“Summer of Rage,” feminist author Rebecca Traister’s fiery entry for the July 9-22 issue of New York magazine, actually attacked the Democratic Party and journalists from the left while defending harassment of Trump officials in public. The online subhead set the tone: “White men are the minority in the United States -- no wonder they get uncomfortable when their power is challenged.”
Traister used Anthony Kennedy’s retirement as a jumping-off point for her long rant (which was even longer online):
This too has been clear for a long time: that protecting the influence of that ruling minority -- white men -- has been the national priority from the country’s very founding........ as [Jonathan] Chait outlines in his column, the Electoral College was intentionally designed to empower a minority: those in less populous areas of the country who wanted to protect the institution of slavery. The documents that encoded the participatory democracy of which Americans tend to be so proud expressly barred the electoral, civic, and economic participation of the nonwhite and the non-male.
White men are at the center, our normative citizen, despite being only around a third of the nation’s population. Their outsize power is measurable by the fact that they still -- nearly 140 years after the passage of the 15th Amendment, not quite 100 years after the passage of the 19th Amendment, and more than 50 years after the passage of the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts — hold roughly two-thirds of elected offices in federal, state, and local legislatures. We have had 92 presidents and vice-presidents. One-hundred percent of them have been men, and more than 99 percent white men.
She criticized the “himpathy” shown by some media colleagues toward former TV omnipresence Charlie Rose, accused of sexual harassment by former colleagues:
We’ve spent the last week hearing mewlings of concern over interrupted dinners and movie nights of Trump administration officials out on the town. In the wake of DSA protesters heckling Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and presidential adviser Stephen Miller at Mexican eateries, and the decision of one restaurant owner in Virginia not to serve Trump’s spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the Washington Post editorialized that these White House power players should “be allowed to eat dinner in peace.”...
Traister went off on a tangent about abortion providers who get harassed, then attacked the Democratic Party from the left:
Just look at how freaked out the Democratic Party leadership got about California representative Maxine Waters. Last weekend, she urged supporters in California to “show up wherever we have to show up,” suggesting “if you see anybody from that Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd and you push back on them and you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere.” Waters was not advocating violence; she was calling for assembly and pushback....
Traister chastised liberal Sen. Chuck Schumer and House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi for criticizing Waters, calling it “a goddamn travesty." Not even Bernie Sanders was sufficiently radical and confrontational; his crime was saying Trump officials had “a right to go into a restaurant and have dinner” without being harassed.
She condoned the left-wing mobocracy, then accused Trump voters of fostering white supremacy:
These people had nice dinners in restaurants interrupted. They did not have their children pulled from their arms, perhaps forever; they were not refused refuge based on their country of origin or their religion or the color of their skin; they were not denied due process; nor were they denied a full range of health-care options, forced to carry a baby against their will, separated from their families via the criminal justice system, or shot in the back by police for the mere act of being young and black.
And yes, some of the upholders of minority power are themselves women -- women working in service of a brutal white patriarch and the brutal white patriarchal party he leads. Similarly, a majority of white women voted for Trump, and always vote for his party, because they benefit from white supremacy even as they are subjugated by patriarchy....
Even CNN’s Brian Stelter, no one’s idea of an objective journalist, was just another clueless white guy in Traister’s view, for “chiding the liberal activist Amy Siskind for comparing border-crossing checkpoints to the dystopian authoritarian state of Margaret Atwood’s Gilead....By a happy accident of birth, he’s a member of the group that has benefitted from this country’s long history of minority rule; for him and them, restrictions on bodily autonomy, disenfranchisement or peril based on race or ethnicity are not likely to be problematic."