Wall Street Journal columnist James Taranto said Claire McCaskill was launching a “war on men” and being “histrionic” about sexual assault in the military. Read the Missouri senator’s response here.
After Air Force Capt. Matthew Herrera was court-martialed and convicted of the aggravated sexual assault of a female second lieutenant, his conviction was reduced by Lieutenant General Susan Helms to an indecent act. Helms— who did not watch the trial—was reportedly urged by her own legal adviser to reject the request to dismiss the sexual assault verdict. When Helms was tapped this March to be vice commander of the Air Force Space Command, Senator McCaskill put a hold on her nomination, due to ongoing concerns over the Herrera case.
On June 17, Wall Street Journal columnist James Taranto wrote an essay deeming McCaskill’s hold “an effort to criminalize male sexuality,” calling the senator’s description of the victim as a “survivor” “more than a little histrionic,” and suggesting the “hanky-panky” came about because the assaulted woman “acted recklessly” by drinking and then getting into a car with a man. Efforts by McCaskill and others to address the issue of military sexual assaults, he wrote, amounted to a “war on men.”