I couldn’t watch when Kavanaugh went on Fox. For so many reasons. Already triggered. He said. He said. He said. (And Fox itself, of course.)
But when I did watch, it wasn’t as bad as I expected. Though it was so repetitive that I found myself listing and tallying and creating a wordle from Kavanaugh’s favorite words and phrases.
The interviewer was much less pleasant and much more direct than I imagined and this relieved me.
What most struck me about Kavanaugh himself can be summed up in one word:
His lips were pursed. His words were pursed. His mood was pursed.
The lips are telling.
I can always feel my own lips giving me away.
In Kavanaugh’s lips, I saw Trump’s.
But despite the telling lips, Kavanaugh assumed a little boy stance. Simple language and sentence structure. Lots and lots of repetition. A bewildered sense of hurt and disbelief. A reference to his high school friends as “boys and girls.” The talk of going to church on Sundays. How he focused on his studies and sports. Service projects. “Ask the moms.”
And my favorite: “America is about fairness.”
4th grade. That’s when the word “fair” appears as often as Kavanaugh earnestly employs it in this interview, almost 20 times!
(I was a 4th-grade teacher.)
“Highschool” is his other emphasis. If I counted correctly, he spoke it more than a dozen times.
I’m struck of Kavanaugh’s use of Trump’s “Poor Me” playbook since it’s not accompanied by Trump’s bravado and disregard for civility, eg. I just grab them by the pussy and pay off prostitutes with whom I had affairs after my son was born.
Instead, Brett goes with: “I am a good person.”
He actually says it.
And I am certain he believes it.
He’s painting a Norman Rockwell picture and all we have to do is believe it. He even went so far as to say that “People” drank in school, without placing an “I” there, as if he was talking to his young daughters at the dinner table about what happens at parties.
I grew up with Catholic boys and Jesuit guys, so many of whom seem to have the capacity to live within an idea of themselves, and who will respond to anything that punctures that idea as an assault on the goodness of life itself. Church on Sunday and service projects and smiling at colleagues somehow absolves them of everything that takes place on Friday or Saturday nights or during summer months. Life is lived in compartments.
Which is to say he may very well believe this Norman Rockwell version of himself.
“I know he’s going to stand by me,” Kavanaugh said almost tearfully of the President.
This to me sounds like an indictment of all manner of guilt, but to him it’s being in with the tough guys.
“America is about hearing from both sides,” Kavanaugh says, resorting to 4th grade again.
Both sides, YES!
Women have been unfairly maligned and silenced for too long.
Let the FBI investigation begin.