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To Believe or Not to Believe

by Tina Ray, Legal Assistant

The following represents the personal and respected view of the writer and not the view of Woodruff Family Law Group.

 I am definitely not a political aficionado, nor do I follow politics terribly closely.  However, out of curiosity, I have found myself listening to and reading about the Kavanaugh case.  When I talk to someone about this issue, I feel like I have to really think about what I’m saying and how I’m saying it so that I don’t offend anyone.  With the #metoo movement in full force, anything that anyone says can easily cause offense or be twisted to mean something else whether spoken by a male or female.

By no means, am I condoning the actions of anyone that has assaulted, raped, molested or de-humanized another person.  As a female, I have had my share of unwanted advances, touches, verbal abuse, and completely uncomfortable situations.  In my teenage years, SOME of the boys were way more aggressive than others.  Although a smaller, thinner me, I was very clear about what was crossing the line and I would not hesitate to express my disgust and make it known that I would not put up with anything that I did not consent to.  One Saturday, while my best friend’s boyfriend was waiting for her at my house, I felt uncomfortable to the point of locking myself in the bathroom to get away from him.  Of course, I told my boyfriend about it, and it became a “he said, she said” situation. From that moment on, I avoided him at all costs.   At this point in my life, if this unnamed person was to run for a public office or some high-ranking position, would I tell anyone what happened back in high school?  My situation was not an assault, just an uncomfortable circumstance but could have turned into something much worse.   If he had gone on to be a consummate professional and adult, I’m sure I would not say anything.  Sometimes choices made as a teenager are just bad decisions or choices.  That does not mean that you will be a failure as an adult.

Do I believe Dr. Blasey Ford?  I BELIEVE that this happened to her.  I BELIEVE that someone assaulted her.   But, after reading about it and listening to her account of it, I’m not sure if it was Brett Kavanaugh.  Clearly, this action affected her negatively and has continued to affect her long-term.  Her memories of the day of the assault are, 36 years later, a little muddled.  I would like to think that, if I were assaulted in the way that she was, I would report it immediately to my parents and the authorities.  But, would I?

Do I believe Mr. Kavanaugh?  I BELIEVE that he drank to excess occasionally and isn’t proud of it.  I BELIEVE that he probably did some things when he was an intoxicated teenager that he doesn’t remember clearly.   However, he has an exemplary record as an adult, employee, and boss.  He sounds very convincing with his calendars and timeline.  If he did this, he was a teenager when it happened.  Would he really say that he did it now?  Probably not.

This is an unfortunate “he said, she said” situation.  There is no winner and no loser.  There are only two people who know what happened to Dr. Blasey Ford.  Is Mr. Kavanaugh one of them?  The bottom line is, I don’t think we will ever really know.   Does it really matter who we BELIEVE?