Sunday, September 30, 2018
How many times does it take for one person to learn the lesson that the suspected crime is not what typically creates harm to the accused, particularly for the white and wealthy. The attempted coverup causes the harm. One would think that more than anyone, a judge would have learned this lesson through observation.
Judge Kavanaugh did not.
The testimony of Dr. Linda Blasey Ford may not be sufficient to derail Judge Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the US Supreme Court. Nor may the FBI investigation. But under any objective standard Judge Kavanaugh has undermined himself.
Even knowing that temperament is a critical factor in judicial appointments, Judge Kavanaugh could not maintain civility during last week’s hearings. He was particularly rude to his female interrogators, supporting theories that this is a man who does not respect women.
Claiming to be the victim, and creating the requisite tears is a technique often used by white men of privilege to divert attention from their own inappropriate behavior.
Chief Justice Roberts must be distraught.
In addition to disrespecting the Senators, Judge Kavanaugh disrespected the rule of law. Although, or perhaps because, he was under oath at last week’s hearing, the Judge refused to answer many questions, notably around his drinking. Throwing back to Senator Amy Klobuchar her question about whether he has suffered blackouts from drinking was an effort to chisel away at her dignity. Even beer consumption questions were scorned by the nominee, though the issue is central to other allegations. His defensiveness around drinking makes some wonder not only whether Judge Kavanaugh suffers from alcoholism, but whether we were witnessing the dis-temperament of one who needs alcohol to function and perhaps had not imbibed for a couple of days – just in case a senator inquired. Covering up his drinking was a mistake. There is a line of former classmates who will attest to the Judge’s frequent inebriation sometimes to the point of vomiting. This attempted cover up may be the Judge’s undoing.
Even worse would be the discovery that anger and disrespect is Judge Kavanaugh’s natural state, unrelated to any addiction. But whatever the source, we can only hope that Judge Kavanaugh seeks whatever help he needs to disengage from his self-righteousness and recover or discover a respectful, alcohol-free self. Maybe then he will understand the significance of the human rights focus on respect and dignity.
The bottom line is that Judge Kavanaugh revealed his anger, disrespect and incivility to the country. And he quite likely lied or misled the Senate Judiciary Committee. Judge Kavanaugh has neither the temperament nor the character to sit on our highest court. The ABA should use Judge Kavanaugh's wretched display of anger as grounds to change their ranking of Judge Kavanaugh to “unqualified”.