In Tuesday's primary election, Massachusetts Democrats chose as their Senate nominee a woman who kept a clearly innocent man in prison in order to advance her political career.
Martha Coakley isn't even fit for the late Teddy Kennedy's old seat. (What is it about this particular Senate seat?)
During the daycare/child molestation hysteria of the '80s, Gerald Amirault, his mother, Violet, and sister, Cheryl, were accused of raping children at the family's preschool in Malden, Mass., in what came to be known as the second-most notorious witch trial in Massachusetts history.
The allegations against the Amiraults were preposterous on their face. Children made claims of robots abusing them, a "bad clown" who took the children to a "magic room" for sex play, rape with a 2-foot butcher knife, other acts of sodomy with a "magic wand," naked children tied to trees within view of a highway, and -- standard fare in the child abuse hysteria era -- animal sacrifices.
There was not one shred of physical evidence to support the allegations -- no mutilated animals, no magic rooms, no butcher knives, no photographs, no physical signs of any abuse on the children.
Not one parent noticed so much as unusual behavior in their children -- until after the molestation hysteria began.
There were no witnesses to the alleged acts of abuse, despite the continuous and unannounced presence of staff members, teachers, parents and other visitors at the school.
Not one student ever spontaneously claimed to have been abused. Indeed, the allegations of abuse didn't arise until the child therapists arrived.
Nor was there anything in the backgrounds of the Amiraults that fit the profile of sadistic, child-abusing monsters. Violet Amirault had started the Fells Acre Day School 18 years before the child molestation hysteria erupted.
Thousands of happy and well-adjusted students had passed through Fells Acres. Many returned to visit the school; some even attended Cheryl's wedding a few years before the inquisition began.
It's one thing to put a person in prison for a crime he didn't commit. It's another to put an entire family in prison for a crime that didn't take place.