What happened to innocent until proven guilty? | Rebecca Jane column

Welcome to 2021, the year where the vast majority of people believe they are judge, jury and executioner as far as other people are concerned. Oh, and Sarah-Jessica Parker is their leader!

Wednesday, 22nd December 2021, 3:45 pm
Rebecca Jane

Chris Noth, otherwise known as Mr Big in ‘Sex and the City’ and the new rebooted version ‘And Just Like That…’ has been accused of raping two women in the early 2000 era.

I’m sure the allegations alone will divide many.

On one hand, we must question why TWO women come forward now? When the reboot is underway, and media attention is once again being shone in his direction.

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What good is coming forward now going to do? Can the allegations truly be questioned or proven after so much time has passed?

On one hand, it seems entirely pointless. The allegations have never been taken to the police, even now. They’re just being shouted about in worldwide press!

On the other hand…. As humans we have developed and grown a lot over the last 20 years, and today if the same happened again. maybe we wouldn’t keep quiet. In my opinion, to this day, women are still cast in a negative light when they bring up sexual harassment or abuse claims.

Appearance is constantly brought into question, what was she wearing or how did she lead him on? Men do tend to have an air of sympathy and that makes women feel they won’t be believed.

I’d also like to point out that sexual harassment and abuse is far from gender based for me. Some comments that women say to men, or behaviour inflicted I truly find inappropriate and if the shoe was on the other foot - there would be repercussions.

Where I have a serious issue is the unnecessary statement Sarah-Jessica Parker and her co-stars decided to throw into the mix.

'We are deeply saddened to hear the allegations against Chris Noth,' the short announcement began. 'We support the women who have come forward and shared their painful experiences. We know it must be a very difficult thing to do and we commend them for it.'

Why on Earth did they have to say anything? The world does not revolve around you, and no one was waiting for your verdict. Did I miss the chapter when they declared him guilty? As far as I can see, he is denying the allegations, nothing has been reported, police have not investigated and a jury has not examined the evidence. Suddenly SJP and pals have now decided to write off one man’s career and throw him under the first bus they see.

If the allegations are true, sure, write his career off but we’ve missed the most vital part of this process. A right to a fair trial!

Absolutely, we need to encourage victims of any abuse to come forward. We need to commit to finding the truth, support and help empower them to be able to speak their truth, even when their voice shakes.

There are also people out there who make false allegations and many people who go through the court process and are found not guilty. This man was their friend, for over 20 years. If they’re using their voice now because they knew or had hints of this behaviour in the past, shame on them for not saying anything when it mattered.

For them to speak out so damningly, it echoes a million times over. Mud sticks and lives are ruined by false allegations.

I wholeheartedly support any victim of sexual abuse. I also support a movement that allow people to remain anonymous until they are found guilty in a court of law, and not before. Certainly NOT a court of Sarah-Jessica Parker and her pals! Stick to your fancy shoes darlings!