UltraViolet

Our work to #StopKavanaugh

Our work to #StopKavanaugh

Our work to #StopKavanaugh

There's no way to sugarcoat it--Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court was a heartbreaking moment of betrayal for survivors and women. His views on issues that impact women will harm millions, and yet it would be a mistake to think of this as purely a defeat. UltraViolet members and our allies are a part of a groundswell to end rape culture and expand women's rights. Although it may not immediately feel like it, we are making real progress.

As soon as Trump announced his pick for the Supreme Court, UltraViolet members and allies leaped into action to protest Kavanaugh's extremist views on criminalizing abortion and taking away women's health care. On the first day of his original hearings, women of color led the civil disobedience that made it clear to the Senate that women are not going to stand for someone who poses such a historic threat to women--particularly women of color, Indigenous women, and LGBTQ people.

Then, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford bravely came forward to testify. Ultimately, it was the voices of survivors that created the biggest obstacle to putting Kavanaugh on the court. In a sharp rebuke of how Anita Hill was treated in 1991, we were a part of a massive coalition of organizations and people, again led by women of color, who fought for themselves and survivors everywhere in the halls of the Senate and inspired many sitting senators to fight as well.

UltraViolet organized hundreds of people to line the halls of the Senate, confronting senators day after day, demanding they listen to survivors and oppose Kavanaugh.

Here are just some of the highlights of what we accomplished together:

  • • UltraViolet member Maria Gallagher and Center for Popular Democracy's Ana Maria Archila made national headlines confronting Sen. Flake in an elevator--and ultimately, according to Flake himself, were the reason he demanded a delay in the vote.
  • • We trained over 300 volunteers in just two weeks to directly confront senators in the halls of the Senate before the final vote on Kavanaugh.

  •  UltraViolet members organized dozens of survivor-led actions in Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Nevada, Texas and West Virginia to confront key swing vote senators at their offices. Ultimately, Senator Donnelly of Indiana and Senator Murkowski of Alaska refused to vote to confirm Kavanaugh.
  •  We delivered letters signed by over 2,300 survivors of sexual violence demanding senators vote 'no' on Kavanaugh.
  •  Over 100,000 members wrote messages of support to Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, Deborah Ramirez, and Julie Swetnick, the brave survivors who publicly accused Kavanaugh of sexual assault, AND we flew planes over Blasey Ford and Ramirez's hometowns with banners thanking them and showing we have their backs.

  • We put a jumbotron in front of the Capitol and played the Access Hollywood video on a loop for 12 hours to remind Senators our president is a sexual predator who was trying to put another man with a history of sexual assault on the highest court.
  • • Along with a long list of allies, we helped organize more than 65 "No Justice, No Seat" marches on Saturday, October 6--the day of the vote-- that were covered in dozens of news sources and attended by thousands of protestors.
  • • We educated nearly 3 million people with social media graphics about the facts behind rape culture and our SHAME graphic calling out the senators who voted to put another sexual predator on the Supreme Court.

In the end, Republicans had the votes (see who betrayed us here)--but survivors, women, and our allies forced the country to face a deep, unvarnished conversation about women's rights, survivor justice, and our values as a country. We drew tens of thousands of people to join protests, call Congress, write letters, and speak out. We educated millions about what it means to be a survivor of sexual assault and the pervasiveness of rape culture. And we ended this fight stronger than we began. This is what we can accomplish together, and we have no plans to stop fighting.

 

Our work to #StopKavanaugh