DING!! We have a winner! Of all the teeth-gnashing, garment rending wails from the left since Tuesday, this piece at AlterNet must be the most pathetic. The title, “When Bullies Win: How Do Weary Americans Face the Post-Election Trauma?” only hints at the woe-is-me self-obsession, reflexive victimhood and complete lack of moral perspective to come.
Essentially (and I know you’ll be shocked) the author, Lynne Stuart Parramore, views our political and social life as a giant playground. Her political opponents are bullies demanding “our candy.”
“Sometimes the bully had powerful friends and came on gangster-style,” Parramore remembered darkly. “Other times the mean girl shoved and hit us and left us flailing in the dirt. However it happened, it left wounds.”
Poor, broken soul! And here it is happening again. In North Carolina, “consummate bully” Tom Tillis apparently beat up Kay Hagan and took away her senate seat. How mean, rotten and nasty is Tillis? He’s “the kind of man who allegedly shot paintballs at his neighbor’s barn.” [shudder!] She quoted approvingly an appraisal of Tillis in which he, “repeatedly failed his constituents by undermining public education, healthcare, labor rights, women's rights, LGBT rights, immigrants’ rights, voting rights, and the environment.” When does that man sleep?
Worse, Tillis likes the Koch Brothers and they've donated to his campaign. (Whether or not they donated anything like the $1.17M George Soros has given directly and indirectly to AlterNet, well, she didn't say.)
And Tillis “will now take his bare-knuckles brand of politics to Washington.” Lock up your daughters.
Tillis isn’t the only one. “In Michigan, Republican governor Rick Snyder, the bully-extraordinaire who has devoted himself to union-crushing, was re-elected,” Parramore moaned. You have to wonder whether any self-respecting teamster or burly AFL-CIO organizer would characterize himself as “bullied.”
As adults, she wrote, “When we feel traumatized by bullies, we have a natural instinct to retreat, to isolate ourselves, to numb our emotions, to pretend that nothing happened, to lash out. But there are other paths our trauma can take.” A good cry over a pint of Ben & Jerry’s and a cheap chardonnay?
No! What we can do is take heart from the civil rights movement of the 1960s! Parramore cited North Carolina Rev. William Barbor “who launched the Moral Monday movement to challenge the bully brigade, reminds us that for grownups, the only way to deal with bullies is to stick together and commit ourselves to unrelenting tenacity.”
“As an African American minister,” Parramore wrote, “Barber carries forward the legacy of sticking together and tenacity in the face of some of the ugliest oppression in our country’s history … The bullies burned and maimed and killed to get their way. There were no lengths to which they would not go, no ugliness they would not embrace.” And obviously, losing an election is exactly comparable.
As for the future, well, it’s mighty bleak on Parramore’s playground. “The future promises a great deal of bullying, pushing and shoving. Can we keep on, bruised and bloodied? We must.”
You might think about some therapy while you’re at it.