|Students, faculty members and staff
members walked out of Yale University’s Sterling Law |
Building on Monday to protest Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination.
Like women, gays are looked down as some form of lesser human by the macho "boys club" that rules much of the nation's political system and most of corporate America. Of course, once one is viewed as "other" or "lesser," it becomes easy for the privileged class - in this case, heterosexual white males - to mistreat those they deem their inferiors. For gays, we are often targeted for abuse and continued discrimination. For women, less than equal rights and having their lives/bodies controlled by men are a consequence. Over the years, I have experience such males in high school, the fraternity scene at the University of Virginia, and, of course, in the Virginia legal community and large law firms. A column in the New York Times looks at this ugly reality in America and why male Senate Republicans are desperate to confirm Brett Kavanaugh if for no other reason than to reassert that they are privileged and gays, women, minorities are not. Indeed, we are less than equal. Here are column excerpts:
Over the weekend, the controversy over Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination evolved in a way guaranteed to create maximum partisan bitterness and mistrust.
Regardless of what happens to Kavanaugh, however, this scandal has given us an X-ray view of the rotten foundations of elite male power. Despite Donald Trump’s populist posturing, there are few people more obsessed with Ivy League credentials. Kavanaugh’s nomination shows how sick the cultures that produce those credentials — and thus our ruling class — can be.
Let’s start with Kavanaugh’s high school, Georgetown Prep, also the alma mater of Neil Gorsuch, Trump’s first Supreme Court pick. There’s now a wealth of reporting painting the private school as a bastion of heedless male entitlement. Kavanaugh’s high school friend Mark Judge — who Christine Blasey Ford, Kavanaugh’s first accuser, says was in the room when Kavanaugh allegedly assaulted her — has written extensively of his drunken teenage debauchery. According to The New Yorker, Judge confided in an ex-girlfriend, Elizabeth Rasor, about an incident where he and other boys took turns having sex with a drunken woman. (Judge denies this.)
From Georgetown Prep, Kavanaugh went to Yale. There he joined the fraternity Delta Kappa Epsilon, or DKE, which was, according to The Yale Daily News, “notorious for disrespecting women.” (Long after Kavanaugh graduated, the fraternity, once headed by George W. Bush, was banned from campus after video emerged of pledges chanting, “No Means Yes! Yes Means Anal!”) Kavanaugh was also a member of an all-male secret society called Truth and Courage, which had an obscene nickname affirming its dedication to womanizing.
It may not be fair to judge Kavanaugh by the company he kept. But it’s telling that these were the crucibles in which he and other members of our ostensible meritocracy forged their identities and connections.