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Character witnesses

Character witnesses

by digby


In the wake of the accusation of attempted rape against Brett Kavanaugh, the Republicans very quickly circulated a letter from 65 women who went to local all-girls high schools at the same time Kavanaugh attended his all-boys high school to testify that he never tried to rape them.

The alleged victim's classmates have now stepped up:

A group of women who went to Christine Blasey Ford’s high school are circulating a letter to show support for the woman who has alleged that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh tried to sexually assault her while they were in high school.

“We believe Dr. Blasey Ford and are grateful that she came forward to tell her story,” says a draft letter from alumnae of Holton-Arms, a private girls school in Bethesda, Maryland. “It demands a thorough and independent investigation before the Senate can reasonably vote on Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to a lifetime seat on the nation’s highest court.”

The women also say that what Ford is alleging “is all too consistent with stories we heard and lived while attending Holton. Many of us are survivors ourselves.”

The letter is a boost of support for Ford, who has been thrust into the political spotlight and had her credibility questioned by going up against Kavanaugh and the White House. The signatories span decades at the school, both before, during and after Ford attended.

More than 200 women had signed the letter as of late Monday morning, said Sarah Burgess, a member of the class of 2005. Burgess said she and some of her schoolmates wrote the letter because hearing Ford’s story felt “personal.”

“I know that in the coming days, her story will be scrutinized, and she will be accused of lying,” Burgess said in an email. “However, I grew up hearing stories like hers, and believe her completely.”

Susanna Jones, the Holton-Arms head of school, put out a statement Sunday night in support of Ford.

“In these cases, it is imperative that all voices are heard,” Jones said. “As a school that empowers women to use their voices, we are proud of this alumna for using hers.”

Meanwhile, Kavanaugh's "character witness" Mark Judge, who wrote a tell-all book about his alcoholism and, apparently, blaming it on his father, had his own credibility challenged by his brother Michael when the book came out. Michael Judge pretty much said his brother is full of shit:

My family has had its arguments and its crises, its tragedies and its embarrassments. It has also been, thanks in no small degree to my father, a marvelously gifted and joyful family, full of laughter and imagination. Both realities exist together.

I was content to live with that truth until now, until my brother wrote his memoir. For the painful secret of Mark’s book and subsequent magazine article, the real truth that “someone who, no matter what, is responsible for,” is a very simple one. The great, insoluble problem of my family has never really been my father.

Mark claims in his book that we all lived in terror of my father’s drunken outbursts. I can only say that he is right in one thing; my family did come to fear one of its members. As another member of our family commented during one of many meetings about Mark’s behavior, “Mark went to Markland a long time ago.” He still lives there. Sadly for my mother, that still means home.

And that’s it, that’s the real problem—not alcoholism or a lousy childhood or an abusive father. Mark is a solipsist: spoiled as a child, gazing always inward, unable to recognize any pain but his own. That is why he could not come to understand or forgive my father, in the way that all adult sons must eventually understand and forgive. Mark never left home long enough to see my father not as the ogre snoring in the other room but as a human being.

It's hard to believe that such a great guy could drunkenly assault a girl in high school, isn't it?