Letter to the editor: SCOTUS hearing shows need for rebirth of civic duty

No one of sound mind who watched the testimony of Christine Blasey Ford before the Senate Judiciary Committee can deny that everything she said was credible. Her very manner and way of speaking showed her to be a truthful person, a shy academic most comfortable in a scientific laboratory or a study or a library; and in quiet conversation with colleagues, friends and family — a decent, gentle person. Someone I would be happy to know and count as a friend. She spoke the truth.
She reluctantly came forward solely out of a sense of duty to her country at great cost to herself and her family.
But if she spoke truly, then the events she recalled did really happen as she described them, and in his testimony before the same committee either Brett Kavanaugh lied, or, if he in fact had no memory of what happened, then he was declaring his innocence out of ignorance. But this is very doubtful. More likely he was lying.
Indeed, we can dispense with probability: he lied in public, before the world. This ambitious, well-connected man, educated at elite schools and the Ivy League, lied because he wants to be a Supreme Court justice. The motive is obvious, if not self-evident.
What, then, is the duty of every Senator? This also is obvious: to vote “No” on his nomination. Will this happen? Probably not. And if not, then Brett Kavanaugh, a public liar, will become a Supreme Court justice. His swearing in will become an infamous moment in the checkered history of this unhappy nation, a moment of shame.
I write this letter not because I believe it may change things. It is a cry from the heart. This nation is corrupt and has been for a long time. Our current president, who also has a truth problem, has boasted of his privilege to be a sexual predator. Bill Clinton is a liar and sexual predator. Richard Nixon was a crook. Martin Luther King Jr. was murdered. Racism, xenophobia, sexual predation and other infamies persist, overlaid with a chronic narcissism, elitism, and a fatuous moral sentimentalism.
There is only one thought that keeps me from total despair. We are all citizens. And every citizen’s duty is to do the right thing. It is our highest obligation in life. Christine Blasey Ford has shown it can be done.
The rebirth of a sense of civic duty in the people of the United States and their legislative representatives could change this moment of national shame into a redeeming moment. The possibility exists; it requires only a national will to make it happen.
Victor Nuovo

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