OPINION: Kavanaugh, #MeToo, and More of the Same in America


Win McNamee via The Daily Beast

Dr. Christine Blasey Ford being sworn in during the Kavanaugh hearings.

Maya Valentine, Staff Writer

After the election of Donald Trump, I refuse to believe any American who has the insensitivity to claim they are shocked by the ignorance, violence, and pure disorganization that has occurred in the aftermath. I can take no American seriously if they honestly admit incredulity at the inhumane detention centers, or if they are surprised at the lack of response our administration has made towards climate crisis, such as the catastrophe Hurricane Maria left on our brothers and sisters in Puerto Rico, and especially, no one can convince me that the recent acceptance of Brett Kavanaugh into one of the most powerful positions in our country is indeed, a shock.

The appointment of Kavanaugh is a symptom of the Trump era and greater consequence of capitalist, white supremacist America. A few weeks ago, when I, along with other Americans, heard the troubling recollections of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s assault by the now Supreme Court Justice, Brett Kavanaugh, I couldn’t help but realistically solve the outcome in my head. Kavanaugh would become the next Justice of the Supreme Court. Not because Ford was discredible or  irrelevant; Ford’s testimony was a demonstration of courage, brilliance, and activism. Although, in the America that exists today, Kavanaughs know how to work these systems and run them.  In Trump’s America, Trump-like players are always at an advantage.

In late September, Bill Cosby was sentenced three to 10 years in prison for sexual assault. Discourse circulated at the double standard of Cosby, a black man, being penalized for a crime white men like Kavanaugh and Trump do with impunity. To be clear, Cosby, just like all people who violate should be penalized. The conversation on the racism that has long been perpetuated in our criminal justice system is a conversation that should be had, but not with the case of Cosby as its prime model.

When I first heard of the Cosby sentencing, my reaction was one of indifference. Indifference because It is incredibly difficult to feel like progress has been made when one of the greatest and most publicly known sexual predators sits in the White House congratulating another. The reality of Ford, on the other had, is one where she nationally relieved a trauma that she has privately lived for most of her life; while having her experience and her character criticized. This critique of Ford only adds to the harmful way victims are treated and their lived accounts undermined. And so here we are, with a life-time of Kavanaugh, sitting comfortably on the seat of the Supreme Court, ironically next to Clarence Thomas who, one should never forget, sexually harassed Anita Hill while she was working for him in the 90’s. In Trump-world, white men especially have no accountability. Their greed, immorality, and ignorance permit and applaud oppression and discrimination towards anyone who is not of their identity.

So when an American tells me that they are surprised by the Kavanaugh appointment, I will just laugh like the powerful white men in our country do, and tell them that justice is and has always been a perpetual joke in capitalist America.