Email #140: “taking the time to meet with me”?

Jacque Carroll has a picture on her Facebook page of you and her posing together in your DC office. She writes:

“Thank you Representative Bob Goodlatte for taking the time to meet with me and talk about what we can do in Virginia’s schools and to get more funding … to bring more sexual assault nurses to my community.”

Jacque Carroll is Miss Virginia 2017. Apparently winning a beauty pageant is one way to get a meeting with you. Although I don’t know if Ms. Carroll is a resident of Virginia’s district 6, I have no objection to your meeting with her. She appears to have spoken to you about an especially worthy cause, and I would vigorously applaud you if you carried through on your meeting by voting to raise funding for rape victims. Given that our President has bragged about committing sexual assault (whether he also committed such crimes or not), such funding would be extremely welcome.

Although you included the same photo of your meeting with Ms. Carroll in one of your newsletters, you neglected to mention her advocacy on behalf of rape victims. I assume this omission was accidental, since you would not want to create the impression that you met with her only because she is a beauty pageant winner—especially given the gravity of the topic you discussed. Would you please include in your next newsletter an update on the steps you have since taken to provide sexual assault nurses to Ms. Carroll’s community?

Ms. Carroll also writes on her Facebook page: “One of the most important lessons in life my mother taught me was to never be quiet.” That’s a lesson millions have been following across every district in the country. We can’t all get meetings with you and our other Congressional leaders, but, like Ms. Carroll, we are not allowing that to keep us quiet. And, although I may not be as pretty as Ms. Carroll, I remain hopeful that you will still respond to my many, many meeting requests.


Author: Chris Gavaler

Chris Gavaler is an assistant professor of English at Washington and Lee University where he teaches creative writing, contemporary fiction, and comics. He has published two novels, Pretend I'm Not Here (HarperCollins 2002) and School For Tricksters (Southern Methodist University 2011), and two nonfictions, On the Origin of Superheroes (Iowa University 2015) and Superhero Comics (Bloomsbury forthcoming 2017).

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