Politics Going Downhill: Bork, Thomas, Kavanaugh

By | September 27, 2018 | 0 Comments

In high-school geometry, I learned the axiom that through two points a line may be drawn. But through three points, the direction of the line is more certain. In order to determine the direction of our politics, our republic, and even our civilization, let us consider these three points. Then tell me which way things are going.

Robert Bork.

Judge Robert Bork, former U.S. Solicitor General, was nominated to the U.S. Supreme Court by President Reagan in 1987. His nomination was controversial because of his conservative judicial philosophy. In addition, he treated members of the Senate Judiciary Committee as dull students who needed things explained in simple terms ‒ which was true, but did not help him to be confirmed.

Democrats questioned his views on the right to privacy, which the Supreme Court had enunciated as a basis for Roe v. Wade, the landmark decision that forbade most restrictions on abortion. Rather than giving a soothing, noncommittal answer that would placate his opponents, he questioned the basis of an unrestricted right to privacy. He asked, privacy to do what? To beat your wife in private? To conspire to fix prices in private? His opponents were not pleased, and his nomination was rejected.

Democrats contented themselves with questioning his legal philosophy. Only once did they attack him personally ‒ for doing little charitable pro bono work. They knew that Bork’s first wife had died of cancer, leaving him with medical bills and little time to donate. But they went ahead anyhow, and Bork was too proud to bring up his wife’s illness.

Nevertheless, despite their keen opposition, Democrats did not attempt to raise any dubious sexual charges against Bork. The word “Bork” came into English to mean derailing a candidate with incessant accusations, but largely professional ones. Judged by current standards, the process was mild indeed. Judge Kavanaugh would be grateful to be “Borked,” rather than what is actually happening to him.

Clarence Thomas.

Judge Clarence Thomas was raised by a single mother in the small Georgia town of Pin Point. His ancestors were slaves, and he spoke Gullah as his first language. Nevertheless, Thomas graduated from Yale Law School and served in various positions in the federal government, including Assistant Secretary of Education and Chairman of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, before being appointed a U.S. Court of Appeals judge.

In 1990 President George H. W. Bush nominated Thomas to the U.S. Supreme Court. Thomas may have expected to be “Borked,” but much worse was to come. Thomas was questioned harshly by Democrats on his legal philosophy. But then Anita Hill, an African American lawyer who had followed Thomas as his assistant from one job to another, appeared with allegations of sexual harassment.

Thomas was accused of commenting on a “pubic hair on a Coke can,” as well as remarking on a porno video he had seen featuring “Long Dong Silver.” Only someone in a deep coma could have missed the prototypically racist reference to black males’ supposed sexual prowess ‒ and to racist fears of what they wanted to do to white women.

Little noted by the mainstream media was the fact that a witness who was intended to corroborate Hill’s accusations at first gave a timeline that implicated Hill’s prior boss, not Thomas. But after a brief time-out for coaching by committee staff, she “corrected” the timeline. This does not prove that Hill’s allegations were false, but it does cast doubt on them. It also is similar to the six days of coaching by Democrat lawyers that helped Deborah Ramirez “remember” that it was probably Brett Cavanaugh who flashed her while a freshman at Yale.

Thomas finally had had enough, and castigated the committee for their “high-tech lynching.” Because of public backlash, Thomas was confirmed, and went on to be an outstanding member of the Court. But even now, 28 years later, Democrats still claim that one “sexual predator” on the Supreme Court is enough.

An old proverb compares slander to cutting open a pillow. You can never put all the feathers back, no matter how long you take ‒ and especially if you don’t even try. The allegations of sexual misdeeds stick to Thomas all these years later, and will follow him to the grave.

Brett Kavanaugh.

It is odd that hazing is condemned as dangerous and brutal when practiced by fraternities and sports teams, yet it is praised when practiced by Senate committees.

The trial by ordeal that Kavanaugh is being subjected to by Democrats is too well known to itemize. Suffice it to point out that psychologist Dr. Christine Blasey Ford accuses Kavanaugh of having forced her down on a bed 35 (or 36) years ago when they were in high school. She claims that there were three (or was it one) other boys present ‒ but that one denies it. She cannot recall the year or the location, and admits to having drunk beer. All three named witnesses deny the charges.

The only people to “verify” Ford’s accusations are four people who claim they heard her discuss them over three decades later. This verifies that she talked about the accusations, but it says nothing about whether the sexual assault actually occurred.

Then we have Deborah Ramirez, who claims it was Kavanaugh who exposed himself to her during a freshman party at Yale, when she was so drunk she was lying on the floor, slurring her words, and having memory lapses. Like Ford, Ramirez told no one at the time, but recently asked classmates if they remembered the incident (they did not), because she was unsure if it was Kavanaugh or someone else. But as noted, after six days of consulting with lawyers, her memory “improved.” What psychologists would say about such a procedure is obvious. Now she is refusing to testify or to speak to the media.

And finally, we have allegations that Kavanaugh’s all-boys Catholic high school was infested by a “rape train.” This is reminiscent of the Soviet Union, where the leaders really didn’t care whether you believed their concocted propaganda. If you believed it, well and good. But if you didn’t believe it, and still felt compelled to parrot it, you were tacitly admitting that they owned your mind. Is this what we have come to?

Summing up.

The line of accusations goes from not enough pro bono work with Bork, to indecent talk with Thomas, to sexual assault with Kavanaugh. One hesitates to imagine what the next conservative nominee will be accused of on this descending pathway: Running a string of under-age prostitutes? Child molestation at a summer camp? Bestiality on a farm? Making “snuff” films? Who knows?

What we do know is that crawling into the sexual gutter reveals more about the minds of the accusers than it does about the actions of the accused. Why are the accusers not satisfied to demonize legal opinions and exaggerate the consequences? Why do they insist on making increasingly disgusting sexual allegations? But they have no self-awareness. Otherwise, they would realize that they are revealing their own sick preoccupation with sex, rather than their opponents’ supposed misdeeds.

What we do know is that the line is descending rather steeply. It is painfully obvious what this tells us about the state of our politics, our republic, and our civilization. Throwing mud inevitably causes mud to adhere to the thrower. If we do not reverse the direction of that line, before long we will all be immersed in mud until it chokes our republic to death, and leaves us with an Orwellian Big Brother telling us what to think ‒ and destroying anyone who dares to think differently.

Contact: dstol@prodigy.net. You are welcome to publish or post these articles, provided that you cite the author and website.

www.stolinsky.com

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