When Maine Sen. Susan Collins spoke before the Senate to explain her vote to support Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, she knew she would face tremendous retribution. It took a lot of bravery to avoid caving and go with the principle of “innocent until proven guilty,” but she did so in a superb tribute to American judicial values, and I have never been prouder of anyone. As expected, the backlash from the bullying left has been relentless ever since.
We must always remember,” she said from the podium, “that it is when passions are most inflamed that fairness is most in jeopardy.” She was talking about the shameful treatment of Kavanaugh, but she could just as easily have been talking about what was happening and would continue to happen to her.
A letter addressed to Collins’ husband and delivered to their home claimed it contained the deadly poison ricin. Their dog is currently under quarantine, along with part of their home, while they await the results of tests by the Maine Crime Lab.
At her alma mater, St. Lawrence University near Ogdensburg, New York, nearly 100 faculty members (out of a total of 217), from virtually every department signed a letter calling for an honorary degree she had received to be revoked, simply because they don’t approve of her vote on Kavanaugh. Another letter signed by about 1,300 alumni did the same. Incredibly, it was said that she “lacks the integrity and commitment to justice that we expect from the St. Lawrence body.” They don’t think she has signaled enough concern about “campus rape culture.” That sounds a lot like the ludicrous attack being made in larger political circles that she’s a “rape apologist.”
It’s wrong for Justice Kavanaugh to be viewed as a symbol of campus rape culture when he was never determined to have done anything. And it’s wrong for Collins to be viewed as a symbol of acquiescence to campus rape culture when she was simply trying to be fair in a particular case. Stunningly, these people said that “rescinding (Collins’) Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters for her words and deeds which reinforce this culture would be a symbolic act that illustrates St. Lawrence University’s strong commitment moving forward to continue dismantling rape culture on our own campus.”
In the leftist world, people are not individuals with individual rights as protected by the Constitution. They are primarily SYMBOLS of interest groups (race, gender, etc.) and ideologies. They don’t live their individual lives; they commit “symbolic acts.” That is why leftists want to “fundamentally transform” America –- they are fundamentally at odds with it.
Kavanaugh is an individual who was accused of a sexual attack with absolutely no evidence that he –- or his accuser, for that matter –- was even present at the event at which it supposedly happened. She could remember virtually none of the details that would help with verification but claimed to be “100 percent sure” that Kavanaugh groped her at a party. Witnesses who said they were “100 percent sure” have been responsible for convicting countless innocent men (typically black, by the way) of sexual crimes; that’s why we have The Innocence Project to use DNA testing to free them. Kavanaugh denied the accusation as strongly as it’s possible to deny anything, and he had literally hundreds of female friends and acquaintances vouching for his character. To ignore these factors defies reason.
This hasn’t stopped Sen. Dianne Feinstein from saying that if the Democrats take the Senate, she wants the sexual misconduct investigation of Kavanaugh reopened. (It was her deliberate delay in revealing the letter from Dr. Ford that started the whole confirmation circus.) And her Democratic colleagues want to hold hearings and impeach him. Rep. Jerry Nadler, who would become chairman of the House Judiciary Committee if they win, agrees with Feinstein. Democrats also plan to impeach the President, simply because they want to. Everyone going to the polls in just under three weeks needs to realize that THIS GARBAGE and much, much more is what they are voting for if they vote Democratic.
Reason in the Kavanaugh case, at least by those opposed to his nomination, is out the window. Just wondering: would the same leftist campus bullies say that faculty members who did NOT sign the letter against Collins are likewise failing to signal enough concern about “campus rape culture”? Come on, why weren’t those professors on board to condemn Sen. Collins, too? I’ll bet most of those wayward academics who failed to toe the liberal line have received scholastic honors at some point; should these now be rescinded? And if they don’t yet have tenure, should that be denied?
And what if Kavanaugh had come to his confirmation as a liberal judge who was seen as unwavering on abortion rights? Does anyone think that Sen. Feinstein would have brought forth an accusation such as Dr. Ford’s? Excuse my cynicism, but you’ve got to be kidding.
George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley wrote about the letters, saying “These professors and graduates are seeking to retroactively punish Susan Collins for reaching a conclusion different from their own...These professors and students vividly demonstrate how power without principle is little more than a mob dressed up as a movement.”
Oooh, there’s that word again: “MOB.” We’re not allowed to use that word now. It’s politically incorrect, as it too accurately describes what we’re looking at.
In the letter, the faculty and graduates say that their decision to rescind the honorary degree is “not rooted in partisan loyalties” (right), and they note that Collins was originally given the honor because she “was willing to break party ranks.” Oh, but that was when she broke ranks WITH THE REPUBLICANS. If she ponders an issue for herself but ends up going in a direction they don’t like, that’s very different. She wasn’t independent-minded in the way they wanted her to be.
The implication in these letters is that there is no justification in reaching a different conclusion from theirs. To not believe Dr. Ford is to show “unwarranted skepticism.” Unwarranted by whom? These professors and alumni, of course. This sort of non-reasoning is being used increasingly by the left to shut down debate. People who argue this way used to be called “crazy-makers.”
Apparently, St. Lawrence University has never before revoked an honorary degree, so this will be a first if it actually happens. Bizarrely, one letter ends with an expression of gratitude for Sen. Collins’ willingness to speak at certain student events, called “DC Connect.” If Collins ever agrees to speak at another one of those events (I sure wouldn’t), she might suggest that they try connecting with some classier behavior and better reasoning skills.
Turley criticized the faculty letter for its “open hostility” and said, “I find the letter to be deeply disturbing from academics who seem to allow for little range of disagreement on such issues while painting people like Collins as virtual rape apologists.”
Collins is probably too nice to react as I would to such insult from her alma mater, but I would take that “honorary” degree off my mantel, remove it from its frame (so I could re-use the frame), rip it into tiny shards, stick it in an tatty old envelope and mail it back. If that many professors and their alumni are as stupid as these letters make them sound, I wouldn’t care to display any academic honor they had bestowed.
But that’s just me. And I love Susan Collins, now more than ever.