A couple of days after IMF head Dominique Strauss-Kahn was arrested for rape and held in solitary confinement at Rikers without bail–and everyone thought that was perfectly reasonable treatment because he was OBVIOUSLY GUILTY–Ben Stein wrote an article entitled:“Presumed Innocent, Anyone?”
The article sent those who knew Strauss-Kahn was guilty into a rage–HOW DARE HE DEFEND A RAPIST!?–and they savaged him.
Oh, how they savaged him! They wanted the man drawn and quartered.
And, sure, Ben Stein brought the loathing upon himself by having a little too much rhetorical fun in his article:
“The prosecutors say that Mr. Strauss-Kahn “forced” the complainant to have oral and other sex with him. How? Did he have a gun? Did he have a knife? He’s a short fat old man.”
But now that it seems the prosecutors aren’t sure Strauss-Kahn forced anyone to do anything, it’s time for everyone who hacked apart Ben Stein to go back and read his article again. And then maybe apologise to him.
Because if ever there was a case that demonstrates how lucky we all are to live in a country with a legal system (if not a press corps) that presumes we are innocent until proven guilty, it’s this one.
(Disclosure: We also thought Strauss-Kahn was guilty.)
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