Wait a second - if eyewitness testimony is unreliable, then is it “safe to say” that Ford was lying? After all, it could be the case that it didn’t happen, and her eyewitness testimony is fragile. And there isn’t any other evidence apart from her allegation.
Is this conclusion based on eyewitness testimony, or something else? If it is eyewitness testimony, then it is fragile (I assume this means unreliable). If it is based on something else, what is it based on?
Lying and being wrong are two different things. It is quite possible that she is wrong. But there’s no evidence that she was lying. And we have no reason to believe that she should have the legal knowledge to doubt her memory.
Kavanaugh spent some amount of his time as a college student blacked out. He can’t factually make the claim that he didn’t do the deed. He can say that he doesn’t believe that he did it, but that’s a different statement.
If he could trust that his memory was as good as hers he could say that he knows that he has never done any such thing. But, the instant we know that he blacked out regularly during that time period, he simply can’t make any statement that’s more than, “I don’t believe that I would do something like that, no matter how drunk I was.” But that’s not what he said.
Eye witness testimony, from enough people, does become evidence. What happened in the room, between Kavanaugh and Ford will always be a mystery. As I said, we only have one source of information on the event.
But what Kavanaugh was like while he was in college we can recreate from multiple accounts. And while each one of those accounts, if viewed independently, is not of much value, when added together and compounded with period documentation - the police report, the yearbook entries, etc. - does give us good reason to believe that Kavanaugh can’t make an honest denial of the event and definitely lied to us about his drinking habits and general demeanor during his college years.
That is kinda the point though. Memory is inherently unreliable. Memories of different events can be conflated. Memories can become distorted. People sometimes remember shit that never happened at all. And it only gets worse over time.
It is possible that both Kavanaugh and Ford were telling truth as they remember it. It is possible one of them is lying. It is damn near impossible to make a determination that is NOT based on emotion.
Actually, his claims have been corroborated.
As it is, I always thought the emphasis on the slang terms was weak sauce. The Senate Committee documents have statements from his classmates backing him up, and also acknowledging that the students wanted to see just how much they could test their teachers. Trying to nail him on teenage humour is rather…juvenile.
Many folks think women shouldn’t speak up unless narrow circumstances are met (i.e. had to be recent, must have proof, etc.). Many others, including myself, believe that it’s always appropriate for women to speak up about their experiences, even when speaking out might inconvenience powerful men. Wouldn’t you rather a society in which women never feel silenced or prevented from speaking out?
Do you want those accusations to be believed and taken seriously?
Look, she got up and told a story about something which occurred 32 years prior when both were in high school. it had no relation to the issue at hand. This was just a media circus put up by the democrats in a desperate bid to stop a nomination.
Now HAD this happened say 5-6 or even 10 years prior when she was working with him, then I can see that.
The White House, and abusers everywhere, thank you for smearing this woman as the pawn of politicians, rather than a full adult empowered human who can make her own decisions, for doing nothing more than deciding to speak out about her own experiences.
What a totally ridiculous, other-worldy interpretation of reality. It’s like you were from Mars, hearing about this for the first time over a very noisy radio channel broadcasting a conservative late-night talk show.
In the real world, Ford wrote a letter to her Senator, Diane Feinstein, dated July 30 in which she laid out the allegations. That’s called “speaking out”. Had she not written this courageous letter there would have been no “confidentiality” to supposedly “violate”. She asked for confidentiality in the interim “until we have further opportunity to speak”. No one forced her to go through the emotional stress and extreme public scrutiny of testifying before the Judiciary Committee.
The stories you guys on the right have the audacity to spin are just shameful.
So, it’s strange to me that this hasn’t been discussed… but IMO the whole problem with this discussion is that it shouldn’t be the victim’s job to provide evidence for a crime!
Presumably it is the job of the police/FBI/whoever claims to care about investigating the issue to do their due diligence, find evidence, investigate to find the truth. Our criminal justice system should NOT set up with the victim-as-plaintiff, and in most cases it isn’t. But somehow in the case of sexual assault, people revert to this notion that the victim needs to give the prosecution everything they need to find out the truth, and if they don’t, then they should stay silent.
That covers the Devil’s Triangle. What about the rest?
The issue isn’t teenage humor (even if he wasn’t a teen by that point, technically). Let’s imagine that Kavanaugh got up and said, “I was in college, I was immature, I drank a lot, I did stupid things. I don’t recall any event like Mrs. Ford alleges, and I realize that’s not proof of my innocence, but I was young and stupid not young and criminal.” And then he goes through some of the stupid things he did at that age that he does remember, to give a sense of whether they were done with malice and sexual repression or just being a goof. And finally he says, “Mrs. Ford, I have no desire to minimize the pain that you may have felt all of these years from the event that took place in that room. If I did something that hurt you or scared you, I sincerely apologize for it. But I just can’t envision any way that I would have attacked you, trying to get sex. No matter how drunk I may have been. Maybe I was trying to scare you? Maybe I was just drunk and tripped and fell on you? Maybe it wasn’t me, like I said, I don’t remember any event like that and I don’t think I’d have drunk that heavily just hanging out at someone’s house.”
If he said something like that, I’d go back to being concerned about how free he is from bias and how rigorous his opinions are as a judge. He’s still not a good pick as a justice even before getting to the Ford question.
But, instead of saying that, he tried to paint a picture of himself at that point in time that is false, trusting that most people wouldn’t care about the details, just the simplified view of the two competing stories. He’d rather sell a story about himself as a wunderkind angel who is now being thrown under the bus by the evil Democrats. And maybe politically or in terms of mounting a legal defense, that’s a reasonable strategy. But making that argument, personally - not through your lawyer or whatever - in the same room as a woman who may well have been attacked and nearly raped by some man, who’s been in therapy for it because it’s been hurting her marriage, displays an extreme lack of basic empathy.
He basically decided that she was 100% just making this up as a political jab and, unless you’re aware of some evidence that Brett Kavanaugh is God, I’m pretty sure that he has no way of knowing that. If anything, he should know as someone who works in law that most accusers are telling the truth - as they remember it. He has pretty good reason to believe that she believes that this really occurred - that someone tried to rape her.
Getting up in front of a woman who most likely genuinely believes that she was sexually assaulted, and astroturfing his life story to make himself seem like the victim is just being a complete, jaded asshole.
Personally, a partisan hack who also lacks basic empathy and is willing to make up any old shit to get his way does not seem like a good pick for Supreme Court Justice. It’s not an issue of what he did or didn’t do as a teenager. It’s a matter of what he did, now, as an adult.