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The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

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The U.S. Has Taken a Risk with Kavanaugh

Wikimedia Commons/ Office of the Vice President
Recently nominated Brett Kavanaugh and Vice President Mike Pence together in D.C.

It’s an honor and a privilege to become one of the nine people who make life-altering decisions on behalf of all US citizens.

Therefore, nominees should be held to higher standards than the average job applicant.

What does it say about the United States when two of the six male Supreme Court Justices were confirmed, despite having been accused of sexual assault or harassment?

It’s unlikely this would occur had it been a different job yet for some reason, when confirming a Supreme Court Justice, we decide to risk it.

Just because Brett Kavanaugh is now a Supreme Court Justice does not mean that he is innocent. It means that he hasn’t been proven guilty.

That’s a crucial distinction, considering the nature of the case.

We don’t have access to concrete evidence, such as video footage or DNA from the night in question.

Character witnesses are also unreliable, considering that the party occurred 36 years ago in a setting where people were intoxicated.

It’s unrealistic to expect conclusive proof on either side.

To those who say that it was reasonable to confirm Kavanaugh because we have no proof that he did it, I say that it was unreasonable to confirm him because we have no proof that he didn’t do it.

It’s more dangerous to confirm somebody who may be guilty than it is to deny somebody who may be innocent. The stakes are too high and the job is too prestigious to risk whether or not it’s fair to Kavanaugh as an individual. The promotion of one man does not surpass the rights of the American people to have a Supreme Court free of sexual predators.

It would have been best for President Trump to nominate somebody else, if only because this nomination was already so tainted by partisan narratives.

If Kavanaugh’s nomination was rescinded, it would not have proven him guilty.

He would not have been labeled a sex offender and he would not have been unemployable, considering how many fellow politicians and citizens jumped to his defense.

The only thing that he would have lost is a job that he was not entitled to in the first place.

Trump would have nominated another conservative judge, and the GOP likely would have been satisfied with that candidate.

Why did it have to be Kavanaugh? If anything, we would all be better off had it not been Kavanaugh.

Confirming Kavanaugh despite the allegations could impair his ability to judge.

Now that he has experienced (and vehemently denied) accusations of his own, will he be positively biased towards defendants when judging cases?

Will he let his personal experiences interfere with his decisions?

Will he try to retaliate against the Democrats with his votes? The fact that we don’t know the answers to these questions is enough of a justification to replace him.

At this point, Kavanaugh hasn’t even his begun work and he’s already had a profound effect on the American people.

Even in the case that Kavanaugh is innocent, certain attitudes displayed towards Dr. Ford contributed to the trivialization of sexual assault, as well as to the perpetuation of victim-shaming.

As if it wasn’t already difficult for victims to come forward, the fact that the accused has become a Supreme Court Justice amidst allegations will make it all the more difficult.

It’s unlikely that this much controversy and uncertainty would have accompanied a different nominee to the bench, but still, America took that chance.


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    FrankOct 19, 2018 at 2:12 am

    As a conservative, we had to stick with Kavanaugh. Yes, ideally, we’d probably pull him back and just nominate another judge but these aren’t “ideal” times. The Democrats weren’t concerned about the charges of alleged sexual assault, rather they just wanted to bide more time in hope that Mueller would come back with a report negative to Trump thus allowing the Senate to deny him the right to make another nomination.

    Just politics as usual.

    SJU grad ’95