Saturday, October 2, 2010

Ron Johnson Defended Pedophiles?!

A few days ago, I saw Keith Olbermann air a news story on his evening television program, Countdown, which handed Russ Feingold a Senatorial campaign victory on a silver platter. What he aired was live footage of Ron Johnson, Feingold's opponent, testifying before a Green Bay legislative committee against something known as the Victims of Child Abuse Bill, which would have eliminated the statute of limitations of victims of child abuse. At issue at the time was one Father John Feeney, who was being sued by one of his abuse victims in Nevada. Green Bay wanted to make people like Feeney easier to sue by throwing out the statute of limitations which protects such ministers. Ron Johnson testified against such legislation while sitting on the Green Bay Finance council at that time.

Now, I understand fully well why statutes of limitations exist. We don't want people reinterpreting their memories years later and suing for events which never happened. However, in cases of rape or incest, advancements in DNA technology have made such protections less needed, because science has filled the human-memory-error gap. Especially in the cases of rape of children, I'm forced to agree with efforts to eliminate statutes of limitations, since children are often too scared to speak up within the statutory time limits. At the very least, the statute of limitations should be extended when children are involved. Ron Johnson, apparently, disagrees, and argued against making it easier to sue pedophile priests like Feeney.

Are you fucking kidding me?

Strike that, let me rephrase: Are you kiddie fucking me?

This is, without a doubt, the single biggest issue to surface in the Senate campaign in Wisconsin. It might be the biggest Senatorial scandal since Joe McCarthy's witch hunt! The fact that Ron Johnson, in effect, defended pedophile priests using some half-baked, poorly thought out rationales of unintended consequences to small businesses, is unbelievable! (And if you want to know what I'm referencing, see the news clip pasted below.)

But this isn't the biggest shock I've received. The biggest shock is: NOBODY ELSE IS REPORTING THIS!!! The single, biggest, and most devastating scandal to his this, or indeed any, Senatorial election in this state, and it doesn't even get a blurb?!?! Johnson defended pedophile priests! How big a scandal do you need?!?!

Even more baffling, is that the Feingold camp isn't running with this! Seriously, if Russ doesn't attack on this, of all things, then he deserves to lose!

We need to hear six words out of Ron Johnson: "I am sorry, I was wrong." And if we don't hear those six words, then as far as I'm concerned, he's out!

Okay, enough is enough! I'm not only going to write every news organization I can think of about this, but I'm urging everyone else I can to do the same. I refuse to let this story go away. If Johnson, who otherwise would be a pretty decent guy, is blinded enough by his Lutheranism to block legislation which would help victims of pedophiles in the ministry, then he's way too blind for any of us. Hell, why not just elect the pedophile priests themselves to the Senate! It would be equally as smart, and make just about as much sense!

Take up the charge! Write, write, write! Nobody who blocks victims of priestly pedophilia from getting their day in court should ever get the vote in Wisconsin!



shane said...

some thoughts:

as far as i understand, limitations periods for child molestation-type cases begins to toll when the victim knew or should have known that they were abused, starting at age 18. in the case of repressed memories, the limitations period will begin upon the resurfacing of the memory.

provided that the victim takes action promptly, upon remembering, the limitations period shouldnt be a problem, no matter what WI legislation gets passed.

with all that said, there is a concern about extending limitations periods, and that spoliation of evidence. the longer it is from the time of the crime to prosecution, the worse the state of the evidence. witnesses on both sides forget, misremember, or even die. physical evidence deteriorates. that goes for both sides of a case. and as far as DNA evidence: yes that can be preserved in data files, but DNA evidence is used in cases a small fraction of the time. we all think its commonplace in the courtroom, but thats because of TV. most cases involve the old fashioned stuff: witnesses and documents. in the case of child molestation, DNA evidence will only be useful if theres a pregnancy or if the crime is reported immediately. in the cases where someone remembers molestation 20 years later, its useless.

does this mean im a defender of child rapists? no. i dont know if that dude was either.

SaganJr said...

Oh, I don't think Johnson deliberately wanted to defend pedophiles. But he was aware of the pending charges against Feeney, and that the statute of limitations could potentially get that case dismissed. As Obermann reported, as soon as the legislation failed, thanks in part to Johnson's testimony, the court in Green Bay moved for dismissal on the grounds that it had passed the statute of limitations. Johnson simply must have known that move was coming. The Nevada State Supreme court overruled that maneuver, so the case is going to trial anyway, and Johnson sacrificed his political integrity for nothing.

You know, Feingold is such a defender of civil liberties that he may take a similar view you do, and not attack, on the grounds that even though Johnson opposed the legislation for the wrong reasons, he did the right thing. The man has such integrity it's stunning. This is why he needs to win, and why he's going to lose. Damn, politics can be frustrating!