Sexual Harassment in federally funded research should be considered a federal crime.   This blog post originates as a comment on this blog at Forbes  "Advice For The Reformed Harasser On Rejoining The Scientific Community" by Janet D. Stemwedel.  

Her third point is way off and looks really bad in light of the fourth point.  I want to say I agree with the spirit and intention of this article and most of the points made within it.    (You know what's coming next.) 

3. Have your defenders stand down.
When you’re committed to your own rehabilitation, it’s great to have people who believe in you and want you to do well. However, if your supporters label your victims, or others concerned that you’ll go back to your old ways, as “hysterical,” as engaged in a “witch hunt,” as motivated by professional jealousy, etc., they are working against your real rehabilitation. If they minimize your harmful behavior on the basis that you meant no harm, or that you’re a hugger, or that your targets didn’t seem hurt by it at the time, they are working against your real rehabilitation. This kind of defense continues to harm people already harmed by your behavior. It also disincentives other targets from speaking up about other bad behavior that needs to be addressed.

If you’re serious about your rehabilitation, you want to address the harm you did — which means not doing more harm to your victims, even by well-meaning proxy. It also means you want to address other instances of the kind of harm you did — which means you want to make it easier, not harder, for people being harmed to speak out and get help. Vocal supporters who minimize what you did or who vilify your targets or critics are undercutting these goals. And, they may give the impression that you are deliberately using them as your proxies, which would argue against your really owning what you did or understanding why it was wrong.
4. Avoid the limelight.
While you shouldn’t hide what you did, reforming and reintegrating into your scientific community should be quiet work. Otherwise, you may give the appearance that your rehabilitation is for show, something you are doing for accolades rather than because avoiding your harmful behavior of the past is the right thing to do whether or not anyone is watching.
(Especially this passage is a bit troubling in light of the above)

Let others in your field assume leadership positions in your department or your professional society. Hand over your supervisory positions, your duties as Principal Investigator in collaborations, etc., to colleagues who can perform these tasks competently and get a professional boost for doing so. Maybe even hand these duties over to some of the people you harmed with your behavior, and ensure that they have the support they need to succeed.

My comment on this is as follows and as posted to Forbes. 

Assuming that a person was accused and found in violation of title IX OR sued and found liable in court AND punished..... I disagree with the following. 

You mention a witch hunt a term I've used plenty in reference to #astroSH... then propose what amounts to a scarlet letter for those accused, and found to have violated title IX or better yet been sued and found liable.   By a scarlet letter I mean a life time, unrecoverable, marking from which no one should defend the accused.  I, like John Adams will always defend those who need it, as he did for the soldiers in the Boston Massacre trials. It is a principle of our country that goes beyond law to give accusers the benefit of the doubt and the accused the presumption of innocence.  Since the 1770's we decided, as a nation, that after a set period we stopped the punishment and let people move on.   Even an unruly slave wasn't flogged forever.  To go backwards on that is not a win for the rights of anyone. 

Fundamentally I don't disagree with your forth point.  Someone accused SHOULD STEP DOWN, etc etc in favor of a minority or a woman.  NOT the exact person that accused them.  That would be just asking for abuse of process  of the kind many fear.  But someone from that group until they are either found to have violated Title IX or been (sued) and found liable in court OR possibly cleared of any wrongdoing.    This would mirror the court system at large where people are arrested and held for trial until cleared.  

The problem with this point comes in light of your third point.  

At what time span does the one found to have violated title IX get to get on with life?    There has to be such a point in time or we are not better than the puritans of Salem who hunted witches and put scarlet letters on people. 

My Alternative

Make sexual harassment in federally funded institutions of any kind a federal crime punishable by prison time and a hefty fine. 

Put someone who sexually harasses someone beyond a reasonable doubt in this kind of prison

Great article by the way.  I just disagree with one point. 

End quote of my comment at Forbes.

I would add here the very idea that by standing up for the principles of presumption of innocence and due process of law in court amounts to putting down the accuser or calling them a liar is absurd.  When you want life long consequences then you should at least want to SUE someone.   See my alternative and tell me with a straight face I am soft on anyone.  

The thing about what I write here is.  I actually believe the things that were complained about against Marcy, Slater, Ott, and even Tyson either did happen or could have happened. They deserve a full and rigorous investigation and if they are found to be valid the punishment should fit the crimes.  Anything from civil liability and a huge cash award to the victims to criminal charges and jail. (The one exception being the charge complainant 4 made about Marcy helping a student up to her hotel room and dropping her off that made him sound like a rapist or something.  Even the title IX investigation debunked that one.)

Where I part ways with most of the people tweeting out #astroSH, signing letters, etc is that I truly believe that our justice system gets these things right, eventually more often than not.  Court is the only thing that can or even should enforce long term consequences that follow a person around for years. 

We don't brand people anymore.
We don't pillory people anymore.
We don't lynch people anymore.
We don't tar and feather people anymore. (Graphic NSFW)

Let's not start. 

While most of her points are right on  number 3 and 4 are a step back if they become standard practice.