IN THE NEWS
This week Uncle Tim, Spencer, and Jessica discuss:
- Dr. Larry Nassar accused of sexual assault
- Gymternet news (29:48)
- Feedback and Q&A from listeners (36:32)
Former USA Gymnastics doctor accused of abuse.
Full story from Indy Star. Two former gymnasts, including an Olympic medalist (identified as Jane Doe), have accused prominent, longtime team physician, Dr. Larry Nassar, working for USA Gymnastics of sexual abuse.
A 2000 U.S. female Olympian has filed a lawsuit for sexual assault against alleged perpetrator, an adult male individual who was a certified athletic trainer and a osteopathic physician for the US Women’s Team through the 2012 Olympics (the Indy Star has identified the perpetrator as Larry Nassar).
The Olympian accuses him of fondling and groping her breasts, and “introduced his bare hand to Plaintiff’s vagina and anus, on multiple locations, in Plaintiff’s assigned sleeping quarters, as she lay on the edge of her bed, alone and without any supervision or a chaperone…” and that she needed “intravaginal adjustment.” Doe asserts this was done without gloves. Read the full complaint here.
- Episode 56: Preventing Abuse in Gymnastics
- 163: ENOUGH
- 63: Doctor Larry Nassar
- Episode 28: Kristen Maloney
- Episode 31: Elise Ray
- 187: McKayla Maroney
- 210: Women’s Podium Training at the Rio Olympic Games
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Please — I urge you to just consider both sides- there is a chance this is not true and it is destroying a man\’s life. False accusations have happened before.
Upon your urging, I have considered the idea that the accusations are false; it took me approximately one second. I admit, that response probably sounds disrespectful, but that is not my intent. My intent is to acknowledge that yes, it is true that there have been men who have been falsely accused and their reputations ruined. However, I personally (emphasis, personally), and especially as someone who identifies as a male, find it irresponsible to give the consideration more than one second for the following reasons:
* because we live in a time when a man can be convicted of sexually penetrating an UNCONSCIOUS woman and can be sentenced to only six months in jail.
* because we live in a society where a judge can be more concerned about how the seconds of a convicted sexual abuser\’s future would be negatively affected by a just verdict than in how the entirety of his victim\’s life has been altered because of him.
*because women who have been raped have to spend a ridiculous amount of time to ensure that their rape kit is not destroyed.
*because the term \”rape culture\” remains part of our cultural lexicon.
*because my female friends have to put energy and time into planning how they will walk outside at night.
*because I could continue to write more and more of these statements.
.You are absolutely right: the possibility that a man\’s life could unjusticely be ruined exists; your concern demonstrates that you are a compassion person. However, we all have to choose how we allocate our time and energy, and I am going to err on the gymnast\’s side..
I don’t think you mentioned in the episode that the civil suit may have been the option for Jane Doe, as too much time has passed or she may be too old to file a criminal complaint. I have little to no knowledge of the law and statute of limitations in regards to this case, but that is something others have brought up. I’m not sure which state’s laws apply to this case if the assaults are alleged to have happened outside of California or if any federal laws apply. I know some people will scoff at the idea of a civil suit vs. a criminal complaint, so I think that may be important information regarding this case.
I\’m uncertain how you could listen to this podcast and read this complaint and come away 1) without realizing that two women\’s lives already have been destroyed by someone and 2) without understanding that if (there\’s my consideration of his side) he did this, he\’s already destroyed too.
Why is so often the first reaction to allegations of sexual abuse the idea that the plaintiff is lying? This is an extremely specific accusation laid out quite graphically. And it\’s a civil case, which leads me to believe that the defendant knows the case against him is stacked and that it is more valuable to the plaintiffs to attempt to change the focus and culture of USAG than to try Nassar in criminal court – although, admittedly, civil court is also where the plaintiffs will be treated much more fairly than they would bringing allegations of sexual abuse to criminal court.
For more information about preventing child abuse please check out Darkness to Light: .http://www.d2l.org/. I work full time for a children\’s after school program. The Stewards of Children training his is what we use to train our employees and volunteers. It is an excellent resource for parents and those who work with youth to help keep them safe.
In answer to your question at what age you should tell your children about sex, the recommended age is 8. There are more details in the training as to why that is an appropriate age and what topics you discuss at that age versus when you children are older
Does Gymcastic have a list of questions to ask a prospective gym/coaches about policies related to keeping kids safe? I think this would be an excellent resource to point listeners to. Thanks!
Very rarely is someone accused by two individuals with no known knowledge of each other and nearly identical stories lying. Where there is smoke there is usually fire. Rumor has it there is another more recent gymnast about to come out against him as well.
The fact that people are already accusing these gymnasts of lying is part of the reason so many sexual assaults go unreported. Everyone is quick to blame the victim because they “like” or “trust” the accused, etc.
Couldn\’t possibly agree more.It annoys the crap out of me.why would they file a law suit under a Jane doe in one case and tell really graphic and potentially embarrassing information without it being true.who would do that?makes my blood boil.
Loved the podcast this week!
I wanted to post a little more on NBC’s treatment of Gabby (and female athletes in general) in order to create drama and (supposedly) increase viewership. Its shitty how the media treats female athletes. And as the owners of olympic broadcasts in the US, NBC really has all the power to create those narratives.
I wrote a post about it, “She Swims Like a Man: Why the Olympic Commentary is Bullshit.” That you guys might like: https://middleworldadventures.wordpress.com/2016/08/27/she-swims-like-a-man-why-the-sexist-olympic-commentary-is-bullshit/
Love the podcast!
It was useful to know who is putting up the tour. I will not be assisting tomorrow\’s show.
Predictably, both the county prosecutor and MSU have reported to the media that they\’ve received additional complaints. The Holt school district, where Nassar volunteered as a sports doctor, has reported that they\’ve severed their relationship with him. John Geddert, who is slimier than a hundred slugs, refuses to make a statement since his previous one extolling Nassar\’s professionalism, and the gym hasn\’t communicated with gymnasts\’ families about this at all. MSU has removed Nassar from clinical duties because of the investigation; he\’s no longer with USA Gymnastics as of 2015, and now the Holt School District has separated from him. It\’s very troubling to me that Geddert won\’t make any statement or take any action; I think it\’s most likely only a matter of time until a Twistars gymnast comes forward.
My youngest kid is a Twistars gymnast, but has had no contact with Nassar. Contact with Geddert has been limited to exchanging hellos in the gym from time to time. We\’ve had our latest round of frank discussions about sexual abuse and appropriate behavior. I\’m watching this very closely, as you may imagine.
I was thinking about that too that it ‘s weird that twistars and jordyn have nothing to say about this.in general i think that gymnasts and coaches are too quiet about this. Seems cowardly to me.and what’s happening with the USAG case of failing to report sexual abuse.i would expect more of an outrage and it seems everyone is laying low.
With the recent USA today report of 16 additional gymnasts coming forward with allegations against Dr. Larry Nassar, I urge you at Gymcastic to keep talking about this painful and uncomfortable topic of protecting our gymnasts from abuse. The unfolding of this story, with its shared accountability by USA gymnastics and all the many adults who permitted this man unchaperoned access to our finest young athletes will be, I sincerely hope, a powerful lesson for change going forward. No doctor puts his fingers inside girls without a chaperone, permission, discussion and full documentation. I am furious, appalled, sad for our gymnasts and proud of everyone who is speaking up for accountability and change.