Did we learn anything?

Photo courtesy of The White House

Lexington Park, MD - It took nearly 90 days from the time his appointment was announced to being sworn in for Washington, DC native Brett Kavanaugh to become an associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. During those three months, ‘America Polarized’ was on display. As distasteful as some of us found it, we could not look away. So, did we learn anything? There was a whole lot to digest. You probably have your own list. Feel free to share via the email address below. Here is my list.

Parents, guardians and friends must insist, encourage and support the immediate coming forward of anyone who feels they have been violated. Document what has happened and notify authorities. No alleged perpetrator should have to be sucker-punched with hints and allegations several decades later. To borrow a toil-worn movie cliché, “speak now or forever hold your peace.”

Respect for yourself and other people cannot be overemphasized. If the odds of facing consequences are rising so should your restraint and self-control. Perhaps this entire fiasco should sound the death-knell of the “frat house” mindset some young people have practiced. While it’s a shame that must happen (after all, parties are supposed to be fun), the truth is societies that have made drunkenness and debauchery a routine ritual subsequently self-destruct.

All three branches of the federal government—whether we like it or not, whether we want to admit it or not—are politicized. Let’s stop pretending they aren’t. If you think about it, it’s the only way the checks and balances can work. Voters need to consider what they want the three branches of the federal government to look like when they go to the polls.

Barry Goldwater said it in 1964— “extremism in defense of liberty is no vice.” There are extremists on both sides of the aisle and they have a right to protest and agitate provided it is in defense of liberty and doesn’t cross the line into lawlessness. Assault and vandalism are not acceptable tactics. Don’t trample on someone else’s liberty. Hurt feelings, while lamentable, are not a product of criminal activities.

It’s not improper for an individual on either side of an issue to stick his or her foot in an elevator door to demand an elected official hear them out. Elected officials work for us. They ought to be good listeners. That doesn’t mean they must change their minds but receiving feedback is a job responsibility.

Finally, it may be the Supreme Court but it’s not the Infallible Court. The high court has been known to make some regrettable as well as laudable decisions. Mortal human beings serve on the bench. The good fight that so many fought for those 90 days now moves to a different arena as Justice Kavanaugh takes his hard-earned place with the other eight.

Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of management.

Contact Marty Madden at

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