Mocking Survivors Is Unpresidential

Dear President Trump,

Just when I think you might be growing into your role as a leader, you remind me my hope is misplaced. Shame on you for mocking Dr. Christine Blasey Ford during your pep rally in Mississippi. You are supposed to be the leader of the United States of America, and yet you behave like a misogynistic schoolyard bully. Your mocking not only wrongly depicts the actual testimony Dr. Ford gave, it also demonstrates disdain for sexual assault survivors and disregard for women. Pushing and pushing for Brett Kavanaugh—a man whose behavior last Thursday shows is incapable of being the kind of thoughtful legal scholar we need on the Supreme Court—along with your mocking of women tells me that you do not lead with the best interests of this nation at heart.

Your behavior tells me you don’t really care about the truth. You don’t really care about justice. You don’t really care about fairness. Or liberty. Or reality. You absolutely don’t care about anything except getting cheered by likeminded people, no matter how small that population might be.

Shame on you for suggesting men are being targeted and are in danger of being ruined because of false claims of assault. Facts, statistics, clearly show men are not in danger of being ruined because of false claims. Less than 5-8% of sexual assault claims are unsubstantiated.

According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, a federal agency, (www.nsvrc.org/sites/default/files/publications_nsvrc_factsheet_media-packet_statistics-about-sexual-violence_0.pdf), finds one in five women and one in 71 men will be raped in their lifetime. Worse, 46.4% lesbians, 74.9% bisexual women and 43.3% heterosexual women reported sexual violence other than rape during their lifetimes, while 40.2% gay men, 47.4% bisexual men and 20.8% heterosexual men reported sexual violence other than rape during their lifetimes. That means a heterosexual male like you, like your sons, are far more likely to be the victims of sexual violence than the victims of false claims that you perpetrated sexual violence.

I am a survivor of rape. In 1993 I was repeatedly raped and held captive for five hours by someone whom others thought was an upstanding white businessman. To make matters worse, I was not believed when I tried to report what happened and was locked in a mental hospital for 18 days. I was told I imagined the whole thing, despite physical evidence of trauma, a diagnosis the doctor later changed to a psychotic break as a result of consensual sexual activity that I felt guilty about. Both were wrong.

You wonder why women and men don’t come forward to report assault? You wonder why women and men have remained quiet about their traumas for all these years? We don’t because we are not believed and thus are deprived of justice. We don’t because we too often are punished for speaking up. We don’t because we are mocked and even blamed for what happened to us. We are victimized all over again so we learn to keep our wounds to ourselves until the price of silence becomes too great to bear.

You could change that. I urge you to abandon behavior that embarrasses this nation and that deprives us all of equal protection under the law. Withdraw the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to serve on the Supreme Court and find someone worthy of our faith and support.