerous and ugly precedent. By doing this you are sending a message to his colleagues: 'don't dare exercise independent and impartial discretion in deciding what a punishment should be, or you may be next.' The movement to remove Persky from the bench will not, and cannot, be limited to this one case. Online petitions have no legal weight at all. The anti-Persky recall effort will put severe pressure on Judges to take a hard line toward sex-crime defendants. Attempts to turn the case into a "war on rape culture" is likely to create a climate that will endanger due process. This usually isn't the response when famous athletes are accused of sexual assault or domestic violence. So, what's different now?
I stand with Judge Persky and Brock Turner.