Democracy Gone Astray

Democracy, being a human construct, needs to be thought of as directionality rather than an object. As such, to understand it requires not so much a description of existing structures and/or other related phenomena but a declaration of intentionality.
This blog aims at creating labeled lists of published infringements of such intentionality, of points in time where democracy strays from its intended directionality. In addition to outright infringements, this blog also collects important contemporary information and/or discussions that impact our socio-political landscape.

All the posts here were published in the electronic media – main-stream as well as fringe, and maintain links to the original texts.

[NOTE: Due to changes I haven't caught on time in the blogging software, all of the 'Original Article' links were nullified between September 11, 2012 and December 11, 2012. My apologies.]

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

The GOP’s new war on women: McConnell’s attempt to silence Elizabeth Warren epitomizes the newly empowered sexism of the right

Perhaps Sen. Mitch McConnell should have skipped his quadrennial all-day post-inauguration nap. Being awake for the Women’s March and witnessing all the rage and energy of millions of feminists might have woken him up to what kind of bee’s nest awaited him on Tuesday night, when he tried to stop one woman, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, from quoting another woman, Coretta Scott King, during the debate over Sen. Jeff Sessions’ nomination for attorney general.

Warren tried to read a letter that the now-deceased King wrote in 1986, accusing Sessions (correctly) of using “the awesome powers of his office in a shabby attempt to intimidate and frighten elderly black voters.” McConnell invoked an arcane rule forbidding senators from insulting one another during debate as a pretext to banish Warren, who then read the letter aloud on Facebook Live, leading to millions more watching her than would have been the case if she had simply read the letter on the Senate floor.

“She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted,” McConnell complained during debate, fully embodying the feminist caricature of a fussy man displeased by uppity females, and thereby spawning hundreds of T-shirts and Twitter memes literally overnight. Warren herself took full advantage of the opportunity, hitting social media and cable news hard to highlight what happened.

McConnell’s behavior would have been noteworthy at any time, but the amount of negative attention he’s receiving is compounded by the widespread suspicion within feminist circles that the election of pussy-grabber-in -chief Donald Trump is ushering in a new era of misogyny.

“We’re going be blown backward so far that this irredeemably shitty year may someday look like a lost feminist golden age,” Michelle Goldberg of Slate wrote at the end of 2016. “The massive power of the American state is about to be marshaled to put women in their place.”

McConnell’s tantrum is just the latest incident in a long line of incidents suggesting that conservatives are feeling more empowered to be overt and blunt with their sexism, as Dan Merica of CNN witnessed in December:

The swamps of Trump-loving right-wing media, never a female-friendly place to begin with, have become even more dense with hysterical pronunciations about the evils of female independence.

Televangelist Jim Bakker spent his post-inauguration show ranting about how the Women’s March was “driven by demons” and recommending that politicians “control those demons that were in those women.”

“Isn’t it time to get past the exaltation of unrestrained womanhood that’s degenerating into Christ-hating blood lust?” wrote Linda Harvey, the head of Mission America, in a January column for WorldNetDaily. “If the pro-abortion feminists had their way, our culture would devolve into worship of a goddess who requires child sacrifice.”

Original Article
Author:  Amanda Marcotte

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