Thread: Something that has become abundantly clear to me in the last few years of public feminist writing is that women carry around an endless library full of testimonies of the various things that have happened to us. #ChristineBlaseyFord is just one of these women.
I say 'just', but of course I don't mean it in the reductive sense. I mean that hers is not an outlier testimony, one that should be scrutinised on the basis of exceptional probability. She is not the exception. She is the rule.
When I say she is 'just' one of these women, I mean hers is just one entry in an encyclopaedia of women whose lives have been impacted, diverted and sometimes even derailed by men whose bodies are not considered property to be claimed and taken.
These men's lives are not impacted. They are not diverted. They are never derailed. They go on, growing and expanding to bigger and greater heights. They become lawyers, CEOs, actors producers, politicians and legislators. They even become presidents.
I say 'just' to illustrate the expanse of women whose lives, like #ChristineBlaseyFord's, have been considered inconsequential to the desires and wants of men. But 'just' is also a derivative of justice. It's a means of talking about making right what has been an act of wrong.
There is no justice in this world for women whose bodies are viewed as territory for men to stake their claim to. Justice is framed instead as something that men accused of such crimes need to seek. To clear their names of minimise their actions.
And they will be aided in this pursuit of 'justice' by family members, friends, colleagues and community members, because those people don't want to confront living in a world where the men they love have to be accountable for the terrible things they do.
In early 2018, a man named Rob Porter publicly resigned from his job. Porter was a senior White House aide who had been named *years ago* as a spousal abuser. His former wives had reported to their churches, their communities and even the FBI.
These claims were known to the White House, because Porter required security clearance. Because of them, it took longer than usual. People knew. They knew. Their was photographic evidence and years old allegations and they knew.
But it took actual exposure and public allegations for Rob Porter to be forced into resignation. Even then, in the days before his resignation, senior figures affirmed their support and commitment to him.
When he resigned, Donald Trump said in a statement, "We certainly wish him well. It's obviously a very tough time for him. He did a very good job while he was in the White House."
There is no justice for women.
Following Porter's resignation, Dahlia Lithwick wrote in @Slate, "Taken together, all the grown-ups in the room protected, privileged, and covered for Rob Porter despite everything they knew about his pattern of abuse, because his career was important to them."
Remember that line. 'Because his career was important to them.'
Men's careers - particularly white men's - are considered more important than women's bodies, women's mental health, women's dignity and women's freedom. Particularly when those women are WOC, like Anita Hill.
In 1991, Hill testified against Clarence Thomas during the confirmation hearings for his nomination to the Supreme Court. She revealed that he had sexually harassed her multiple times when she worked for him. She had numerous witnesses, but they were not called to give evidence.
Clarence Thomas has been a Supreme Court justice since that time. In 2018, Donald Trump tweeted a photo of the two of them wishing him happy birthday and calling him 'a great man'.
There is no justice for women.
And here we are again. Where another women, just one of many billions across multiple decades, centuries, millennia, has harboured a secret for years about an assault a man chose to exert against her. Because he wanted to and he knew he could.
He knew he could, because the world we live in allows men - particularly the rich, well heeled, white ones who are born into a legacy of inherited power - to get away with it.
Violations of women are the mistakes men are allowed to make on their path towards becoming great. Louis CK, Harvey Weinstein, Rob Porter and yes, Brett Kavanaugh. Their actions may not all be the same but they are borne from the same toxic mindset.
Brett Kavanaugh is vying to become a Supreme Court justice. From here, he will get to once more determine what's done to other people's bodies (particularly women's) and this will be welcomed as the inevitable next step in his path to greatness. He is just another man, making it.
Women, meanwhile, go on being just ignored, discredited, undermined, dismissed, disbelieved, vilified, abused and harassed. Because we are 'just' trying to destroy a man's career by bringing up old news.
Like I said, I have been privileged with the weight of women's testimonies. I know how much pain exists out there because men decided that a woman's body was was a pit stop on their way to where they were going. This story is not remarkable. Its end probably won't be either.
#ChristineBlaseyFord is just another woman with a story about a man who took what he wanted from her on his way to becoming great. And there is no justice for them, none at all.
If #BrettKavanaugh is confirmed as a Supreme Court justice, it will also be confirming once again that women don't matter. That women exist only as addendums to men's stories.
Women deserve justice. Not to be thought of as 'just as'.


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More from @clementine_ford

Jun 14, 2018
1. Some thoughts. It was not a lack of ‘situational awareness’ that ended the life of Eurydice Dixon - it was a person who made a conscious choice to exercise extreme violence against her. #eurydicedixon
2. I didn’t know Eurydice, but I have no doubt at all that she had ‘situational awareness’ and an awareness of her own personal security, because she was a woman who lived in the world and as such had been learning those infuriating lessons since she was a young child.
3. Here are some lessons too. Inspector Stamper urges people to call triple-0 if they have ‘any concerns at any time’, but is he aware of the high level of derision directed at women who are seen to be ‘wasting’ the time of people with ‘better things to do’?
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