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Rights of women, girls must finally be recognized in this country [Letter]


Roy Moore, elected by Alabama voters of the Republican Party to be on the ballot for U.S. senator to replace former Sen. Jeffrey Sessions, has been accused of pedophilia, back in 1979. A woman came forward to report that Moore made sexual advances to her when she was 14 years old at that time.

This woman, as with other women accusing other men, put her name out there — publicly — to accuse her perpetrator. For years women have kept silent about these extremely traumatizing experiences; kept silent, not because they’ve been offered money, no, but some have and took the bribe. They’ve kept silent because they would not have been believed against the reputation of the man. They would have been scorned; maybe even ostracized by their community and family. They don’t have prominence or celebrity… and that now they will. Or, that now they’ve been given money to speak out and ruin this man’s reputation.

NO! They are coming out now because they realize they must for the rest of us — the women and girls in this United States of America — to prevent further attacks and punish those sexual offenders. In this case, Roy Moore could be accepted by the U.S. Senate to take his seat as an honorable person representing his state. Leader Mitch McConnell said the Senate does not have to accept his election and let him take a seat. GOOD for our founders and the Senate’s rules!

To help understand this situation of a sexual predator, we need look no further than to an Alabama evangelist who, in attempting to whitewash Moore’s actions, gave his opinion of Mary and Joseph as the parents of Jesus. “Mary was a teenager and Joseph was an adult carpenter.” (And that was OK… then.) There’s more to what he said, but let’s stop there and try to understand how he could tie the most sacred religious tenet of Christians’ beliefs for nearly 2000 years to 2017 and the reasoning behind absolving Moore of pedophilia.

Until 1848 in Seneca Falls, N.Y., girls and women were accepted as chattel in marriages. 1848 was the beginning of the long struggle for women to have the right to vote in this country. To be able to vote is to realize you have your own mind, to be able to voice your own opinions, to be free from your husband’s opinions in shaping yours. I am simplifying the story for reason of brevity. Officially, the right to vote was passed to women in the 19th Amendment; ratified on August 18, 1920. Nearly 100 years ago!

It is a long story of struggling to stand tall in the midst of jeers, against public opinion, to be heard, to be recognized as a human beings with worth and inherent dignity. The rights of women and girls in this country must finally be recognized by this great nation. Roy Moore must be found guilty in the court of public opinion because the victim put her name out there — finally.

JoAnn Macdonald


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