President Donald Trump, for the first time, is calling out Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh's accuser, Christine Blasey Ford, by name and is questioning her account of an alleged sexual assault by Kavanaugh 36 years ago based on the fact that she didn't report the incident at the time. She also wants the FBI to investigate her claim before she testifies against Kavanaugh as part of his nomination proceedings.
We hope these women's fearless act of coming forward will put to rest questions of why some people take long to tell their #MeToo stories - and why so many others never do.
He also heaped praise on Kavanaugh, writing: 'Judge Brett Kavanaugh is a fine man, with an impeccable reputation, who is under assault by radical left wing politicians who don't want to know the answers, they just want to destroy and delay.
"He was the nephew of my father's girlfriend at the time & was older & stronger than me", he wrote.
Ford, a California professor, initially made the accusation in a confidential letter and only came out publicly because she felt her "civic responsibility" was "outweighing my anguish and terror about retaliation", she told The Washington Post. The top trending hashtag, "WhyIDidntReport", sparked these stories.
Trump rejected the credibility of Ford's claim that a drunken Kavanaugh tried to pin her down and remove her clothes, muffling her cries, in the early 1980s.
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Kavanaugh denies knowledge of any such assault and wants to give his side of the story to the committee. Double Jeopardy actress Ashley Judd, who is also one of dozens of women who accused Harvey Weinstein of harassment, tweeted: "The first time it happened, I was 7".
"Because I was 18" and "I was scared" and "I didn't want to be defined by someone else's violent criminal act", Gretchen Whitmer, who is running for governor of the USA state of MI, tweeted using the hashtag. To that end, a host of social media users shared their painful stories of sexual assault on Twitter and elsewhere Friday, many recalling fear, despair, and self-doubt. The reason why: Trump claimed that women who are sexually assaulted should report it right away. I didn't think they'd believe someone like him would behave the way he did.
Across Twitter, survivors themselves have taken on the hashtag #WhyIDidntReport to share their own assaults, and divulge why they themselves didn't say anything at the time they were assaulted.
"They told me what I described was a rape". Once when I was a teenager. When an adult read it, she accused me of having sex with an adult man, ' she said.
Ford says Kavanaugh assaulted her as he attempted to remove her clothes to rape her when the two attended a party in high school, when she was 15 and he was 17.