Marie Yovanovitch’s Moral Courage (testifying before Congress, defying Trump)

From the New York Times article, 10/20/2019:

It took a woman to break the spell of ‘sovereign masculinity’ that appeared to put the president above the law.

moral courage required an ability to “judge without banisters,” that is, to judge the unique and specific case in a situation that is radically unprecedented, with no universal rule available under which to subsume it. Moral courage, she taught us, is about exercising independent judgment in a situation where the rules collapse.

Yovanovitch didn’t just follow the law by complying with the subpoena, she restored the dignity and authority of that law, which had been weakened and thrown into crisis by a pattern of obstruction. Refusing subservience to the word-as-law claimed by the executive branch was an act of independent judgment.

Her moral courage struck a blow to sovereign masculinity and political authoritarianism as they are intertwined in our contemporary politics.