Ched Evans Should Be Able To Work Wherever He Can Find It
CHED Evans is a convicted rapist. He’s also a former Sheffield United and Wales footballer. Next week, he’s scheduled to leave prison.
Thousands of people have signed a petition calling on Sheffield United not to re-sign him.
The petition says Evans’ return to the club would be a “deep insult to the woman who was raped and to all women like her who have suffered at the hands of a rapist”.
That seems unfair. What should he do? What job is fitting for a rapist? What income level or job satisfaction are rapists permitted to have?
Karen Ingala Smith of East London Rape Crisis said, “we’re not talking about someone simply returning to work, we’re talking about someone who is lauded as a role model and hero”.
Is that his fault? And are football fans so thick and misoynistic they will pat Evans on the back and sing his name from the rafters? Why is football different and its fans in need of a moral education?
Evans is a convicted rapist whether he’s rewiring a house or scoring a goal. We don’t have to like him. We don’t have to emply him. But he should be given the chance to make amends and live his life to the best of his abilities.
Evans had sex with a woman immediately after his friend had. He never got consent. He never bothered to ask. And rightly he has been made to pay for the crime. His victim, as the petition says, is forever sullied:
The clear message to young boys and men is that you will be forgiven for this crime. Women will not be believed when they accuse you of that crime even if a court believes them. The message given is that men who commit such atrocious crimes will suffer only a small penance whilst the women they attack suffer for the rest of their lives.
Are men and young boys who like football so stupid? Are they all potential rapists who will look at Ched and say to themselves, “Well, you only get a few years chocky and you can still be good at kicking a ball. So, yeah, I’ll proably be a rapist. Ched, after all, is my role model.”
Is the money the issue? Is he earning too much? If Evans were from a filthy rich background, and never needed to work again, would that be ok?
Maybe he should pay his victim restitution? But Evans maintains his innocence, so it’s unlikely he’ll volunteer cash. Good job, then, the courts deal with such things and custodial sentences have finite terms; the villain is removed from decent society.
Ched Evans is to appeal his conviction. We should have faith in the legal process that right will be done.
Meanwhile, Evans’ lover, one Natasha Massey, has stuck by her man. She says he’s innocent. Sure, he had sex with a comatose woman behind her back. But it’s true love. Natasha sees a rosy future for she and Ched. She’s made her judgement.
You might think her a fool. But her other point is surely one we should all agree with:
“If he was a builder or a bank worker we wouldn’t be having this conversation. He’s a professional footballer and he just wants to get on the pitch and score goals. It think he should be allowed to do that.”
It’s not redemption Sheffield United offer. It’s just a job…