Community rallies to show support for Kavanaugh accuser in candlelight vigil

Ryan Wisowaty, Editor-in-Chief

Activists wave the American flag alongside posters saying “Stand with Christine” at the corner of Embarcadero and El Camino. Members of the Palo Alto community organized a candlelight vigil Thursday night to show support for Christine Blasey Ford, who accused judge Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault. “I believe Christine Ford,” attendee James Sheridan said. “She’s part of my community.”

Under the street lights and with chants of “Trust Survivors,” community members gathered at a candlelight vigil to show support for Christine Blasey Ford on Sunday at the corner of El Camino and Embarcadero.

The vigil, which drew hundreds of participants, was held to show solidarity with Ford, a Palo Alto resident who has recently come forward accusing Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her when they were teenagers.

“This is an important event,” attendee Lynda Rose said. “The doctor [Ford] had a lot of courage coming forward, and she needs to be listened to. She needs to be heard.”

Many community members also brought their children to witness the events.

“Daughters need to stand up, and the more that we enable them as young people to make decisions and come to things like these and learn about what’s really happening, then we can change from what’s happening in the future,” said attendee Anne Lawer, who came with her 10-year-old daughter.

Although Ford has agreed to speak before a Senate committee to discuss her accusations, Republican leaders disagreed on the manner of conducting her testimony, leading some at the vigil to believe the Senate is being purposefully unfair.

“The Republican Party is waging a war on women,” attendee James Sheridan said. “Their paymasters are [the] Koch brothers, the wealthiest of this country, and they’ll say and do anything they can to maintain their grip on power.”

Community members also showed support for other women who are victims of sexual assault.

“We do not want women to be silent,” Lawer said. “We do not want women to be sidelined.”