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Strauss-Kahn’s disgrace not another case of ‘men will be men’

 Dominique Strauss-Kahn resigned as International Monetary Fund chief after being charged with sexual assault in 2011.
MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP/GETTY IMAGES/FILE 2010
Dominique Strauss-Kahn resigned as International Monetary Fund chief after being charged with sexual assault in 2011.

RE “Disgraced IMF leader seeks redemption” (Page A4, Oct. 14): Are you kidding me? Dominique Strauss-Kahn has his “hidden life as a libertine” “exposed” by a criminal inquiry?

To add to the charm, the New York Times article you ran on Sunday tells of a history of “ ‘libertinage’ . . . dating from a 16th-century religious sect of French libertines.” I’m enthralled. Where can I sign up? Wait — I’m a woman.

A sexual scandal such as this affecting a female politician would be described in blunter terms, including a few synonyms for “prostitute.” Equivalent descriptors for men are scarce in our language.

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Meanwhile, the article reporting on the strategy of Strauss-Kahn’s defense team reinforces an almost sympathetic portrait of a self-described “naïve” man with “a zest for sex parties.” The word “libertine” is used six times.

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The reporters do note that powerful men who participated in the orgies did have to pay prostitutes to participate because they couldn’t find enough willing women. There’s a shock.

Instead of objectively reporting on Strauss-Kahn’s defense strategy, the writers appear to have been seduced by it.

Beth Freed

Newton