Preacher Franklin Graham has weighed in on the allegation made by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, who professionally uses Dr. Christine Blasey, against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, by saying that it is “irrelevant,” and that “there wasn’t a crime that was committed,” during his CBN interview. Graham touched many nerves with the host of comments he made regarding the Blasey accusation, even among his base followers of evangelical Christians. Graham continued to pound away against Blasey, defending Kavanaugh to the point that, according to at least some viewers of the interview commenting on Twitter, it got ridiculous.
Heather Sells conducted the interview for CBN, and each time she tried to give Graham an opportunity to walk back some of his more inflammatory or false statements, he doubled down on them as reported by Yahoo. The general theme that Graham delivered during the interview is that nothing happened, and if something did happen it wasn’t a crime. Even if it was a crime, they were teenagers and adults shouldn’t be held responsible for what they do as teenagers. No matter how Sells tried to steer Graham to answers that might be better received, Graham maintained his course, according to the Charlotte Observer.
“People are up in arms over this like ‘oh, this is such a disaster.’ You’re talking about two teenagers 40 years ago. That has nothing to do with what we’re talking about today about this man being a judge on the Supreme court. And they call it sexual assault? No, I don’t believe it.”
Graham went on to allege that Dr. Blasey came forward with her allegation as an attempt to help stop Kavanaugh from being confirmed for the bench.
“They couldn’t find anything else in his record and so this is just an attempt to smear him and to smear his name and put a black dot on it.”
Graham, who is primarily known as the son of deceased evangelist Billy Graham outside of evangelical Christian circles, took a significant amount of heat online for the above comments he made and many others. Rachael Denhollander, who is an evangelical Christian, and the first woman to speak out against former USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar, said on Twitter, that a part of the reason it took so long to blow the whistle on him was that she witnessed people “eviscerated” for speaking out against ministers and the people they support. The same type of thing happening now to Dr. Blasey.
Amy Smith, who runs Watch Keep, was reported by Yahoo as saying that Graham’s comments were “irresponsible and reckless.” She also said that Graham and his statements were highly insensitive toward Blasey. Similarly, Christa Brown who writes about church cover-ups as a clergy abuse survivor said the message Graham sent with his comments on the situation were “dreadful.”
Franklin Graham says attempting to rape a 15 year old is no big whoop compared to overturning Roe v. Wade, which is putrid and yet still more honest than Susan Collins pretending she believes Kavanaugh might not overturn Roe.https://t.co/KX10vvjZw2— LOLGOP (@LOLGOP) September 20, 2018
The one thing Brown, Denhollander, and Smith seemed to agree on is that Graham is still mired in a mentality in which many older Christians in positions of authority tend to view sexual assault as something that is privately discussed and shameful to be known of in public. They tend to rely on their gut instinct when it comes to allegations such as those against Kavanaugh, rather than an examination of the facts. “That is no longer acceptable,” Huffington Post reported Brown as saying.
“Kavanaugh is being considered for a lifetime appointment as one of the highest judicial officers of the land. His character matters, and the people of this country deserve to have full confidence in his character. These allegations must be fully vetted by people who are experts in dealing with allegations of sexual violence. To do anything less than that is to be dismissive of sexual assault and sends a terrible message.”