Books

Clarence Thomas Tag

New revelations coming out of the January 6 Congressional committee hearings this past week raised the hair straight up off my head in ways even I had not anticipated.

So we just had Mother's Day--fitting, because last Tuesday the United States Supreme Court ruled that every American woman must become a mother. The forced pregnancy ruling that was leaked from the United States Supreme Court, written by Justice Samuel Alito, is on one hand not at all surprising, in that we were expecting it, but on the other hand is an utter astonishment, because of its complete gall, an audacity, an atrocity. I and others, far more learned in law, have already and will in future make clear why the haphazard, erroneous reasoning cited by Alito in his draft is egregiously wrong, biased, myopic, and in brazen contradiction to the Constitution and to jurisprudence itself. Which is not to even begin mentioning the death-knell effect this ruling will try to ring on American women—more than half the population of the country—or blatant ignoring of the fact that over 54...

The greatest deliberative body in the world. That's how the United States Senate has been described, a group portrait that's an exercise in aspirational hyperbole, to my mind.

That’s an odd, uncomfortable title for any writing of mine. I thought I thought vengeance a waste of energy. Then a recent barrage of news stories set me off. Nothing unique about any of them, given the pattern we’re used to under patriarchy. But the barrage, across a range of contexts, kept drumming the same insult home. There’s Trump's boy, Brett Kavanaugh, confirmed to the Supreme Court for life by the narrowest of margins, after having been credibly, publicly, convincingly accused of sexual assault, and responding with an indignant tantrum before the Senate committee. Now the story breaks that additional credible witnesses contacted the FBI to testify in agreement with Dr. Blasey Ford, the survivor of his assault—but the FBI refused even to interview them. Did the FBI, pressured by the White House and GOP-dominated Senate, just cave in? Was the FBI worn out by right-wing accusations against its own...

For the record, let me be clear. I would give up my US citizenship if it meant I ever had to vote for Donald J. Trump. If the only opposition to Donald J. Trump from the Democratic Party or any other political party was a platypus, I would be among the first to wear buttons proclaiming Duck Billed Platypus for President! Who can better bring us together? An egg-laying mammal! An amphibian! An ancient, fuzzy, refuse-to-go-extinct creature with a duckbill that’s a study in uniting contrasts? You get the point. That said, I’m in need of a vent about the would-be Democratic candidates, more of whom pile on each day. Let me specify. I’m in need to vent about the boys. Oh. I should also say upfront that I believe strongly in the right of any American citizen to run for any office, including the presidency, law permitting. This is not about...

As I write this, it's still uncertain under what circumstances Dr. Christine Blasey Ford will testify Thursday before the Senate Judiciary committee about her alleged sexual assault in high school by Brett Kavanaugh, Trump’s nominee for a lifetime seat on the Supreme Court.

This is the season of Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, Christmas, and other holidays invoking the light, all renamed from ancient festivals, all born from the scientific reality of the Solstice: Winter Solstice in the Northern Hemisphere and simultaneous Summer Solstice south of the Equator. Here in the United States, where I am, it seems fitting that after 2017 we’ll be observing the longest, darkest night of the year. But never forget, the light does return. So let's hold our noses and burrow through this, fast as we can. Wildfires in California (Southern Cal, this time) rage on, as 2017's hurricane and flood and drought survivors try to piece their lives and homes back together—the now daily normalization of intensifying climate change still not properly identified as such in news reports. Trump's announcement of moving the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem (de facto declaring it the capital of Israel), alienated allies, delighted...

Although some people have confused the 1960s rebirth of feminism with what they call “the sexual revolution,” here’s the truth: the sexual revolution of the 1960s and 70s was a sexual revolution for men. It never happened for women.

You might as well settle back. This may take me a while. Because, oh my god, this has already taken too long a while. Too many tipping points. I think it was around 1974 that Ms. magazine ran the first cover story on sexual harassment, which was already an issue in the women's movement. Almost 20 years later in 1990, Anita Hill's courageous truth-telling before Congress galvanized American women–yet Clarence Thomas, the perpetrator of criminal sexual harassment against her, still sits on the United States Supreme Court. In the mid-1990s, feminists were divided over whether Bill Clinton's semen stains on Monica Lewinsky's dress were "consensual": yes, she had told friends that she planned to go to the White House carrying kneepads in hopes of just such an encounter; and yes, many of his policies were good for women; and yes, there was a vast right-wing conspiracy out to get him...