Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, Civic-Minded American

One of the questions that has been raised most often about the emergence of sexual assault charges against Judge Kavanaugh is why Dr Ford waited over 30 years to bring them to the surface?

Lots of answers have been offered save for the one that makes the most sense.

Given Dr. Ford’s testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee last Thursday it was clear to all who watched that the trauma she suffered from the violation of her body that she clearly believes did happen, has been with her ever since that fateful night 36 years ago.  It was also obvious that the trauma was real, that she spent a lot of time in therapy trying to deal with it and that reliving those events on national television was a clear and understandable challenge.

What appeared to be most telling during her testimony was the fact that even though she was affected by the trauma seemingly continuously for all of these years, she never chose to bring it up during the earlier times when Judge Kavanaugh was being considered for judgeships other than to the Supreme Court of the United States.

For example, when Judge Kavanaugh  was nominated 12 years ago to the US Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington he was grilled by the Senate Judiciary Committee at that time as well.  No doubt Dr. Ford was aware of that nomination but chose not to raise any concerns.  But why not?

It would seem that she was only motivated to act when she saw the list of potential nominees that were provided to the press by President Trump.  When Kavanaugh’s name caught her eye, at least according to her story supported by the corroborated time line, she decided to come forward with her accusations.  Again, but why then?

Logic would dictate that in her mind giving someone who she believes did what he did to her makes him ineligible to receive a lifetime appointment to the highest court in the land.  In other words, he is alleged to have committed an act as a 17 year old which, in her opinion, does not prevent him from living a normal life (even though her trauma has altered her life forever) but does render him ineligible to receive the highest position attainable in the US legal profession, a lifetime appointment as a Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.

We who watch this experience play out in real time on television may disagree with her judgement as to whether the conduct of which Kavanaugh is accused, even if he is guilty, should prevent him from ascending to the Supreme Court.  That is the right of everyone and does not impinge on the credibility of Dr. Ford’s testimony. But having said that, one can only be impressed that a normal citizen of the United States of America, concerned about the moral expectations associated with judges who are being considered for elevation to the Supreme Court of the United States, would choose to exercise her civic duty and make her congressperson aware of her concern.  For that action alone she deserves the praise and gratitude of the American public in general and the respect of women worldwide for her bravery and grace under pressure.

Whether for or against the nominee, one cannot fail to be impressed by the brave actions of a single citizen to do what she believed was right, regardless of the personal cost, especially in the incredibly polarized times in which we live.  And for that we thank her.

About the Author
Sherwin Pomerantz is a native New Yorker, who lived and worked in Chicago for 20 years before coming to Israel in 1984. An industrial engineer with advanced degrees in mechanical engineering and business, he is President of Atid EDI Ltd., a 33 year old Jerusalem-based economic development consulting firm which, among other things, represents the regional trade and investment interests of a number of US states, Ontario and Hong Kong. A past national president of the Association of Americans & Canadians in Israel, he is also Chairperson of the Israel Board of the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies. His articles have appeared in various publications in Israel and the US.
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