I’m getting ready for an early morning CLE seminar on the ethics lessons from Clarence Darrow’s career, so this is going to be quick and brief.
1 Now that’s a double standard! Ann Althouse flagged an aspect of the statistics on male penalties in tennis we discussed yesterday that I neglected to mention. The men play longer matches, five sets against the women’s three. Thus there is more time on the court to commit rules breaches. She also asks why women play less. That IS a double standard, but I’ve never heard a female player complain about it. She also writes,
Look at the prison population. It’s less than 10% women. Does that mean men are held to a high standard of behavior? I think we’re comfortable with the extreme gender disproportion because we feel awfully sure that men commit many more crimes, especially the kind of crimes that deserve a substantial prison sentence. We like thinking that the prisons are confining individuals who pose a danger to the rest of us, and we think of those people as overwhelmingly male. Maybe we’re wrong, but you can see we’re pretty resistant to the idea that there’s a “double standard” that’s unfair to men.
Ann’s comparison is a bit off, don’t you think? Yes, the prison stats presumably mean that men commit more crimes, but would any female defendant, in the face of such figures, throw a tantrum in court claiming that the system in biased against women?
2. High school. High school. I just listened to several critics of the late-hit accusation by Christine Blasey Ford against Brett Kavanaugh, as they expressed problems with the years, decades, that have passed since the alleged incident. Never mind the length of time: it was high school. The participants were minors.
Am I going crazy? First we had multiple baseball players who sportswriter were saying needed to be fined and suspended for politically incorrect tweets they made to their seven followers when they were still shaving only every other day, and now a distinguished judge, nominated to the Supreme Court, who has been cleared by six FBI background checks and assembled an unassailable career in a field, law, which makes character an entry level requirement, and an account of a drunken episode of teenage stupidity is considered relevant by progressives? In Washington state, liberals and especially feminists assembled to demand that a woman’s prior record of illegal drug dealing and gun possession be set aside as a reason to deny her a law license, and she was an adult when she was convicted and served time in prison. Are we really going to accept a new paradigm in which the mistakes we make on the way to adult responsibilities as clueless students and teenagers will be held against us forever, as if growing up doesn’t count?
I’ve been trying to think back to my high school years, my miserable dating experiences, and the dozens of stupid, wrong things I did that today embarrass me every time I’m reminded of them. Should those juvenile episodes continue to shadow my reputation and handicap my career forever? That seems to be what the latest anti-Kavanaugh strategy is arguing for.
3. Disgusted. It’s hard to disgust me, but the reactions I am reading on Facebook regarding the Kavanaugh accusation reveal how thoroughly progressive cant and anti-Trump mania has corrupted once -reasonable people and leached them of all integrity is horrifying. I asked one such corruptee if he would feel justly treated if, in the midst of a process that would bring him a major advancement in his career, an old high school acquaintance emerged to detail her version of an episode that reflected badly on his character when he was 17. How about if the accuser was anonymous? There was no answer. Nobody would feel such an accusation was fair, because it isn’t fair. It’s only fair because it advances an anti-conservative, anti-Trump agenda.
4. Yes, she should. Apparently the Trump administration has decided to pander to the worst of #MeToo fanaticism. I just heard Kellyanne Conway say “This woman should not be insulted, and not be ignored.”
Yes, she should be. She should be insulted because she has interjected herself into a Supreme Court confirmation based on a distant memory she cannot prove, denigrating a veteran professional based on alleged conduct that he may have engaged in as a minor, and she should be ignored because even if it could be proven, high school misconduct is not and should not be relevant to Kavanaugh’s fitness to serve now.