Democracy is Alive and Well - for Now
A few days ago I was watching CNN and the ongoing dialogue about Judge Kavanaugh and Dr. Christine Blasey Ford. It was the day before senators were going to vote and they were outlining how they would be voting and why.
I happened to catch 2 senators' speeches and I was extremely impressed with both. The first was Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy, and immediately following Republican Senator Lindsey Graham. Two days later I observed the elevator incident with Republican Senator Jeff Flake and later his tapping the shoulder of Senator Chris Coons - his friend and Democratic rival - for a private conference.
I make four points :
1. When I saw and heard Leahy I must confess I was expecting another lengthy yada yada drawl by some old guy (OK - I am also a senior.) Was I wrong! This guy articulated his points with precision and great timing and convinced me that the Judge should NOT be confirmed. I can see why he became a senator.
2. Next Lindsey Graham whom I have seen several times was also very well spoken and had me thinking he was also going to vote "No." Then he did a complete about face and lambasted the Democrats. He accused one of them of leaking the name of a female complainant to the press and brought out another fact which was new to me. The Doctor had apparently been offered the chance to avoid publicity by testifying in private at her time and place but she never received this offer. He convincingly stated that he believed her when she said she was not aware of this option. He then powerfully questioned who had intercepted the offer - her legal team or more Democrats? Whoever it was they certainly did not have the Doctor's best interests at heart.
3. Hopefully many people witnessed the elevator incident with Senator Jeff Flake when a couple of women accosted him in the elevator preventing the door from closing and dragged him through the coals over his apparent attitude towards female abuse. You could see the emotion on his face and theirs.
Wow! As a Canadian I too enjoy a democratic form of government and I am frequently critical of it. Often Canadians are smug about our system vs. the American one with its open and brash institutions and decisions - the O. J. Simpson trial comes to mind.
However look what happened to me. By having a system in which four people (in my example) were able to speak freely without repercussions, I changed my mind at least twice. These people are still alive as far as I know and not confined to slave labour for their outspokenness. In other countries they would not be so lucky.
But the main point is that finally two senators from opposing parties were able to compromise for the good of their country. THAT is what Democracy is supposed to be about. Where was this when the Republicans stonewalled Obama? Where has it been with the Democrats to date with this issue?
THAT must never change. It is the heart of Democracy.
Now if only the person elected to their highest office shared this belief!