The entrance to Yale University Law School, one of the most famous and respected law schools in America, was tagged with the words of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford on Monday morning.
“Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter…” reads the white graffiti on the paving stones outside the Sterling Law building on Yale’s campus in New Haven, Connecticut.
The quote is taken directly from Ford’s testimony last month during the confirmation hearing for Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, a 1990 graduate of Yale Law. In her testimony, Ford described what she says was Kavanaugh’s sexual assault of her when they were both in high school in 1982.
“Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter, the uproarious laughter between the two, and their having fun at my expense,” Ford said in response to a question from Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) at her testimony, referring to Kavanaugh and his friend. “I was underneath one of them while the two laughed. Two friends having a really good time with one another.”
As HuffPost’s Anna Almendrala noted last month, it’s “common for survivors of sexual trauma to strongly remember the details of the event itself but not have many memories of other details around the event.”
Yale Law student Laurel Raymond tweeted an image of the graffiti at the Sterling Building on Monday morning.
Raymond, a former reporter for ThinkProgress, told HuffPost she didn’t see any other instances of the graffiti on campus and did not know “anything about where it came from or who did it.”
Even though she was late for class, Raymond said, she “still doubled back to take a picture.”
“This graffiti is that arresting. The front of the law school is a symbol of the institution,” Raymond told HuffPost in a message, adding that “it’s not unusual to see tourists taking pictures out front.”
Raymond said that since the hearings, the walls inside the law school “have been papered with fliers that people have filled out with why they’re ‘demanding better:’ better from the judiciary, better from [Yale Law School], better from our leaders, better for survivors.”
“But this is different. Something about the permanence of paint speaks to how deeply betrayed and disappointed people feel,” she went on. “There’s still a lot of anger and disappointment in the halls of [Yale Law]. I think in particular, a lot of female students feel very fundamentally betrayed. But also very determined to change things for the better.”
“One thing you learn in law school is that process affects results,” Raymond said, adding that the past few weeks have been “a reminder that the processes that put people in power aren’t equally accessible and don’t value people —women, people of color, and people from non-elite backgrounds particularly — equally.”
Yale Law School did not respond to HuffPost’s requests for comment.
Need help? Visit RAINN’s National Sexual Assault Online Hotline or the National Sexual Violence Resource Center’s website.