Exposing Past Sins of Candidate


Many years ago, I was sexually assaulted by a law student I dated. There was not enough evidence to prosecute him and he got away with it. Today that same guy has a wife and kids and is running to be a judge in my town and is in a close lead in the polls. I feel tempted to speak out publicly about what he did to me to keep people from voting for him. What I would gain by doing so is possibly ruining his career and marriage, which deep in my heart, I feel is the least I can do to punish him. But I know there is such a thing as lashan hara. Under Jewish law, what can I do?



  1. I am so sorry that you experienced what you did. I hope and pray that with time you will have been able to overcome the trauma.

    If the candidate is Jewish, you should seek out a local authority to ask then what is the correct thing to do. And, if it is permissible to speak out, what to say and how to say it. If the candidate is not Jewish, there are no Halachic prohibitions of Lashon Harah involved.

    Please allow me to make what I assume will be a painful observation. The way that the civil legal system is built, you may find yourself being hounded for exposing what he did to you. And, unfortunately, there is a chance that your reputation will be destroyed by the other side. This is the unfortunate truth in such cases especially as you have no proof that would be legally presentable. That means that it will be your word against his. My feeling is that, as a potential candidate, he probably has a small army of supporters who are helping to get him elected and they will go all out to discredit what you are accusing him of. The simplest and most effective way of doing that is by discrediting you personally. The question is whether you are prepared to potentially sacrifice your professional and personal reputation in order to stop him from becoming a judge.

    I apologize if I have given the impression that there is anything acceptable or fair about what I have just written. It is neither. However, the sad truth is that you may end getting burnt up in his retaliatory fire, which might be as tragic as what he has already done to you.

    Best wishes from the AskTheRabbi.org Team