Cal Thomas: Civil discourse

MARY REICHARD, HOST: Today is Tuesday, October 9th. Good morning! This is The World and Everything in It from member-supported WORLD Radio. I’m Mary Reichard.

NICK EICHER, HOST: And I’m Nick Eicher.

Next up, Cal Thomas on the presumption of innocence and the shrinking emphasis on common values.

CAL THOMAS: In a speech announcing her vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, Senator Susan Collins of Maine reminded me of some of the great orators of the past. Her speech was measured in tone, substantive in content, and delivered with conviction.

Collins is no conservative. She supports abortion and same-sex marriage, while towing a more moderate to conservative line on economic and other issues. But her speech supporting Kavanaugh and denouncing the smears against him and the distortion of his judicial record was as good as any delivered by her more conservative colleagues.

She correctly described a process that has become corrupt, nasty, and divisive:

COLLINS: But today we have come to the conclusion of a confirmation process that has become so dysfunctional it looks more like a caricature of a gutter-level political campaign than a solemn occasion.

Noting, quote—“Our Supreme Court confirmation process has been in steady decline for more than thirty years,” she added this wish: “One can only hope that the Kavanaugh nomination is where the process has finally hit rock bottom.”

In what might be one of those “carved in stone” quotes, Collins delivered her most profound line:

COLLINS: We must always remember that it is when passions are most inflamed that fairness is most in jeopardy.

Fairness was not just in jeopardy; it was murdered. Though there were no corroborating witnesses, and Christine Blasey Ford could not remember significant details about the evening during which she claimed Kavanaugh attacked her, virtually all Senate Democrats and many Americans declared him guilty.

Nearing the end of her speech, Collins said of the process surrounding the Kavanaugh nomination:

COLLINS: It is a case of people bearing ill will towards those who disagree with them. In our intense focus on our differences, we have forgotten the common values that bind us together as Americans.

Unfortunately, a younger generation of Americans knows little about those values. They are taught rarely in public schools and universities. That is why they are slipping away. Young people would do well to be reminded of them by listening to Senator Collins’ speech.

For WORLD Radio, I’m Cal Thomas.

(AP Photo/Alex Brandon) Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, heads to the Senate floor for the vote on the confirmation vote of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, on Capitol Hill, Saturday, Oct. 6, 2018 in Washington. 

WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

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