Words matter, Tom, on that we agree. No one can demand that we simply “believe all accusers”, and also no one really wants to “destroy a man’s life.”
Erring on the side of the accuser, giving him or her the benefit of the doubt, especially in matters of sexual harassment & cultural marginalization, is a necessary measure to counteract decades / centuries / millennia of male patriarchy, religious dogma, racial suppression, etc.
This is a form of political correctness, I don’t dispute — which, as I stated above, is the acceptance that white men cannot say & do what they want without repercussion.
This is compatible with rule of law, with presumption of innocence. Accusers should be given the benefit of the doubt, because statistics do matter, because we have to acknowledge that the odds are historically stacked against them. Taking them seriously is the first step to investigating their claims within the boundaries & conventions of the legal system.
As for Kavanaugh, his life wasn’t destroyed, and it would not have been destroyed if he didn’t get the job, to which he felt entitled as he demonstrated in his Sept 27 performance. I’ve been rejected in several job interviews, because the interviewer didn’t like something on my resume or just didn’t like my face, or didn’t think I was the best addition to that particular institution at that particular time. Yet here I am, alive & kicking.