MSNBC anchor: Trauma experts “have said again and again” that hesitating to report sexual abuse “is not a reason to doubt someone”

Kate Snow: “If you talk to people in the world of -- people that advocate for victims and survivors of sexual violence, sexual assault, they call this victim blaming”

From the September 26 edition of MSNBC Live with Velshi & Ruhle:

Video file

STEPHANIE RUHLE (CO-ANCHOR): Kate, as someone who's reported on this for as long as you have, when you hear Lindsey Graham, a sitting senator, say things like “I find it curious these charges were never brought forward until 2018.” Come on.

KATE SNOW (NBC NEWS): And it's more than that. He said “I hope people will be highly suspicious of the allegation” because why would she go to ten parties -- “Why would any reasonable person,” I'm quoting, “continue to hang around people like this?” If you talk to people in the world of -- people that advocate for victims and survivors of sexual violence, sexual assault, they call this victim blaming. They call this --

ALI VELSHI (CO-ANCHOR): “I hope people will be suspicious of the allegation.” Can you imagine?

SNOW: Be suspicious of the allegation because it was -- because she kept going. And all I can sit here thinking is, I did a lot of work reporting on the Cosby allegations. I'm not saying they're similar, they may not be at all. But Bill Cosby's defense team in that courtroom in the spring when he was convicted, that was their argument, and some of the women involved in the Cosby case said to me, it was an old-school 1970s, 1980s kind of argument. “Why would you keep going back?” In other words, why would Andrea Constand continue to have a relationship with Bill Cosby even after he had assaulted her? The jury didn't buy that argument. The jury went with the prosecution and they convicted Bill Cosby, and yesterday he was led away in handcuffs.

Again, I'm not saying they're the same, but that argument of why didn't she report it and why would she keep going back has been, sort of, in the community of people that deal with this, psychologists, social workers, people who deal with trauma, have said again and again that that is not a reason to doubt someone. 


RUHLE: Not that #MeToo is perfect, but we hear all the time that everything is different now because of the #MeToo movement, and then when you say things like that, it doesn't feel that way. 


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