Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Feminist Tableware Line?!?!?!?!

*CLEARS THROAT*

O.H.M. turns four this month, and if it’s one thing I’ve learned in 1,460 days of writing this blog, it’s that “putting yourself out there” will pay unforeseen dividends. 
Some of these—like meeting new friends and making new connections in the world—are wonderful. Others—like being called a hideous, reprehensible cunt who deserves to be raped and should commit suicide—are less so. 

Diamonds and turds is what you can expect, my friends. Diamonds and turds. (Fun fact for Trivia Night: Diamonds and Turds was the original title of the Prince song, Diamonds and Pearls).

Por ejemplo, just yesterday, someone whom I believe generally agrees with the four basic premises of this blog--(1) Trump is an asshole; (2) Parenting is hard; (3) Nutella is good; (4) Alaska is cool—called me a “back-stabbing mean girl” who is “angling for viral status daily” and who “thinks I’m funny” because I questioned the wisdom of Elizabeth Warren’s DNA test (and subsequently conceded I should probably have kept my big fat mouth shut about that).

The same thing happened when I dared to question the wisdom of non-retaining judges for bad but legal decisions, to the point that I had to delete stuff due to a relentless fusillade of shit-posting from people whom I know for a fact actually agree with me most of the time, but for some reason demand a bizarre level of irrational ideological purity or else hell hath no fury. Which in part is why, some might argue, that the left wing of this country can’t have nice things.

Anyway, I clarified on Twitter that I definitely think I’m Kanye West-level funny and shamelessly angle for viral status on the daily, but I don’t think I’m a mean girl. And the reason I point this out, is because I think some things MUST be mocked, which doesn’t make me mean or “shaming,” per se. But the thing of it is, fam, if you’re going to “put yourself out there,” you’re asking for it. I’m asking for it. DAILY. And I certainly can take what I dish out.

So if you’re putting yourself out there in the real estate section of the New York Fucking Times, bragging about your gigantic East Village closets and your FEMINIST TABLEWARE LINE you should rightly anticipate a wee bit of shit to come drifting your way. Because truly, you are BEGGING ON BENDED KNEE in full genuflection for a flotilla of shit. 

And that is where I come in.

Alleged “mean girls” like me derive no small modicum of satisfaction from dragging lawyers who publicly defend the honor of superyacht owners and well to-do, trust fund babies who work at Facebook, spend $7,000+ a month on a Manhattan apartment, insist on profiling themselves in the New York Times about it, and therefore have approximately zero self-awareness. 

It’s not what Kendra and Jared have. It’s how Kendra and Jared talk about what they have. And how Kendra and Jared talk about what they have can be helped. And—I hate to say this—if it can be helped, it can be shamed. And should be. In short: I simply cannot resist giving Kendra and Jared their internet comeuppance, and if that makes me a mean girl, so be it.

But I just cannot with this.

This is a Cinderella story of a young couple who made the brave pilgrimage from the depths of a basement apartment in the Mission District of San Francisco (near where they also own a $700,000 “fixer-upper” somehow) to a brand new apartment building in the East Village. In the same neighborhood, I believe, where my family first landed in a tenement off the boat from the pogroms of Eastern Europe to pluck chickens and let karp swim around in a bathtub, but where now stands a half-empty luxury apartment complex built by Russian oligarchs and rented for $7,000 a month by a couple-plus-their-roommate with a French Bulldog named PacMan who has back problems and a Peloton bike next to their salvaged drift wood headboard.

Despite being born and raised in New York City, I don’t live there anymore, and Kendra and Jared are just two of many reasons why. 2018 NYC is laughably unaffordable, teeming with insufferable douchebags, and gentrified to the point that every bodega is now an artisanal mayonnaise co-op or a Bikram yoga studio. 

And every time I go home to my parents’ cluttered, vaguely depressing, senior-citizen outer borough ninth floor apartment packed to the rafters with 45 years’ worth of old newspapers and coffee mugs full of decommissioned subway tokens, I tell them it’s time to do Swedish Death Cleaning. And all I can think about is who in Williamsburg will redecorate their loft with this quirky crap when they die and I unload it in an estate sale; and will I hate whoever it is enough to just decide to burn it all anyway? Or will these subway tokens end up underneath a sheet of glass on an “upcycled” coffee table in SoHo?

Kendra and Jared (those are their names, if I didn't make that clear) first looked at a “pristine and lovely two-bedroom floor-through in a charming three-story brick townhouse” in Little Italy for $6,500. “But the stairs were a deal-breaker for Pacman.” 

DEAL-BREAKER.

I don’t even know what a “floor-through” is, but Kendra and Jared ended up foregoing one. Instead, they moved into a brand-new building called “EVBG” which stands for “East Village’s Greatest Building.” 

With its “boutique industrial aesthetic,” EVBG is meant to be a “nod to the storied rock club CBGB,” but actually sounds like something Donald Trump himself named on his Twitter feed (WE HAVE THE GREATEST BUILDINGS)! Ironically, the vast majority of East Village dive bars like CBGB, where I spent most weekends in high school, can’t afford their rent anymore because of Kendra, Jared, and EVGB.

But the best paragraph of this article by far is where Kendra brags that “as conservationists, they decorated almost exclusively with secondhand furniture.” And the large closets are “the biggest I’ve had in my life” with "enough storage space for craft materials she uses for her FEMINIST TABLEWARE LINE."

M'kaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay.

So here we get to the point of this profile, which I think, was to compare Kendra’s life history of closet sizes and low-key promote her “feminist tableware line,” oddities, which aims to “elevate your meal time conversations with female anatomy, original art, and upcycled dinnerware.” I checked it out and these are plates and bowls with boobs and vaginas on them which, cool cool cool. I’m here for that. I’m totally going to get some of this and wear my $900 vulva scarf by Fendi to dinner.

The article wraps up by noting that “the building has more amenities than [Kendra and Jared] can use, including a 19,000 square-foot roof deck and at two-level gym.” Kendra “bought goggles, thinking I’d be all about the pool,” and she “intends to use the sauna on weekends” but always forgets. I guess she’s got titty-plates on the brain? Kendra and Jared do, however, somehow remember to “make use of the bocce court on the roof.”

For perspective, the last time we lived in Brooklyn, we made use of the fuse box in the basement of my aunt’s old rental in Prospect Heights to avoid getting electrocuted, and jury-rigged the shower with dental floss so that you didn’t have to choose between hot OR cold and could maybe sometimes get warm. 

We’d also sometimes call the landlady—Mrs. Daniels—when the radiator clanged in at top heat in mid-August. She’d answer, sometimes, in a thick Trinidadian accent, “BUT IT’S DA SUMMAH! DA HEAT NOT SUPPOSED TO BE ON!” And I would say yes, that’s the problem. Also mice. Also a drunk homeless guy wandering up to my front door late at night and teetering in my doorway. Also old Fudgecicle sticks my aunt left behind on the loft bed. We bought quarters, because we spent a lot of time in a laundromat, and also a tie-dyed sheet for a “door” between the bedroom and the living room which was actually just one big small room without the sheet.

So Kendra and Jared, I’m sorry to shame you for “living big,” as you call it, but honestly, you asked for it.





Saturday, October 13, 2018

Superyacht Investing: The Struggle is Real

In this era of commodified outrage and wealthy white male victimhood, nothing should surprise me. And yet, something did! What was it? I'm glad you asked. 

It was this apparently non-satirical column by a lawyer named—because of COURSE—Quentin Bargate, on a website called superyachtinvestor.com. Not to be confused with Superyacht Quarterly, Superyacht Monthly, Superyacht Lifestyle, or any of the other countless trade publications targeted to superyacht owners and investors.

Quentin Bargate--who for some reason is wearing stripes and plaid together--titled his article “Separating Morality from Legality—and Why Yachting Has the Moral High Ground.”

I’ll give you a minute to re-read those dozen words a few times and absorb them before I send this entire column to the burn unit sentence for sentence. Ready? Not yet? I’ll give you a few more moments. How about now? Okay.

Let’s go.

I don’t believe lawyers should write too much about morality. 

CAN CONFIRM. I'm a lawyer myself, so I should know. If you have a law degree, refraining from moralizing is DEF best practices. Just ask Michael Cohen. 

But following the disclosure of the ‘Paradise Papers’ in 2017, an onslaught of misguided moral righteousness resulted, villainising the wealthy for using perfectly legal means of investing their wealth in offshore corporations in order to achieve tax efficiency. 

Wow wow wow. So true. We are all so misguided in our moral righteousness and resistance to disgusting, unfettered capitalism run amok. It's a veritable tragedy how the "ultra high net worth community" felt villainized for using "perfectly legal means" of sheltering their jillions overseas to dodge the fuck out of their debt to society. For as we all know, if it's legal, it must be right! (See, e.g., slavery, segregation, and prohibition).

In the process, many August journals blurred the lines between entirely legal tax avoidance and illegal tax evasion.

Dude. Your clients are billionaires--not just yacht investors, but SUPERYACHT investors (side note: what's the dif between a regular yacht and a superyacht? Kryptonite?). So ostensibly you should be able to distinguish between "august" with a lower-case "a," which means reputable, and August, with a capital "A," which is the eighth month of the year. Unless your'e referring to the slew of journals which just two months ago villainized your clients for being the greedy bastards that they are? Avoidance, evasion. It's all semantics. EVASION = bad. AVOIDANCE = good. TAXES SCHMAXES!

It was regrettable that we saw yacht owners who choose to flag their vessel with an offshore flag state being pulled into the debate in the ever popular pantomime of the evil Superyacht owner who hides his wealth and avoids paying tax.

SO REGRETTABLE! It's a regrettable stereotype harbored by the unwashed masses that people who own superyachts are probably YOOGE dicks. It's certainly more regrettable than, say, the "ever popular pantomime" of "Black boy holding Skittles as armed assassin” or "Gay man as pedophile" or "brown toddler in cage for no reason, signing their rights away in Crayolas on an immigration form" or "woman in politics with opinions as screaming, actively-menstruating bog witch?"

Many of the these flag states are BOTs, such as the British Virgin Islands and the Cayman Islands. They support seafarers and do vital work alongside other “Red Ensign” (i.e British) flags, but you hear little about that.

Ah, that's right. We don't hear enough about the "vital work" that a small cabal of James Bond wannabes are doing in the Bahamas. This is totally under-reported. To just assume they are idle assholes devoid of principle and drowning in inherited wealth stolen via British colonialism is FAKE NEWS.

The choice of flag state should be considered one of the most important decisions in yacht ownership . . . The benefits of registering a vessel under a recognised offshore flag state are clear and considerable.

Guys, in case you were in the market for a superyacht, please remember how critical it is to choose the right flag state. It's the most important decision you'll ever make in yacht ownership. Quentin Bargate stands ready to assist you when you’re ready to take the plunge.

This is legitimate tax avoidance. Who benefits? Not just the yacht owner but also the economies of the European countries, whether for ship repair, bunkering, victualling, restaurants, marinas and several support services.

Ohhhhh . . . I SEE. Good old trickle-down economics of late-stage capitalism. This is so 80s. Both 1980s AND 1880s. How Dickensian. I don't know what "victualling" is, but it sounds like "drinking Absinthe on the bow of a superyacht after a polo match?" This is NOBLESSE OBLIGE, you see. Yes, we Anglos stampeded across the globe, colonized land that didn't belong to us, killed everyone with our filthy diseases, and made ourselves stinking rich in the process. So now everyone should be THANKING us for doling out a non-living wage to some 45 year-old with black lung and seven kids turning bolts under the hull of a dry-docked superyacht on 12 hour shifts at a shipyard near Plymouth. M'kay.

I cannot personally think of a film where a superyacht was not used as the lair or getaway vehicle for some disreputable character. 

Yes. For good reason.

Granted, playing the villain is often the best acting role. 

GRANTED. It's good to be bad! Even when we’re portrayed as assholes in the media, we rich people always get THE BEST ACTING ROLES. Just ask ya boy Trump!

The more we can dispel this misleading association between yacht ownership and dodgy behaviour, then the more new individuals we can encourage into this fantastic and unique world.

Finally someone is speaking up for the little guy, aka, the deeply marginalized and misunderstood community of FUCKING SUPERYACHT OWNERS, Y’ALL! Yes, let's all work to dispel these unjust myths, because that is an excellent use of our time and energy in civic messaging. The misleading association between yacht ownership and dodgy behavior is totally unfounded. Take to the streets!

With increased security risk, it is beneficial that these superyachts are able to respond to aid the government in detection and prevention of threats.

Wai wai wait . . . are you suggesting that there's a cozy (or as the Brits would spell it, cosy) relationship between extremely rich people and the military-industrial complex/police state? I don't believe you.

There is a good story to be told, but it is not being repeated often enough. It is a story of high standards, increased safety and crew welfare. It is also a story of wealth generation across Europe and beyond, and the enhancement of our own security.

Right on. This story is not being told enough. So let me give it a shot: Once upon a time, in a land far far away, there was a douchebag named Quentin Bargate who made his fame and fortune defending the good honor of European superyacht owners. And they all lived happily ever after, drowning in their swollen stock portfolios. The End! Now repeat that story in the bathroom mirror 13 times and Warren Buffet will appear and write you a seven-figure check.

Now, the pressure is on for publicly searchable beneficial ownership registers. No longer will the wealthy enjoy any meaningful financial privacy, their security will be compromised and the aims of General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will be entirely lost. How ridiculous!

Noooooooooo! How RIDICULOUS!!!!!!! We must ensure that the wealthy enjoy meaningful financial privacy. This is like, a basic human right. But first can we maybe make sure that children in the global south enjoy meaningful access to running water devoid of parasites as opposed to shitting themselves to death before the age of five? Let's enjoy making that happen first, maybes.

We should not let the tabloid press or leaks such as that of the Paradise Papers, obscure the bigger picture. It is the duty of all of us that know of these many benefits to get out there and tell that story.

PREACH, KWEEN! We must NOT let the tabloids take control here. IT IS THE DUTY OF ALL OF US. We must wrest this narrative back from the plebes. Quentin Bargate, you are doing God's Work. GOD'S WORK, I tell you!




Friday, October 12, 2018

Seriously What the Actual Fuck is Even HAPPENING Right Now?!

Sometimes I just need to step back, duck out of the proverbial storm for a minute, and ask myself the following question: Seriously, what the ACTUAL FUCK is even happening right now?!

Fortunately, I have some ME TIME™️ today to contemplate the answer. My Me Time™️ will not now, nor will it ever, involve yoga or errands. Rather, my Me Time™️ = lying in bed, eating toast, dozing intermittently, and shaking my head in abject disbelief while staring into this glowing rectangle of doom until it’s time to pick up my crotch fruit from school and Make Memories™️ while pretending they’ll still inherit a livable planet.

It will also involve ruminating on exactly how fucking CONFUSED I am. Like ALLLLL of the time. 

This picture of Kanye and Sarah Huckabee Sanders chillaxing in the Oval Office is the Maraschino cherry atop the giant shit sundae of American dystopia that we’ve been shoveling into our collective faces since 11/9/16. 

And all it serves to do is further cement my confusion.

I mean, I’m given to understand that all three branches of our government have been seized in a silent coup led by a hollowed-out decorative gourd-headed crypto-Nazi, catalyzed by white grievance and its slavish devotion to the police state, and enabled by civic apathy all to the exclusive benefit of an elite oligarchy of filthy rich latter-day robber barons who plan to strip the earth for parts before escaping to Mars in a spaceship and leaving the rest of us to quite literally burn to death.

That much I get. It’s all the OTHER stuff that’s so confusing.

Like what is the meaning of Ambasador Kanye? Do you think Sarah Sanders hates herself as much as the rest of us do? How is the fact that the President of the United States is a self-confessed sexual assailant and intellectually and financially bankrupt unindicted white collar criminal like WAY below the fold news?

Who do we believe? Where does the echo chamber begin and end? Is my break from reality all Putin’s fault? Is this what psychological warfare looks like? If there’s another Civil War, will I have to eat hard tack and homegrown snap peas or can I still go to Costco for those organic chicken skewers?

My grip on reality is at “freehand ice climbing on a frozen waterfall” level right now.




Wednesday, October 10, 2018

For the Juneau Gonna Juneau Files: Leftover Shrimp Pad Thai for Sale on Craigslist

I stumbled upon this many months ago, and almost lost my ENTIRE shit when I saw it, but I’ve been saving it for the right time.

As it turns out, that time is a few days after returning home to Alaska from a failed diplomatic mission to our nation’s capital to save democracy from an irascible dry-drunk frat boy who just swore on a bible to uphold the constitution with the same hand he used to smother a 15 year-old girl at Beach Week?

But, I digress, because this post has nothing to do with newly-minted Justice Biff “Rage-Stroke” Boofington, and everything to do with the most Juneau ad ever posted to Juneau Craigslist.

Please let’s take a moment to appreciate and unpack this anonymous gem un-ironically selling leftover Shrimp Pad Thai for the original retail price of $15.95 or “interesting trade offers”:



Like what even IS this ish, Y'ALL?!?!? I legit have ALLLLLLLLLL the questions about this ad. 

For starters:

1. Why did you buy two orders of Shrimp Pad Thai for one person?

2. Would you really be “honestly sad to see it go?” I mean, this is language typically reserved for the retirement party of a valuable accounts receivable tech, not tomorrow’s lunch?

3. If you could “use the $15.95,” couldn’t you have used it an hour ago when you ordered twice as much dinner as you needed?

4. Again, being “willing to negotiate” is something you offer for like, a car or a bike or maybe a couch. Not a styrofoam container full of luke warm rice noodles and peanut sauce?

5. What are the chances that someone is going to happen to be looking at Craigslist and be hungry and be willing to buy leftovers from you in God the fuck knows where when they could just go to the restaurant and buy NEW Shrimp Pad Thai for the same price?

6. The phrase “interesting trade offers” is both obscure and vaguely troubling. You have to imagine that someone who seriously tries to sell their leftovers on Craigslist has ...  erm ... an unconventional idea of what constitutes an “interesting trade offer?”

7. What do we think “interesting trade offers” are? Like this could be anything from an innocent deck of cards or a sleeve of Oreos to a blow job or a happy ending or even your liver with fava beans and a nice Chianti. HARD PASS.

I mean ... this whole thing is so much WTF, I don’t even know where to start. Or end. 

Goodbye.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

New Viral Hashtags Now That Mitch McConnell Killed #MeToo

#TurtlePower
#FuckOff
#EatShit
#YouWinAssholes
#RammedThrough
#HappyNow?
#ThisIsNotOver
#OhReally
#SitNSpin
#SCrOTUS
#TakeProzac
#BongHits4ThePatriarchy
#AllFemaleMartianCommune
#UghButThatDickTho
#WhatNow
#NowWhat
#AuntLydia
#FFFFuckYou
#JusticeRenateAlumni
#ILikeBeer
#BeerIsGood
#BeerBeerBeer
#YourHonorableBoofer
#JusticeBoof
#BrettTheBoofer
#DevilsTriangle
#WheresMyPayCheckGeorgeSoros?
#DidYouSmotherHerWithTheSameHandYouPutOnABible
#AskingForAFewMillionFriends




Friday, October 5, 2018

A New Sisterhood and the Meaning of No

Last Saturday night, I received a Facebook message from an Anchorage attorney I didn’t know, asking for my personal email address. We had several friends in common and Alaska is a tightknit legal community, so I gave it freely. 

Five days later, I was sitting three feet away from Senator Lisa Murkowski at a small conference table in her DC office, looking her squarely in the eye and asking her to please vote her conscience on Brett Kavanaugh. 

What happened in between was one of the most intense and memorable civic experiences of my life.

The woman who’d messaged me wanted to write a letter signed by Alaskan women lawyers opposing Kavanaugh’s appointment to the Supreme Court, and in order to gather as many signatures as possible, created a Facebook group to begin drafting it. The group quickly began to accumulate members, several of whom subsequently composed a succinct and dispassionate plea to Senator Murkowski to reject this appointment.

Shortly after the group formed, a woman named Susanna—whom I also didn’t know and whose husband had passed away only three weeks prior—posted there that the ACLU would be supporting 100 Alaskan women to travel to DC that week to meet with our Senators on Kavanaugh.

I didn’t even consider going on the trip. It was late Sunday evening by now, and my family needed me at home the following week. I have a full-time job as the primary income earner in a four-person household. My 10 year-old daughter and 7 year-old son were mired in school and activities; flying all the way to the east coast on such short notice was a non-starter.

But the next morning, the attorney who’d originally emailed me posted that she was going to DC, and urged others to do the same despite their busy lives as lawyers, spouses, and moms.

“Here’s what I want for my birthday this year,” I texted my husband, and put in for three days of personal leave at work. By 5:00 a.m. Wednesday morning, I was at the Juneau airport on my way to Washington.

Thursday was a whirlwind, and most of us barely ate or slept.

Our group met with Senator Sullivan in the morning and Senator Murkowski in the afternoon. In both meetings, we carefully echoed the points in our letter—which by this time bore the signatures of nearly 400 Alaskan women lawyers—on why we felt Brett Kavanaugh was a grave and irreversible mistake for our nation’s highest court. The meeting with Lisa (her small population of constituents often refer to her by her first name) felt especially critical. 

We knew she was undecided on Kavanaugh, and for good reason. An Alaska bar member herself, we knew she would absorb the legal and ethical reasons—as opposed to the policy leanings—to vote no on Kavanaugh. 

We made the pitch that this wasn’t about policy. We hadn’t flown down for Neil Gorsuch. It was about the public’s faith and integrity in the judiciary itself. It was about credible allegations of sexual assault that arose during an interview for a lifetime job that would affect millions of American lives for a generation, most notably the majority of women who have experienced sexual violence. It was about the applicant’s entitled and intemperate response to these allegations, his perjurious answers to questions, his disrespect to a female Senator, his combative demeanor, his conspiratorial rantings, and the naked partisanship and vows for retribution that “what goes around comes around.”

Even as I sat at the table, listening to my new sisterhood explain these points with trembling poise, and doing so myself, I was acutely aware of how lucky I was. This was a unique, quiet, and historic moment, and I was immeasurably grateful.

I’ve been given so many blessings in life. Healthy children and a supportive spouse. Professional mentors and mentees alike. The ability to process my thoughts in writing and entertain people in the process. The recklessness, I suppose, to speak my mind frankly and irreverently about things that matter to me. Loving parents who provided their only child with an education that brought me to this room and enabled me to articulate myself.

Tears streamed down my face in the Senate Gallery during the cloture vote on Friday morning when Senator Murkowski whispered “no” and her vote was confirmed on the roll call. That one word—“no”—meant so much to so many. Because our Senator wasn’t just saying “no” on her own behalf to a single nominee. 

This was much bigger than one judicial nominee or one woman’s assault.

That soft, quiet “no” was heard around the country by millions of women whose own “nos” were and continue to be ignored in college dorms, bedrooms, and workplaces every single day. 

That “no” was the denunciation of a culture that silences women and elevates privilege and entitlement over their sworn testimony and bodily integrity. 

That “no” was the rejection of the idea—so deeply entrenched that millions of women cheer and promote it against their own interests—that nothing in America deserves more coddling, reverence, and ferocious protection than a wealthy white man’s ambition and “reputation.”

All throughout my 60-hour trip, I heard supportive words from back home that drowned out the countering jabs of harassment, cruelty, and even my own ample cynicism. And I shared them with my new sisterhood of Alaskan women, most of whom I hadn’t met before. 

I am leaving Washington knowing that we all said “no” together, even though it feels futile. And that we helped Lisa—acting alone and yet with millions—do the same.








Tuesday, October 2, 2018

This is the Letter Hundreds of Alaskan Women Lawyers Who Oppose Kavanaugh Will Be Signing Shortly

Dear Senators:

We are Alaskan women attorneys who work in a variety of settings, including public interest organizations, government agencies, and private practice. Among us are Republicans, Democrats, Nonpartisan, and Undeclared voters. We ask you, as your constituents and as fellow lawyers, to vote against confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh as Justice of the United States Supreme Court.

Our opposition to the confirmation of Judge Kavanaugh is not a matter of policy disagreement or political affiliation. As lawyers, our focus is on the Constitution and the law. The ongoing legitimacy and public confidence in our nation’s highest Court requires that we hold the Justices who interpret those laws to the very highest standards. Judges in state and federal courts, and the United States Supreme Court in particular, must uphold and promote the independence, integrity, and impartiality of the judiciary, avoiding even the appearance of impropriety. The rule of law demands nothing less.

The press and some of your fellow Senators have presented the confirmation process as something like a criminal trial. But of course, your critical constitutional role to provide “advice and consent” on the suitability of a judicial nominee should bear no resemblance to that process. The question the Constitution asks you to consider is not whether Judge Kavanaugh could be convicted of a crime, but rather, whether he has demonstrated over the course of his life and his career—including during the confirmation process itself—his suitability to serve for a lifetime on our highest court.

Judge Kavanaugh's conduct during his confirmation hearings fell far short of our standards as citizens and as lawyers. He displayed uncontrolled anger, sarcasm, and open contempt  for Senators—particularly female Senators—and he made numerous unapologetically partisan statements.This response to admittedly difficult circumstances exhibited poor judgement and a temperament unsuitable for a Supreme Court justice. His answers to Senators’ questions were frequently evasive, incomplete, and combative. This behavior raised serious questions in our minds about his credibility and trustworthiness. His performance diminished public confidence, and our confidence, in his ability to uphold the independence and impartiality of the Court.

Our opposition to Judge Kavanaugh also reflects our deep concern for survivors of sexual harassment and sexual assault. Like far too many of our fellow Alaskans, many of us and many of our clients and others with whom we work professionally are survivors of these traumas. Sexual assault survivors nationwide are watching Judge Kavanaugh’s response, and the response of the Senate, to Christine Blasey Ford’s sworn allegations of sexual assault. In his testimony, the judge displayed no appreciation that this seat on the Court is much larger than one man and much larger than Dr. Ford and her story. His focus rested entirely on himself and his own outrage; his words and actions were not those of the dedicated public servant this country deserves.

This appointment will affect the legitimacy of the Court in the eyes of legal practitioners and the public for decades to come. We can, and we must, do much better than Brett Kavanaugh. We respectfully urge you to vote “No” when Judge Kavanaugh’s confirmation reaches the Senate floor.

Alaska deserves better. The nation deserves better.

Clarification: I didn’t draft this letter. It was drafted by a committee of Alaskan women lawyers opposed to Judge Kavanaugh’s confirmation. If you are an Alaskan woman lawyer, you should be receiving an email shortly on this with info on how to sign on. Check your spam folders in case of filtering. Thanks.