Former Alabama chief justice Roy Moore in Fairhope, Ala., on Sept. 25. (Brynn Anderson/AP)

Regarding the Nov. 10 front-page article “Moore accused of touching teen girl”:

It is completely unacceptable to mitigate the allegations against Roy Moore, the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate in Alabama. To hear the Alabama state auditor use a biblical reference as a defense is reprehensible. Pedophilia is a crime, not an analogy to the Holy Family. To hear other men say the accusers, with the exception of the 14-year-old, were of the age of consent, so no harm no foul, is beneath contempt. Those other women, by the way, were between the ages of 16 and 18.

We must stop protecting criminals and abusers. We must put country before party and agenda. And we must support those who need and deserve it.

Eileen McClure Nelson, Burke

If Roy Moore came forward, stated he had acted wrongfully and apologized for alleged past behavior, should he be forgiven? Were he to drop out of the election, would that be enough? What of Louis C.K., Kevin Spacey and the many others, from the famous to the nobodies, who are being accused in a tsunami of allegations of sexual abuse, some alleged behavior going back 30 or 40 years?

I ask because it is not clear just what should be done to the many, named or anonymous, who are being accused of wrongdoing. Because human nature is complex, some who are guilty will feel no guilt. Others will experience guilt and regret — but beyond that, what can they do to atone for actions (maybe only a single action) that happened perhaps years ago? Is not continuing harassment sufficient? Should every alleged perpetrator lose his job? (I write “his” because it seems that every or nearly every accused abuser is male.)

Making an angry, truthful allegation is important, but it may be easier than determining what should be done once the charges are stated in public. After the accusers speak, who will set forth the punishments? Who will carry out what some would call “justice”? If millions of abuse claims are made, what must be done to the millions of alleged abusers? The first stones having been cast, what comes next?

Doug Giebel, Big Sandy, Mont.