‘I am Kavanaugh’: a screenplay

1 October 2018

‘I am Kavanaugh’

Overview:

This 10-minute fictional video screenplay starts with a series of brief interviews with five middle-aged men (MAMs). They are fictional schoolmates of Brett Kavanaugh. Each says he has come forward to take responsibility for the alleged sexual assault on Prof. Christine Ford, exonerating Judge Brett Kavanaugh, who – Ford claims – forcibly groped her at a drunken high school party when he was about 17 and she about 15. 

The schoolmates give specific, detailed accounts of the time, the setting and the actual attack, which they claim to recall clearly, despite the gap of 35 years and having been dead drunk at the time. Each man’s description of the actual assault is almost identical – except that each claims he did it. But each says he was dragged off the girl by one of the former schoolmates taking blame for the attack.

Their accounts of the time, location and setting differ wildly: two different states, two different years.  One says it was a beach party, not a pool party. The first and fifth accounts are nearly verbatim, identical except for time, place and the liquor in the punch bowl. All agree Christine Ford was their victim. All agree that Brett Kavanaugh had nothing to do with it. None even remember him being at the party. Two say he wasn’t capable of such behavior, even – as one put it – if he had been ‘shitfaced.’ 

It appears each man might have made up a story and come forward to protect  Kavanaugh, whose innocence was never in doubt – least of all to Christine Blasey Ford and her Senate Democrat handlers. But this is never resolved. The men could all be delusional. Or perhaps there were five separate assaults on a girl, who in one instance or more, may have been Christine.

Scenes 1-10:  Each MAM is introduced, describes the setting & attack. Scenes 11-15: The camera cycles from each MAM to the next very quickly, finally focusing, in scene 16,  on the last few words of their testimony:

Stone: … ‘I don’t know why they think I’m Kavanaugh.’

Rogers: … ‘ suddenly I’m Kavanaugh.’ [Shakes head.] 

Adams: … ‘she thinks … I’m Kavanaugh.’

McQuade: … ‘Everyone thinks … I’m Kavanaugh.’

Dr Reynolds: … ‘how could anybody get it in their head that I’m Kavanaugh?’

Then the ‘I am Kavanaugh’ meme is repeated by an additional five ‘classmates, who didn’t testify. 

Finally, there is a jail scene, where all the MAMs and maybe some extras, stand up and shout ‘I am Kavanaugh’ – reminiscent of the 1960 movie ‘Spartacus.’

Cast: All these names are completely made up. ANY names could be used. It would be helpful if some of the actors were black, Hispanic or Asian. There is an off-camera interviewer who is heard but never seen.

Middle-aged male 1 – Jeff Stone

MAM 2 – Mike Rogers

MAM 3 – Randall Adams

MAM 4 – Ron McQuade

MAM 5 – Lester Reynolds

MAM 6 – Bill Cho

MAM 7 – Lon DeWitt

MAM 8 – Jeff Barlow

MAM 9 – Alberto Zepeda

MAM 10 – Larry Quinn

Scene 1: Elegantly furnished living room. Jeff Stone, on sofa, elbows on knees, hands clasped. 

‘My name is Jeff Stone. I went to school with Brett Kavanaugh. There was this wild party at a friend of a friend’s house in Bethesda. His folks were outta town. Musta been late spring of ‘82, my junior year. I knew who Christine was, but we had never spoken. There was a big punch bowl full of Hawaiian Punch and Bacardi 151 on the kitchen table. We had both had quite a bit to drink and we started talking, first in the pool, then standing next to the punch bowl. I went to look for the bathroom. I walked down the hall and opened a door,  but it was a bedroom. As I turned around, Christine brushed past me into the room and threw herself on the bed. She said she was dizzy and might pass out. She had an awesome little bod. I shut the door behind us. I was pretty hammered, but I DO remember thinking “She’s drunk, I’m drunk, we’re alone, it’s now or never.” [Pause, frown, shaking head.] I just lay down on top of her and started pulling her clothes off. How fucked up is that?’

Scene 2: Private office c/w a senior Fortune 500 exec’s. ‘Michael E. Rogers – CFO’ name plate on desk. Rogers slumps forward slightly in swivel chair behind desk, nervously tapping a pen on the desk. ‘When I heard bout it, it made my hair stand up. I was really drunk at the time, but I remember it just the way she described it. It was May or June ‘83, a high-school party at some friends’ house whose parents were out of town. It was in Largo, I remember, cuz the directions were tricky and it was a long drive for me ‘n’ my pals. I knew Christine a little. At the party,  we were talking in the hallway. I was flirting as best I knew how, but one of my doofus friends kept butting in. Eventually I pulled open a bedroom door and dragged her inside.’

Scene 3: Spacious backyard w/ greenery. Patio table and outdoor furniture. Tall glasses of iced tea on table. Randy Adams leans back, ankle crossed on knee. Sad, wistful smile.

‘My name’s Randy Adams. I went to school with Brett Kavanaugh. I had to speak up. Christine’ memory is uncanny – the parts she remembers anyway. She got the details right – all but one. 

‘It was Memorial Day 1982, there was a pool party at a classmate’s house in the McLean-Langley area – just off Great Falls Road. Dunno why everyone keeps saying it was Maryland. Our class was from all over the area, not like a public school where everyone lives nearby. We had to drive across the river to get there. The parents were away for the weekend – but big bro ‘n’ sis were already home from … Tech, I think, or  maybe sis went to UVa. Anyway they came back from college loaded for bear – several cases of hard liquor and dozens of half-gallon bottles of mixers. I was acquiring a taste for jack ‘n’ coke and had several before I ran into Christine. We didn’t know each other at all, even by name, but we had some friends in common. 

‘We were splashing ‘round in the pool. She looked real cute in her little swimsuit, but it was starting to get late, and chilly, so she got out to go change. I was hammered. I followed her, planning to burst in on her while she was still naked. I was too late – I had to peek into a couple bedrooms before I found the one she was changing in. She had already put her clothes on. I was so frustrated – I just tackled her on the bed. I tried to pull her clothes off.’

Scene 4Ron McQuade [wearing three piece suit, leaning forward, elbows on knees, fingertips pressed together], on red-leather-covered swivel chair in a dim study. Bookshelves filled with law books line both visible walls. Where the walls meet, in the corner just to one side of McQuade’s chair, a small antique display table with an antique globe (or vase, or Rodin sculpture, eg The Thinker.)

‘My name’s Ron McQuade. I went to school with Brett Kavanaugh, but I was a year behind him. When I heard the news I was driving home from work. I got tunnel vision, my chest felt tight … I had to pull off the road.  

‘No excuse for what I did. I was just drunk, seventeen, still a virgin and just desperately horny.

The news reports got a lot of stuff wrong. Let’s face it, journalists are dopes. If they weren’t, they’d be lawyers. Or doctors, or CPAs. [Laughs.] 

The party wasn’t in the DC suburbs, it was in Ocean City. It wasn’t a pool party, it was a beach party. We’d just gone on summer break, 1982. One of my friends had an aunt ‘n’ uncle who owned a beachfront so-called cottage [air quotes] that was about four thousand square feet. We were playing in the surf, body surfing and whatnot.

I still remember Christine walkin’ outta the surf, up the beach in her wet one-piece.  She had a cute little body. I followed her inside. There was an impromptu bar on the dinner table. Self serve. I dunno if they raided the liquor cabinet ‘n’ set it all on the dinner table, or if somebody brought in booze. I was sampling different liquors ‘n’ mixers. I got pretty smashed. 

She seemed to be always surrounded by her gang, but at one point she wandered off  and went down a hallway. I followed her. She had put some dry clothes on over her wet swimsuit. I thought maybe she was going to take off the wet swimsuit and put her clothes back on. I wanted to watch. She opened a door in the hallway, peeped inside, then went in. She started to push the door shut behind her, but I crowded into the room behind her and shut it. I just grabbed her in a bear hug. My head was spinning from all the booze – we hit the bed before I even knew we were falling. 

Scene 5. Les Reynolds sits in a hospital staff lounge, nursing coffee in a styrofoam cup. Wears white lab coat with ‘Lester Reynolds, MD – Cardiothoracic Surgery’ embroidered on lapel; stethoscope over shoulders. He looks tired, just got off shift. Leans fwd on elbows.

‘It was this wild party at a friend of a friend’s house in Rockville. His folks were outta town for the weekend. Musta been late spring of ‘83, my senior year. I knew who Christine was, but we had never spoken. There was a big punch bowl full of cherry Kool-Aid and Everclear on the kitchen table. We had both had quite a bit to drink and we started talking, first in the pool, then standing next to the punch bowl. I went looking for the bathroom. I walked down the hall and opened a door,  but it was a bedroom. As I turned around, Christine brushed past me into the room. She said she was dizzy and might pass out, and threw herself down on the bed.  She had an awesome little body. 

I shut the door behind us. I was pretty hammered, but I DO remember thinking “She’s drunk, I’m drunk, we’re alone, it’s now or never.” [Pause, frown, shaking head.] I just lay down on top of her and started pulling her clothes off. How messed up is that?’ 

Scene 6 – cut back to MAM 1, Jeff Stone:  ‘She was yelling and struggling and trying to get out from under me. A guy barged in behind us and pulled me off her.’

Interviewer: Do you remember who pulled you off her?

Stone: Sure. It was Les Reynolds. He’s, like, a heart surgeon now.

Scene 7 – cut to MAM 2, Mike Rogers. ‘Christine kinda froze when I grabbed her, but when I pulled her down on the bed – then she got really scared and tried to push me off. I think my friend heard her yelling, ‘cuz he barged in and dragged me off her.’ [shaking head]. ‘I was just enraged at the time, but it’s a good thing he did, or there woulda been REAL trouble. 

Interviewer: ‘Who was the friend that dragged you away?’ 

Rogers: ‘Guy named Jeff Stone.’

Scene 8 – cut back to MAM 3, Randy Adams: ‘Christine was screaming and yelling bloody murder, I guess somebody heard her, a guy I knew charged in and pulled me off her, onto the floor.’ 

Interviewer: ‘Do you remember the name of the classmate who pulled you off her? 

Adams: ‘Sure. Mike Rogers. Good guy. I was furious with him til I sobered up. He’s, like, a Fortune 500 exec these days.’

Scene 9 – cut back to MAM 4, Ron McQuade: 

‘She was squirming, trying to get out from under me. She started screaming and yelling. Someone heard her and barged into the room, grabbed me by the back of my belt and pulled me off her. We both fell on the floor, and Randy dragged me off her and out of the room. 

Interviewer: Who dragged you off her? 

McQuade: ‘Randy. Randy Adams. Good thing too. I was really mad at him, til I sobered up and it dawned on me how much trouble I almost got myself into.

Scene 10 – cut back to MAM 5, Dr Les Reynolds: ‘She was yelling and struggling and trying to get out from under me. A guy barged in behind us and pulled me off her.

Interviewer: Do you remember who pulled you off her?

Reynolds: ‘Sure. It was Jeff Stone.’ 

Scene 11 – cut to MAM 1, Jeff Stone: 

‘I don’t think I ever told her my name. Anyway Brett wouldn’ta done anything like that, even shitfaced. It wasn’t him that groped her. It was me. I don’t know why they think I’m Kavanaugh.’

Scene 12 – cut to MAM 2, Mike Rogers: 

‘Not sure why she thought I was Brett. But then, we’d both been drinking. She was probably trying to figure out who did it later, talking to her friends, and somebody misidentified me, or him. Imagine that, suddenly I’m Kavanaugh.’ [Shakes head.] 

Scene 13 – cut to MAM 3, Randy Adams: 

Interviewer: You said Christine – uh, Prof. Ford – got one detail wrong.

‘Yeah. That’s why I came forward. She didn’t know me, and I didn’t even find out her name til days or maybe weeks later.  I don’t think Brett was even at the party. Anyway if you knew him back then, you’d know how crazy that sounds. It wasn’t him that assaulted her, it was me. It’s mistaken identity. For some reason, she thinks … I’m Kavanaugh.’

Scene 14 – cut to MAM 4, Ron McQuade: ‘It hit me really hard last week, when she spoke up. I had a physical reaction, for a minute I thought I was having a heart attack. I thought, ‘Uh-oh. Everyone thinks … I’m Kavanaugh.’

Scene 15 – cut to MAM 5, Les Reynolds MD: 

‘I don’t think I ever told her my name. Anyway,  I don’t remember even seeing Kavanaugh at the party. Brett wouldn’t have done anything like that, anyhow, even drunk. What I don’t get is, how could anybody get it in their head that I’m Kavanaugh?’

Scene 16 – Rapid, sequential replays of MAMs 1-5, replaying the last sentence of their testimony: 

Stone: … ‘I don’t know why they think I’m Kavanaugh.’

Rogers: … ‘ suddenly I’m Kavanaugh.’ [Shakes head.] 

Adams: … ‘she thinks … I’m Kavanaugh.’

McQuade: … ‘Everyone thinks … I’m Kavanaugh.’

Dr Reynolds: … ‘how could anybody get it in their head that I’m Kavanaugh?’

Scene 17Even faster replays of MAMs 1-5, each man’s final two words of testimony. Immediately after MAM 5, cut to MAMs 6-10. 

Stone: … ‘ I’m Kavanaugh.’

Rogers: … ‘ I’m Kavanaugh.’ [Shakes head.] 

Adams: … ‘I’m Kavanaugh.’

McQuade: … ‘I’m Kavanaugh.’

Dr Reynolds: … ‘I’m Kavanaugh?’

MAMs 6-10 are extras. They have given no detailed testimony. Each looks directly at the camera, standing before a neutral, blank indoor backdrop; speaking firmly and slowly:

MAM 6 – Bill Cho: ‘I am Kavanaugh.’

MAM 7 – Lon DeWitt: ‘I’m Kavanaugh.’

MAM 8 – Jeff Barlow: ‘I am Kavanaugh.’

MAM 9 – Alberto Zepeda: ‘I am Kavanaugh.’

MAM 10 – Larry Quinn: ‘I am Kavanaugh.’

Scene 18: The same ten Middle Aged Men are sitting together on benches in an ugly concete room – a big-city jail holding cell,, or reasonable facsimile. (More than ten would be great, but if so, the ‘extras’ should be seated behind those who’ve already spoken on camera.) A heavy metallic door opens. The men look up. The unseen bailiff’s voice summons ‘Kavanaugh! Kavanaugh?’

The men glance briefly at those on either side of them. After a few seconds’ pause, two stand almost simultaneously and say, ‘I’m Kavanaugh.’ Another and another stand, and each says, ‘I am Kavanaugh.’ In rapid succession, the others all stand and shout, ‘I am Kavanaugh!’ 

[It should be done, obviously, with pacing similar to the ‘I am Spartacus’ scene in the famous 1960 movie ‘Spartacus.’]

Fade to generic background. Voiceover [can be spoken by interviewer]: If you’re an American man, you are Kavanaugh. You can be be any color, any creed, rich or poor. You’re still Kavanaugh. You may not be a judge, you can be a mechanic, a doctor or a truck driver. You’ve been told you’re a predator. You’re not. The predators are the politicians, media hacks and hate-mongering activists who have targeted you. They are political rapists. They are ‘gaslighting.’ It’s what psychologists call ‘projection.’ Don’t forget who the predators are.  Talk to other men about them. Talk to your wives, sisters, moms and girlfriends about them. Don’t forget to register, and don’t forget to vote this November.

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