Oh, Andy! your essay of September 28, 2018 was worth the wait! On the continuing Kavanaugh Nightmare. Andy assumes the role of the natural successor to Agnes Nixon, the great chronicler of American Life, on Day-Time Television. Andy discards his usual role of Political/Moral Inquisitor, for the the role of providing a national analgesic, in the wake of the wreckage of the bruising Kavanaugh Hearings. The first three riveting paragraphs of his essay set the stage, for the whole of his indispensable analysis of a utterly fractured American politics! Will we recover? the burning question of the moment!
Yesterday was a spectacle I hope we do not have to experience again. We watched two human beings, Christine Blasey Ford and Brett Kavanaugh, exposed in the rawest possible fashion to the entire world, over the gravest of accusations, with no definitive evidence apart from personal testimony to draw on, 36 years after an alleged crime took place. It was a grotesque political drama, in which everyone lost.
Both Christine Blasey Ford and Brett Kavanaugh have been traumatized and ill-served by the process. At the all-day Senate hearing, there was no real sifting of evidence about her allegation that he sexually assaulted her, because nothing but memories were on the table. (We still don’t even know when or where the alleged attack happened.) Other witnesses were not called to testify, which they obviously should have been, if only to say (as they all have) that they had no memory of the event. So we were left to judge the credibility of two individuals, who both said they were 100 percent certain.
Christine Blasey Ford was not just credible, her account of her assault and trauma was deeply affecting. She was understandably anxious in such a setting, but kept her shit together, made her case poignantly and calmly — her moments of humor, her need for caffeine, her hair framing her glasses like wisteria were all thoroughly human. In her dignity and restraint and precision, she helped me and I’m sure many others better understand what sexual trauma is.
There are two victims of this bruising political process,namely Kavanaugh and Ford, as Andy constructs his narrative. A function of Andy’s usual self-serving myopia, disingenuousness allied to his misogyny? Or perhaps the rhetorical strategy of duel victim-hood act as his pseudo-apologetic, for the natural successor to Andy’s ideal of the Jurisprudential Conservatism of Anthony Kennedy? The reader can come to her own conclusion! We live now in the age of Trump’s cultivated political crises-is Andy Divine that strong clear voice of reason, that can rescue our politics, our civic fate, from this nihilist?