The end of summer brought about the confirmation hearings for Judge Brett Kavanaugh. The Progressive nightmare scenario is on the precipice of reality — a hard 5-4 conservative court — one seemingly willing, ready and able to roll back decades of reform. Most think "Roe" is gone — but I would argue it is far more then Roe v. Wade. In the midst of what seemed like a 51-49 party line vote to confirm, a few temporary stays have occurred.
First, Judge Kavanaugh's responses to basic questions turned to verbal cow cookies! The man had a hard time clarifying his positions on just about everything including whether Roe was settled law, or if a sitting President would be required to comply with a subpoena or if he discussed the Mueller Investigation . As badly as Kavanaugh fumbled about during his hearings, worse was yet to come.
Enter Christine Blasey Ford.
Dr. Blasey Ford has accused Mr. Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her some 35 years ago while they were both teens at a Maryland house party. Comparisons to Anita Hill, who accused Clarence Thomas of sexual harassment in 1991 have been made on the news programs for over a week and will continue for the next several weeks until Judge Kavanaugh either gets confirmed or not!
Prior to the assault allegations, there was already plenty to dislike about Mr. Kavanaugh. As I consumed more and more information about this case, and learned more about the allegations levied against Mr. Kavanaugh, I found myself struggling to keep an open mind about the case. It is very easy for me to believe Dr. Blasey Ford.
First, what sane person — that should read any male, female or any other gender — who has, by all accounts a quality, fulfilling life, would want to inject themselves into the cold civil war that is America with accusations of sexual abuse? Because I have a hard time believing someone would volunteer for death threats, harassment, humiliation and abuse of all kinds, it is easy for me to believe her.
Second — full disclosure — I want to believe her because I am not a fan of Judge Kavanaugh and in theory this could convince at least 2 of the Republicans needed to torpedo the confirmation.
My "voodoo" — that is my political instinct — tells me that Republicans will largely ignore everything Dr. Blasey Ford has to say. I would be genuinely surprised should there be at least two Republicans in the Senate that will vote no on Kavanaugh. Many are thinking Collins and Murkowski are the two most likely no votes. They are pro-choice Republicans and have said many times they would not threaten Roe. The problem with that, is they are both Republicans. Outside of a few, rare instances, their loyalty is party first, people second. There are a host of issues that a hard conservative court would rule on over the next 20-30 years, and the pressure on these two to suppress their position on Roe to push a wider agenda is heavy.
Civil rights in the form of Affirmative Action and the Voting Rights Act will be torn to pieces. Republicans have made no secret of challenge to both of these issues. In the case of the latter, the section 4(b) of the voting rights act was already ruled unconstitutional — creating all kinds of voter suppression. Republicans in Alabama gerrymandered the congressional map. In Arizona, voters who registered to vote are now being asked to prove their citizenship or their registration will be discarded at the state level. North Carolina used the ruling to create a voter ID law. Ohio, Texas and Wisconsin also used the ruling to advance measures to challenge voting rights.
Countless other issues could face the new court. LGBT rights in the form of marriage equality, healthcare and service to the nation in the military could all be facing renewed challenges, and likely to be overturned. Any hope for creating single-payer healthcare, firearms controls, women's rights, the environment, financial reforms and more — would all be a fantasy that would be hard to fathom in never never land let alone the 2030s and beyond!
Lost in the politics of the moment is that Christine Blasey Ford is a real person. Judge Kavanaugh is too. Both of these people deserve to be heard on this issue. Under proper rules of the Senate, this hearing would be scheduled to include not only Dr. Blasey Ford, but Mr. Kavanaugh, and other witnesses of the incident in question. There would be an added investigation by the FBI which would take perhaps as much as a week. All of this in an effort to discover the truth about a life-altering incident.
Truth is a nasty word today. We have come to see lying as common as breathing from Donald Trump and his demonic minions at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, and his evil enablers in the House and Senate. "Advise and Consent" is in the fire barrel along with the US Constitution. Republicans are pouring gasoline into the can and are about to strike the match.
What is more stunning to me is the way people are treating the situation. The sexual act here is one of assault. It is a crime. A woman has come forward to say that she did not consent to being touched in a sexual manner by a man. As a result Republican men in droves are questioning Dr. Blasey Ford's validity.
"Why didn't she go to the police 35 years ago?" is a common retort.
"What proof does she have?" is another refrain.
"Why didn't she tell someone, anyone back then — parents? friends?"
It is terrifying to me how many people lack empathy. I'm a white dude and I can empathize with Christine Blasey Ford. How easy is it for a 15 year old girl to come forward and describe in great detail how a boy touched her in a sexual manner? How confident would your 15 year old daughter be in 2018 let alone 1982 in coming forward now to police — particularly when the President of the United States can grab anyone by the pussy he damn well pleases according to him... I mean if the President can do that, who's going to believe your daughter?
Then there are the other questions.
What was she wearing?
Was she drinking? Taking drugs?
Was she flirting with him?
If Republicans want to make the argument "guns don't kill people, people kill people," then I am going to make the argument that clothes, alcohol, drugs and flirtation do not rape women, men rape women!
Boys will be boys is also being uttered by Kavanaugh (Trump and Roy Moore) apologists — which really got me thinking.
A few weeks ago, a story broke of hundreds upon hundreds of sexual assault cases against priests throughout Pennsylvania. This is not a new problem for the Catholic Church. Yet it continues.
No one is saying that the victims who have come forward — many of them now middle-aged men — are liars. Their stories of being sexually abused are believed. I am not hearing anything from anyone anywhere about what the boys were wearing just prior to being assaulted. I have not heard about anyone asking the men if they were drinking or taking drugs, or if they were flirting with their abusers. I certainly have not heard a single remark about "boys being boys" as an identifier for the priests who committed the "alleged" abuse on these young boys.
What's the difference? Why are these victims to believed, but Ms. Blasey Ford is a liar?
What about Leigh Corfman? She was allegedly abused by adult Roy Moore when she was 14 years old. That is pedophilia by any standard. But nearly half of the people in Alabama believed she was a liar.
How about Summer Zervos, Jessica Leeds, Rachel Crooks, Mindy McGillivrey and Natasha Stoynoff? They all reported sexual abuse and harassment at the hands of Donald Trump. Were they all lying too?
I think the reason the men who have come forward today are not being challenged by the same Republicans that challenge these women is because they are men, and their perpetrators were other men. While it might not be conscious, it seems pretty believable (and obvious) that faint-of-heart Republicans who consider homosexuality disgusting and a sin easily justify that no man would "want" to have another man touch him — however, I suspect in a lot of ways, their thinking is that a woman has to be asking for it! Don't believe me? Listen to the questions and comments I listed above again!
Some say progressive, some say liberal others say just say Democrat. Many have other names for me, but we won't repeat them here. I am a long time political junkie and former operative from New York. The writings here are my thoughts and opinions on the days' events and the world we live in — and what it should be.