I started in the mailroom, literally, as an intern... in 1974. The legislator I was working for at the time said, 'I want you to get your law degree and come back here and get elected and be the first woman governor.' I kind of took that guy seriously - I thought that sounded like a pretty good idea.
You can be a victim of a crime and not exercise great judgment. And when women have been sexually assaulted, they feel like they have to have been perfect in order to have anybody believe them. They think nobody will believe them unless a stranger jumped out from behind a bush with a knife - not that they got too drunk and that a guy they thought they knew, you know, took advantage of them in a physical, assaultive way.
There are people who have legitimate concerns about false accusations and the impact that can have on a young person's life when they have been falsely accused. Kirsten [Gillibrand] and I are not unaware that that is an issue we need to be concerned about, and that's why we have made changes in the legislation to address not just the rights of the victim, the accuser, but also of the accused.
Some of the morays have held on. When I was in school, I remember asking the question, "Why is it that whenever I walk into a fraternity there's alcohol everywhere and there's no alcohol in a sorority? Why is it that sororities won't allow alcohol, but fraternities do? What is that?" You know, nobody had a really good answer, and that's kind of held on. It's one of the issues that's being examined now - the role of alcohol in sexual assault.
I've got a really hard election. If you had a really hard election and it was after Labor Day would you go to North Carolina to a bunch of parties and glad-handing or would you stay home and work as hard as you know how to convince Missourians they should rehire you?
I want to compliment the fraternity and sorority organizations for taking the time to meet with us and then removing their support from the legislation that would have been so counterproductive for a goal that I think we all share - and that is making campuses safer and the successful prosecution of people who commit serious crimes. So, good on them that they backed off, and we don't have to fight them.
The goal is not to just have rapists expelled from schools. I don't want rapists transferring schools. I don't want them out there, being able to commit these crimes. I want them to go to prison. But if you understand this crime and you understand what happens in the reporting of this crime and the support that a victim does or does not get, you realize that our legislation increases the likelihood that a young woman will go to the police in a timely manner and that the police will investigate and that they will be able to administer real... Read more »
The notion that the campus has its hands tied if a woman is not willing to go to the police, if the woman is only willing to go so far as, "I just don't want to see him in my dorm anymore," is ridiculous. If that's as far as she's willing to go, then we need to accommodate that. And a university needs to be able to accommodate it.
It was a very easy way to have a group of friends on a very large campus - a sense of identity. It was a great place to learn how to navigate a variety of personalities, which you kind of have to do in life. You've got the shy woman and you've got the obnoxious woman and you've got the brainiac and you've got the social climber and you've got the introvert and the extrovert, and you're all living together. I think it gave me valuable experience in learning how to live with people that are different than you are.... Read more »
I started in the mailroom, literally, as an intern… in 1974. The legislator I was working for at the time said, ‘I want you to get your law degree and come back here and get elected and be the first woman governor.’ I kind of took that guy seriously – I thought that sounded like a pretty good idea.