Adele M. Stan

Adele M. Stan is a columnist for The American Prospect. She is research director of People for the American Way, and a winner of the Hillman Prize for Opinion & Analysis Journalism.

Recent Articles

Trump and McConnell Take Gaslighting to New Level in Kavanaugh Confirmation Fight

(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
(AP Photo/Evan Vucci) President Trump arrives for a campaign rally in Rochester, Minnesota, on October 4, 2018. T he confirmation process for President Donald J. Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Judge Brett Kavanaugh, continues to be a significant test of the U.S. form of government, and a display of high drama. Washington, D.C., was only on its third cup of coffee when the presidential tweet hit: “The very rude elevator screamers are paid professionals only looking to make Senators look bad,” wrote Trump. “Don’t fall for it! Also, look at all of the professionally made identical signs. Paid for by Soros and others. These are not signs made in the basement from love! #Troublemakers .” He was speaking, of course, of the sexual assault survivors—mostly women—who have been following the example set by Ana Maria Archila and Maria Gallagher when they famously confronted Republican Senator Jeff Flake by holding his elevator door open and imploring him to consider the experiences of those who...

Trump and Kavanaugh: Sexualized Dominance and Executive Power

(Oliver Contreras/SIPA USA via AP Images)
(Oliver Contreras/SIPA USA via AP Images) President Trump shakes hands with Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh on July 9, 2018, at the White House. I t should come as no surprise, I suppose, that a man nominated to the Supreme Court of the United States—a man who would be a justice for another 40 years, perhaps—by the pussy-grabber-in-chief now stands accused of sexual assault himself. Both Donald Trump and his nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, share that sense of entitlement that tells men of a certain sort that the world is their oyster, as it were—there for the grabbing. It’s quite likely that the reason Trump nominated Kavanaugh went beyond the judge’s box-checking right-wing positions on regulation and reproductive rights, and was an obvious calculation regarding the consequential outcome of a particular criminal investigation. The real potential jackpot in having Kavanaugh on the court lay in his expansive view of executive power and privilege. That kind of investment in the...

I Know Why Sexually Assaulted Women Resist Coming Forward; I’ve Been There

AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill. A t first glance, the willingness of the Republican majority on the Senate Judiciary Committee to call a hastily organized hearing on Monday to examine allegations by Christine Blasey Ford that she was sexual assaulted by Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh may look like an attempt at fairness, but it’s not. In fact, it demonstrates several of many reasons that women often don’t come forward after being the target of sexual assault or misconduct. The fact that the committee refuses to allow an investigation of Ford’s claim that Kavanaugh attacked her sexually at a party when they were both in high school—whether by the FBI or another neutral entity with expertise in the examination of sexual assault allegations—shows that the committee Chairman Charles Grassley is more interested in quickly dispensing with Ford’s allegation...

That Anonymous Op-Ed Was About Saving the GOP — Not the Republic

(AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
(AP Photo/Andrew Harnik) Vice President Mike Pence, left, and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, right on August 20, 2018. T here’s a whole lot of news absorbing Washington these days. Normally, the confirmation hearings for a cagey Supreme Court nominee would be the end-all and be-all, while the spectacle of a foaming-at-the-mouth conspiracy theorist in the halls of the Senate would make for a robust sideshow. But the anonymous September 5 op-ed run in The New York Times , written by a person described by the Times as a senior administration official, has the chattering classes rapt. In the op-ed, the senior official strikes a pose as one of the “adults” he says are “in the room,” and casts her or himself as a member of an internal “resistance” to President Donald J. Trump that exists within the administration. The person frames the essay as an effort to assure readers that inside Trump’s government, there are people bent on saving the republic from a morally unmoored president...

Twitter Abdicates Responsibility for What Appears on Its Platform

(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
(AP Photo/Evan Vucci) Twitter Director of Public Policy Carlos Monje speaks during a roundtable on cyberbullying with Melania Trump at the White House on March 20, 2018. S ilicon Valley, with its “disruptor” culture, has long embraced libertarianism’s extreme focus on individual freedom, regardless of the cost to the common good. It is essentially a system that accrues additional power to those who already have it. And right now, the people with the power are neo-fascists whose speech is being protected by Twitter. There’s one in the Oval Office as I write this, and he’s coddled an even more noxious breed in the form of conspiracy theorists who are capable of directing violence at his opponents. Sure, they may not tell their followers to “go kill so and so”—but they don’t have to. If you tell people that there’s a ring of pedophiles among the president’s opponents, and that they operate out of a particular pizzeria, you don’t get to act surprised when a guy with a gun shows up at the...

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