Thursday 2 February 2023
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Something to Think About: Innocent Until Proven Guilty…Right?

Rev. Michael Vaughn, Sr. Pastor, New Wineskin Church

Op/Ed By Michael Vaughn –

I realize that there are a lot of emotions surrounding the issue that I am going to share in this week’s article but if you stay with me, maybe you’ll be able hear what I am saying.

Ever since the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the United States Supreme Court by President Donald Trump there has been a full-court press to, in the words of Sen. Charles Schumer, do whatever it takes to oppose the nominee.  It mattered not who this nominee was or what kind of person he was, just that he was nominated by President Trump was enough to oppose him.

During the confirmation battle Justice Kavanaugh was accused of sexual misconduct when he was in high school, as a teenager!  While sexual misconduct is never to be taken lightly, there was a lot of skepticism in bringing forward these allegations in the manner in which they came to light.

Justice Kavanaugh had had six FBI background investigations and none of them turned up the scenario that he was accused of.  It seemed coincidental that these 36-year-old allegations would show up at this time, for this nominee when the Democrats had already expressed their complete and utter opposition this nominee.

It appeared that it was purely political and therefore it was suspect from the very beginning.  The point that I want to raise in this article is that in America we are innocent until proven guilty.  The sad fact was that US senators threw out the rule of law in order to paint Justice Kavanaugh in the light that they wanted him to be seen in the media.  And the media was completely complicit in their reporting on these accusations.

In order to be truly fair and adhere to journalistic principles, one does not offer opinion on one side or another and they check the facts in the story being reported.  However, the media is biased and did what they do best and this is to stir up emotions so that the truth is much, much harder to see.  I am convinced that if the mainstream media is reporting on something, I do not trust it.  They have an agenda and we mustn’t allow ourselves to be manipulated.

It is sad what the accuser had stated and she indeed should have been heard.  Where the issue is was that just because she made an accusation and was sure that the boy that had done this to her was now the man Justice Kavanaugh, that that made her story true.  Justice Kavanaugh firmly denied that he had done what he was accused of doing.  Her eyewitness that she claimed to be in the room at the time, denied that he saw anything.  Therefore we now have one person making a horrible accusation and another person firmly denying it.  What do we do?  In America, we give people the benefit of the doubt (unless you happen to disagree with the Democrats then all your rights are null and void).

It was completely sad how grown adults could so passionately dismiss Justice Kavanaugh’s fundamental American rights solely on the basis of an accusation that cannot be corroborated.  As African-Americans we have to resist the antics of the media to stir up emotions so as to hide facts.  This is how they have ensured the African-American vote for so many years.

For example, many African-Americans have a complete disdain and even borderline hatred of President Trump.  However, they would be hard pressed to bring forward exactly what he has done in order to be hated.  What most often is brought up are things that have been heard in the media; never tangible things that they can point to.  It is this same tactic that was used in this situation.  It should be criminal what the media does because they distort the truth in order to destroy lives and stir up emotions.

Please don’t be tricked and do your own research into the issues so that you will know what is true.  In this case, what is true is that as Americans we are innocent until proven guilty!

Rev. Michael Vaughn currently serves as senior pastor at New Wineskin Church in Rochester. Contact him at

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(The views expressed on our opinion pages are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the position or viewpoint of the Minority Reporter.)