Poor word choice in recent headline

We are writing to express our strong objection to the use of the word “gripes” in the front-page headline story on June 29 about the teacher accused of inappropriate sexual behavior with students in Stonington. The young women who reported these actions by the teacher were brave to do so, even more so given their age and positions as students. The headline on the story diminishes the serious claims of women who are sexually harassed and assaulted and excuses these actions as mere gripes as opposed to the crimes that they are. Once again, the perpetrator’s behavior is made light of just using the word. Seriously, if the french fries in the cafeteria are soggy one might gripe about it. But when a woman accuses someone of inappropriate sexual contact, particularly by a teacher, it should be taken seriously. 

Pamela Byrnes

and

Rick Jacobsen

East Lyme

 

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