While I understand that a defense attorney has to mount a vigorous defense of a client who has proclaimed his innocence, Bozeman defense attorney Chuck Watson went just a bit too far today and revealed some deeply hostile attitudes towards women. Defending a man accused to sexual assault, he told the jury today:
“This is not a girl. This is a woman. She’s got a nose ring. She’s got a belly ring. She’s been around.”
When people are tempted to tell you that rape culture isn’t a real thing or that we’ve developed more enlightened attitudes about sexual assault and victim responsibility, you might want to show them this quote. I hope the jury in Bozeman is able to reach a fair verdict, and I hope Mr. Watson comes to realize that someone’s status as “woman” or “girl” and whether or not “she’s been around” has nothing to do determining guilt in a sexual assault case.