Friday, October 5, 2018

Hell hath no fury like women scorned

Revised: October 6, 2018.
Want to know why so many women are outraged with the GOP's engineered process in confirming Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.  Let me spell it out.
Here is the message the GOP has sent women: "yes, we will listen to you with mock respect".  Young women, here is my grandmotherly advice.Just make sure as you are being sexually assaulted in an attempted rape that  you have a trusted  eye  witness friend of yours that is not a  friend of the attacker who can stand up in court or before 11 GOP old men and be the kind of witness that might give them the proof that would satisfy them. Otherwise you will just be dismissed with a mock sympathetic pat on the head, ignored, and sent on your way as a confused woman who mistook the identification of the wannabe rapist. Then, as you flee after fighting the attacker off, run through the rest of the party goers crowd who are  somewhere  else in the house for whom this was just another unremarkable one of many  usual beer drinking gettogethers, screaming  as you flee that so and so just tried to rape you..    Make a mental note of how you got home. Oh, by the way, text everyone you know, too, immediately.. The attack may have stuck in your brain, but just make sure it stuck in others' brains as well. You may never know if this will ever come in handy.

 As in the case of Dr. Blasey Ford, the core issue with women reporting sexual assault, what they are asking,  is that  frequently those  who are reporting such incidents are assumed to be lying or are somehow assumed to be the guilty party or are confused and mistaken. Women are demanding that those who are victims reporting sexual assault should be treated with respect and their allegations impartially investigated and fairly.

Sen.Susan  Collins (R-ME), the critical vote,  made a judgment call based on an assertion that Dr. Ford mistook an identity and there was no corroborating evidence.. Anyone listening to Dr. Ford's testimony heard her say  she traveled in Kavanaugh's  social circles and knew him from previous social gatherings.  including information about the person who introduced her to Brett Kavanaugh.  Collins joined the rest of the GOP in subscribing to a conspiracy theory that had been debunked weeks before that someone else was the attacker, with no evidence of anything.. Just a theory. No corroborating  witness, no individual proved to be that mystery man.  That  must have made those supporters of Brett Kavanaugh feel much better about themselves to believe him since it gave them the luxury of expressing their belief in the rest of Ford's  story and offer their sympathies, Yet at the same time they dismissed the key accusation, the positive I.D. 

Senator  Susan Collins gave a detailed argument of why she concluded there was no corroborative evidence and thus there  no preponderance of evidence to support Dr. Ford's accusation.. Brett Kavanaugh's testimony was more believable to her than Dr. Ford's... So in a future" he said she said situation" does that mean the  bar of preponderance of evidence will now be the new standard in an attempted rape case.?  Presumption of innocence is certainly a rule in criminal procedures as well as "beyond a reasonable doubt". as the GOP likes to assert.  However, this Senate action on Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation  is not a criminal procedure.It does not even rise to the preponderance of evidence burden placed on an accuser  in a civil case  that Sen Susan Collins cited  as her standard for drawing her conclusions.based on the evidence. Come now.  It is a matter of fair treatment to get at the truth before conclusions are made.

 Dr. Blasey Ford was not fairly treated nor was there an honest effort to get at the truth..  
While bemoaning the unfairness of the  attack on Brett Kavanaugh's reputation, an nth hour  left wing surpise,  the GOP Senators  engineered a process that was even less fair than the storied similar case in 1991 of Anita Hill's treatment in her complaint about Court nominee Clarence Thomas. 
Hill was afforded an FBI investigation before her appearnce and testimony, not a sham one after it, plus she summoned 22 witnesses.  Neither Kavanaugh nor Dr. Ford could call on witnesses, even  her therapist and husband,  she had told about the attack years before Kavanaugh was even a potential  Court nominee,  nor could she even have the person who adminstered her lie detector test testify.  Another complainant alleged that in Yale an out of control, drunken Kavanaugh had exposed himself  to her and she did have witnesses. They were not interviewed, either.. The FBI, working under the direction of the White House and from the GOP staff list did not interview any of those witnesses that could have corroborated the women's testimony. They  contacted only those they suspected or knew remembered nothing.  Therefore, since there was no corroboration, voila, neither women had a credible case.   Besides, the FBI only had a week. Of course, the week was an artificial deadline, as well, which could have been cured if the the GOP were willing to extend the time period.. 

In any case, had Kavanaugh been proved to be a liar, I suspect  the GOP was set to confirm him anyway, since the attack on Kavanaugh was some left wing conspiracy to spring Dr. Ford on him and besides, the sins of a 17 year old should not be visited on a 50 something year old, whether lies were involved later or not.  It was just the way men functioned. Boys will be boys. Assaulting girls they got drunk is not a big deal to them.  So what if  it is a big deal to their victims.  

Trump then turned this victimization upside down, telling young men these are scary times. You could be ruined by such accusations lose a big corporate job, he opines. . Sleep easy. First, the standards for a seat on the Supreme Court are much higher than usually required for positions. Sometimes a frat boy mentality is actually considered an asset in some business sectors.Second,the cards are stacked in your favor, boys.. Kavanaugh's confirmation is proof. Besides, what were you doing indulging in under age drunkenness and trying to assault girls, anyway.  Maybe a dollop of fear is not a bad thing. 

That Mitch McConnell referred to the women demonstrating in DC as "mob rule" in his remarks on the floor debate  is  a fundamental misreading by the GOP of the anger women are feeling and that will haunt the GOP for years to come. Those demonstrating were channelling the anger for many women who could not be there. In a poll taken Oct 3-4, only 36% of women approved of Kavanaugh's confirmation and did 55% of men per an Axios/Surveymonkey poll. That is a huge gender gap.  
Another poll: "A new NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll released Wednesday found that 45% believe Ford to be telling the truth, while 33% believe Kavanaugh. Both of these figures mark an increase from a poll taken ahead of their respective testimonies, but the jump is more significant for Ford: up from 32% who said they believed her, and 26% for Kavanaugh.The hearing also had an impact on Americans who had previously been unsure of whom to believe, dropping from 42% before the hearing to 22% in the week after."The GOP must think women can be taken for fools so easily. Hell hath no fury like women scorned.

 Strangely enough, confirmation of Kavanaugh  may be the best thing that could happen to Democrats in Nov 6 and 2020... The Trumpsters will feel less is now at stake in Nov 6 since they won and the non-evangelical suburban women will really be angry since they lost. It will also free Democrats to concentrate on health care and consumer issues...issues which are their strong voter appealing issues..  That theory is yet to be tested since the final vote did not take place until October 6 a month before the midterms and two years before the next general election. Polls taken now will not reflect what women are thinking after what has happened to them has soaked in.

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