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Ford: Kavanaugh’s sexual assault, my life has been damaged
In the opening speech of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Christine Blasey Ford testified that she believed that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh was going to rape her and accidentally kill her, in 1982.
Thursday Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on sexual assault accusations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh captured the attention of Washington and the nation with hours of fiery, emotional statements of a judge, and Christine Blasey Ford, the woman accused him of sexual assault when they were high school students. Kavanaugh denied the accusation.
The full opening of the bottom of speech by Christine Blasey Ford:
Thank you, Chairman Grassley and Ranking member Feinstein, and members of the Committee. My name is Christine Blasey Ford. I am a professor of psychology at Palo Alto University and was a research psychologist at the Stanford University School of Medicine. I’m not going to detail my training, because it summarized. I was married to Russell Ford since 2002, and we have two children.
I’m here today, not because I want to. I am appalled. I’m 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.
I have the events described to the public. I took you in my letter to high-ranking member Feinstein, and again in a letter to Chairman Grassley.
I understand and appreciate the importance that you hear from me directly about what happened to me and the impact it has on my life and my family.
I grew up in the suburbs of Washington, DC, I attended the Holton-Arms School in Bethesda, Maryland, from 1978 to 1984. Holton-Arms is an all-girls school, opened in 1901.
During my time at this school, girls of the Holton-Arms often met, and became friendly with the guys from all-boys schools in the area, including the Landon School, Georgetown Prep, Gonzaga High School, as well as our country clubs and other places where children and families meet. So I met Brett Kavanaugh, the boy who sexually harassed me.
During my freshman and sophomore years in school, when I was 14 and 15 years old, my group of friends cut with Brett and his friends for a short period of time. I was friendly with a fellow classmate Board for a short time during my freshman and sophomore year, and it was this connection, to the visits I visited a number of parties, Board also. We did not know each other well, but I knew him and he knew me.
In the summer of 1982, as most of the summer, I most of the time spent each day at the Columbia Country Club in Chevy Chase, Maryland, swimming, and diving practice.
One evening this summer, after a day of diving in the club, I attended a small meeting in a house in the Bethesda area. There were four boys, the I remember the house: Brett Kavanaugh, Mark Richter, a boy named P. J., and another boy whose name I can not remember. I remember visits to my friend Leland.
I don’t remember all the details of how the collection came together, but like many in this summer, it was almost sure to make a spur-of-the-moment.
I really wish I could be more helpful, detailed answers to all questions have to be asked, as I was to the party and where it took place, and so on. I don’t have all the answers, and I can’t remember, as much as I would like.
But the details are about in the night, bring me here today, those who I will never forget. They were burned into my memory, and have followed me episodically as an adult.
As I to the small Assembly of the people were drinking beer in a small living /family room-type area on the first floor of the house. I drank a beer. Brett and Mark were visibly drunk.
In the early evening, I came to a very narrow staircase, the use of the living room to a second floor to the toilet. When I get to the top of the stairs, I pushed from behind in a bedroom, opposite the bathroom. I could not see who is pushing me. Brett and Mark came into the bedroom and closed the door behind them.
Music ran in the bedroom. It was louder, by drawing either the Board or, as soon as we were in the room.
I pushed her on the bed, and Brett came up to me. He started with his hands over my body and grinding into me. I shouted, in the hope that someone down the stairs could hear me, and I tried to from him, but his weight was too heavy.
Board groped me and tried to undress me. He had a hard time, because he was very drunk, and because I was wearing a one-piece swimsuit under my clothes.
I thought he wanted to rape me.
I tried to scream for help. When I did that Board, and put a hand over my mouth to stop me from screaming. This is what scares me the most, and the most lasting impact on my life. It was hard to breathe for me, and I thought the Board had a chance to kill me.
Both Brett and Mark were drunk, laughing, during the attack. To be a very good time seemed to be.
Mark seemed to be ambivalent, sometimes Board pushing and tell him to stop. A few times I made eye contact with Mark and thought he could try to help me, but he didn’t do it.
During this attack, Mark came over and jumped on the bed twice while the Board was on me. And the last time he did this, we had overturned and the Board was no longer on me. I was able to get up and run out of the room.
Directly opposite the bedroom is a small bathroom. I ran in the bathroom and locked the door. I waited until I Board heard and Mark left the bedroom, laughing out loud, and go up the narrow staircase, pinballing off the walls on the way down.
I waited, and when I got up stairs not hearing back, I left the bathroom, went to the same staircase by the living room and left the house.
I don’t remember that I came on the road and feeling this enormous sense of relief that I had escaped the house, and the Board, and Mark out to me.
The Board’s attack on me drastically changed my life. For a very long time, I was too scared and ashamed to tell anyone these details. I wanted to say that I was my parents at the age of 15, in a house without parents in attendance, drinking beer with the boys.
I have not convinced myself, because Brett is going to rape me, I should just go further and say that it happens.
Over the years, I have said, very, very few friends, I had this traumatic experience. I told my husband before we were married, I had a sexual assault. I had never told the details to anyone who — specific details — to may 2012 in the case of a couples-counselling.
The reason for this came out in counseling is that my husband and I had completed a very extensive, very long remodel of our house and I insisted on a second door, an idea which he and the others of a different opinion and could not understand.
In the case of the explanation of why I wanted a second door to describe, I began the assault in detail. I remember, to say that the boy who attacked me, could one day be on the U.S. Supreme Court, and spoke a little about his background to an elite all-boys school in Bethesda, Maryland. My husband remembers that I Kavanaugh with the name of my attacker as a Board.
According to may 2012 therapy session, I did my best to ignore the memories of the assault, because he caused you to experience me, experience, and caused panic and fear.
Occasionally, I would discuss the attack in an individual therapy session, but talking about it is causing more re-experiencing the trauma, so I tried not to think about it or discuss it. But over the years I went through phases where I thought about the attack.
I confided in some close friends, I had an experience with sexual assault. Occasionally, I said that my attacker was a prominent lawyer or judge, but I do not know his name.
I can’t remember every person I talked to about Brett’s assault. And some of the friends reminded me of these conversations, since the publication of the Washington Post story on September 16, 2018. However, until July of 2018, I had never by the name of Mr. Kavanaugh, as my attacker outside of therapy.
This changed at the beginning of July 2018. I saw reports in the press, stating that the Board was Kavanaugh on the shortlist, a list of very well-qualified Supreme Court nominees. I thought it was my citizen duty to relay the information I had Kavanaugh about Mr. ‘ s behavior, so that the consideration of his nomination would be in the know about this attack.
On 6. In July, I had a sense of urgency to give the information to the Senate and to the President as quickly as possible, before a candidate was chosen. I didn’t know how to do, in concrete terms, this.
I called my Congressman and let your receptionist know that someone on the President’s shortlist had attacked me. I also sent a message to the encrypted Washington Post insider’s tip line. I didn’t with my name on it, but if I have the name of Brett Kavanaugh and Mark judge. I explained that Mr. had Kavanaugh, has attacked me in the 1980s in Maryland.
This was a very difficult thing for me, but I felt that I could not do it.
In the next two days, I’ve had a couple of close friends on the beach of Aptos, California, Mr. Kavanaugh, sexually harassed me. I was very undecided if to speak.
On 9. July, I received a return call from the office of Congress member, Anna Eshoo, according to Mr. Kavanaugh had the nomination. I met with your stick on the 18. July and on the 20. July, described the attack and to get over my fears in order to move forward.
Later, we discussed the possibility of sending a letter, Ranking member Feinstein, to describe my state senators, the what happened. My understanding is that representative Eshoo’s office sent a copy of my letter to Senator Feinstein’s office on the 30. July.
The letter my name, but also a requirement that you provide is treated confidentially. My hope was that the provision of the confidential information would be sufficient for the Senate to consider Mr. Kavanaugh is a serious misconduct, without myself, my family or someone the family vulnerable to the personal attacks and invasions of the privacy that we had, because my name out to the public.
In a letter dated August 31st, Senator Feinstein wrote that she would not share the letter without my Express consent, and I appreciate this commitment. Sexual assault victims should be able to decide for themselves when and whether their private experiences to the public.
The hearing the day came closer, I struggled with a terrible choice: do I give the facts with the Senate and put myself and my family in the focus of the public, or do I have to preserve our privacy and allow you to meet with the Senate to make a decision without knowing the whole truth behavior about his past?
I broke the head daily with this decision, and throughout August and September 2018. The sense of duty, that originally motivated me to reach, in confidence, of The Washington Post, and Anna Eshoo’s office, when it was still a list of very qualified candidates — and Senator Feinstein, always there, but my fears of the consequences of speaking out, began to increase exponentially.
In August 2018, the press reported that Mr. Kavanaugh’s confirmation, was as good as safe. People painted him as a champion of women’s rights and empowerment. And I believed if I came forward, my voice would be drowned by a chorus of powerful supporters.
By the time of the hearings, I had to remain inside me to be quiet and let the Committee and the Senate makes a decision, without knowing what Mr. Kavanaugh did to me.
Once the press began reporting about the existence of the letter Senator Feinstein sent, I stood in front of the print. A Reporter appeared at my home and at my workplace, demanding information about the letters in the presence of my students. She called my bosses and co-workers, and leaving behind clear for me, many messages, so that my name would inevitably be released to the media.
I decided to speak publicly for a journalist who had originally responded to the tip I had sent to the Washington Post, and who gained my trust. For me, it was to describe important details of the attack, in my own words.
Since September 16th, the date of the Washington Post story that I have experienced so much support from people in every state in this country. Thousands and thousands of people whose lives changed dramatically, from sexual violence to share their experiences and to come at me, thanked for forward. We receive tremendous support from our friends and our community.
At the same time, my greatest fears have been realized, and the reality is far worse than what I had expected. My family and I have threats of the target of constant harassment and murder, and I have been called, the most vile and hateful names that you can imagine. These messages, while far less than the expressions of support have been a terrible and rocked me to my core.
People have posted my personal information and that of my parents online via the Internet. This has led to additional e-mails, calls and threats.
My family and I were forced to move out of our home. Since September 16th, my family and I have been visiting various safe places, sometimes separately and sometimes together, with the help of security guards.
Last Tuesday evening, my work e-mail has been hacked, messages were sent, the attempt to renounce my description of the sexual assaults.
Apart from the assault itself, these last few weeks are the hardest in my life. I had to experience the trauma before the world. And I have seen my life torn to shreds by people on TV, on Twitter, other social media, other media, and in this body that have never even met me or talked to me.
I have been accused of acting out of party political motives. Those who say that knew me. I am an independent person, and I’m not a chess piece.
To get my motivation to move forward was to be helpful and to facts about how Mr. Kavanaugh actions of my life have been damaged, so that they could proceed in a serious consideration as you make your decision about how to proceed.
It is not my responsibility to decide whether or not Mr. worthy Kavanaugh to sit on the Supreme court. It is my job to tell you the truth.
I understand that a professional Prosecutor’s office has been set up to ask me questions, and I am obliged to do my best to answer you. I have never been called into question by the public Prosecutor’s office, and I’ll do my best.
At the same time, because the members of the Committee shall be the assessment of my credibility, I hope that I will be able to deal directly with each of them.
And at this point, I will do my best to answer your questions, and ask you some caffeine.