News

Community to Kavanaugh accuser: 'We are here, and we have your back'

Palo Altans, others voice support for Christine Blasey Ford in letters, GoFundMe campaign

In the days since Christine Blasey Ford publicly accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her while they were teenagers, possibly upending his nomination to the highest court in the land, local residents, friends and strangers alike, have started to rally around her.

They have penned public and private letters of support, shared compassionate messages on social media, launched a GoFundMe campaign to raise funds for Ford and organized an "I Believe Christine" candlelight vigil for this weekend.

"We are your neighbors, we are fellow moms in and around Palo Alto, we are members of your community; we wanted to tell you that we are here, and we have your back," Palo Alto area mothers wrote in one open letter signed by more than 1,000 people as of Wednesday afternoon. They plan to deliver the letter to Ford on Thursday.

Ford, a research psychologist at Palo Alto University, alleged in a Washington Post story published Sunday that Kavanaugh assaulted her in the early 1980s, when they were both high school students at a party in suburban Maryland. Ford, 51, said that Kavanaugh, 53, pinned her to a bed on her back, groped her, tried to pull off her clothing and put his hand over her mouth when she tried to scream.

Kavanaugh has categorically denied the allegations. Another male teenager who Ford said was in the room at the time, Mark Judge, has said he has no memory of the alleged incident. Ford told The Post that both he and Kavanaugh were "stumbling drunk" at the time.

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A group of Ford's friends sent their own letter Wednesday to Sens. Charles Grassley and Dianne Feinstein, the Senate Judiciary Committee's Republican chairman and Democratic ranking member, respectively. In the letter, they testify to her character as an involved mother, thoughtful mentor and a brave woman who has "endured a lot."

"But, her experiences have left her with a firm grasp on what is most important in life -- integrity, community and care for others -- and we have all, at one time or another, benefited from that wisdom," the letter reads.

Jamie Barnett, a Palo Alto mother whose son played on the same basketball team as Ford's, is one of about 140 people from around the Bay Area who signed the friends' letter. Barnett told the Weekly that she added her name to "show her (Ford) as well as to show the Senate Judiciary Committee and essentially the world that we are standing very staunchly with Dr. Ford."

"We trust her," she added. "We believe her."

Barnett described Ford as a caring community member and "no-nonsense person."

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"It's my strong view that she is not doing this to create drama or be a political operative or any such thing," Barnett said. "I think what you see is what you get with her."

The separate mothers' letter seeks to remind Ford "how much you telling your story does matter." They paint a picture of a tight knit local community standing behind her.

"We will bake you cookies, bring over dinner, lend a hand with your kids, help with your pets, protest in front of City Hall, sign petitions, run for office, write to the media and to lawmakers, form a human chain to protect your house, your workplace, your kids' schools --- just let us know if we can ever help," they wrote.

The GoFundMe campaign, launched Tuesday by Joanna Strober of Los Altos, surpassed its $50,000 goal in just over 24 hours. The funds will be donated to defray the cost of security Ford has reportedly hired since going public with her allegations this weekend and other "personal needs" of her family, the online campaign states.

Ford's lawyers said in a statement Tuesday that "vicious harassment," including death threats, email hacking and online impersonation, forced her and her family to leave their Palo Alto home.

The GoFundMe money will be withdrawn directly by Ford's family, Strober wrote on the campaign page. The fundraiser's organizers are in touch with Ford's "team," which has "specifically stated that funds are needed for this purpose."

"We need to protect the voices of brave people who speak out - especially when they are part of our community," the page description reads.

In an update posted to the GoFundMe page on Wednesday evening, Strober wrote that "Ford is extremely grateful for your donations and specifically said: 'My kids will be so happy to be home because of you all.'"

Strober did not respond to an interview request. The GoFundMe is sponsored by Ford's "neighbors and colleagues," the page states.

Another GoFundMe campaign launched by a Georgetown University law professor has raised close to $130,000 for security costs. The organizers plans to donate any extra funds to women's organizations and/or into an account to cover similar costs "incurred in comparable situations."

Several advocacy and political organizations, including Orchard City Indivisible, Enough Is Enough Voter Project, Santa Clara County Democratic Club Women's Caucus, Together We Will - Palo Alto, Mountain View & Surrounding Areas, Families Belong Together San Jose and Women's March San Jose, are organizing the candlelight vigil for Sunday, Sept. 23, from 8-9 p.m. at the corner of El Camino Real and Galvez Street/Embarcadero Road, adjacent to Stanford Stadium and Town & Country Village.

UltraViolet, a national women's advocacy organization, has commissioned a plane to fly over Palo Alto on Thursday at 11 a.m. with the message: "THANK YOU CHRISTINE. WE HAVE YOUR BACK."

In a statement Thursday, Palo Alto University called Ford's decision to come forward "courageous, especially in the context of the political discussions around the appointment of leaders to our country's highest court."

Ford is a "valued and highly respected" member of the Palo Alto University community, the university said in the statement, which also lists resources for sexual violence survivors, friends and family.

"As a university dedicated to the study and practice of psychology and counseling, we are especially attuned to the challenges and consequences of experiencing trauma, and the courage it requires to speak publicly about that experience," the statement reads. "And, as an institution of higher learning, we understand the importance of providing service to society and participating actively in civic life."

Meanwhile, Ford's allegations have thrown the all-but-sure confirmation process into deeply partisan uncertainty, with updates making breaking news daily. Both Ford and Kavanaugh have indicated they are willing to testify in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee, with hearings set for Monday, but Ford's lawyers have demanded that the FBI first conduct an investigation.

"A full investigation by law enforcement officials will ensure that the crucial facts and witnesses in this matter are assessed in a non-partisan manner, and that the Committee is fully informed before conducting any hearing or making any decisions," her lawyers said in a statement Tuesday.

President Donald Trump told reporters Tuesday that he believed the furor over the allegations to be "very unfair" to Kavanaugh and that it’s "very hard for me to imagine that anything happened." He's open, however, to giving Ford the chance to testify.

"If she shows up, that would be wonderful," he said. "If she doesn’t show up, that would be unfortunate."

Grassley has refused to delay Monday's hearings and set 10 a.m. Friday as the deadline for Ford's lawyers to respond to his request for her to speak to the Judiciary Committee, stating it would be a "disservice" to Ford, Kavanaugh and the "American people" to further delay the hearing.

On Thursday, The New York Times reported that Ford told the Senate Judiciary Committee that she "would be prepared to testify next week," as long as senators offer "terms that are fair and which ensure her safety," according to an email her lawyers sent to committee staff members.

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Community to Kavanaugh accuser: 'We are here, and we have your back'

Palo Altans, others voice support for Christine Blasey Ford in letters, GoFundMe campaign

by Elena Kadvany / Palo Alto Weekly

Uploaded: Wed, Sep 19, 2018, 4:48 pm
Updated: Thu, Sep 20, 2018, 11:57 am

In the days since Christine Blasey Ford publicly accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her while they were teenagers, possibly upending his nomination to the highest court in the land, local residents, friends and strangers alike, have started to rally around her.

They have penned public and private letters of support, shared compassionate messages on social media, launched a GoFundMe campaign to raise funds for Ford and organized an "I Believe Christine" candlelight vigil for this weekend.

"We are your neighbors, we are fellow moms in and around Palo Alto, we are members of your community; we wanted to tell you that we are here, and we have your back," Palo Alto area mothers wrote in one open letter signed by more than 1,000 people as of Wednesday afternoon. They plan to deliver the letter to Ford on Thursday.

Ford, a research psychologist at Palo Alto University, alleged in a Washington Post story published Sunday that Kavanaugh assaulted her in the early 1980s, when they were both high school students at a party in suburban Maryland. Ford, 51, said that Kavanaugh, 53, pinned her to a bed on her back, groped her, tried to pull off her clothing and put his hand over her mouth when she tried to scream.

Kavanaugh has categorically denied the allegations. Another male teenager who Ford said was in the room at the time, Mark Judge, has said he has no memory of the alleged incident. Ford told The Post that both he and Kavanaugh were "stumbling drunk" at the time.

A group of Ford's friends sent their own letter Wednesday to Sens. Charles Grassley and Dianne Feinstein, the Senate Judiciary Committee's Republican chairman and Democratic ranking member, respectively. In the letter, they testify to her character as an involved mother, thoughtful mentor and a brave woman who has "endured a lot."

"But, her experiences have left her with a firm grasp on what is most important in life -- integrity, community and care for others -- and we have all, at one time or another, benefited from that wisdom," the letter reads.

Jamie Barnett, a Palo Alto mother whose son played on the same basketball team as Ford's, is one of about 140 people from around the Bay Area who signed the friends' letter. Barnett told the Weekly that she added her name to "show her (Ford) as well as to show the Senate Judiciary Committee and essentially the world that we are standing very staunchly with Dr. Ford."

"We trust her," she added. "We believe her."

Barnett described Ford as a caring community member and "no-nonsense person."

"It's my strong view that she is not doing this to create drama or be a political operative or any such thing," Barnett said. "I think what you see is what you get with her."

The separate mothers' letter seeks to remind Ford "how much you telling your story does matter." They paint a picture of a tight knit local community standing behind her.

"We will bake you cookies, bring over dinner, lend a hand with your kids, help with your pets, protest in front of City Hall, sign petitions, run for office, write to the media and to lawmakers, form a human chain to protect your house, your workplace, your kids' schools --- just let us know if we can ever help," they wrote.

The GoFundMe campaign, launched Tuesday by Joanna Strober of Los Altos, surpassed its $50,000 goal in just over 24 hours. The funds will be donated to defray the cost of security Ford has reportedly hired since going public with her allegations this weekend and other "personal needs" of her family, the online campaign states.

Ford's lawyers said in a statement Tuesday that "vicious harassment," including death threats, email hacking and online impersonation, forced her and her family to leave their Palo Alto home.

The GoFundMe money will be withdrawn directly by Ford's family, Strober wrote on the campaign page. The fundraiser's organizers are in touch with Ford's "team," which has "specifically stated that funds are needed for this purpose."

"We need to protect the voices of brave people who speak out - especially when they are part of our community," the page description reads.

In an update posted to the GoFundMe page on Wednesday evening, Strober wrote that "Ford is extremely grateful for your donations and specifically said: 'My kids will be so happy to be home because of you all.'"

Strober did not respond to an interview request. The GoFundMe is sponsored by Ford's "neighbors and colleagues," the page states.

Another GoFundMe campaign launched by a Georgetown University law professor has raised close to $130,000 for security costs. The organizers plans to donate any extra funds to women's organizations and/or into an account to cover similar costs "incurred in comparable situations."

Several advocacy and political organizations, including Orchard City Indivisible, Enough Is Enough Voter Project, Santa Clara County Democratic Club Women's Caucus, Together We Will - Palo Alto, Mountain View & Surrounding Areas, Families Belong Together San Jose and Women's March San Jose, are organizing the candlelight vigil for Sunday, Sept. 23, from 8-9 p.m. at the corner of El Camino Real and Galvez Street/Embarcadero Road, adjacent to Stanford Stadium and Town & Country Village.

UltraViolet, a national women's advocacy organization, has commissioned a plane to fly over Palo Alto on Thursday at 11 a.m. with the message: "THANK YOU CHRISTINE. WE HAVE YOUR BACK."

In a statement Thursday, Palo Alto University called Ford's decision to come forward "courageous, especially in the context of the political discussions around the appointment of leaders to our country's highest court."

Ford is a "valued and highly respected" member of the Palo Alto University community, the university said in the statement, which also lists resources for sexual violence survivors, friends and family.

"As a university dedicated to the study and practice of psychology and counseling, we are especially attuned to the challenges and consequences of experiencing trauma, and the courage it requires to speak publicly about that experience," the statement reads. "And, as an institution of higher learning, we understand the importance of providing service to society and participating actively in civic life."

Meanwhile, Ford's allegations have thrown the all-but-sure confirmation process into deeply partisan uncertainty, with updates making breaking news daily. Both Ford and Kavanaugh have indicated they are willing to testify in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee, with hearings set for Monday, but Ford's lawyers have demanded that the FBI first conduct an investigation.

"A full investigation by law enforcement officials will ensure that the crucial facts and witnesses in this matter are assessed in a non-partisan manner, and that the Committee is fully informed before conducting any hearing or making any decisions," her lawyers said in a statement Tuesday.

President Donald Trump told reporters Tuesday that he believed the furor over the allegations to be "very unfair" to Kavanaugh and that it’s "very hard for me to imagine that anything happened." He's open, however, to giving Ford the chance to testify.

"If she shows up, that would be wonderful," he said. "If she doesn’t show up, that would be unfortunate."

Grassley has refused to delay Monday's hearings and set 10 a.m. Friday as the deadline for Ford's lawyers to respond to his request for her to speak to the Judiciary Committee, stating it would be a "disservice" to Ford, Kavanaugh and the "American people" to further delay the hearing.

On Thursday, The New York Times reported that Ford told the Senate Judiciary Committee that she "would be prepared to testify next week," as long as senators offer "terms that are fair and which ensure her safety," according to an email her lawyers sent to committee staff members.

Comments

Eila Hughes
Registered user
University South
on Sep 20, 2018 at 6:12 am
Eila Hughes , University South
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 6:12 am

I'm glad to hear Professor Blasey Ford has a good support system.

I also hope that Judge Kavanaugh, his wife and young girls also have support at this time. [Portion removed.]

I believe that the SC vote should move forward however and that the accusation, while certainly shocking, cannot be used in evaluating Kavanaugh's suitability because it lacks fundamental concrete elements. It's impossible to ascertain its level of truth.

It's important to educate young girls, and boys really, to come forward if they are assaulted or harassed in any way. Sadly many victims of assault or bullying do feel shame or do not trust their parents or teachers enough to confide in them.


DuvMom
Crescent Park
on Sep 20, 2018 at 6:35 am
DuvMom, Crescent Park
on Sep 20, 2018 at 6:35 am
Former CA Resident
Midtown
on Sep 20, 2018 at 7:10 am
Former CA Resident, Midtown
on Sep 20, 2018 at 7:10 am
full and fair
Fairmeadow
on Sep 20, 2018 at 8:04 am
full and fair, Fairmeadow
on Sep 20, 2018 at 8:04 am

Senator Grassley on the need for a full and fair FBI investigation before the senate meets...

...for Anita Hill.

Web Link Grassley demanded and supported a full FBI investigation.

This nomination also deserves a full FBI investigation of these new allegations. Why hide things and rush without complete information?

What are Grassley and Kavanaugh hiding?

This is one of the most rushed nominations ever.

Call all potential witnesses.

What are they hiding?


Resident
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Sep 20, 2018 at 8:06 am
Resident, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Sep 20, 2018 at 8:06 am

This worries me big time. The assumption that anyone making a sexual claim against anyone is believed without question and not only believed but rewarded unconditionally makes me wonder about mindset of those who appear to be able to think any deeper than believing everything they are told.

There are many instances of women making sexual claims against someone who eventually admit they are lying or exaggerating and how can we believe this coming out at such a strategic time after so many years. Childhood memories can be distorted and until or unless we know more I won't believe unquestionably.


Hollywood Daze
College Terrace
on Sep 20, 2018 at 8:10 am
Hollywood Daze, College Terrace
on Sep 20, 2018 at 8:10 am
Mkara
Crescent Park
on Sep 20, 2018 at 8:20 am
Mkara, Crescent Park
on Sep 20, 2018 at 8:20 am

[Portion removed.]

How complicated is this? Not very.

A teenage girl in the 80s was assaulted by another teenager at a boozy party.

People were talking about it in their peer group.

He moved on.

Over the years, she confided in some people.

Now this guy is being vetted for SCOTUS.

She knows he’s not temperamentally qualified because he attacked her, violently.

She struggles with whether to come forward.

She’s ‘outed’ by the media.

She comes forward.

She’s hounded out of town by the media, her fellow Palo Altans, and by anonymous, scary actors (some of them posing as Palo Altans).

The only thing unique about this is that her attacker is now a federal judge.

Otherwise this would just be another tragic episode that one person buries and the other person carries.


i_like_good_people
Registered user
Professorville
on Sep 20, 2018 at 8:49 am
i_like_good_people, Professorville
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 8:49 am
Eila Hughes
Registered user
University South
on Sep 20, 2018 at 9:45 am
Eila Hughes , University South
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 9:45 am

@Mkara

You're right; it's not complicated.

Ever see "TO Kill a Mockingbird?"

Once upon a time in America people formed real lynch mobs and hanged men because of unsubstantiated stories.

Our nation rests on a presumption of innocence.

Presumption of innocence.

I hope our schools still teach and instill these basic American values in our children.



TheVoiceofGod
Registered user
Community Center
on Sep 20, 2018 at 11:15 am
TheVoiceofGod, Community Center
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 11:15 am
Alexa
Registered user
Mountain View
on Sep 20, 2018 at 11:23 am
Alexa, Mountain View
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 11:23 am

I am saddened by the comments above that doubt Professor Blasey Ford's veracity or dismiss the incident as high school high jinks. Obviously, none of these posters have been sexually assaulted or have sisters, mothers, daughters or friends who have been. I have been harassed many times, although not assaulted, but have friends who have been raped. Rape and attempted rape leave deep scars on the psyche long after the physical wounds heal. Those who dismiss this disclosure as a political stunt clearly do not understand the moral and ethical imperative we should all have in "doing the right thing." Professor Blasey Ford suspected that her disclosure would subject her to ridicule and harassment, and acted anyway. However,the attacks on her children are beyond despicable. Get a life people. Please remember what your mothers and fathers taught you about fair play and respect for others.


What Will They Do Next
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Sep 20, 2018 at 11:40 am
What Will They Do Next, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 11:40 am
An investigation is in order.
Registered user
Duveneck/St. Francis
on Sep 20, 2018 at 11:44 am
An investigation is in order., Duveneck/St. Francis
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 11:44 am

I hope that Ms.Ford's description of events is investigated fairly as she has requested. I hope that the outcome of this investigation is considered in deliberations toward Judge Kavanaugh's approval. Attempted rape is a crime. Being young and drunk is no excuse. If the investigation confirms that Judge Kavanaugh did this, he does not belong on highest court of the land.

Thank you, Dr. Ford, for summoning the courage to offer your story.


Novelera
Registered user
Midtown
on Sep 20, 2018 at 12:14 pm
Novelera, Midtown
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 12:14 pm

From what I've heard, the main issue is not whether Kavanaugh did what Ms. Ford said but Kavanaugh lying about it. THIS is what pundits say disqualifies him for the Supremes.


Aletheia
Registered user
Green Acres
on Sep 20, 2018 at 1:28 pm
Aletheia, Green Acres
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 1:28 pm
bjc
Registered user
Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Sep 20, 2018 at 2:28 pm
bjc, Leland Manor/Garland Drive
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 2:28 pm

Prof. Ford,
Thank you for your courage. Trump's America is a tough place to be a citizen who believes in civic responsibility. I am so sorry that you experienced the trauma of that attempted rape while still a child, I'm so sorry that it has cost you such troubles. It shouldn't have to be so hard to speak up for what is right. Good on you for being so brave, and thank you for speaking out.


Curmudgeon
Registered user
Downtown North
on Sep 20, 2018 at 5:05 pm
Curmudgeon, Downtown North
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 5:05 pm

"I believe that the SC vote should move forward however and that the accusation, while certainly shocking, cannot be used in evaluating Kavanaugh's suitability because it lacks fundamental concrete elements. It's impossible to ascertain its level of truth."

I believe that Kavanaugh's SC vote should be canceled immediately and forever, and another candidate considered. There are many other qualified jurists out here.

Our top court deserves only the best of the best. Others may, of course, disagree. And apparently many do.


"Our nation rests on a presumption of innocence."

Nominally true, in criminal trials, which this proceeding is not. Kavanaugh is up for a position which should command the highest respect of all citizens. He is instead tainted. If he were a patriot, he would gracefully withdraw his name.


What Will They Do Next
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Sep 20, 2018 at 5:19 pm
What Will They Do Next, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 5:19 pm
What Will They Do Next
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Sep 20, 2018 at 5:20 pm
What Will They Do Next, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 5:20 pm

Thank you for being brave, Professor Ford. This is a test.


TresTrue
Registered user
Barron Park
on Sep 20, 2018 at 5:27 pm
TresTrue, Barron Park
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 5:27 pm
What Will They Do Next
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Sep 20, 2018 at 5:33 pm
What Will They Do Next, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 5:33 pm

Alinsky's Rules for Radicals...# 13 Pick the target (Kavanaugh) freeze it, polarize it and personalize it. #6 A good tactic is one your people enjoy (no further commentary necessary). # 11 If you push a negative hard and deep enough it will break through into it's counterside. # 8 Keep the pressure on. # 10 The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure on the opposition.

Does this sound like what is going on ? Time to take the blinders off.


What Will They Do Next
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Sep 20, 2018 at 5:36 pm
What Will They Do Next, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 5:36 pm
Eila Hughes
Registered user
University South
on Sep 20, 2018 at 7:21 pm
Eila Hughes , University South
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 7:21 pm

“Atticus, you must be wrong."

"How's that?"

"Well, most folks seem to think they're right and you're wrong. . ."

"They're certainly entitled to think that, and they're entitled to full respect for their opinions," said Atticus, "but before I can live with other folks I've got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn't abide by majority rule is a person's conscience.”
― Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird


What Will They Do Next
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Sep 20, 2018 at 7:54 pm
What Will They Do Next, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 7:54 pm
What Will They Do Next
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Sep 20, 2018 at 7:58 pm
What Will They Do Next, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 7:58 pm

@ Novelera......and the pundits are certain Kavanaugh lied? And they can prove that how ? What if Ford is lying ? Can you wrap your head around that ? Could it be possible ? Think about it.....


JR McDugan
Registered user
Palo Verde
on Sep 20, 2018 at 8:28 pm
JR McDugan, Palo Verde
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 8:28 pm

I support Ms. Ford completely and I admire her courage, but flying a plane over town is not likely to rally supporters to her cause. Palo Alto skies are already outrageously congested thanks to SFO routing planes over Santa Clara County, and adding yet another aircraft to the mix will just cause more headache for residents. Please rally support for Ms. Ford and hold Washington accountable, but do it on the ground!


kapi
Registered user
another community
on Sep 20, 2018 at 9:08 pm
kapi, another community
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 9:08 pm

To “Resident,” who wrote: “There are many instances of women making sexual claims against someone who eventually admit they are lying or exaggerating and how can we believe this coming out at such a strategic time after so many years.”
Have you done your homework? Instances of false reporting of rape are actually extremely low. And, no wonder; it is frightening and dangerous for people in Ford’s shoes to come out publicly, in this case resulting in death threats and other forms of intimidation.

I can’t help thinking that if Kavanaugh were accused of murder, we wouldn’t be having the same national conversation. We are talking about the highest judicial office in the land; shouldn’t we be asking more of our nominees than a simple “innocent until proven guilty”?


kapi
Registered user
another community
on Sep 20, 2018 at 9:09 pm
kapi, another community
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 9:09 pm

To “Resident,” who wrote: “There are many instances of women making sexual claims against someone who eventually admit they are lying or exaggerating and how can we believe this coming out at such a strategic time after so many years.”
Have you done your homework? Instances of false reporting of rape are actually extremely low. And, no wonder; it is frightening and dangerous for people in Ford’s shoes to come out publicly, in this case resulting in death threats and other forms of intimidation.
I can’t help thinking that if Kavanaugh were accused of murder, we wouldn’t be having the same national conversation. We are talking about the highest judicial office in the land; shouldn’t we be asking more of our nominees than a simple “innocent until proven guilty”?


Curmudgeon
Registered user
Downtown North
on Sep 20, 2018 at 10:34 pm
Curmudgeon, Downtown North
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 10:34 pm

"This nomination also deserves a full FBI investigation of these new allegations. Why hide things and rush without complete information? What are Grassley and Kavanaugh hiding?"

The truth. Grassley is afraid to know what the FBI might find out; Kavanaugh knows what the FBI would find out.

If you don't want the answer, don't ask the question. It's that simple.


Curmudgeon
Registered user
Downtown North
on Sep 20, 2018 at 10:40 pm
Curmudgeon, Downtown North
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2018 at 10:40 pm

"Thank you for being brave, Professor Ford. This is a test."

It is indeed a test--of Ms. Ford's courage and of the nation's commitment to the integrity of its highest court.

Many thanks to @"What Will They Do Next" for bringing that to our attention.

We got your back, Ms. Ford.


i_like_good_people
Registered user
Professorville
on Sep 21, 2018 at 8:05 am
i_like_good_people, Professorville
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 8:05 am

Please stop posting comments about assault and memory unless you have personally been assaulted and personally have memory of it OR you are a professional with expertise in it.

I remember the man, the season, the setting, the shocking abruptness, the throwdown, the physical pain, the blinding recognition of what was happening, the hand over my mouth, the other hand gripping my wrist, his silence, his finish, my shame. I remember cleaning myself afterward and walking into the dark night. I remember the first time I told my therapist.

In other words I remember pretty much everything except the date.


Alexa
Registered user
Mountain View
on Sep 21, 2018 at 9:34 am
Alexa, Mountain View
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 9:34 am

@i_like_good_people: You win. I'd didn't want to share my personal experience, but here it is. I have been stalked by three different men in my lifetime. One was a former finance. One was a manager in my office. The other was from Match.com. Those unsettling experiences gave me nightmares for just a few months. I have also been in a date rape situation. I fought him off and he was shocked at me defending myself and left my home rather quickly. And why did I let him into the house in the first place? Because we had gone to an charity event at a local museum. I was very dressed up, in a sexy, but classy dress. He took me home and I knew him well enough to invite him in for coffee before his long drive home. He took it as an invitation to pin me on my sofa with his 200-lb body. At first, he interpreted my protesting as foreplay and started to aggressively grab parts of my body. It wasn't until I screamed loud enough for the neighbors in my townhouse to hear that he got off of me and left. I still remember every detail, twenty years later. And I do know women who have been much more seriously assaulted. So stop pontificating about a subject you clearly do not understand or empathize with.


i_like_good_people
Registered user
Professorville
on Sep 21, 2018 at 9:58 am
i_like_good_people, Professorville
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 9:58 am
Alexa
Registered user
Mountain View
on Sep 21, 2018 at 10:26 am
Alexa, Mountain View
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 10:26 am
i_like_good_people
Professorville

Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 10:30 am
Name hidden, Professorville

Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 10:30 am

Due to violations of our Terms of Use, comments from this poster are only visible to registered users who are logged in. Use the links at the top of the page to Register or Login.


Alexa
Registered user
Mountain View
on Sep 21, 2018 at 11:39 am
Alexa, Mountain View
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 11:39 am

@i_like_people. I support Prof. Blasey Ford. I support you in your recovery. What I don't support are misinterpretations of my words. Best of luck.


S Brady
Registered user
Los Altos Hills
on Sep 21, 2018 at 1:02 pm
S Brady, Los Altos Hills
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 1:02 pm

However this turns out.....

1) I do not support a judicial system where a person is found guilty based on one person's word without any supporting evidence, without a statement, with basically nothing but what the media is reporting.

2) I would never go to, or recommend a friend might go, to any psychologist who does not believe that people can change for the better over 36 years. What is the point of being a therapist if there is no possibility of progress and change?

3) If she felt strongly about this situation, why not go directly to Kavanaugh, with someone else present, and ask him if he has changed? She has chosen a damaging route for him and herself. First, do no harm. It didn't need to be this way. It should not have been done this way.

4) I did things as a kid, and as a teen that I later felt sorry about and I would NEVER do again. That is sometimes how kids/teens learn life lessons. I think she might not let her daughter go alone to a party where there are drinking male teens. Right? Well, then, why couldn't he say (if this happened) that he learned a lesson as well? Do only women learn lessons, and men don't? To my mind we all need to respond to an accuser.

A sad situation not matter how you look at it. Sad for all women, sad for all men, sad for the judicial system, sad for political divide, and sad for the country.



Nayeli
Registered user
Midtown
on Sep 21, 2018 at 1:16 pm
Nayeli, Midtown
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 1:16 pm

It is baffling that ANYONE would "believe" someone that they do not know on the basis of a recent allegation from an event that supposedly happened 36 years ago. This really says more about the mentality of highly political individuals than it does the desire for truth. People believe him/her more often because of their ideology and political goals than the desire for truth.

It is a shame, really.


kapi
Registered user
another community
on Sep 21, 2018 at 1:23 pm
kapi, another community
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 1:23 pm

@S Brady: I am very curious: if Kavanaugh were accused of attempting to murder someone back when he was an older teen, would you still favor a neutral posture towards his nomination as a Supreme Court justice? I’m not asking whether or not he should be convicted or jailed. I’m asking whether or not he should be considered for a lifelong position on the highest court on the land. It seems to me that those positions should go to people who without a doubt are of impeccable character. Even when they were younger.


Nayeli
Registered user
Midtown
on Sep 21, 2018 at 1:37 pm
Nayeli, Midtown
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 1:37 pm

@ i_like_good_people - I agree with what you're saying about remembering the event. However, I can remember the date too. I can remember the next day...the day after that...and days and weeks that followed. The terrors of reality from such an event is burned into the subconscious.

This alleged event took place 36 years ago and before I was even born.

However, in 36 years, I might eventually forget the date of my own horrible experience. Yet, I would still be able to remember other things that can help me pinpoint the date.

I will remember the day of the week. I will remember the time of day. I will remember that exact location. I will remember who was there. I will (unfortunately) remember the face, touch, smells and, yes, the name of my attacker. I will remember trying to maintain my composure and even the assignment that I struggled to complete in school during the following school day.

I think that this is true of almost every victim. Of course, the details of this particular alleged assault aren't particularly clear. We've learned very few details. Apparently, this wasn't as dramatic as what many of us have experienced.

For instance, one colleague indicated that she had not stepped forward before because she said "wasn’t an actual rape it’s not going to do any good." Web Link

My issue is that this should be understood to only be an ALLEGATION. Society cannot simply accept an accusation as "fact" simply because she's a woman. In this country, people are still "innocent" until proven guilty even if the accusation is vile and the accuser is a woman.


Nayeli
Registered user
Midtown
on Sep 21, 2018 at 1:57 pm
Nayeli, Midtown
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 1:57 pm

@ kapi - I know that this wasn't addressed to me, but please permit me to provide my thoughts.

You asked, "If Kavanaugh were accused of attempting to murder someone back when he was an older teen, would you still favor a neutral posture towards his nomination as a Supreme Court justice?"

An accusation is just that -- merely an accusation. The problem with this particular accusation is the TIMING. It didn't come forward until this week -- even after his appearance before the judiciary committee.

If we are going to take justice seriously, then we must follow the law and the blind justice that it tries to establish.

In this sense, Kavanaugh is still "innocent." The only thing that has changed is that a woman has brought an accusation about an alleged event that supposedly took place 36 years ago.

No one should be expected to believe this woman if we weren't there. Unfortunately, there are people who want to believe the accuser or the accused for purposes of political ideology. The irony is that some people almost WANT it to be true if only to destroy a nomination that they didn't support anyway.

If we aren't careful, such accusations could become a weapon.

I don't support Gavin Newsome. Yet, I would still give him the benefit of the doubt if he faced a similar accusation. If someone came up with an accusation against him a week before the gubernatorial election that accused him of sexual assault as a teenager more than three decades ago, does that mean that voters are supposed to reject him?

Instead, the better thing to do is let justice have its place.

Unfortunately, in cases like this, many highly political people are more concerned about a conviction in the Court of Public Opinion than any sort of search for truth. After all, a reputation can be marred with just a single accusation. A reputation might never be repaired because there will always be someone who believes and spreads it without fear of repercussions.

In this case, Brett Kavanaugh has apparently lived a stellar life outside of the one alleged incident at an alleged drunken teenage party on an alleged evening that allegedly took place 36 years ago -- of which he and his also-accused friend deny ever took place.

At this point, most Democrats were going to vote "nay" anyway. The rest of the votes should only depend upon what he has been proven to have done in his life and not simply because someone steps forward and said that a teenage Kavanaugh groped her 36 years ago.


m2grs
Registered user
Midtown
on Sep 21, 2018 at 3:01 pm
m2grs, Midtown
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 3:01 pm

@Nayeli,

The timing is deliberately orchestrated the the Democrats. It is not the fault of Donald Trump or Republican Senators. Senator Feinstein got the information months earlier. She chose to fire the political torpedo at the closing of the hearing process. Mrs. Ford and her supporters should not blame Chuck Grassley. They should blame Feinstein and her team. Everything has a process, procedure and deadline.

But really what is the outcome Democrats, or Mrs. Ford and her supporters want? Let's discuss some of them.

(1) Can the accusation be proven? No it cannot. Let's be realistic. There is no way this can be proven.

(2) Even if people think it happened, would it disqualify judge Kavanaugh? No it does not. 36 years of outstanding experience speaks a lot about the man. It's just common sense. We don't destroy a person simply because he or she made a small mistake in teenage years. It's not American.

(3) Is there anyone on Donald Trump's candidate list that are more moderate, less conservative, and better for Democrats' causes? No there is none. Check it out yourself. There are some true right-wing judges on the list.

(4) Can Democrats block supreme justice selection for the full two years, until next presidential election? No they won't. Never happened, never will. It'd be a party self-annihilation if they try.

(5) Will this issue help Democrats in November? No it will not. On the contrary it will help energizing Republicans and those who are offended by the political mob lynching attempt.





kapi
Registered user
another community
on Sep 21, 2018 at 3:07 pm
kapi, another community
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 3:07 pm

@nayeli: You speak of blind "justice" in its classic Western form--yet, as we all know, justice has often been ill-served in this country, especially for persons of color as well as for women, and, unfortunately, for survivors of sexual assault. I hope I don't need to dig out statistics about how few perpetrators of sexual assault are EVER punished for it; but it is a very, very low number. And roughly 96% of accusations are NOT found to be false or frivolous ones. So, the question remains: Do YOU wish to see someone sitting on the highest court in the land, for a lifetime appointment, accused of this crime and without even a full FBI investigation into the matter? I for one do not. The language of "innocent until proven guilty" was designed for (and works reasonably well for) decisions about when someone should be criminally punished. It does NOT work well for decisions about positions of power such as SCOTUS. The "blind justice" you promote is, it turns out, not so blind when it comes to survivors of sexual assault. As for me, I'll choose to go with the 96% odds that the accusation has some degree of merit. If you want to play the reverse odds, that's up to you. But I expect more from my government and its leaders; I expect them to take accusations such as this one with all due seriousness and not write it off to a political power play without at least giving it a thorough, FBI-led investigation.


i_like_good_people
Registered user
Professorville
on Sep 21, 2018 at 3:38 pm
i_like_good_people, Professorville
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 3:38 pm

@alexa is not a real person. Real people don’t pick fake fights with others just to create drama.

The bot phenomenon is so rampant in local papers...part of the RuGOP strategy being revealed this minute in the NYT.

Christine is a real person though, and she’s going through hell to ensure that our children have decent laws protecting them.


Nayeli
Registered user
Midtown
on Sep 21, 2018 at 5:06 pm
Nayeli, Midtown
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 5:06 pm

@ kapi - As a "person of color," an immigrant, a woman, and a survivor of sexual assault, I think that I do have keen insight on what people like me go through in terms of "justice."

As you've pointed out, I certainly understand that many perpetrators never face consequences for their crimes just as I also know that some people aren't truthful with allegations or denials too.

The fact that sexual crimes are a problem doesn't change the fact that a person is not necessarily guilty simply because one person says that he is.

In this case, a woman stepped forward and made an accusation against a man about an event that she claims happened 36 years ago.

She says that he didn't "rape" her but that something happened (although the specific details aren't entirely clear). She also said that he was joined with a friend. He says that this isn't true. The friend says that this isn't true.

Are we supposed to "take sides" when it comes to people that we don't know?

I feel that it would be exceptionally foolish to simply "believe the woman" because she is a woman. It would be worse -- dishonest and imprudent -- to stand by the accuser's side simply because it would be motivated by a desired advancement a political goal.

Like I said, it would be wrong for anyone to publicly convict Gavin Newsome in the Court of Public Opinion if someone accused him of sexual impropriety during his high school years (more than three decades ago) but it wasn't revealed until a week before the upcoming gubernatorial election.

The #MeToo movement cannot ignore due process. A person should not be publicly lynched on the basis of an accusation. This is true no matter if the accused is Brett Kavanaugh, Gavin Newsome, Bill Clinton or Asia Argento.


Nayeli
Registered user
Midtown
on Sep 21, 2018 at 5:33 pm
Nayeli, Midtown
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 5:33 pm

@ kapi - I know that you're saying that roughly 5% of accusations are found to have no merit. I think that this stat is based upon accusations deemed by police to have no merit. Of those that the police feel have merit, many of those end up with prosecutions without a finding of guilt. Thus, the "5%" rate isn't entirely accurate.

Remember: Justice -- guilt or innocence -- doesn't work by statistics. Society doesn't simply deem an accused man guilty of a sex crime simply because a study found that police believe 95% of sex accusations to be credible. I've had the displeasure of sitting on a jury in which I would have convicted the defendant if the accuser didn't recant her accusation.

I am surprised that someone would be angry if everyone doesn't simply "believe" an accusation because the accuser is a woman. None of us know if she is telling the truth (or the full truth). The only people who really know the truth are the accuser and the two men who she accuses.

Why should I believe this woman? I don't know her. Even if I did know her, it wouldn't mean that she was telling the truth. I wasn't there. In fact, none of us were there.

I fear that people have turned an accusation from 36 years ago into a political weapon motivated by sociopolitical fervor.


Online Name
Registered user
Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Sep 21, 2018 at 6:08 pm
Online Name, Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 6:08 pm

And it's very very low when compared against the fact that more than half of ALL girls and women have been sexually assaulted and raped at least once.


Curmudgeon
Registered user
Downtown North
on Sep 21, 2018 at 10:28 pm
Curmudgeon, Downtown North
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2018 at 10:28 pm

"The timing is deliberately orchestrated the the Democrats. It is not the fault of Donald Trump or Republican Senators. Senator Feinstein got the information months earlier. She chose to fire the political torpedo at the closing of the hearing process. Mrs. Ford and her supporters should not blame Chuck Grassley. They should blame Feinstein and her team. Everything has a process, procedure and deadline."

A masterstroke of political gamesmanship. Feinstein blew up the process right at its most vulnerable. As every warrior knows, it is much more effective to derail a speeding train than a standing one. Or to torpedo a ship in deep water than in shoals.

And foxed out by a woman, no less. Aren't those white Republican males just squealing.


"Can the accusation be proven? No it cannot. Let's be realistic. There is no way this can be proven."

"Proof" is unnecessary and entirely beside the point. This is politics, not trial procedure. The damage is done.


"Can Democrats block supreme justice selection for the full two years, until next presidential election? No they won't. Never happened, never will. It'd be a party self-annihilation if they try."

You mean, like the Republicans self-annihilated by stonewalling Garland for a year?


"Will this issue help Democrats in November? No it will not. On the contrary it will help energizing Republicans and those who are offended by the political mob lynching attempt."

It will help them with their targeted group--American patriots. You know, the Clinton mob that outvoted the Trump mob by three million in 2016? The "fraudulent" votes that Trump never could prove. They're relishing the spectacle.


Nayeli
Registered user
Midtown
on Sep 22, 2018 at 11:02 am
Nayeli, Midtown
Registered user
on Sep 22, 2018 at 11:02 am

@ mkara - I think that you're forgetting to include words like "alleged." Let me present this "not very" complicated series of events from a somewhat different perspective:

A woman who was teenage girl 36 years ago CLAIMS that she was assaulted and groped by two other teenagers at a boozy teenage party.

After the alleged event, she says that everyone went on with their lives.

She received her education and became a psychology professor at Palo Alto University. She married and had children.

In March 2012, it became increasingly clear that Judge Brett Kavanaugh would be at the very top of a short list of potential nominees to the Supreme Court by Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney.

Web Link

Later that same year, this woman purportedly mentioned her recollection of the alleged event from that party at a couples counseling session.

This woman was also very politically involved -- donating money to several Democrats. She also helped coordinate transportation to take women to the rally response to Donald Trump's inauguration in Washington D.C. (and appearing in an article by the San Jose Mercury News wearing specially-sown pink brain caps).

Web Link

In April, Kavanaugh again became the most likely candidate for potential Supreme Court nominees.

In July when one of the men that she accuses of being the teenage boy that groped her was being vetted for nomination to the Supreme Court, she contacted the Washington Post but decided against cooperating with them on any sort of story. The Washington Post never reached out to anyone else about it and simply let the story die.

Web Link

This accuser also enlisted a prominent Washington D.C. attorney known for her work on sexual harassment cases. This attorney prepped the accuser for her potential fallout and repercussions of stepping forward with her case. The attorney even had her undergo at least one lie detector test administered by an ex-FBI agent hired to administer it. A resulting affirmative on a single statement was given to the Washington Post.

However, the accuser again decided against going forward. She told one colleague that since it wasn’t an “actual rape it’s not going to do any good. He’s going to go through."

Web Link

However, this woman also wrote letters to our local representative to Congress, Anna Eshoo. Eshoo then shared it with Senator Diane Feinstein. Neither Eshoo nor Feinstein went public with the accusation or details in the letter.

However, the contents of the letter were leaked to adversarial website, The Intercept, by other individuals aware of the letter's content. The sources "provided different accounts of the contents of the letter, and some of the sources said they themselves had heard different versions, but the one consistent theme was that it describes an incident involving Kavanaugh and a woman while they were in high school."

Web Link

Although when the various leaks became public, Senator Feinstein was instructed by the accuser to not go public. According to Feinstein, "I have received information from an individual concerning the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. That individual strongly requested confidentiality, declined to come forward or press the matter further, and I have honored that decision."

Following her contact with newspapers and the letter to our member of Congress, the accuser deleted all of her social media accounts. Some of the photos from her accounts were still recovered and some of them became memes online (particularly images that were anti-Trump in nature).

When asked about the alleged incident, Brett Kavanaugh strongly denied that this alleged event from 36 years ago took place. The other person accused of being complicit also strongly denied it. Although he hasn't been in contact with Kavanaugh for years, he said, "It’s just absolutely nuts. I never saw Brett act that way."

Still, the bottom line is that the entire incident is an ALLEGATION. It isn't proven. There is no evidence -- other than three accounts -- to corroborate the accusation. In fact, the details of the allegation are somewhat less precise too.

Yet, her supporters, Hollywood celebrities, certain media outlets, liberal activists and politicians opposed to Kavanaugh have declared that the accusations are TRUE and that the accuser is undoubtedly a "victim." They have painted Kavanaugh as a violent perpetrator -- despite a stellar record clear of any other accusations over his lifetime since he was a teenager when the alleged event supposedly took place.

As such, Kavanaugh's supporters and many conservative politicians have declared the accusations to be FALSE and that Kavanaugh is the real "victim."

At this point, the accuser has gone back and forth about whether or not she would testify. However, she has said that she would be willing to testify before Congress -- but only on certain negotiated terms. In fact, one of those terms mentioned is that she would be allowed to testify after Kavanaugh rather than before. This would be different from traditional protocol in that that an accuser usually presents an accusation first and the accused is allowed to defend himself/herself.

My issue is that this is an allegation. I am troubled by people who declare an allegation to be true because it fits with the narrative or a desired political outcome.


m2grs
Registered user
Midtown
on Sep 22, 2018 at 12:40 pm
m2grs, Midtown
Registered user
on Sep 22, 2018 at 12:40 pm

This issue reminds me of two episodes of podcast Revisionist History by the renowned journalist Malcolm Gladwell.

In season 2 episode 7, State v Johnson, he described how in 1959 Georgia a 32-year old white nurse accused a black man named Nathaniel Johnson of rape. He was convicted despite numerous inconsistencies of the accusation and executed on the electric chair. But the truth was that she had an affair with him. In a fallout he beat her. She became angry and fearful. Hence the accusation.

In episode 8 in 1954 a black man named Willie Nash was accused by a white woman of rape and the killing of her boyfriend. In truth her boyfriend was killed by her other boyfriend. She just randomly picked out a black man she saw while driving and blamed him to cover up the incident.

What I’m trying to say that one should not always believe one side of the story. These accusations have serious consequences. In this politically charged environment we should be even more careful.


Curmudgeon
Registered user
Downtown North
on Sep 22, 2018 at 12:41 pm
Curmudgeon, Downtown North
Registered user
on Sep 22, 2018 at 12:41 pm

"I am troubled by people who declare an allegation to be true because it fits with the narrative or a desired political outcome."

Indeed. We all remember Jennifer Flowers and Paula Jones alleging Bill Clinton tried to molest them.


kapi
Registered user
another community
on Sep 22, 2018 at 1:24 pm
kapi, another community
Registered user
on Sep 22, 2018 at 1:24 pm

I think it bears reminding ourselves: We are not talking about whether or not Brett Kavanaugh should be put in jail, or register as a sex offender, or face some other criminal punishment. We are talking about whether or not he should be appointed, for life, into the most powerful judicial position in the land, one where he will be ruling over women’s well-being and bodily integrity for the rest of his life. It is a job interview, and a very, very important one at that. It is not a criminal proceeding, where defendants are indeed presumed innocent in a court of law. In this case, however, the question is whether the accusation raises real questions about his fitness for the position. @nayeli claims that Kavanaugh has a “stellar record clear of any other accusations over his lifetime.” But what else DO we know about Kavanaugh? We know that he belonged to a secret society at Yale fondly nicknamed “T*t and Cl*t”.
Web Link
We know that he belonged to a fraternity notorious for its disrespect of women. I’m not sure how any of this indicates a “stellar” record, as claimed. Yes, he was in college at the time. But again: Do we really want to go down such a path, for THIS office, Supreme Court Justice of the United States? We reject people all the time in job interviews for far, far less egregious behavior—for goodness sake, we reject them because they have visible tattoos, or indiscrete Facebook pages, or because they wear something not quite suited to an interview. I have no idea how it can be a wise choice, for the left OR for the right, for Kavanaugh’s SCOTUS nomination to continue. At a minimum, let’s call for a full and fair FBI investigation. And in this forum, let’s stop framing this as a criminal proceeding; it’s NOT.


Nayeli
Registered user
Midtown
on Sep 22, 2018 at 3:00 pm
Nayeli, Midtown
Registered user
on Sep 22, 2018 at 3:00 pm

@ Curmudgeon - I'm not sure if anyone tried to force Bill Clinton to withdraw from the 1992 election because certain women accused him of impropriety or rape. Moreover, I'm not sure if the media covered it as tenaciously as they're covering this accusation (despite the fact that it is alleged to have occurred even before Clinton's alleged acts).

Again: I don't know if it is true. I simply know that we cannot weaponize accusations or decide that something is "true" simply because it aligns with our politics or political desires.


Nayeli
Registered user
Midtown
on Sep 22, 2018 at 3:14 pm
Nayeli, Midtown
Registered user
on Sep 22, 2018 at 3:14 pm

@ kapi - You claim that you want to stop framing this as a "criminal proceeding."

Meanwhile, you seem to be testifying about Kavanaugh in the Court of Public Opinion. Your testimony is based upon the presumption that his life hasn't been clean because some freshman who was supposedly attempting to get into the Yale chapter of the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity was captioned in a photo with ladies undergarments as part of initiation (where those undergarments might have been purchased at K-Mart for all we know).

Are you really calling his character into question because some unnamed person trying to get into that fraternity (of which he was only one member out of many) was photographed with women's undergarments? Are you going by the hearsay from "some students" who claim that the Truth and Courage society at Yale was referred to by a colorful nickname?

That is the very definition of muddying someone's reputation in the public! Why? It seems increasingly likely because it fits a particular controlled narrative and a desired political outcome.


Curmudgeon
Registered user
Downtown North
on Sep 22, 2018 at 3:35 pm
Curmudgeon, Downtown North
Registered user
on Sep 22, 2018 at 3:35 pm

"@ Curmudgeon - I'm not sure if anyone tried to force Bill Clinton to withdraw from the 1992 election because certain women accused him of impropriety or rape."

If you're not sure of something, Google it up.

The idea was to prevent Clinton's (re-)election, and to stain him while he was president, not to get him to withdraw from the election. But it didn't work--not enough people believed women in those days. Same story with the Anita vs Clarence thing just before that.

Things have changed. Now even corporate titans are falling.

One view of the Kavanaugh affair is it's a futile effort to prevent his confirmation by appealing to the Senate Republicans' sense of decency. Futile, because the target of the appeal does not exist.


m2grs
Registered user
Midtown
on Sep 22, 2018 at 6:40 pm
m2grs, Midtown
Registered user
on Sep 22, 2018 at 6:40 pm

Just saw Jonathan Last, a commentator on Weekly Standard, analyzes potential outcomes for Kavanaugh nomination from a game theory point of view.

Basically he argues that the best outcome is to pull Kavanaugh and nominate a more conservative judge. Give the liberals some bones to brag about, but in exchange install the most conservative judge possible for long-term gain. If you look at Donald Trump's candidate list there is certainly no shortage of such judges.

In politics no one is loyal forever. Kavanaugh is not indispensable. He can be a sacrificial lamb if more can be gained for the right wing Republicans.

The tactic is called "owning the libs".

Web Link


Nayeli
Registered user
Midtown
on Sep 22, 2018 at 6:54 pm
Nayeli, Midtown
Registered user
on Sep 22, 2018 at 6:54 pm

@ m2grs - That's interesting. The irony is that Kavanaugh was not the favorite of conservatives. Kavanaugh, the former clerk for Justice Kennedy, is more to the center than most of the other options that Trump considered.


Curmudgeon
Registered user
Downtown North
on Sep 22, 2018 at 9:34 pm
Curmudgeon, Downtown North
Registered user
on Sep 22, 2018 at 9:34 pm

"In politics no one is loyal forever. Kavanaugh is not indispensable. He can be a sacrificial lamb if more can be gained for the right wing Republicans. The tactic is called "owning the libs".

It would be a very smart move, and it would work--if any president other than Trump were in office. Even W.

But Trump has personalized this matter like he personalizes everything. With his characteristic childishness, he regards it as a mortal contest of his manhood versus this upstart female who dares to get in his way, who therefore must be personally and utterly demolished by the master male (himself). To him, your strategy amounts to his personal surrender to Ms. Ford. He will never allow it.

Too bad. The Repubs elected their own worst possible obstacle.


Eila Hughes
Registered user
University South
on Sep 23, 2018 at 10:40 am
Eila Hughes , University South
Registered user
on Sep 23, 2018 at 10:40 am

@kapi

In this new era of extraordinary acrimony between the Left and Right, generally speaking, It's important we maintain rule of law, proper procedures and common sense and decency.

Pelosi: "This is Armageddon"
Eric holder: "this is a knife fight"

More than ever we cannot allow scurrilous, unsubstantiated claims out of nowhere and at the 11th 59 minute hour to upend the course of the proceedings. Sen. Feinstein failed to follow procedure and has turned what should have been a quiet committee issue & examination into a tabloidesque, character assassination.

To prevent future attempts to sabotage government, we need to set an example and throw out this woman's claim and proceed with a vote.

Should she ultimately face perjury charges that will be in no small part the blame of Sen. Feinstein.

Harper Lee is looking down and shaking her head at all who slander this Judge Kavanaugh today. It's not okay to convict a person without due process and without evidence, AND it's not okay to use salacious stories and decades old tales to destroy a person's life and reputation.


i_like_good_people
Registered user
Professorville
on Sep 23, 2018 at 11:21 am
i_like_good_people, Professorville
Registered user
on Sep 23, 2018 at 11:21 am
Alexa
Registered user
Mountain View
on Sep 23, 2018 at 3:29 pm
Alexa, Mountain View
Registered user
on Sep 23, 2018 at 3:29 pm

@i_like_good_people. "alexa is not a real person. Real people don’t pick fake fights with others just to create drama." I am a real person and I apologize for offending you and causing you pain. I do not "pick fights with others to create drama." That accusation hurts me more than you can imagine. I admit that I did not read your original post thoroughly enough before my responses. Neither one of us can know what Professor Blasey Ford is feeling. Her experience hit me very hard, just like Prof. Anita Hill's testimony when she was so disrespected and bullied by the same Senate committee.

Further, please try not to accuse people of being "bots" or "trolls" or whatever offensive term you can think of when they appear to disagree with you. No one in our currently volatile environment benefits from name calling, even if these terms arise from a painful place in the name-caller's soul. If you haven't already, I urge you to seek either professional or peer-group help. I have and it's helped enormously. This is a mostly anonymous forum, so people tend to reveal their real feelings. Dismissing those as originating from a "bot" is not only disrespectful to those you accuse, but also to yourself.


Eila Hughes
Registered user
University South
on Sep 23, 2018 at 4:55 pm
Eila Hughes , University South
Registered user
on Sep 23, 2018 at 4:55 pm

@ I Like Good People (ironic name choice)


You have your opinion and I, as well as my fellow members of the community, all have a right to express opinion too.

We have a right to voice opinions too.

Personally I think the committee should go directly to vote. None of the four others named as people present during the party offer any corroboration whatsoever and all have very clearly stated that there was no party they recall.

Presumption of innocence is key of course and this accusation is so egregiously lacking in substance it's, frankly, verging into the ludicrous.


Eila Hughes
Registered user
University South
on Sep 23, 2018 at 5:05 pm
Eila Hughes , University South
Registered user
on Sep 23, 2018 at 5:05 pm

@Nayeli

WELL SAID! Bears repeating:

Remember: Justice -- guilt or innocence -- doesn't work by statistics. Society doesn't simply deem an accused man guilty of a sex crime simply because a study found that police believe 95% of sex accusations to be credible. I've had the displeasure of sitting on a jury in which I would have convicted the defendant if the accuser didn't recant her accusation.

I am surprised that someone would be angry if everyone doesn't simply "believe" an accusation because the accuser is a woman. None of us know if she is telling the truth (or the full truth). The only people who really know the truth are the accuser and the two men who she accuses.

Why should I believe this woman? I don't know her. Even if I did know her, it wouldn't mean that she was telling the truth. I wasn't there. In fact, none of us were there.

I fear that people have turned an accusation from 36 years ago into a political weapon motivated by sociopolitical fervor.


Curmudgeon
Registered user
Downtown North
on Sep 23, 2018 at 6:24 pm
Curmudgeon, Downtown North
Registered user
on Sep 23, 2018 at 6:24 pm

"Why should I believe this woman? I don't know her. Even if I did know her, it wouldn't mean that she was telling the truth."

On the other hand, even if you didn't know her, it wouldn't mean that she wasn't telling the truth.

But brace yourself. There's another one: https://www.newyorker.com

Kavanaugh's beginning to challenge Trump's record.


All rings true
Registered user
Fairmeadow
on Sep 23, 2018 at 8:09 pm
All rings true, Fairmeadow
Registered user
on Sep 23, 2018 at 8:09 pm

I grew up in that era in that sort of school, and all the reporting in the New Yorker article rings true. Terrible, misogynistic and even criminal behavior. And now of course the patently false denials by these supposedly respectable men. Thank heavens for the many people stepping forward and speaking the truth.


i_like_good_people
Registered user
Professorville
on Sep 23, 2018 at 9:53 pm
i_like_good_people, Professorville
Registered user
on Sep 23, 2018 at 9:53 pm

More women are coming forward.

Are these women also part of the Democratic attempt to undermine the GOP?

All of these women have everything to lose and nothing to gain.


Online Name
Registered user
Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Sep 23, 2018 at 10:15 pm
Online Name, Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
Registered user
on Sep 23, 2018 at 10:15 pm

According to the Merc, more than 1,000 showed up for the candelight vigil tonight. Web Link

..."They gathered in support of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, who they saw not just as a victim courageously speaking her truth, but a neighbor, a hero and something else.

“She has nothing whatsoever to gain from coming forward in any way,” Palo Alto resident Linda Henigin, who volunteers with Women’s March San Jose, said Sunday.

“She really can only be doing this out of civic duty, personal integrity and frankly patriotism. I think she’s the patriot in this situation, because she is being vilified in a way that he is not. She has no security, and he does.”

Henigin said she could viscerally feel the outcry that has driven Blasey Ford from her neighborhood. “It’s pretty real when you see her empty house, that she is afraid to live there safely. It’s very real, it’s not anywhere across the country, it’s in my own backyard. She doesn’t feel safe in my town.”

The quote above makes me wonder what -- if anything -- Palo Alto is doing to provide security for Dr. Ford in the face of all the harassment and death threats. Anyone know?


Peers Parent
Registered user
Evergreen Park
on Sep 23, 2018 at 10:38 pm
Peers Parent, Evergreen Park
Registered user
on Sep 23, 2018 at 10:38 pm

@Eila Hughes -

Senator Feinstein did not come forward because Ford asked her not to. She requested the Senator not expose her or the incident. She did not want to come forward. Senator Feinstein respected that. She did exactly what she should have done. I'm grateful she put people before politics. She is never the one who broke this story. It bubbled up, because you can't keep a story secret.


Hinrich
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Sep 24, 2018 at 7:39 am
Hinrich, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Sep 24, 2018 at 7:39 am

Women are being used. Hard fought women’s right are being used by politicians with no decency whatsoever to smear a candidate for the Supreme court. Woman trust but are being lied to and for that they should be outraged.
The people behind these late charges are specialists in these political dirty tricks. They were brought in because everything and anything will be used to defeat this nominee. This isn’t defense of women at its best, its politics at its absolutely dirtiest and worst.
Women deserve and need the legal protections they have earned over the decades and that is why this so especially offensive. The politicians know they can manipulate women by these charges - women are being used.
If all else fails, toss in a sex assault charge. That charge alone, these days is all that is needed - just the charge itself is enough to ruin someone.
The charge is especially incendiary in Palo Alto where so much support rushes in. But women should think carefully about being used in this case because in the end falsely using these claims in a smear campaign diminishes both women and their protections. It’s just wrong.


Online Name
Registered user
Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Sep 24, 2018 at 9:45 am
Online Name, Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
Registered user
on Sep 24, 2018 at 9:45 am

"Women are being used. Hard fought women’s right are being used by politicians with no decency whatsoever to smear a candidate for the Supreme court. Woman trust but are being lied to and for that they should be outraged."

Hinrich, did Dr. Ford send herself and her family death threats, too?

I'm pretty outraged that such thuggery's becoming increasingly common and can force one of our neighbors out of town.


Hinrich
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Sep 24, 2018 at 10:28 am
Hinrich, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Sep 24, 2018 at 10:28 am

@online name - there are a lot of nuts out there. It’s sad but just about anything goes these days.
Dr. Ford may have relocated for many reasons, including the certainty of hundreds of reporters on her front lawn.

This will be one for the history books. People, rightly so, have a pretty low regard for politicians these days. We know that we are not happy with their work or the climate of conflict in the legislatures that they have created - each side at the others throats. We know that behind the scenes tactics have been pretty ugly at times. In time, as the whole picture emerges, it will be a lot clearer that this whole affair is manipulation. Dirty politics. Exploitation of the best intentions of things like #metoo. We should not be fooled.

No nominee of either party will suit everyone. Kavanaugh apparently is reasonably moderate and abundantly qualified. We shouldn’t go too far down the road of destroying everyone who stands for public service because we need good people to want to be in our government. The hearings were fair. Desperate measures by unscrupulous politicians should be condemned. As above, they claim to be defending women but are really using them. In all fairness, women should be outraged by these ugly tactics, not parading in support of them.


Curmudgeon
Registered user
Downtown North
on Sep 24, 2018 at 3:14 pm
Curmudgeon, Downtown North
Registered user
on Sep 24, 2018 at 3:14 pm

"In all fairness, women should be outraged by these ugly tactics, not parading in support of them."

Well, so far two women have expressed their outrage over Kavanaugh's ugly tactics. We shall see how many more do. Support will doubtless encourage them, as it did Trump's victims.

Don't fret about Kavanaugh's future. He will receive hero's welcome and a lifetime position with a king's salary at a major Republican think tank--not despite what he did to these women, but because of it.


fdutch06
Registered user
Midtown
on Sep 25, 2018 at 9:45 pm
fdutch06, Midtown
Registered user
on Sep 25, 2018 at 9:45 pm

Near the end of the article there was a comment about a “disservice” to Professor Ford. The real “disservice” to Professor Ford was delivered by our local elected officials who failed to respect her wishes to hold the information confidential.

Besides a disservice to Professor Ford, Dianne Feinstein did a disservice to her constituents. Doctors and other professionals are legally and ethically bound report certain information. The notion that Sen Feinstein was willing, albeit incompetently, to hold information confidential which is critical to such a major decision is unethical and a disservice to her constituents and all Americans. She needs to be voted out of office in November!


yeah right
Registered user
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Sep 26, 2018 at 9:01 pm
yeah right, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
Registered user
on Sep 26, 2018 at 9:01 pm

@eila hughes, your personal opinion of Dr. Ford doesn't actually matter. Stick to the matter at hand.


yeah right
Registered user
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Sep 26, 2018 at 9:05 pm
yeah right, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
Registered user
on Sep 26, 2018 at 9:05 pm

@nayeli, is your viewpoint changing at all with the latest news?


Midtown102
Registered user
JLS Middle School
on Sep 28, 2018 at 11:27 am
Midtown102, JLS Middle School
Registered user
on Sep 28, 2018 at 11:27 am

I doubt most of the above commenters live anywhere near Palo Alto. Christine you have our support.


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