Thursday, September 27, 2018
It was impossible to listen to today's testimony from Dr. Christine Blasey Ford without remembering the many women who, on prior occasions, have come forward with their stories and experiences of violence, harassment and assault, only to be told that their experiences don't matter. Much has been said about the parallels between Anita Hill's testimony and the hearing today. But there are more examples.
Remember Christy Brzonkala, the brave woman who levied rape allegations against members of the Virginia Tech football team. She made her claim under the Violence Against Women Act but, in the case of U.S. v. Morrison, the U.S. Supreme Court dismissed the claim. How dare Brzonkala challenge Virginia Tech football players in a year when they were vying for a bowl game!
Remember Jessica Gonzales, the brave woman who, despite tragically losing her children, asserted claims against Castle Rock, Colorado for failing to enforce the protective order against her husband. Her case was dismissed even without an investigation; the only hearing she received was before the InterAmerican Commission on Human Rights. Here in the U.S., the official response was, how dare she claim that the government has any responsibility for acting to prevent violence?
Remember the two additional women who came forward with information about Judge Kavanaugh, who the Senate Committee declined to call to testify. How dare they offer their information when it might delay this nomination. This is a moment of deja vu because two additional women came forward to testify against Clarence Thomas but their testimony was blocked by the Judiciary Committee.
During today's hearing, Judge Kavanaugh was asked repeatedly about his high school and college drinking, and whether he might have ever drunk to excess. His response? Essentially: "I did well in school, I got into Yale, I got into Yale Law School, I got a well-qualified rating from the ABA. I'm entitled to this."
In short, it was once again, how dare she?