Russia has just decriminalized domestic violence.
Women are harmed at an alarming rate from domestic violence here in the US too. And the Senate just voted to make sure contraception is not covered. Misogyny has long been apart of our culture. This is a moment in which patriarchy has put all its chips on red.
It is time for us to refuse. This means men too have to really get in your guts, what it means to have self-agency and control over your body handed over whether its forced pregnancy, the very common experience of rape and sexual assault and the de facto cultural and legal reality that there’s not a whole lot you can do about it without more pain and even with the pain there are almost never collective social and legal consequences for rape for the rapist other than affirmation of so-called “masculinity,” the dismissal and marginalization of womens experience (or these would be stories and experiences you’d be hearing about all the damn time in media), any random guy walking toward down the airplane aisle feeling like its no big deal to put his hands on your waist to move you aside.
This means marching and calling and insisting. This means making consent a reality and the norm. This means talking to your sons and students about what consent is. This means social norms and pressures that support girls and womens’ agency.
Sadly it is things getting much worse and emboldened that make people more aware of what has always been there. A good chunk of the country had to knowingly vote (though I am not persuaded it was just votes that put Il Dupe in position we need an open investigation) for someone who brags about sexually assaulting women. Sexual assault was voted for. We will see more like this as in Russia if we do not say and embody “no.”
As with all things, if you don’t get the lesson, it gets harder.
And for those doubling down on misogyny in the new regime and the emboldened culture of dominanace sold, like crack or a bottle, like it’s gonna make everything ok, they will continue to find there will never be enough to make them feel ok. Their desperation will only increase.
There’s no way out of this without learning to feel, without growing up.
I don’t see how Il Dupe controls the population inexpensively without the companies that decided to kiss his ring the other day.
Why presume Cheeto tuchus now somehow means he won’t hurt your company? Perhaps they should send their cross-platform invite to Chris Christie while they’re at it.
Why presume the value of the market and currency will somehow be supported by his regime taking over (though Russian interference and electors haven’t met why presume for sure he’ll take over? Why not support public inquiry into Russian hacking? Technical stuff too complicated for tech CEOs? They gave him an implied endorsement via this appearance timed when it was.
Dave Pell recently outlined the shareholder pain but not the moral quandry or benefit (or political benefit) of taking a stand.
Putin got a whole lot of bang for his hacking buck. If they collectively decided to not go, who do you think the market would choose?
My instinct at this point is that you disarm manipulation best with what is inalienable. It is what can’t be bought and sold.
None of these CEOs and COOs who took off all their fleece vests and travelled to a sudden demand meeting with Thiel’s latest angel investment has been willing yet to make the public stand others who work in the industry and sometimes for them have. You can too
I wrote a little something on twitter about lessons learned coming out and living in a “make up your own facts” world.
The Donald Trump v Hillary Clinton election has given us a moment in which the threads of what the country appear to all agree upon are unravelling.
Donald Trump’s Thanksgiving Day Parade float level of narcissism seems to have given us a new level of ignoring or making up facts in politics and government.
So many on the left are convinced of the need to only persuade with argument and the apparent hopelessness of this for our collective future safety when we cannot agree on basic things.
It’s not new that people in the US won’t accept facts. Here’s one example and some things I learned from it.
Youth Protesting in the Castro
I went to the Castro the night after Trump was elected to be with my people. I went there to fight Prop 8 and when marriage equality passed. It’s where queers marched the night Harvey Milk was killed by an elected white guy full of resentment and looking for someone he was allowed to blame. It’s where we lost a generation and where they were loved and mourned and fought for. It is the gay Jerusalem. After Harvey was killed, more people came out. When HIV/AIDS hit and decimated a generation and the President refused to even acknowledge this was happening, many well-to-do white, gay men came out and were outed, queer men and women united to work together and care for and bury our own. ACT UP was created. We organized. People learned about medicine and drugs. When Prop 8 passed in California, more straight folks joined us than ever before. Each time something unimagineably horrible has happened, something unimagineably powerful has been born in response. there has been no one leader. The change has come within each person and from what they have done.
I want to time travel to 1988 and tell everyone “We have the meds!!! You did it!! You cheated death! We have marriage, we’re not criminalized!! We have some trans* rights! Keep going! Come out.”
Some part of future me is here to tell you the same.
November 11, 2016
I wrote this to someone sad and possibly in disbelief about the NY Times giving Trump the validation and narcissistic attention he has longed for without saying what he has done to get where he is, without making a moral and factual stand and calling things like racism and sexual assault and authoritarianism what they are.
This applies to much more than this one paper, or Jimmy Fallon mussing Trump’s hair like a playful fraternity brother. It applies to a lot of things and people that may begin to feel different that what you had believed. I urge you to consider that if something or someone seems different to you than you had imagined, that that is not just about someone else or something else changing. It is, most importantly, about you changing. When you do think, and not just feel about it (critical!) you will find that your own present conclusion means you now believe you were misguided before or did not see as whole a picture before. Consider why you didn’t and what that way of seeing and believing meant to you. These are suggestions I am offering from my own experiences of loss. Everything Is Subject to Change. #EISTC:
It is painful to see the places and people one believed were safe and enduring “homes” appear to not be what we’d believed : an external consistent safe and reliable place. The “parent” element we look for and project into so much and so many. It is believe it or not, good that you feel the disappointment. It is healthy. It is so hard. I am sorry for the feeling and it is good to be in community to help as we have these feelings. But it is not feeling** that allows illusions and projections to rule us, to give our unwitting obedience to something other than our own connection to our inner guidance. It is a lonely, abandoning feeling path but it is one many millions are now on. You are not alone. You are becoming more yourself. With all of us.
November 14, 2016
Why did people not vote?
Comey FBI “surprise” delighted on from the Bannon / Trump campaign. Last minute suprise plot twist! Stay tuned!
But you can’t pull the pieces apart.
Patriarchy, sometimes “she’s not one of the good ones, like me. Sometimes ”uppity cunt.“”
Media, global economic change, failure of straight up talk from elected officials, GOP stonewalling for a generation, liberals failing to vote in midterms, hammered narrative about Hillary not Ms Rodham Clintons wickedness evil ambitious Lady MacBeth cackling. Email email. So much media time about email.
Very little coverage in media and TV of Trump’s fascist working and rallies. I’ve never been anywhere that men don’t get to say and do what they want to women. Isn’t that what life just is? Economic depression, felony convictions, systemic imprisonment of people of colour, lies to white folks from the GOP, the Roseanne show ending.
SCOTUS gutting the Voting Rights Act, States doing the same. Voter ID requirements. Fear of the government for deportation. Fear. Not knowing you can get a lift to the polls. Not having many polls. A long line at the polls. Not getting time off work. Believing fake news you saw on Facebook or TV. Trump and Bannons and Ailes and Stone getting in the vote. It’s rigged. I’m not sure I’ll accept it.
Bernie Sanders and so many others telling you “they’re both the same.” Not learning in school how the basics of democracy work. Not understanind that Trump is fascist and corrupt. The word tremendous. Not knowing where to go to vote. Having a doctors appointment. Not wanting to miss your show on TV. Did I mention she sent emails?
I don’t get exactly what I want. Being afraid people will have guns at the polls. Failing to know that people died for your freedom to vote. Not having someone growing up who always voted. Not having someone who believes in you and says you matter. Helplessness, not believing your vote will matter.
Bitterness for Sanders. Bernie or Bust. Humans have nothing to do with it, what happens is up to Jehovah and so she will never vote, said two young Black women to me. “I’m not going to vote,” said Trent pushing me in a wheelchair through the Las Vegas airport. “We’re going to have a war no matter who I’d rather save lives than take them.” He is going to play D+D still. He still is going to recycle his soda can.
So many reasons. So many versions of helplessness, so many versions of “Daddy beat me for my own good.”
It came down to not so many of them in a few neighborhoods in the midwest.
There is a third party in the US. This is it.
Compassion and empathy are important things to have. But who needs it most right now from you? Where will it do some good immediately? Do you have compassion more for the people scared out of their minds about real impending persecution? Are you able to care first for yourself and see and handle your fear? Are you able to see first what are real risks and harms in the world today right where you are? Do you believe intellectually understanding something will make your feelings of fear or disorientation go away? Do you have a fantasy about placating someone who isn’t interested in what you’re saying? White liberals need to stop going to the hardware store looking for bread. Build bakeries.
I was interviewed, just before the election, by Brett Terpstra on Systematic Podcast. I was really happy to get to talk with Brett who has built, among other things, the brilliant nvalt a note taking text editor for the Mac. It’s a double episode and we talked–among other things– about comedy, the Net’s influence on me, and Iggy Pop. You can hear it in your podcast apps or here on this page where you can also see the notes and my recommendations of great stuff.