The case of Kavanaugh vs. Ford is a matter of perspective

Is it possible that at the age of 17, while a student at Georgetown Prep, that Brett Kavanaugh forced a then 15-year-old Christine Blasey Ford down upon a bed, tried to remove her clothing, all the while turning the music up loudly and placing his hand over her mouth to drown out her cries?

Absolutely!

APP-091818-Kavanaugh-Christine-Blasey-Ford(Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford in high school)

Unless you have been living under a rock or you have been on a traditional and social media fast, by now you know that Brett Kavanaugh was nominated for a slot on the United States Supreme Court by President Donald Trump. By now, you also likely know that Kavanaugh was on the fast track to confirmation until news broke a little over a week ago that now Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, a psychologist and professor, had drafted a letter that was sent to Senator Diane Feinstein indicating that as teenagers, Kavanaugh had sexually assaulted her at a mutual friend’s home.

By now you also likely know that Feinstein bizarrely sat on the letter, and that the Senate Judiciary Committee almost gave its stamp of approval to Kavanaugh despite the fact that Dr. Blasey Ford submitted to a polygraph test–passed it–and had spoken of her traumatic event to her own psychologist during a couple’s therapy session way back in 2012.

The year 2012 is important in this essay because Kavanaugh supporters who want to believe that this is some liberal conspiracy, ignore the fact that Dr. Ford would have had to be clairvoyant to discuss this event with her own doctor six years before Kavanaugh would be tapped for a lifetime appointment to the highest court in the land.

180917161728-donald-trump-brett-kavanaugh-response-zeleny-dnt-lead-vpx-00011318-super-tease(Two accused sexual assaulters, Trump and Kavanaugh)

Kavanaugh’s supporters, like those who have supported accused and/or convicted sexual assaulters like former President Bill Clinton, movie mogul Harvey Weinstein, actor Kevin Spacey, entertainer Dr. Bill Cosby, director Roman Polanski, singer R. Kelly and countless other lecherous types through the years, now ask “where is the evidence?”

Well, as an attorney who has handled many sexual assault cases, I can tell you that most rape cases boil down to “he said, she said.” I can tell you that there are many men and women sitting in prisons across America who were convicted of rape without one ounce of scientific evidence such as DNA and because a jury believed a victim’s testimony. I can tell you that contrary to male myth, that men who boast that they are so well endowed that had they raped a girl or woman, that there would have been significant tearing or trauma to the vagina is NOT true according to dozens of trauma physicians and nurses that I have deposed who have conducted rape test kits not long after a victim is attacked.

As such, the “evidence” that Kavanaugh’s defenders seek is in plain view–Dr. Ford’s testimony!  Further, while it is true that polygraph tests are inadmissible as substantive evidence in court, such are used behind the scenes in case negotiations to determine the credibility–or lack thereof–of a witness.

But to go a step further, in addition to Dr. Ford’s testimony, there is other circumstantial evidence that tends to corroborate her allegations.

For one, the yearbook entries and writings of Brett Kavanaugh’s close friend and classmate, Mark Judge, describe the rampant drinking and Bacchanalian pursuits of their gang of friends in high school. Judge’s memoirs include a cameo by a “Bart O’Kavanaugh,” who “puked in someone’s car the other night” and “passed out on his way back from a party.”)

 

(Kavanaugh and Judge in a football photo to the left, and partying with friends at the beach on the right in the early 80s)

Cognizant that drunken revelry is a common prelude to rape, and that one’s propensity for violence is also relevant, in a court of law, such could be probed and considered as “reputation evidence.”

2DV4KTXB2M4K7FYQAGK3PEXRHI(Nota Bene–Kavanaugh’s high school senior yearbook entry, depicted above, includes the quote: “certain women should be struck regularly like gongs.”)

Additional circumstantial evidence includes yesterday’s entry from the Yale Daily News (Kavanaugh’s alma mater), which says that as an undergraduate, the judge belonged to the Delta Kappa Epsilon Fraternity, one known for its chant that “no means yes, and yes means anal.”The newspaper also noted that Kavanaugh belonged to a secret society called “Truth and Courage,” one more notoriously known as “Tits and Clits.”Again, in a court of law, such arguably could be probative of Kavanaugh’s character.

That Kavanaugh never was charged or taken to court, however, is a separate matter altogether. To understand why, first, check out the following headline from the Vice website:

20180922_020738

You see, where I differ with this headline is that patrician white males, from colonial times until this very day, have raped women, be they white women, enslaved Black women, or Native American women, often with impunity. I do not mean to suggest that men of all races do not rape–indeed they do. But for every R. Kelly that rapes and walks around free, there are infinitely more men of color of all socio-economic backgrounds, from Dr. Bill Cosby to Pookie on the corner, who are charged, convicted and sentenced to hard time for rape, whereas powerful white males routinely get passes.

Still, when a woman makes an allegation against a prominent male, rape deniers run through the following “shaming” questions: “1.Why did she have on a skirt and no panties, she must have wanted it;” 2. “Why was she at his house, apartment or dorm room that time of night because my momma told me that ain’t nothing open after midnight but a convenience store and some legs;” 3. “Why did she drink, smoke weed, pop a molly, roll beans or snort coke with that man–surely she should have known what would happen;” 4. “If it was true, why didn’t she call the police immediately?”

This last question, “why didn’t she call the police,” was even the subject of a Tweet by President Trump yesterday:

20180922_020231

What troubles me with such queries is that those doing the questioning, particularly men, quite likely are related to or know many women who have been raped or sexually assaulted. They collectively are our mothers, wives, sisters and girlfriends–many of them just may never tell you because they have listened to you defend alleged rapists without much scrutiny. Or, they have listened to you blast ribald music lyrics, like the late Tupac Shakur’s line from “I Get Around,” that ” there’s a lot of real G’s doing time, because a groupie bit the truth and told a lie.” ‘Pac was partially right, but he did not balance the equation by concluding that there’s alot of creepy men walking free, because a victim chose silence for eternity.

Victims choose silence because in courts of law and public opinion, they run the risk of being shamed and disbelieved. Dr. Blasey Ford runs the risk of being pilloried before the Senate next week, much like law Professor Anita Hill was 27 years ago during Clarence Thomas’s confirmation hearings. The senators slated to lead the questioning for the Republicans are all white males:

20180922_040647

Which leads to my conclusion, that from my perspective, I believe that Dr. Ford is telling the truth. I do not know why she did not come forward sooner, but to be frank, I do not care about that, either. You see, it’s not about politics regarding Judge Kavanaugh–elections have consequences and if Kavanaugh is not confirmed, someone equally conservative will be confirmed in due time.

No, my concern is that Kavanaugh symbolizes the privileged, patrician white male, one whose worst character traits are typically overlooked or summarily forgiven as “boys being boys”  because he, and they, have the complexion and connections for protection. Judge Kavanaugh should have to face the consequences of his conduct–the same as Clarence Thomas did in ’91–and if still confirmed, so be it. But if he is confirmed, such is yet further proof that while the Virginia Slims ad of “You’ve come a long way baby” is true, women still have so much further to go as far as being treated as equals and with respect in America.