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PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 12:05 am 
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yovargas wrote:
Even if you believe that her testimony is not good enough reason to discredit Kavanaugh, that is not a good reason to treat her and her trauma as irrelevant and meaningless. Please try to understand that by belittling Ford, millions of victims who are afraid to come forward with their stories also feel belittled.


Not just that. Attacks on Dr. Ford, up to and including death threats, are calculated to intimidate and silence not just her but every woman who might consider coming forward against a powerful man.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 3:29 am 
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I wouldn't be surprised if male victims are also feeling intimidated into silence. This isn't about gender. This is about power.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 3:51 am 
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I thought these comments by Sen. Heitkamp were very interesting, particularly given she was one of three Democratic senators to vote for Justice Gorsuch, and her vote against Mr. Kavanaugh likely hurt her chances in an already very challenging reelection campaign.

https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/08/politics ... index.html

I particularly resonated with these comments.

Quote:
It was also Heitkamp's own experience as an attorney that changed her mind. Having dealt with victims of sexual assault, she said she instinctively believed Ford.

"I certainly think I have expertise beyond a number of people within the United States Senate and that expertise is that I have sat across the desk with victims people I've believed when they told me their story, and I had to say,'I believe you but these cases can't be proved beyond a reasonable doubt so we can't proceed with the prosecution.' And when you've done that, you know for a victim, the most important thing you can say is 'I believe you' if you do, and I think it really came down to that I believed her," Heitkamp recalled.


I too have dealt with a lot of victims of sexual assault, and I feel the same way that she does. It is true that I called the retirement of Justice Kennedy a "disaster" because I felt that whoever Mr. Trump nominated was likely to change the court's balance on a number of issues very important to me. But the allegations against Mr. Kavanaugh and even more the way he acted in response to them at the hearing convinced me -- like the 2400+ law professors that signed the letter -- that quite aside from those issues this was a person that was not suited to be justice on the U.S. Supreme Court. I'm sure that there are some people that will always believe that it is nothing more than politics, or that I am fooling myself into believe that it isn't, and I'm sure that there is nothing that I will or could say that will convince them elsewhere. But just as I was very quick to call for Al Franken's resignation, even when other liberals were have second thoughts, there are some things that I think transcend politics.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 2:46 pm 
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As I understand it, Dr. Ford originally contacted Rep. Eshoo with her allegations, as well as anonymously contacting the Washington Post, and perhaps she also wrote to Sen. Feinstein directly, or Rep. Eshoo forwarded her letter to Sen. Feinstein, all with a request for confidentiality. Her letter was turned over to the FBI, redacted and made part of Kavanaugh's background file. At that point, all Senators had access to it and could factor it into their decision. That's where the matter should have rested. Dr. Ford would then have done her part to inform parties involved in the nomination process, her life would have remained undisturbed and Judge Kavanaugh's reputation would not have been destroyed.

What I'm not clear on is how reporters started showing up at Dr. Ford's house and school, which led her to eventually go public with her statement. Either someone at the paper ferreted out her name (don't know how that could be done), or one of the few people who knew the name leaked it to the press. So I would say that person is responsible for the current upheaval in Dr. Ford's life. I guess in the future, people in her position should assume that confidentiality cannot and won't be maintained. Which leads to the question, should someone with a decades old accusation that likely can't be substantiated come forward in a case like this? I don't see what has been gained here for Dr. Ford. In retrospect, would she still write a letter to her representative asking that confidentiality be maintained?

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 4:54 pm 
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Right when this started breaking loose, when the story was only that Feinstein had forwarded a letter to the FBI, NPR talked to Ronan Farrow. Mr. Farrow claimed to have seen the letter, though it wasn't clear how he got it. Feinstein has denied that anyone on her staff leaked it.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 5:34 pm 
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But as I understand it, the letter Farrow saw was the redacted version without Ford's name (perhaps I'm wrong about that). I'm wondering how reporters, who started showing up at Ford's work and home, found out who she was. She said that's the reason she went public -- because somehow they had found out her name, and if her story was going to be told, she'd rather tell it herself.

I can't help wondering, between the present state of things and not writing the letter at all, which she would now choose in retrospect, since her first choice -- telling her story while remaining unknown -- was not to be.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 5:40 pm 
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Regardless of how Ford feels right now, it's clear to me that how this all played out is going to serve to discourage victims of sexual abuse from speaking out, which is a damn tragedy.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 6:02 pm 
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Before sending the letter to Sen. Feinstein, Dr. Blade Ford requested and received a meeting with her (and my) representative, Anna Eschoo. At the end of the meeting, Rep. Eschoo told Dr. Blade Ford that she believed her and encouraged her to send the letter to Sen. Feinstein.

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.mercur ... naugh/amp/

I have no idea how the letter became public, and I am sure that Dr. Blasey Ford at least partially regrets coming forward, but I am equally sure that she believed she needed to tell her story.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 6:47 pm 
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Cerin wrote:
But as I understand it, the letter Farrow saw was the redacted version without Ford's name (perhaps I'm wrong about that).


No, that is not correct. They apparently received a copy of the actual letter with her identity revealed, but because she did not agree to be identified (or agree to an interview with them) they did not reveal her name. Here is Ronan Farrow and Jane Meyer's original article:

https://www.newyorker.com/news/news-des ... n-congress


yov wrote:
Regardless of how Ford feels right now, it's clear to me that how this all played out is going to serve to discourage victims of sexual abuse from speaking out, which is a damn tragedy.


I think that remains to be seen. I know a lot of women and men that were greatly inspired by her courage and grace at the hearing, particularly in contrast to how Mr. Kavanaugh came across. There was and has continued to be a large spike in calls to organizations providing services to people (primarily but by no means exclusively women) who are victims of sexual assaults and other abuse. We'll have to see how things play out of the coming months and years before that judgment can be made, in my opinion.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 7:02 pm 
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yovargas wrote:
Regardless of how Ford feels right now, it's clear to me that how this all played out is going to serve to discourage victims of sexual abuse from speaking out, which is a damn tragedy.

When you say 'how all this played out,' what do you mean? On the negative side (from her perspective), Kavanaugh was still confirmed. But given the fact that her accusation was from over 30 years ago and unsupported by any factual evidence, I would say that can't have been a total surprise. On the other hand, she was effusively praised by Senators at the hearing, is being hailed a hero by many and is reportedly believed by over half the country.

The personal difficulties she is facing (having to move from her home, death threats) are largely due to the extraordinary political context of the situation, which most people wouldn't face, so that shouldn't be a factor in other people speaking up in more ordinary circumstances.

I'm not convinced that it will have a discouraging effect; maybe the opposite (and I've read that opinion in several articles).

Thanks for that clarification, Voronwë.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 2:54 am 
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Those who believe Ms. Ford should have reported this incident 30 years ago, I cannot help but wonder what they believe would have made conclusions different. What rock solid uncontroversial evidence they believe there would there have been then that there is no longer? There would have been none, just as 30 years later there was none. No photographs, no semen. The assault wasn't likely reported because nothing would have come from reporting it (with the exception that Ford might have been ticketed with underage drinking/at a party with alcohol). Kavanaugh was also underage. Heavy drinking was evidently quite common at his school/among his peers so I doubt he would have been kicked out of school or denied entrance into Yale. Additionally, this lack of evidence doesn't mean Kavanaugh is innocent and that Christina Ford is a liar (as Trump and others claim) it means it cannot be proven one way or another.

Many assaults at universities are not recorded by campus police and they do not make reports if they can avoid it. Violence statistics give the university a bad reputation/ranking. Students and parents take those statistics into account. Additionally, if there is no 'rock solid' proof, victims are increasingly sued for defamation of character. As a result 70-95% of campus assaults go unreported. Those that are reported, only about 25% result in convictions. Too often, even if it was a full-on rape, it's one person's word against another as to whether it was consensual, etc...

Supreme court nominees are vetted for a variety of criteria; education, knowledge, judicial ideology, character, etc.. Several of Kavanaugh's classmates/former clerks who had previously vouched for him withdrew support because of his temperament/behavior/ lies/misrepresentations of himself at the hearings. Those are all character issues, not about the assault. As I've said before, I believe Ms. Ford's came forward not specifically for justice for an incident that happened to her years ago, but because it's horrible to watch someone climb a ladder of power who (she feels) isn't an appropriate fit for one of the most powerful positions in our country.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 3:32 pm 
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https://www.foxnews.com/politics/this-time-lock-her-up-chant-directed-at-feinstein-first-then-clinton
Quote:
“How about Senator Feinstein. That’s another beauty,” said Trump, who was in Iowa campaigning for Republican candidates ahead of next month's midterm elections.

Seconds later, the president's supporters started the familiar “Lock her up!” chant.

“And I think they’re talking about Feinstein, can you believe that?” Trump said. “Now was that the worst body language. In other words, did she leak it? A hundred percent. No, I don’t want to get sued, 99 percent. See now, I can’t get ... Now I can’t get sued.”


Well thank god we all agree on standards of evidence, innocent until proven guilty, not throwing around false, inflammatory accusations, and ensuring proper investigations are conducted before conclusions are drawn.

Our fine government in action.

I am getting increasingly irritated at people who want to hold one side or another to an impossible standard while not even approaching it themselves, all while screaming that they have the moral high ground.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2018 1:23 pm 
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https://www.foxnews.com/politics/roberts-refers-ethics-complaints-against-kavanaugh-to-federal-judges

Quote:
Chief Justice John Roberts is referring complaints about statements made by new Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh to federal judges outside the Beltway.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2018 11:21 pm 
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https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-kavanaugh-grassley/senator-refers-kavanaugh-accuser-avenatti-for-criminal-probe-idUSKCN1MZ2QH

Not to beat the dead salmon :salmon: but I wonder what they'll do if this investigation corroborates any of her accusations.

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