How well I remember a childhood episode involving my older brother, Sten, and his acquisition of a new toy. He was bright, mentally quick, with a healthy dose of Dennis the Menace.
One day, he came home with a new toy. My mother inquired into how this came about. “Oh, I found it”, Sten responded. When pressed for more details, he offered, “ It was on the sidewalk.”
Well, Mama was no fool. She knew that new toys did not simply lie on the sidewalks of the Bronx during the Depression so she insisted that Sten take her to the site. It was a bit of a walk but they came to a building with a fenced-in yard that was adjacent to the sidewalk. My brother pointed to the spot hoping that this would end the inquiry. No such luck. Mama pressed on and finally came upon the truth.
Yes, the toy was found on the sidewalk. But that was only after my brother had obtained a long stick, put it through the chain-linked fence and flipped the toy resting on the grass in the yard over the fence and onto the sidewalk.
That appears to be where we are today relative to the Kavanaugh probe. As I write this blog, the White House is announcing its willingness to expand the FBI probe and allow it to interview anyone they want “within reason”. This means that the scope and thoroughness remain unclear. That ought not to be the case. Our core principles as a nation are bound in our pledge to “tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.” Why is this the standard in court for a traffic violation but not applicable when it involves the seating of a Justice to the Supreme Court? Why is it that all too often standards are weakened or compromised when it comes to judging those with power?
No, anything short of a complete, independent professional investigation is unacceptable. Why?
1-At least three women have come forth and publicly accused Kavanaugh of serious sexual misconduct. Thus it cannot be a “he said, she said” but rather a “ he said, they said”.
2- These women have publicly called for a full independent and professional investigation. Kavanaugh has refused. Further, Dr. Ford has taken a polygraph test and passed.
3-Not one Republican Senator showed the slightest interest in pressing Kavanaugh on his drinking, his yearbook entries, nor his refusal to welcome a full investigation or a polygraph test.
In order for this nation to restore its credibility and faith in its governing institutions, we must insist on a complete FBI review reflecting their highest standards free from partisan control.
Mama understood integrity and pursued it. Our leaders must do no less.
Writers note: Sten, who has passed on, was a wonderful older brother who was protective and opened up doors of opportunity. He attended Yale on a full scholarship and served in Army Intelligence as a Russia expert. Following this episode, he retired from the toy business.