The day the world got grabbed by the pussy

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“I moved on her like a bitch. I’ll admit it…I did try to f*ck her. ”

-President-Elect Donald Trump

So what else is there left to say that hasn’t already been said? This election will be analyzed for decades to come (if we even make it that long.)

My friend Alex, philosopher, lecturer, wrote a brilliant analysis of the election results which I encourage all of you to read here.

But for those of us who don’t have time to be consumed by our unrepentant genius (and snark) let’s take a minute to really absorb what’s happening here.

“Donald Trump is the next president of the United States.” Those are the words I woke up to, after dozing off next to my laptop in bed while watching the NPR live stream of the election results.

I hoped I was still asleep. But then I saw the dozens of messages on my phone from my friends and colleagues in Australia, Japan and around Germany, each of them asking me if I was okay and/or apologizing…as if they had anything to be sorry for. Let the record state, dear friends, that it is I who owe you an apology. I’m so very fucking sorry.

Personally, I’m still waiting for an apology from the people who are the real architects of this disaster – the Democratic Party.

For years, social psychologists, philosophers and economists have been preaching about rising trends of paranoia, anti-intellectual and anti-globalization sentiment. Experts are no longer trusted. Having a set of letters at the end of your name is an automatic giveaway about your role within the “establishment”…or the illuminati. Traditional news sources with actual journalists are now competing with conspiracy blogs. People would rather take their cancer treatment advice from “wellness” bloggers over oncologists.

You can’t trust big pharma. You can’t trust little pharma. Hell, you can’t trust the pharmacist down the street who’s been treating your runny noses since you were too little to wipe it yourself. Should you buy organic or GMO? What’s the best way to rid “toxins” from the body? Monsanto is out to destroy your reproductive organs from the inside out!

As William S. Burroughs once said “paranoia is the sudden realization that everything around you is alive.”

Trump came along at the perfect time. He exploited that paranoia and made grand promises that spoke directly to the fear it created. He said everything that the rest of the right (and some of the left) was thinking, and he didn’t apologize for a word. He stoked the flames of misogyny, racism, hatred and fear with expert precision. He bloviated with simple words that people who have been left behind with no education, resources, jobs or options, could understand.

He went so far to the right, the entire political spectrum was thrown off balance, and the only way to bring it back to standard would have been by pitting him against a progressive. Not a white-passing progressive; an actual progressive.

So let me ask you…are you feeling the Bern now?

Et tu Democrats?

This is what upsets me the most. My vote was wasted. Not because I voted for third party, which I didn’t. It was wasted because it was driven by a fear of the alternative, not for a belief in my candidate. Clinton was never my candidate. She was never the candidate for people of colour, or the poor, or migrants, or the protestors in North Dakota – and for years, she wasn’t the candidate for the LGBT community. She only became that candidate when it was convenient.

And yet, so many of us, who have been underrepresented in and categorically oppressed by her policy and legislation, rallied behind her as we always do, because we feared what might happen to us if the other guy won.

As a good friend of mine who is Serbian said, “You know it’s bad when you’re cheering for the person who bombed your home country.”

…this is the best we could do?

The reason why Trump won is because Clinton didn’t present, what George Monbiot called in his (okay, no seriously) excellent post-election analysis, a competing narrative. And even though I wish she had won, with all of my heart, I cannot express the remotest sign of incredulity that she lost.

Democrats don’t want to be reminded of Bernie Sanders as we lick our wounds from an extraordinary loss, but it needs to be said. Once again, it is the people who live on the margins of society who will suffer irreparable damage because of the arrogance, entitlement and hubris of the people who sold us out to further their own myopic cause…again.

After Debbie Wasserman-Schultz sabotaged Sanders in favour of creating what she and many others saw as history, I had nothing left to say. She shut Sanders out of the party’s data files, stacked convention committees with Clinton supporters and propagated the most vile “Bernie bro” smear campaign to paint him and his millions of supporters (many of which were within the black community) as Men’s Rights Activists. And when she was caught, she didn’t double down, she didn’t apologize. She was appointed an honorary position in Clinton’s election campaign.

And President Obama, who I sincerely love and will miss dearly, gambled his entire legacy on the promise that he would leave the Oval Office to a woman as his successor. In doing so, he overlooked the needs and cries of the lower and middles classes, thinking that a symbol mattered more than actual progress. As a result, his eight years of hard-won fights will be undone by a reality TV star within 100 days.

You can’t get more Shakespearean than that.

Whenever I, and many others, attempted to debate this issue with traditional white Democrats, many of whom were women, we were shut down, told to fall in line, and quickly reminded of our place within the party…behind everyone else. We were headlocked into supporting a candidate who made deals to privatize the prison system, enforce mandatory minimums, voted to invade Iraq, criminalized being gay in the military and legislation that gutted the remaining articles of FDR’s New Deal, which contributed equally as much to the GFC of 2008 as Bush’s two wars.

So I’ll say it again…this is the best we could do???

And every time I put up these issues in a discussion, I was met with the same response: “But Jennifer, don’t you want a woman president? Isn’t it time?”

Of course it’s time. OF COURSE I do. But not her.

I watched Hillary Clinton accept her nomination as Democratic Candidate for the president of the United States, a woman who pulled every trick in the book to win it, and I asked myself why we were catering to her ego at the expense of everything else? It was like watching a child, surrounded by balloons, toys and candy, who keeps stuffing the faces of her playmates into the cake while they cry, and all the adults just smile and say “Naaw. That’s adorable.”

Bernie Sanders didn’t tear a part the Democratic Party. Hillary Clinton did. And as angry as it makes me, as fearful as I am for the future, my one consolation is this – it’s about fucking time.

Michelle Alexander wrote an article earlier this year on theroot.com saying that nobody, not even Bernie Sanders, could save the Democratic Party from itself. It’s hell-bent on self-sabotage, because it can’t make up its mind about who it represents. So let’s blame Trump. Let’s blame his millions of supporters. Let’s blame his racist, sexist, bigoted ideology. But let’s also blame our deluded belief that people would just buy whatever we were selling, as long as it wasn’t that.

Americans wanted more. But white Americans, once again, had the privilege of voting their “conscience” (for better or for worse) while everyone else was consumed with voting for the option least likely to reinstate lynching as a national past time. And now, everyone…everywhere…will have to suffer the consequences.

Who else is to blame?

There’s a video by Jonathan Pie going around that inarticulate white dudes everywhere are sharing in masse. I watched the video. It’s engaging, provocative and there are some truths to it that you’ll see echoed in this post. One thing on which I vehemently disagree is the subject of political correctness. Telling racist white people not to be racist isn’t wrong. Telling sexist men not to be sexist isn’t wrong. Telling homophobes not to be homophobic ISN’T WRONG. And yes, the likelihood of you being sexist, racist or homophobic for wanting the right to “express” your thoughts freely, even if those thoughts come at the expense of someone already marginalized by the system of privilege from which you benefit directly, is extremely high.

And guess what?

Electing a man who brags about sexually assaulting women, threatens to build a wall between America and Mexico, and whose VP is a man who supports scrapping HIV research in favour of “conversion therapy” (i.e. torture) doesn’t support your argument. It supports ours.

Yes, the left lacked leadership and progressive ideas. But let us not forget, that those progressive ideas are needed not just to win elections, but to combat a plague of hatred that has threatened to consume America from the inside out since the first indigenous genocide, and subsequent denial of said first genocide, began centuries ago. Those progressive ideologies are a necessary reaction to the draconian ideology of the conservative right. It’s a response to institutional racism, rape culture and the prison industrial complex.

“Mansplaining” is real. Men do interrupt women at an infinitely higher rate because of a socially-reinforced belief that what men have to say is more important than what women have to say.  The first presidential debate is the only example you need of that. Men are socialized to feel intellectually superior, even if they’re dumb…again, see our president-elect as the canonic example. Men are paid more than women for doing the same job (often to lower standards of quality…the current president-elect just so happens to be a glaring example of the latter.) Privilege is real. You not wanting to acknowledge it because it makes you uncomfortable, even if it would make the lives of the people subjugated by your privilege better, only proves it!

And last but certainly not least, “Black lives matter” is a response to “black lives never mattered.”

If you want to stop being called out by the left for being horrible, then stop being horrible. It’s that simple.

Don’t be distracted by the 2% of Americans who voted third party. They are not to blame and never were. They wanted a better alternative, and the two-party system is underpinned by the refusal to provide one. I personally looked at voting for Jill Stein or Gary Johnson. But a doctor who doesn’t vehemently condemn the anti-vaxx movement or a former governor who’s in favour of defunding the department of education, didn’t provide better alternatives. I would like to live in a world where this is more of a possibility. It Bernie Sanders had run as a third party candidate, we might be looking at a very different America today. One run by an actual progressive, and where a third party candidate made US history.

It’s a waste of time to direct any anger at third party candidates or their supporters, when the real issue is the countless men and women who voted for Donald Trump instead.

Fuck you, pay me

So here we are. Donald Trump will be sworn in as the 45th president of the United States. His portrait will hang in airports, government buildings and embassies. He has just announced a famed white supremacist as his senior adviser. Rudy Giuliani, a man whose signature legislation known as “stop and frisk” was ruled unconstitutional for racial profiling, is in talks to become state attorney. Sarah Palin, you know…the bulldog with lipstick…is rumoured to be his next interior secretary. Trump has already announced his plan to deport three million immigrants, and he has said that he intends to overturn Roe V. Wade immediately.

That’s what we’re up against. And what’s the left’s response? Safety pins.

Get the fuck outta here.

This feel good slacktivism doesn’t cut it anymore. I understand you want to feel good about yourself for damning the rest of us to a very dark four years ahead, but while you’re crying on each other’s shoulders in a secret Facebook group, Donald Trump is plotting to subjugate the country. DO BETTER.

While millions of leftists are taking cute selfies of themselves for “solidarity,” I’m getting flooded with emails from people who are desperate to move their children out of the United Sates before “Stand your ground” is implemented nation wide.

PUT DOWN YOUR PHONES AND DO SOMETHING.

I get it. You want to pretend like everything is okay. And if you’re white, straight, Christian and born in the USA, there’s a very strong possibility that everything will be okay…for you. But to the millions of black people, brown people, LGBT people, disabled people, Muslim people and foreign people, you owe us a debt. Not just a debt of gratitude for coming out in record numbers and supporting your shady candidate, but for forcing us to do so while you couldn’t even hold up your end of the bargain.


I don’t want your safety pins. I don’t want your solidarity. I want you to pay.what you.owe.

When I was a young girl, I asked my mother what the difference was between a Republican and a Democrat. She told me “A republican believes that the government should tell the people what to do, and a Democrat believes that the people tell the government what to do.”

Simplistic? Yes. But how else do you explain to a ten year old the driving force between the nation’s two major parties? Anyone who has studied history knows that the signature ideology between the two parties we now know today wasn’t always like this. Abraham Lincoln [a great but very problematic president] signed the Emancipation Proclamation as a Republican. Eisenhower taxed the wealthy at 90% and used that money to build what is now our crumbling infrastructure. Kennedy was the beginning of a liberalism that is now a shadow of its former self (and he was only that candidate because of a growing civil rights movement that held him accountable.) Now, when looking at the two parties objectively (let me emphasize that word, ‘objectively’) the differences aren’t as clear as they should be.

That’s why we’re in this mess. But that’s also why we now have an opportunity to change everything, everything, from the ground up.

…and while we’re doing that, it might be a good time to donate to Planned Parenthood. They’re going to need it.

 

 

 

 

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