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“There are maybe three settings where this has been shown to work… They are also fictional.”

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Bob Filner could probably benefit from some therapy, but the idea that two weeks will fix what’s wrong with him is..implausible. More to the point, though, even if we were to assume that two weeks of therapy would be enough to stop him from harassing women…he already has an extensive record of harassing women and he should resign. If he had embezzled money from the city, say, nobody would think that going into therapy so he wouldn’t do it again would be enough (even if the statute of limitations had expired and he couldn’t be charged.)

I feel like I’m howling into the void here, but again I must insist about the pernicious effects of bundling consensual and nonconsensual behavior into a single category of “sex scandals.” (This conflation is particularly damaging in a media context in which behavior as obviously trivial and irrelevant as “an unmarried Christian politician made out with some douche this one time” can be passed off a scandal.) Filner didn’t cheat on his wife with a consensual partner, which (rightly or wrongly) I don’t believe would be particularly relevant to his fitness for office. He routinely harassed his employees. He should not be in an ongoing supervisory role in public office, therapy or no therapy. And while I don’t know if anything he’s done rises to the level of a criminal violation based on state and local law authorities really should be looking into it.

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