Herman Cain's Rich, His Accusers Are Poor. Does it Matter?

Illustration for article titled Herman Cain's Rich, His Accusers Are Poor. Does it Matter?

Sharon Bialek, the first woman to publicly accuse Herman Cain of sexual impropriety, was served eviction papers yesterday. Cain supporters are crowing that this is yet another testament to her lack of credibility, as someone desperate for money would be willing to falsely smear a man in power in hopes that her payday was imminent. But could it be that Cain was drawn to Bialek because of her position of character vulnerability?


The Chicago Tribune reports that preceding her eviction, Bialek owed $7,500 in back rent. When deputies attempted to serve an eviction notice to her yesterday, Bialek wasn't home, so the process server gave them to her 13-year-old son. Media outlets haven't been able to reach Bialek for comment.

As with the case of both Bialek and Ginger White, who accused Herman Cain of conducting a 13 year extramarital affair with her earlier this week, much speculation is directed toward the finances of the women who publicly accuse high-profile men of scandalworthy behavior.

Both Sharon Bialek and Ginger White have faced major ongoing financial problems. Both are single mothers trying to support a child in addition to themselves. Bialek was unemployed at the time of the alleged incident wherein Herman Cain acted sexually aggressive toward her, and she's unemployed now. Cain admitted to providing Ginger White with financial assistance throughout their friendship, and she's also currently unemployed. Is it possible that Bialek and White are not telling the truth, that they're opportunists, and that they would go so far as to smear the name of an innocent man in order to stay afloat financially? Sure.

But it's important to consider the oft-overlooked possibility that maybe men like Cain who stand accused of trying to use power to their romantic advantage (or abuse power over others in a sexual way) are drawn to victims or partners expressly because they're in positions of vulnerability and because no one would believe their word over the word of a wealthy, successful businessman. This isn't to say that clearly unwanted sexual harassment and a full-blown consensual sexual affair are the same thing; but a man like Cain who has a lot to lose might have had the foresight to choose a victim or partner that he was sure would never tell— or, because they're "troubled," would never be believed. Powerless people, even when armed with powerful information, are still powerless. Or so the powerful and busted think.

Of course, this is all armchair psychological speculation. It's possible that Herman Cain was moved to allegedly victimize Bialek and engage in a long, drawn out affair with White because he's got a giant ego and overestimated his ability to control information about his missteps and dalliances. Or maybe he wasn't thinking at all. But assuming that powerful men are perennially victimized by powerless and troubled female opportunists makes about as much sense as a Herman Cain stump speech.

Eviction papers served on Cain accuser [Chicago Tribune]



Of course it matters, it goes to motive.

That being said, I believe that Cain had an affair with Ginger White. I also think that should not matter, there was nothing illegal about it, they were two consenting adults. People shouldn't be so concerned with whom other people are fucking (with their consent).

I do not think Herman Cain should be President. But the reasons for that opinion have nothing to do with what he did or did not do with these women.