Any Harvard students who were hoping to take Brett Kavanaugh’s course in January must be bitterly disappointed, as the controversial judge has “indicated that he can no longer commit to teaching his course in January Term 2019.”
That’s according to associate dean Catherine Claypoole, who emailed Harvard law students Monday to break the news.
Kavanaugh has taught at the law school for around a decade. His upcoming three-week course was to have covered the subject of “The Supreme Court Since 2005.” However, the allegations that have emerged about Kavanaugh’s sexual behavior, during the turbulent process of his own confirmation to the Supreme Court, have caused intense debate at Harvard.
More than 700 alumni of Harvard Law School signed a letter to its dean, John Manning, asking him to rescind Kavanaugh’s appointment as Samuel Williston Lecturer on Law. The alumni said the school had to “send a clear message that it takes sexual violence seriously.”
Christine Blasey Ford testified last week that, when they were teenagers, Kavanaugh subjected her to a sexual assault that involved him putting his hand over her mouth. Two other women have also come forward with sexual assault allegations. Kavanaugh denies all the claims, and disputes the idea that he was an aggressive drunk.
However, a former Yale classmate of Kavanaugh’s named Chad Ludington said Sunday that Kavanaugh had been a “frequent drinker, and a heavy drinker [who] was often belligerent and aggressive.” Another Yale classmate, Kerry Berchem, has reportedly given the FBI text messages sent between Kavanaugh’s friends that contradict his sworn testimony regarding his second accuser, Deborah Ramirz.
“Judge Kavanaugh is not leadership material, and he is not lectureship material. [Harvard Law School] would be tarnished to have him on campus in any position of authority,” the alumni wrote.
Dean Manning has also been flooded with letters from current students, demanding a Harvard-led investigation into the sexual assault allegations. Some letters said Kavanaugh’s presence would create a “hostile environment” in the absence of such an investigation.
The Harvard Undergraduate Council voted Sunday to demand a probe, saying it “stands in solidarity with Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, Deborah Ramirez, Julie Swetnick, and all survivors of sexual violence.”