Anita Not Alone
By Gwen McKinney,
The memory is indelible: Anita Hill in a bright blue suit, facing off with poise and dignity before the all-white, all-male inquisitors. They shutdown debate in a cover-up that has lasted for 26 years.
So began the national conversation about the power dynamics and sexual misconduct in the workplace. It is a spectrum of abuse that ranges from inappropriate comments, to disrespectful and demeaning gestures, to full-on physical violation.
Anita Hill shattered the silence and brought the conversation into the public forum.
I wonder how that Senate hearing would play out today. If Hill was white would things have gone differently? What if the other accusers – Anita Hill was not alone – and corroborators were allowed to give testimony?
We’ll never know the answers. What we do know is that this is a moment that makes revisiting Clarence Thomas worthwhile. Some say, go after Donald Trump first. Why not demand that he resign?
While others dismiss this proposition as a quixotic adventure (after all, he’ll never resign, they say), silence seals the status quo. And power concedes nothing without a demand.
If members of Congress, news anchors, network executives and Hollywood superstars can be brought down under the glare of public attention, why not Clarence Thomas? What makes a person who sits on the highest court in the nation reign above the law?
If you believe Anita Hill told the truth in her sworn testimony (verified by a polygraph), then where does that leave Clarence Thomas who vehemently denied her charges? Perjury under oath before Congress is an impeachable offense.