I am angry. Furious, really.
It is not an emotion I am comfortable with. I aim for hopeful and understanding and determined. Angry feels like I am wearing someone else’s clothes.
Women are not raised to be angry. We are encouraged to keep our negative emotions in check. “Smile” we are told repeatedly. “You are so much prettier when you smile.”
It is sometimes OK for us to be sad and scared… but angry? Not so much.
But this week I am angry. Sour taste in my mouth angry. A scream building in my throat angry. Fingers curled into fists angry. Knots in my stomach angry.
The way Republicans have treated Christine Blasey Ford has lit a fire of fury in me. I have barely been able to follow the news this week, it made me so mad.
Maybe it is all we have in common. We are around the same age, both went to prep school, both professional women with families.
I know what she is giving up by coming forward because, in many ways, her life is my life. So to see her motivations doubted and her story discounted is infuriating. It is a reminder of how far we have to go. It is a reminder of how little a woman’s word matters to those in power.
And it is a reminder to keep fighting.
There is a new book coming out on October 2nd by Rebecca Traister. It is called Good and Mad: The Revolutionary Power of Women’s Anger and boy does it speak to how I feel right now.
The Cut has an excerpt titled “And You Thought Trump Voters Were Mad: American women are furious.” I would suggest reading the whole thing.
Sounds like I am not alone in my anger:
The seeds sown during the Hill hearings have come into full flower in the past two years, as the #MeToo movement erupted following the election of a multiply accused sexual harasser, and angry women jumped into electoral contests around the country.
It’s those women who’ve been winning primaries, toppling men who’ve occupied seats of power since God was a boy. The partisan gender gap has become a chasm, a fault line splitting open under the pressure of so much rage. Based on polls going into the midterms, the gap has grown to 33 points, largely because white women — a majority of whom voted for Trump in 2016 and have supported Republicans in all but two elections since 1952 — have shifted toward backing Democrats over Republicans, 52-38; among millennials, 39 points separates women who favor Democrats and men who prefer Republicans.* It’s angry women who’ve staged teachers’ strikes, who’ve knocked powerful men off their perches at television networks and in the Senate; it’s often female elected officials who’ve linked arms with the angry masses.
the book contains lots of stories of women’s anger that inspire, but the one of Mamie Till, mother of Emmett Till stuck with me:
After his body was finally found, officials tried to bury him in Mississippi without allowing his mother, Mamie, to even look at him. But she insisted on having the casket delivered back to Chicago. Once it got there, the funeral director told her he’d been prohibited from opening it.
“Do you have a hammer?” Mamie recalled saying to him in a 2005 documentary. “[Because] if you can’t open the box, I can.”
His body was violated in ways no mother should have to see and no human should have to endure.
Mamie then told the funeral director to keep her son’s casket open. When he asked if he should try to fix Emmett’s features, she replied, “No, let the people see what I’ve seen.”
The people saw. More than 50,000 of them saw Emmett’s body — identifiable only because of a ring he wore — in person. Thousands more saw, because Mamie wanted the photos of her son’s bloated, mutilated face to be published in Jet magazine.
Mamie Till is credited as a transformative figure, but she is most often pictured as a grieving mother at her son’s grave, her mouth open in keening loss. What we aren’t trained to consider is that alongside her sorrow was rage. Lamentation and sadness do not drive a woman to vow to smash open her son’s casket, to make damn sure that the world has to look at the racist brutality that has been visited on her family and her life.
Anger does that. In the case of Mamie Till, it lit a match under a burgeoning social struggle.
I am in no way comparing my rage this week to the suffering that Mamie Till had to endure. But I am hoping that the outcome of my rage — and your rage — will be similar.
Mrs Till’s righteous rage demanded that the world acknowledge its wrongs.
So do we.
There is nothing OK with a society that demonizes and terrorizes a woman who reports sexual abuse. There is nothing OK with a political party that insists that a young man holding his hand over a young woman’s mouth while she struggles is somehow normal or not a big deal. There is nothing OK about leaders who want to sweep abuse allegations under the rug for their own political expediency.
Let’s channel our rage.
Let’s vote those bastards out.
Some of ours do.
Now the good news:
We Are Fired Up For November
With four Democratic-held seats (Florida, North Dakota, Missouri and Indiana) and four Republican seats (Texas, Tennessee, Arizona and Nevada) rated as toss-ups — with most of these races within the margin of error — you can see that Republicans’ apparent advantage, based on the number and political tint of states Democrats were forced to defend, has all but evaporated.
Moreover, of the Democratic seats in play, it’s fair to conclude that Sen. Joe Donnelly in Indiana (+3.8 points in the RealClearPolitics averages) is in the strongest spot. Sen. Bill Nelson (Fla.), thought to be the weakest campaigner, caught a big break when Andrew Gillum, the African American mayor of Tallahassee, won the Democratic gubernatorial nomination while Republicans went with far-right gadfly Rep. Ron DeSantis. The GOP, meanwhile, is consistently behind in polling in Arizona.
Republicans also have a new problem: Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh. President Trump on Friday reminded women voters why they are so enraged with Republicans when he demanded to know why Christine Blasey Ford did not file a police report when she was attacked as a teenager. The answer is that she was about 15 years old at the time and was too afraid or filled with shame to report it.
Trump is in fact making America great again — by driving us to engage in our democracy as few presidents have. The shock of his election and his chaotic governance has mobilized progressives to run for office — women in record numbers — and to march for causes like women’s rights and gun control.
They told us that we suffered from Trump Derangement Syndrome, an emotional and illogical obsession with opposing and unseating Donald Trump.
They were unable to see that our objection to Trump was an achingly particular phenomenon that transcended party tribalism and went to the core of who we are as a people and a country.
For us, it was clear: This man was wholly unacceptable, as a matter of character. And true patriotism demanded that we say so, without equivocation, and unrelentingly.
it looks like people are champing at the bit for the chance. There has been extraordinarily high voter turnout in primary races across the country, including in New York, Michigan, Arizona, Vermont and Iowa.
Last month, the Minnesota secretary of state, Steve Simon, tweeted after that state’s primary:
“Minnesota, you crushed it last night! With 100% Reporting: 902,119 people voted in the primary; the highest number of primary voters since 1982. Overall turnout was approximately 22.7%; the highest turnout percentage in a primary since 1994. Amazing!”
Most of that energy is coming from people opposed to Trump and his corrupt administration, thereby benefiting Democrats.
Resistance up to this point has largely been a statement of principle, but when we vote in November it will be an expression of power. We’re not deranged; we’re determined!
New video of @DevinNunes whining about the fact #TheResistance is everywhere: "It's such a pain now to go to these political events. And it makes it very difficult to even move around the valley or anywhere else, because everywhere you go you have this Resistance movement." pic.twitter.com/OXWLw0L7tE
— Scott Dworkin (@funder) September 20, 2018
The White House and congressional Republicans are blaming one another for a difficult political environment that has bolstered Democrats’ chances of winning control of the House, and possibly the Senate.
Republicans on Capitol Hill say President Trump‘s lack of discipline and penchant for controversy has put them at a disadvantage, while Trump’s political team has grown frustrated with the high number of GOP retirements and poor fundraising totals.
aw, boys, no need to fight. there is plenty of blame to go around!
Wealthy donors — including a former GOP backer — injected millions last month into the main Democratic Senate super PAC, a sign of intensifying hopes on the left of flipping control of the chamber.
Senate Majority PAC, which works to elect Democrats to the Senate, posted a strong haul in August at $17.6 million, far above its monthly fundraising average of $10.5 million so far for the midterms. The super PAC has raised $94.4 million so far, compared with the $61.5 million by its GOP counterpart, according to new Federal Election Commission records posted Thursday evening.
Among the biggest donors to the PAC last month was Seth Klarman, a Boston hedge fund billionaire and registered independent who was once the biggest GOP donor in New England
big money has no place in politics, but since it is in there, we need it and I am glad we have it.
During a discussion about his party’s legislative high points this year with a small group at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce last week, Senator Mitch McConnell, the majority leader, expressed a new concern about an old habit of President Trump’s.
The many “distractions” generated by the president, Mr. McConnell said during the dinner, were preventing Republicans from having a coherent message for the midterm elections focused on the booming economy, according to multiple people who were briefed on the remarks.
Representative Paul D. Ryan, the House speaker, who also attended, expressed another concern — that the president’s talk with his supporters of a “red wave” in November was unfounded. All agreed that he should instead be sounding the alarm about the possibility of big Democratic gains.
The two congressional leaders were only echoing the worries of many Republican strategists and Mr. Trump’s own advisers.
And Mr. Trump’s confidence in inevitable Republican success, they say, has prevented him from focusing on the need for a coherent message, and his own supporters from understanding the very real possibility that Democrats could retake the House and even the Senate.
There’s a small-but-real possibility that Democrat Beto O’Rourke could unseat Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz in November. In two separate polls this past week, O’Rourke has been 9 points behind Cruz and 2 points ahead of him. Both are shockingly close for a race that’s been comfortably handed to Republicans for the past 30-odd years.
But even if he loses, O’Rourke could still be a big winner — and it wouldn’t just be a moral victory.
The closeness of the race has made Texas Republicans nervous. Not only are they staring down a competitive Senate race in deep-red Texas, but the state GOP is starting to worry that the energy behind O’Rourke could spur a local blue wave across Texas — a state that has a handful of competitive congressional races, half a dozen of competitive state seats, and more than 70 toss-up state judicial posts on the ballot.
“Even if O’Rourke can’t close the statewide gap, if he closes it within the range polling is right now, it will close the gap in some of the races that are tightly contested,” James Henson, the director of the Texas Politics Project, said.
It’s not often that a Democratic candidate for Congress features footage from Fox News in their advertising. But that is exactly what Ammar Campa-Najjar, the Democrat challenging embattled incumbent Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA), has done in a brand-new spot.
The ad, first reported by The Sacramento Bee, features Fox News hosts expressing criticism of Rep. Hunter, specifically focusing on his initial defense of an indictment leveled against him and his wife.
Legal Walls Are Closing On Trump and Co.
President Donald Trump’s former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, has participated over the last month in multiple interview sessions lasting for hours with investigators from the office of special counsel, Robert Mueller, sources tell ABC News.
Add Russia Investigation as an interest to stay up to date on the latest Russia Investigation news, video, and analysis from ABC News.
The special counsel’s questioning of Cohen, one of the president’s closest associates over the past decade, has focused primarily on all aspects of Trump’s dealings with Russia — including financial and business dealings and the investigation into alleged collusion with Russia by the Trump campaign and its surrogates to influence the outcome of the 2016 presidential election, sources familiar with the matter tell ABC News.
Investigators were also interested in knowing, the sources say, whether Trump or any of his associates discussed the possibility of a pardon with Cohen.
This is BIG. Remember how freaked out Trump was when the FBI came for Cohen? Cohen knows where all the bodies are buried and he is sharing all he knows. Trump is toast and no amount of firing people or declassifying documents is going to end that.
The same day Trump Jr. emailed “if it’s what you say I love it,” $3,300,000 reportedly began moving between two of the men who orchestrated the Trump Tower meeting: Aras Agalarov and Ike Kaveladze. Mueller is examining the transaction, BuzzFeed reports.
that is shady as F. And Mueller knows all abut it.
Nearly a dozen lawyers now assist President Trump in contending with two federal investigations, one in Washington and one in New York, that could pose serious threats to his presidency and his businesses. But the expanding legal team is struggling to understand where the investigations could be headed and the extent of Mr. Trump’s legal exposure.
The lawyers have only a limited sense of what many witnesses — including senior administration officials and the president’s business associates — have told investigators and what the Justice Department plans to do with any incriminating information it has about Mr. Trump, according to interviews with more than a dozen people close to the president.
What is more, it is not clear if Mr. Trump has given his lawyers a full account of some key events in which he has been involved as president or during his decades running the Trump Organization.
article summary: their client is a crooked idiotic pathological liar which makes lawyering tricky.
Even after he’s sentenced, Flynn will still have to testify “in any trial where his information is relevant.” His grand jury testimony will have been locked in by that point, so any contradictions can be held against him, experts say: https://t.co/GOjlpIUnbE
— Natasha Bertrand (@NatashaBertrand) September 18, 2018
I am glad he will still have to testify but I am really hoping that they lock him up. You know who isn’t being locked up? HILLARY FUCKING CLINTON that is who (see, there is that anger again….)
Trump has ordered the Justice Department to release numerous classified documents related to the Russia investigation. A White House statement claims this is in the interests of “transparency.” One of Trump’s most dutiful servants in Congress, Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida, insists this release will “reveal to the American people some of the systemic corruption and bias” at “the highest levels of the DOJ and FBI.”
We have already seen this happen with the Nunes memo, the IG report, and the release of the redacted FISA application on Page. Thus, the latest release, no matter what it says, will help the president and his allies further their political goals — but only to a limited, base-consolidating extent. Fortunately, most signs are that, despite their best efforts and the deep imbalances that they are exploiting, the broader public is entirely rejecting the alternate reality they are trying to weave.
Mueller has won 35 indictments and six convictions — including of Trump’s national security adviser Michael Flynn, campaign chairman Paul Manafort, and deputy campaign chairman Rick Gates. You can make that 37 indictments and eight convictions if you count Michael Cohen, Trump’s personal lawyer, and Sam Patten, a lobbyist linked to Manafort, who pleaded guilty in other jurisdictions to charges arising from Mueller’s work. Cohen’s plea deal was particularly significant, because he implicated the president in a conspiracy to violate federal campaign-finance laws. Even if Mueller were to end his probe tomorrow, he already would be judged one of the most successful special counsels in history.
Mueller’s latest triumph came last week when Manafort, having already been convicted of eight felony counts, agreed to plead guilty to two more counts to avoid another trial. In return for having the other charges dropped, Manafort pledged to cooperate with the special counsel. Trump and his lawyers have adopted a mantra of “no collusion,” as if that were the only crime of which he could possibly be guilty, but Manafort represents collusion in the flesh: He is a longtime agent for Russian and Ukrainian oligarchs who worked closely with a suspected Russian intelligence operative.
Trump’s end will be dramatic — but it is also looking increasingly likely.
President Donald Trump on Friday appeared to back away from his earlier demand for the “immediate declassification” of various documents and text messages related to the Russia investigation, kicking the issue instead to the Justice Department watchdog.
The fact that Trump is not simply declassifying all these new documents tells me that he’s afraid this would wind up being the Nunes memo all over again, and there’s a good chance he’d be right. So by passing it off to the Inspector General, he’s effectively saying, “Never mind.” It’s yet another reminder that the defense of the president against the Russia probe is being carried out by a bunch of clowns led by a fool.
Other Good News
The Trump era, overflowing with news, and the emergence of new ways to tell stories appear to be giving a jolt to journalism schools that in recent years struggled to cope with industry contractions. Students such as Ready are more fired up than ever about learning the tools of newsgathering, educators say. And at some prominent schools, there’s evidence of growing demand for journalism degrees as applications and enrollment rebound and investigative reporting classes fill up.
At the University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism, an estimated 130 freshmen are entering the journalism college this fall, up 50 percent compared with the previous year. The incoming master’s class of 26 students is also bigger than the year before.
“Every time [Trump] calls journalists the ‘enemy of the people,’ or says something about ‘fake news,’ or gets a crowd at a rally to jeer at the White House press corps,” said Lucy A. Dalglish, dean of the Merrill College, more students decide “they’re going to major in journalism.”
they are trying to kill it, and it just rises up stronger.
A Kavanaugh collapse would worsen an already-perilous midterm environment for the GOP, demoralizing Republican voters just weeks before voting. But a Kavanaugh confirmation could prove dangerous as well. In a political moment shaped by women’s anger, from the Women’s March to the #MeToo movement, putting Kavanaugh on the court despite a credible allegation of sexual assault could prove disastrous for Donald Trump and the Republican majority in Congress.
Democracy in danger has become a buzzword. Let’s not forget that Greece and South Africa, resilient through crises, and Malaysia and Indonesia, suggest otherwise. The human urge to be free is not about to die in the 21st century.
But, yes, Western democracy is in upheaval. Of late, it has concentrated, but not spread, wealth, suggesting that it’s no more than a vehicle for injustice
Still, I am an optimist. Democracy is stubborn. It raises our gaze. It is the system that best enshrines the unshakable human desire to be free. Athens reminds us of that. America reminds us of that. It fails. It falls short of John Winthrop’s “city upon a hill.” It strives still to fail better.
Perhaps you know the story of the old man on his deathbed approached by his children.
“Dad,” they say. “We were afraid to ask you but perhaps the time has come. Do you want to be buried or cremated?”
“Oh, I don’t know,” he says. “Surprise me!”
Democracy will still surprise us.
PayPal is terminating its relationship with Alex Jones and his website, Infowars, the online payment service said Friday.
After an extensive review of Infowars and its related sites, PayPal said in a statement, the company “found instances that promoted hate or discriminatory intolerance against certain communities and religions, which run counter to our core value of inclusion.”
There are some districts in America that Democrats had all but given up on.
New York State’s 147th Assembly District is one of those districts.
Wyoming County, home of the 147th, is just about as rural as a district comes. It has 40,000 people and 70,000 cows. Trump won this district 70% — 30%.
Enter Luke Wochensky. Luke Wochensky grew up in rural Western New York and is the proud son of a town highway worker and a substitute teacher. Luke is endorsed by Run for Something, a group set up to support young progressives running for down-ballot races. He is also endorsed by the top elected Republican in his district, Doug Berwanger, chairman of the Wyoming County Board of Supervisors. Plus a slew of other Democrats, labor organizations, and environmental groups.
He has the support necessary to win.
He just needs the people behind him.
So this past Tuesday , Luke climbed on a late model Farmall 400 tractor and embarked on a 250-mile journey across the 147th. One small town and one country road at a time.
In areas of the district never visited by non-local elected officials, Wochensky is reviving rural politics.
that is it for today. Please, please, please stay involved and do all you can for November. Contact your local candidates and local Democratic committees and see what you can do and then DO IT!
This is it y’all. It is go time and I couldn’t be happier, prouder, or luckier than to be on the same team with all of you. ❤️ ✊ ❤️
This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.