Letter from Jennie Richardson

Volunteers working to keep Judge Persky on the bench have now sunk to a new low: blaming Brock Turner’s behavior on alcohol and minimizing his actions as a brief boys-will-be-boys mistake committed by a naive college freshman. In fact, Turner’s cell phone records revealed that he had used (and abused) both alcohol and illegal drugs while in high school and throughout his freshman year at Stanford. That he was inebriated when he assaulted his victim does nothing to minimize the consequences of his behavior—any more than a drunk driver would be excused from a traffic accident. Stop making excuses for the Brock Turners of the world: send a message that nonconsensual sexual contact is, as the law states, a crime. Recalling Judge Persky is one way to change a culture that has dismissed sexual aggression for far too long.