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bullying trump

Watch Meryl Streep’s Golden Globe speech eviscerating Trump

If you haven’t seen this yet, give it a watch.

I always cringe a little when celebrities speak out on political and social issues, even when (as is often the case) I agree with them. And Streep’s joke about the audience at the Golden Globes being the “most vilified group” in America today fell a bit flat for me, for obvious reasons.

But her comments about Trump’s mocking “performance” imitating a disabled reporter during one of his stump speeches were right on:

This instinct to humiliate, when it’s modeled by someone in the public platform, by someone powerful, it filters down into everyone’s life because it kind of gives permission for other people to do the same thing.

Disrespect invites disrespect, violence invites violence. When the powerful use their position to bully others we all lose.

Naturally, Trump has responded in his characteristic manner:

Dude, just stop. It’s embarrassing. We all saw what you did.

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Caveats and Quandaries
Caveats and Quandaries
3 years ago

First bit of hope I’ve seen in awhile, to be honest. Still, I want to remain a party pooper to anyone who holds this up too high. Yes, it’s awesome that someone with privilege used it to say something about those without those privileges. However, now think about how much more someone with that level of privilege could do? Especially if more people with that privilege are now inspired by Meryl Streep to speak out.

In other words, we hit the ground running, and I’ve got the celebratory cake ready, but we can’t eat it until we get a little further in the race. We’re still too behind to be complacent.

Iseult The Idle
Iseult The Idle
3 years ago

The reaction from the Trump camp has been telling: Meryl Streep calls for compassion, and Kellyanne Conway complains that Ms. Streep is appealing to the worst instincts.

Therefore, to the Trump camp compassion is the worst instinct.

Shadowplay
Shadowplay
3 years ago

@Iseult

Well, it’s the same lot that booed Ted Cruz when he told them to vote their conscience … apparently another dirty word to Trumpets.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
3 years ago

There are many reasons to find Trump loathsome; but what amazes me is his sheer pettiness.

On its own it might just be bemusing. There are thicker skinned soap bubbles. But it’s the combination with his hypocrisy that makes him so vile. He’s a classic example of ‘you can give it but you can’t take it’.

A man who will bully a 16 year old girl in the most egregious manner just for having the audacity to question him, yet explodes in a fit of petulance when faced with the most sublime of criticism.

I do see a silver lining here though. His insecurity is his achilles heel. He clearly finds criticism and mockery devastating and humiliating. We can weaponise that. Mock him at every opportunity. Treat him as a joke (albeit a dangerous one). Let his name become synonymous with ignorance and foolishness. As tempting as it may be, don’t yell at him, just laugh. Make his time in office such a humiliating experience his ego just can’t take it any more. Jeer him out of power. Ensure he fears sneers and pointed fingers like real presidents feared the assassin’s bullet. Make his first term simply unendurable until he slinks back under the rock of celebrity TV from whence he came.

Rina
Rina
3 years ago

I’ve honestly seen three-year-olds behave more maturely than this.
Still haven’t fully wrapped my head around how this guy becoming president was even possible…

Shadowplay
Shadowplay
3 years ago

@Alan Robertshaw

Only works if the bugger hears it from people he wants respect from. Us, well, we don’t exist. Right?

Not to say it isn’t fun mocking him anyways.

Caveats and Quandaries
Caveats and Quandaries
3 years ago

@Alan

I’ve been thinking about the same thing for a few days now. It just seems, to me, that it’s a horrific combination of circumstances that made His Oranginess into what he is.

Firstly, he’s a man who’s only marketable skill is failure. It’s the only thing he’s been consistent with his whole life (I hope he wasn’t a very racist baby, but considering stories of his father I won’t hold my breath). Couple that with the fact that he hasn’t failed in any permanent sense. My economic knowledge base is abysmal, but my ignorant opinion would be that a lot of that has to do with there being a certain wage cutoff above which you can’t really go back down from. If memory serves, a big reason the banks that he owed millions to didn’t deliver the coup de grâce was that the buildings with his name in gold letters would lose value if Trump went down. A man who can do nothing but fail, yet somehow recovers from said failures, is a man I would not be surprised lives in a fantasy world. He has to to stoke his own insatiable ego, and he has the means to surround himself only with people who will keep pouring gasoline on it.

That explains his general lashing out and self-aggrandizement. Now, however, the game has changed; he can’t buy every person in the world. By running for office he has left his bubble, and the tantrums we’re seeing are his desperate attempts to get his bubble to fit over the world instead.

We are not dealing with a man who can ever agree on even basic facts, because in the real world Trump is a failure. And that is the most egregious sin possible in Drumpfworld.

The Thousand Cock Stare
The Thousand Cock Stare
3 years ago

I honestly hope he keeps wasting time making an ass of himself on Twitter. At least then he’s distracted and not causing mayhem elsewhere.

Youthful Indescretion
Youthful Indescretion
3 years ago

Oh, she is just brilliant isn’t she? And her speech is so carefully and deliberately worded that it’s quite hard to openly disagree with it, which is why people are resorting to ‘she’s irrelevant’, ‘she should stick to her lane’ etc…

I’m afraid I am not so positive about some of the responses to this, although I am glad that people are using their platforms to dissent. I find two things scary: How quickly Trump flies off the handle at criticism, which leads me to fear that he’ll simply clamp down on it and feel entitled to. Most dictatorships are not led by people who aim to be evil, but by entitled and oversensitive cowards who don’t like being criticised and don’t see why they should have to allow it.

Secondly, how quicky his defenders rushed in to claim that the bullying of the reporter had simply never happened. There’s footage, but that simply doesn’t matter. The comments from Trumpsters under articles are full of people not just denying it, but actively being utterly furious that ANYONE would dare repeat this obvious lie. Scary stuff 🙁

Nequam
Nequam
3 years ago

@TCS: and then Pence really gets to run things? Not necessarily an improvement.

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
3 years ago

Trump can’t even make a statement about the state of the DC apparel industry without lying. Lying is just a compulsive state for him. He’s learned over time that he can say whatever and there is some group of people who will roll with it, so that’s become his MO. He probably knows no other way to speak anymore.

Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
3 years ago

Thing about gaslighters: you can see em a mile away, and they’re fulla hot air

Meryl Streep, one of the most over-rated actresses in Hollywood

She’s a 4, tops

@Alan

Ensure he fears sneers and pointed fingers like real presidents feared the assassin’s bullet

Dayum!

The Thousand Cock Stare
The Thousand Cock Stare
3 years ago

@Nequam

Pence is awful, and in some ways arguably worse in that he’s actually semi-competent at getting awful shit done, but also seems less likely to break out the nukes on a whim.

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
3 years ago

But letting Pence do all the work as VP is the worst of both worlds, because Pence gets awful shit done, while Trump is still the one who can nuke countries because he got his back hairs up over an unkind tweet.

Mish of the Catlady Ascendancy
Mish of the Catlady Ascendancy
3 years ago

@Alan,

Wow, your post! Fiery, awesome stuff.

@Caveats and Quandaries,

OT, but I love your nym, for the highly selfish reason that it encapsulates how I think and write (it maddens me sometimes). Plus, caveat and quandary are such lovely words 🙂

Moocow
3 years ago

Saw it live, it was glorious. Also, her message to the press was very much on point. Hope she’s safe, I can only imagine she’s being inundated by death threats from internet nazis.

Caveats and Quandaries
Caveats and Quandaries
3 years ago

@ Mish of the Catlady Ascendancy

Haha that was my thinking when I came up with it. It also stands as a go-to response to an imaginary strawman who might ask, “How is it possible for two people to see the same facts so divisively!?”

Anyhoo if we’re talking about epic names that deserve their own soundtrack you’re one to talk.

Caveats and Quandaries
Caveats and Quandaries
3 years ago

To put it another way, caveats and quandaries are the two things I most frequently see anti-feminists (and the various ugly groups that stem from that) get wrong when it comes to social issues. They might be very close to a revelation, with one awful little asterisk ruining it for everyone.

Mish of the Catlady Ascendancy
Mish of the Catlady Ascendancy
3 years ago

@Caveats and Quandaries,

Ah, but I can’t claim credit for coming up with my name, unlike yourself. Mish is actually (part of) my name, and the Catlady Ascendancy bit was taken from an alt-right rant featured here on Mammoth, back before the US election. It’s a good fit, though, as crazy catlady has long been a career aspiration of mine 🙂

They might be very close to a revelation, with one awful little asterisk ruining it for everyone.

What a fabulous line!

Kat
Kat
3 years ago

Disrespect invites disrespect, violence invites violence.

At this point, perhaps Meryl Streep was harking back to phrases she used many times in her role as a mom.

Headologist
Headologist
3 years ago

Much as I adore Streep and this speech, there’s also been some good discussion about the ableism in it (especially given its coming from Hollywood.) I don’t have the links on me (and it’s 6am here and I have a 7 hour train this afternoon if I ever sleep) but Ijeoma Oluo linked a twitter thread on her fb page and I believe there’s an Establishment article to the same effect.

Youthful Indescretion
Youthful Indescretion
3 years ago

@Headologist I may have missed something, but I’m not sure what ableism you’re referring to?

Youthful Indescretion
Youthful Indescretion
3 years ago

The Establishment article rubbed me up the wrong way tbh. One has an an absolute right to point out instances where people are trying to help, but getting it wrong (especially if there is racism, sexism, ableism involved etc…). For ages I have valued the idea that we need to hold each other to account over the things we deem progressive. That we question how progressive something actually is, and if there turn out to be flaws (like, it ignores black women, or ignores lack of income) then we do better. But I am completely sick and tired of this need to out-progressive whatever progressive thing gets mainstream attention.

No, Meryl Streep is not on the front lines of this fight, but she has a platform and she is using it. She had a short speech, and a short space of time, to use an example that everyone would recognise and make a point that reached out to the apathetic. This is good!!! For goodness sake, she’s not preaching to the converted, and a disabled rights activist who could do that speech better wasn’t invited to a celebrity event. It’s like claiming that a primary school teacher isn’t REALLY teaching maths because REAL mathmeticians don’t just just learn times tables. No, but they’re teaching to 8 year olds right now and we’ll get there. It’s being applauded because it was very public (and dangerous for her career) not because it was progressive thing anyone has ever said.

leftwingfox
leftwingfox
3 years ago

But I am completely sick and tired of this need to out-progressive whatever progressive thing gets mainstream attention.

THIS!

Headologist
Headologist
3 years ago

I don’t want to insinuate that Streep’s speech wasn’t important or, y’know, awesome, because it was, but I’m afraid that I really don’t think it’s trying to “out-progressive” her to point out that the example that she used and the way she and the rest of the media are talking about it is really problematic. Disabled people are always held up as the helpless victim, often not named by the people using them for political caché, and far from being an unfortunate necessity it’s fucking harmful. It feeds the view that anything a disabled person does is in spite of their disability, that they have no personal agency, that they are defined only by their disability and that once you get diagnosed your life is over. It’s the same track of thought that leads to the celebration of things like “Me Before You,” and the “bravery” of euthanasia for disabled people – because how could they lead a full life themselves? So while I agree Streep’s speech was great, I’m not going to ignore the huge ableist elephant in the room because however good something is you can’t just gloss over ableism, and I think it’s important to critique our heroes. Telling disabled people they are reducible to their disability and have to wait around for society to fight for them because they’re helpless is not OK, no matter what it’s in service of.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
3 years ago

You all might find this amusing. Trump interview from last year. Ignore his usual apologetics and just scroll down to find out who his favourite actress is (was?).

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/features/donald-trump-murdoch-ailes-nbc-816131?utm_source=t.co&utm_medium=referral

Oh, and he also states his concern about all the hacking Russia is doing.

Youthful Indescretion
Youthful Indescretion
3 years ago

@Headologist Oh, I get that, I really do. I totally understand the sense that we don’t need patronising sympathy, and that platitudes don’t solve the issue. I guess I just want us to support each other rather than tearing each other down, and by ‘us’, I mean ‘people who are not dicks, and need to be standing up to dicks right now’.

Also, I got the impression that she was implying the power differential was more to do with money and position than disability. She mentions that he mocked a reporters disability, then points out that due to the power difference (ie – potential president vs journalist) using a characteristic of his disability to mock him was particularly shitty.

But I undertand how somebody could take something different away from that, I’m just glad people aren’t being quiet. Also, I’m relatively privileged and British so not as directly effected so feel free to ignore my late night epiphanies lol.

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
3 years ago

the example that she used and the way she and the rest of the media are talking about it is really problematic.

Your preference would be?

Kylo Ronin
Kylo Ronin
3 years ago

Teared up a bit when I saw that clip online. It’s good that she said that because I still been feeling downbeat.

A little compassion goes a long way for me.

Scildfreja Unnýðnes
Scildfreja Unnýðnes
3 years ago

@Kylo Ronin, <3

Kat
Kat
3 years ago

@Alan
The many moods of Donald J. Trump . . .

That was wonderful. Thanks!

Headologist
Headologist
3 years ago

@Youthful Indescretion

I wrote a long reply to you but I lost it checking other pages, bugger it. So in brief: I’m also British, and pretty privileged in some ways. I think this is hitting very close to home because I have a progressive disability and I’m hitting a lot of unfortunate milestones with it very fast and am watching, very clearly, how people who once thought of me as strong and capable are now seeing me as pitiful and helpless – not least myself.

@Policy of Madness

Eep, I was not prepared to rewrite a speech today. I guess another example, maybe instead of but preferably as well as the reporter. Use of his name. An acknowledgement that he wasn’t just a disabled man but part of the press – I admit this was probably mostly due to timing but given the anecdote and then immediately talking about protecting the press as if it was a separate thing, it seemed a bit like reducing the reporter to a victim despite his achievements. A sentence mentioning that far from mocking being Trump’s worst offence, the actual huge problems facing disabled people (and women, non-whites, immigrants, the LGBT+ community etc). And in the press, where time is less of an immediate factor, more than just a brief mention of the reporter as an example. Acknowledgement of him as an accomplished journalist. Acknowledgement that the mockery he’s probably faced many times before is far from the worse of the struggles he and many others will be facing with the Orange Flatulence in power. Literally any notion that disabled is not a prefix that negates what comes after it, and that disabled people are quite capable of dealing with the horrible mockery we face so often – unlike, say, the removal of vital healthcare or social support.

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
3 years ago

Eep, I was not prepared to rewrite a speech today.

Sorry about that. But we’re talking about someone who had only like 2 minutes to say everything she wanted to say in the context of a speech about accepting an award for acting. Her speech wasn’t perfect, but it was pretty damned good. The criticism of Donald was worked in by tying it to a “performance” he gave (the award was for acting). You want her to work in a whole lot of other stuff and I’m not sure it’s possible to give a perfect speech in 2 minutes while still acknowledging that the award is for acting chops rather than disability activism. It’s more likely that she would just not say anything at all, which renders Serge Kovaleski straight-up invisible.

Headologist
Headologist
3 years ago

@Policy of Madness

Sure, I get that, and I was by no means suggesting that she work in all my suggestions or get to the meat of disability activism in such a short space of time. However that doesn’t mean it wasn’t poorly phrased – I think one extra sentence, or possibly even just slightly different phrasing, could itself make even the exact same speech just a little better and not a part of the problem re: ableism.

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
3 years ago

Lots of people accepted awards that night. I don’t recall any others mentioning any disabled people. They aren’t getting any criticism for it. I wonder if Meryl Streep would be catching flak for her speech like this if she had just kept disabled people invisible like everyone else did.

Headologist
Headologist
3 years ago

It’s more about how she mentioned them, though. I feel we’re going round in circles at this point, but I stand by the view that presenting a disabled person in the way she did was minimising and more harmful to views on disability than helpful, even if the overall speech was much needed.