Things That Matter

Here’s How People Are Coming Together To Support Brett Kavanaugh’s Accusers After They Came Forward

The United States has experienced a very emotional time during Supreme Court hearings for Brett Kavanaugh. Victims of sexual assault watched as Dr. Christine Blasey Ford went before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee to tell her story. Dr. Ford spoke calmly and consistently about how Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her one summer in high school. All this just days after Deborah Ramirez’s account of Kavanaugh exposing himself to her in their first year at Yale University.

While the Republican majority Senate plans to vote Kavanaugh in as the next lifetime-long Supreme Court Justice, many Latino Senators have showed their support for Dr. Ford, alongside some celebrities. Here’s the highlight reel of what you missed at the hearing and the major players involved.

Disclaimer: the details of her assault can be triggering. Please proceed with caution.

“I am terrified. I am here because I believe it is my civic duty to tell you what happened to me while Brett Kavanaugh and I were in high school.”

CREDIT: @onespinal / Instagram

While three women have laid serious sexual assault claims against Kavanaugh, Dr. Ford is the only woman who has consented to go before the Senate in a nationally televised court setting to share her harrowing, intimate story.

Ford details the incident during which Kavanaugh and his friend, Mark Judge, shove her into a bedroom, pinned her to the bed and tried to rip off her clothes. She tried screaming for help, but he put the weight of his hand over her mouth.

“It was hard for me to breathe and I believed that Brett was going to accidentally kill me,” she said.

Republican Senator Lindsey Graham repeatedly dismissed Ford’s claims and then had an aoutburst of emotion defending Kavanaugh.

CREDIT: @NRO / Twitter

He didn’t even question Kavanaugh. He just railed on his defense and said, “To my Republican colleagues, if you vote no, you’re legitimizing the most despicable thing I have seen in my time in politics,” and that Ford was “just as much of a victim as you [Kavanaugh] are.”

Dr. Ford openly shared that she has no political motives and is putting herself at risk to share her story.

CREDIT: @THR / Twitter

Her and her family have been receiving death threats that have “rocked [her] to [her] core.”

“I have been accused of acting out of partisan political motives,” she said. “Those who say that do not know me. I am a fiercely independent person, and I am no one’s pawn. My motivation in coming forward was to provide the facts about how Mr. Kavanaugh’s actions have damaged my life, so that you can take that into serious consideration as you make your decision about how to proceed.”

Meanwhile, Kavanaugh crossed the line of indignation and appeared angry.

CREDIT: @tictoc / Twitter

“This confirmation process has become a national disgrace,” Kavanaugh said in his tearful and resentful opening statement. “The Constitution gives the Senate an important role in the confirmation process, but you have replaced advice and consent with search and destroy.”

When asked about his high school and college reputation of being a drunk and a partier, his actual soundbite was, “I liked beer. I still like beer. Do you like beer, Senator?”

Dr. Ford passed a polygraph test while Kavanaugh said they’re “not much use.”

CREDIT: @thehill / Twitter

At the end of the hearing, Senator Kamala Harris asked Kavanaugh if he would submit to a polygraph test. He said he would, but that it would be inadmissible. Just two years ago, Judge Kavanaugh wrote an opinion article that detailed how polygraph examinations are “an important law enforcement tool.”

Democratic Senators failed to ask about Deborah Ramirez’ claims against Kavanaugh.

CREDIT: @LifeNewsHQ / Twitter

Ramirez currently lives in Boulder Colorado, but was raised in a Catholic Puerto Rican household in Connecticut. Ramirez tells the The New Yorker that she was invited to a party as a Yale freshman where you sit in a circle and people pick who has to drink. She was targeted and quickly became so drunk, she was on the floor, “foggy and slurring her words.”

“I remember a penis being in front of my face.”

CREDIT: @prosemund4 / Twitter

Other students were laughing and telling her to “kiss it.” She was raised as a devout Catholic and was planning to only have sex within marriage. Then she remembers Brett pulling his pants up and laughing. Then, she heard someone yelling, “Brett Kavanaugh just put his penis in Debbie’s face.”

She remembers feeling mortified.

Both Ramirez and Ford are asking that the FBI reopen their investigation into Brett Kavanaugh.

CREDIT: @CNNPolitics / Twitter

The vetting process took place before any allegations were brought up. While these women will never forget what happened to them, up until very recently, we have lived in a culture of shame around being sexually assaulted. Rape culture blames the victim, doubts the victim, questions the victim’s memory and credibility.

READ MORE: Sen. Jeff Flake Called For An FBI Investigation Into Kavanaugh After Two Latinas Confronted Him With Their Stories.

More than 2,200 Yale women have signed a letter of support for Ms. Ramirez.

CREDIT: @dailycamera / Twitter

Someone paid for this banner to fly over Boulder, Colorado, where Ramirez lives, and where she hasn’t left her home since the story broke. Ramirez first started leaving pieces of paper on her trash that said, “no comment” and “no trespassing.”

Today, it reads, “Please demand an FBI investigation for Dr. Christine Blasey Ford and Debbie Ramirez’s claims.”

Several Republicans have made it known that sexual assault claims are non-partisan.

CREDIT: @ananavarro / Twitter

Including Ana Navarro, the famous Nicaraguan-born American Republican strategist and political commentator, who says, “Every American -every Senator- listening to Kavanaugh and Dr. Ford testimony today, should remember, this is not about ideology. It’s not about wanting or not wanting a Conservative on Court. That’s a different issue. This is about right & wrong. It’s about fitness of character.”

Our hearts grow bigger for these celebrities who are speaking out in support of Ford:

CREDIT: @hereisgina / Twitter

Gina Rodriguez put it simply, “I believe you.”

As Senators from both sides asked how Ford was so sure it was Kavanaugh, she replied in the way only a survivor and Ph.D in psychology could: “It’s just basic memory functions, and also just the level of norepinephrine and the epinephrine in the brain that sort of -as you know- encodes; that neurotransmitter encodes that trauma into the hippocampus. And so the trauma-related experience is kind of locked there while other details kind of drift.”

Eva Longoria joined other celebrities in a video PSA.

CREDIT: @evalongoria / Instagram

In the PSA, her along with Julie Michaels, America Ferrera, and many others all read aloud, “Dear Professor Ford, we know how difficult it is to stand up to powerful people. We want to thank you for publicly sharing your story of sexual violence. As members of the Senate determine whether Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh should serve as a Supreme Court Justice, this context is critical.

The behavior you described was wrong and runs directly counter to upholding the law and promoting justice. He should not be confirmed… We believe you.”

“One Day at a Time” star, Justina Machado points out the stark contrast between how we treat 17-year-old white boys and brown toddlers in America.

CREDIT: @justinamachado / Instagram

She retweeted Erika Andiola’s poignant truth, “In Trump’s America, a 17-year-old privileged, white teenage boy can’t be held accountable for sexually abusing teenage girls, but toddlers brought to America are detained, held in cages and expected to defend themselves in immigration court. Think about it.”

Sara Ramirez live tweeted the whole hearing process.

CREDIT: @sararamirez / Instagram

You know she was watching from her home and retweeting action plans and opinions about Kavanaugh’s emotional outbursts like, “He’s crying because his whiteness, his maleness, his PRIVILEGE, his ‘promised’ perfect future is being questioned, and society never prepared him for failure or for facing the consequences of his actions.”

Meanwhile, two of the four Latino Senators in office made their allegiances clear.

CREDIT: @SenatorMenendez / Twitter

Caption: “Searing. Powerful. Brave. The details of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony are heart-wrenching to hear. I hope every single Senator not only watches, but listens. Thank you Dr. Ford for your courage. #IBelieveChristineBlaseyFord”

Cuban-American Menendez called out the GOP for funneling their questions through an outside party prosecutor.

CREDIT: @SenatorMenendez / Twitter

Senator Menendez of New Jersey was sensitive to what this hearings meant for his constituents. He retweeted RAINN’s National Sexual Assault Hotline (800.656.HOPE) with this message:

“1.8 million survivors of sexual violence live in NJ, and watching or hearing about this testimony can be triggering. Survivors need to know, you are not alone. I encourage anyone seeking help to start here.”

Senator Catherine Cortez Masto is the other half of the Democratic Latinos in the Senate that supports Dr. Ford’s wish.

CREDIT: @SenCortezMasto / Twitter

Over and over again, senators asked Kavanaugh to ask the President and the FBI to investigate the claims to clear his name and allow the proceedings to go on. Several witnesses of the assaults of Dr. Ford, Ms. Ramirez and Ms. Swetnick have not been interviewed.

Swetnick’s attorney posted a statement that Swetnick witnessed Kavanaugh lining up outside a bedroom door where “numerous boys” were “waiting for their ‘turn’ with a girl inside the room.” Swetnick was raped at one of the parties and believed she was drugged.

Republican Marco Rubio previously supported Kavanaugh but now claims to have his hesitations.

CREDIT: @marcorubiofla / Instagram

Politico asked Marco Rubio if he maintains his yet vote and he wavered, “I want to see what happens in the hearing on Thursday. I can only vote based on the information before me.”

Rubio is notorious for saying what his constituents and Americans want to hear but votes with his party consistently.

Activists rallied outside Rubio’s office against Kavanaugh.

CREDIT: @womensmarch / Twitter

While protests have organized all around the country, it’s important for locals to show up to their Senator’s office, especially if they’re undecided. I mean, it is Rubio’s job to represent his constituents.

There is going to be a weeklong pause as the FBI opens a “limited” investigation into Dr. Ford’s allegations.

CREDIT: @americaferrera / Instagram

The results of the probe could change the outcome of the vote for Kavanaugh. Only time will tell.


READ: Lawsuit Alleges That Cristiano Ronaldo Raped A Woman In 2009 In Las Vegas

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Conservative Cuban-American Federal Judge Tops Trump’s SCOTUS Nominee List

Things That Matter

Conservative Cuban-American Federal Judge Tops Trump’s SCOTUS Nominee List

Supreme Court of Florida / Public Domain

Conservative Cuban judge Barbara Lagoa is said to be towards the top of President Donald Trump’s list of Supreme Court picks. If announced, Lagoa will then undergo a confirmation hearing to fill the seat vacated by Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death.

President Trump is reportedly considering two very conservative women to fill Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s empty seat on the Supreme Court.

Barbara Lagoa, a Cuban-American federal judge, is one of the women President Trump is seriously considering for the Supreme Court nomination. Critics state that President Trump is trying to stack the court to rule conservatively for decades to come. Lagoa was the first Latina to be appointed to the Florida Supreme Court.

Politicians and political pundits are calling on the Senate to follow precedent they set in 2016. During President Obama’s last year in office, the Republican-led Senate refused to confirm a nominee to the Supreme Court following the death of conservative justice Antonin Scalia in March. The argument was that the American people should have the right to decide who fills the seat since it is an election year. In 2020, the same Senate is committing to rushing a hearing as soon as possible.

Lagoa made a name for herself when she worked to fight Elián González’s deportation.

Lagoa, who currently serves on the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, worked behind the scenes. Her role in the González fight was in making the argument against the Bill Clinton administration. The judge, like most Cuban-Americans at the time, was desperate to keep González in the U.S. having witnessed the trauma of the Cuban exile diaspora in Miami.

Her position on abortion is up for debate right now.

Lagoa hasn’t had to weigh in on the heavier issues because of her previous positions so it isn’t clear how she’ll rule on abortion matters. However, in her confirmation hearing last year for the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, Lagoa answered question about Roe v Wade.

Senator Dianne Feinstein of California asked Lagoa about the decision and how she would follow it.

“Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973), is binding precedent of the Supreme Court and I would faithfully follow it as I would follow all precedent of the Supreme Court regardless of whether it is referred to as ‘super-stare decisis’ or ‘superprecedent,'” Lago wrote in response.

Lagoa did vote to make access voting harder for felons in Florida despite the people voting in 2018.

Lagoa was one of the voting members in the 6-4 ruling of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals that created voting restrictions for felons. The decision was a key legal victory for the Trump administration and Republicans. Lagoa’s vote made it so that felons could only restore their voting rights if they pay their fees and fines, which the state of Florida is not responsible for telling or showing them how to pay them off.

President Trump is expected to make an announcement soon about who he is going to be nominating to the Supreme Court. A political battle is already brewing as both sides of the aisle fight for the seat.

READ: Latino Politicians And Celebrities Mourn The Death Of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

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Crowd Boos President Trump As She Visits Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Casket At Supreme Court

Things That Matter

Crowd Boos President Trump As She Visits Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Casket At Supreme Court

Gage Skidmore / Flickr

President and Melania Trump visited the Supreme Court to pay respects to Ruth Bader Ginsburg. As the president and first lady stood by the casket, protesters could be heard booing and chanting against the president.

President Donald Trump visited Ruth Bader Ginsburg casket at the Supreme Court and things got loud.

A crowd of people gathered in front of the Supreme COurt booed the president as he stood behind the casket. The boos turned to chants of “vote him out” that grew louder until the president left the scene. Some were also heard chating “honor her wish” in memory of Justice Ginsburg’s wish not to be replaced until a new president is elected.

Justice Ginsburg’s death has electrified the political debate dividing the nation.

Justice Ginsburg was a pop culture icon who was beloved by the American people. She stood for progress and advancing the civil rights of all communities. Her death has mobilized Democrats with record-breaking donations to Democrats in the days following her death.

President Trump has announced that he is going to be announcing a nominee to fill the seat as soon as possible.

President Trump is bulldozing ahead by announcing that he would pick a nominee four days after Justice Ginsburg’s death. Democratic and some Republican lawmakers have called on the Senate to reconsider voting for a nominee before the election.

Political pundits are resurfacing videos of Republican Senators in 2016 denying President Obama’s Supreme Court because it was an election year. Senator Mitch McConnell, the Senate majority leader, was the one in 2016 to deny the Obama administration a Supreme Court pick citing the election year. In 2020, the Republican-led Senate has changed the rules.

Some politicians, like Senator Lindsey Graham, are facing backlash because of their flip-flopping.

Senator Graham is the chairman of the Senate Committee on the Judiciary and will be running the confirmation hearing of the next Supreme Court nominee. Sen. Graham is facing a very tight race for re-election in South Carolina against Jaime Harrison. Sen. Graham’s seat, which is a Republican stronghold, is in jeopardy as Harrison continues his campaign.

Republicans and Democrats are both watching the Senate closely to see what will happen.

The Supreme Court vacancy has become a flashpoint in the 2020 election cycle. Both parties are fundraising on the issue of changing the court for decades to come.

READ: Latino Politicians And Celebrities Mourn The Death Of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

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