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Deplorables LOVE LOVE LOVE the “I really don’t care” jacket Melania wore to visit caged children in Texas

Melania’s inspiration?

By David Futrelle

You may have been a bit startled, as I was, to learn of Melania Trump’s strange choice of outerwear for her trip to Texas today to comfort, I guess, the immigrant children her husband has kidnapped for their parents’ misdemeanor crime of crossing the border, some of whom may never be returned to their parents because, oops, the Trump administration doesn’t seem to have even bothered to keep track of whose kids are whose.

Anyway, that sentence got away from me but, hey, it’s been a weird day, not least because Melania’s choice of outerwear for the trip was a jacket with the words “I REALLY DON’T CARE DO U?” written across the back in giant letters. WTF. After pondering for a few moments the possibility that we have all been living in a weird simulation since November 8 2016, and concluding sadly that we probably haven’t been, the best reaction I could muster was this:

Melania’s spokesperson quickly assured the media that it was just “a jacket” with “no hidden meaning” intended by the words on the back.  Then The Donald himself weighed in with a completely contradictory explanation:

To Trump’s biggest fans, it really didn’t matter what the explanation was. Because they had already decided that Melania’s jacket was totally kickass and also very classy because it was OWNING THE LIBS so hard, and maybe the #FAKEMEDIA too. Because evidently, that’s all any of this is about to them — almost as if we live in some sort of Troll Nation.

Naturally some of these terrible people took to Twitter to express their joy, and I’ve collected together some of their tweets for you all and for the benefit of any future historians (assuming we have a future) who are stuck with the unenviable task of making sense of this shithole of an era.

I’m not quite sure I understand this one, though:

“THANK YOU cry now?”

On Gab, the Twitter alternative for Nazis and people who don’t mind hanging out with, like, a huge number of Nazis, the responses were a little more blunt.

Yes, that’s our old pal Heartiste in the replies there, because of course.

We are through the looking glass, people. And it’s one of those carnival mirrors that makes everything weird and wiggly. If Joe McCarthy were alive today, and he were confronted, as the real McCarthy was, with the question “Have you no sense of decency, sir? At long last, have you left no sense of decency?” he would have simply replied “LOL, are you triggered yet, snowflake, I identify as an attack helicopter #TrumpTrain #MAGA #ListOf57Communists” and his idiot fans on Twitter would have cheered.

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Austin G Loomis
2 years ago

May God forgive me, may history judge me charitably.

Perhaps she was ordered to wear that jacket?

“It puts the jacket on or else it gets the hose again. So big. The biggest hose.”

You’re welcome, and I’m sorry.

Defiantcreatrix
Defiantcreatrix
2 years ago

@Moggie

Re: #3: I had that thought too. I think Donald *made* her wear that jacket – partly as a political statement, partly to punish her for speaking out against his policy of separating children, however mildly:

https://www.cnn.com/2018/06/17/politics/melania-trump-children-separated-immigration/index.html

The woman is a fashion model. The last thing she wants to wear is a tacky $40 coat. Not to mention, it was hot, and she didn’t need a jacket at all. That coat was ordered, and she wore it because she had to.

That said, I don’t know whether she agrees with the sentiment or not. I’m just a … connoisseur …of the logic of abusive relationships with narcissists, and that’s what this looks like to me.

Buttercup Q. Skullpants
Buttercup Q. Skullpants
2 years ago

“I have gotten yelled at a few times walking out of work,” lamented one White House staffer. “I want to get home, not get in a debate in the middle of Pennsylvania Avenue.”

Aw. Let me get out my violin carved from a single Higgs particle.

Katherine the Adequate
Katherine the Adequate
2 years ago

Okay, trying again, since my post disappeared. I have never seen a first lady do something so odd, Democratic or Republican. No doubt deplorables loved it, but all previous first ladies I remember (and I’m not young) never did anything so tasteless. Some came close, but nothing like this.

Moggie
Moggie
2 years ago

comment image

Scildfreja Unnyðnes
Scildfreja Unnyðnes
2 years ago

@Defiantcreatrix,

Welcome! I haven’t seen you here before.

@Moggie

Re: #3: I had that thought too. I think Donald *made* her wear that jacket – partly as a political statement, partly to punish her for speaking out against his policy of separating children, however mildly:

https://www.cnn.com/2018/06/17/politics/melania-trump-children-separated-immigration/index.html

The woman is a fashion model. The last thing she wants to wear is a tacky $40 coat. Not to mention, it was hot, and she didn’t need a jacket at all. That coat was ordered, and she wore it because she had to.

That said, I don’t know whether she agrees with the sentiment or not. I’m just a … connoisseur …of the logic of abusive relationships with narcissists, and that’s what this looks like to me.

When I first saw her wearing that my first reaction was “Oh my god, she *is* a monster, I rescind all of the sympathy I’ve ever had for her.”

But now that I’ve cooled down a bit? I came to the same conclusion you seem to be pointing at. If she were sending the message on her own initiative, she could have sent it entirely differently. It doesn’t make sense to me that she’d choose a tacky, cheap, out-of-season jacket with words scrawled across the back.

But it does make sense as something she was forced to do. And that’s exactly the sort of horrible thing an abusive monster would do if he wanted to make sure she was seen as being on his side.

Heard on MSNBC that when she returned to Washington from that trip, wearing that jacket, she went directly to the White House, into a meeting with Trump, Sessions, and a few others. It feels forced.

No evidence, she could absolutely have chosen to wear it on her own initiative. But she could also have been forced into it. We just don’t know. So I can’t condemn her just yet.

I can certainly condemn him though.

kupo
kupo
2 years ago

Trump also tweeted what the jacket means. If it were her message, she could tweet what it means.

Catalpa
Catalpa
2 years ago

So I wonder, if it does ultimately come out that yes, he did physically abuse her, would people still be sympathetic and supportive, or has she burned enough good will that people will look at it as “shitty people being shitty to other shitty people?”

Melania can be a shitty person (and it wouldn’t surprise me overmuch if she is a shitty person, given the company she keeps), and still not deserve abuse.

No one deserves to be abused by their partner. No one deserves to be raped. (And given what Trump did to Ivana and countless other women, I’d honestly be surprised if he hasn’t raped Melania.) She deserves to be protected from that kind of awful abuse, even if she is a shitty person.

morgondag
morgondag
2 years ago

Well I can actually admit this was a clever stunt.

The point is who hasn´t suspected that a politician visiting a disaster zone or something actually doesn´t care much except about the PR?

So in a weird way the jacket actually makes her comes off as honest, if very cynical.

At the same time it seems insanely imature

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

My mom and I just went to the Zara store. The infamous jacket was nowhere to be found.

Diego,

There are some Democrats who have called for impeachment. Maxine Waters comes to mind. The party leadership is maybe putting it off. The Republican base loves Trump, but not the congressional republicans. The fear is that calling for impeachment before the midterms will energize his supporters and get them to vote while they might otherwise stay home. The Democratic base is already energized. The political calculus is that they’re better off lying low on the issue. Since its absolutely crucial that the Democrats take at least the house in November, I can live with it. Midterm turnout tends to be low. So it’s all about the balance between getting your base out while not inspiring the other party’s base to turn up at the polls.

I do think that after the midterm elections impeachment does need to be on the table though. That’ll probably be the time the Mueller probe really gets interesting. I think he’s holding back until after the elections.

US politics is weird. I know.

Ooglyboggles
Ooglyboggles
2 years ago

@weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

US politics is weird. I know.

Frustrating would be more like it.

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

I mean, I’m not suggesting we let Dems off lightly. But while they’re in the minority, they can’t do shit. So let’s just do whatever we need to do to win in November. Which seems to be to go after Trump, but not promise impeachment because that will get Trump’s base off their sorry asses.

After the elections though, then we need to get on our congresspeople and ask them to impeach. Or demand it.

Redsilkphoenix: Jetpack Vixen, FemiNest Collective agent, Hell Toupee keeper, & Intergalactic Meanie
Redsilkphoenix: Jetpack Vixen, FemiNest Collective agent, Hell Toupee keeper, & Intergalactic Meanie
2 years ago

Speaking of Melania, does anyone know where her son Barron is at? I’ve not heard of him making any public appearances for a while now. Was he left in New York City, well away from the rest of his adult siblings and their shenanigans?

Bina
2 years ago

@Alan:

Is anyone familiar with this “3.5% Rule”?

It’s the idea that once three and a half percent of the population engage in non violent resistance, oppresive regimes inevitably topple.

I’ve seen it popping up a bit recently. I’ve tried googling, but it’s all TED talks and the like.. I’d love it to be true, but it sounds a bit like the political equivalent of “This miracle superfruit cures all diseases!”

But if anyone here knows more about it I’d be interested to hear.

Hadn’t heard of it till now, but it sounds like bunkum. Nicolae Ceausescu wasn’t ousted by 3.5% of Romanians resisting peacefully, but by a much larger number revolting and overthrowing him. And putting a bullet in him to drive the point home. Same thing goes for the last Czar of Russia…

Not a fan of “miracle superfruits”, either. (They’re just fruits, with no special powers over and above any others.)

Bakunin
Bakunin
2 years ago

@ Bina
Or the French Revolution
Or the American Revolution
Or the Haitian Revolution
Or the end of apartheid
Etc…

SpukiKitty
SpukiKitty
2 years ago

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee
June 22, 2018 at 8:35 pm

My mom and I just went to the Zara store. The infamous jacket was nowhere to be found.

Diego,

There are some Democrats who have called for impeachment. Maxine Waters comes to mind. The party leadership is maybe putting it off. The Republican base loves Trump, but not the congressional republicans. The fear is that calling for impeachment before the midterms will energize his supporters and get them to vote while they might otherwise stay home. The Democratic base is already energized. The political calculus is that they’re better off lying low on the issue. Since its absolutely crucial that the Democrats take at least the house in November, I can live with it. Midterm turnout tends to be low. So it’s all about the balance between getting your base out while not inspiring the other party’s base to turn up at the polls.

I do think that after the midterm elections impeachment does need to be on the table though. That’ll probably be the time the Mueller probe really gets interesting. I think he’s holding back until after the elections.

US politics is weird. I know.

Perhaps that’s why Mueller seems to be taking so long. He not only has to be thorough but he also needs to spring the big “Gotcha” on the Chumpster Dumpster at the right moment.

PirateJennie
PirateJennie
2 years ago

Trump’s tweet about what Melania’s jacket “really meant” chilled me when I read it.

The idea that she was forced to didn’t occur to me. It’s something I’m still pondering. It was that abusers often offer explanations for behavior(s) that are intended to override and obfuscate the truth.

Honestly, I’m not sure what I’d do without all you amazing mammotheers.

Kat
Kat
2 years ago

If you don’t care, why are you even part of the human race?

lightcastle
lightcastle
2 years ago

@Alan and others: The 3.5% idea comes from research by Erica Chenoweth. (Link goes to the book.)

There is also some research on whether the present of a violent flank helps.

This Global Comment article from last year goes over a bunch of the research, and does point out that the track record against genocide is bad for non-violent resistance.

Most reviews I have seen have discussed whether or not their coding methodology is correct, or sufficiently complex, and how to define success in situations where end goals are somewhat fluid. I haven’t seen any serious reviews saying they fudged the data. (In fact, it seems they have been quite transparent about what data they used and how they coded it, so that it can be refined or interrogated in other ways.)

lightcastle
lightcastle
2 years ago

Do links result in something dropping to moderation? Because I posted a bunch of links to the 3.5% research but it isn’t showing up.

SpukiKitty
SpukiKitty
2 years ago

The theory about Melania being forced to wear that dopey jacket makes a lot of sense.

The clues line up….

* Gal-Spouse may have expressed concern for this whole “Kidnap and jail migrant kid” thing.
* Married to an abusive jerk responsible for the “Kidnap and jail migrant kid” thing.
* Does a photo-op to “smooth things out”.
* Jerk-Spouse wants to send “The real message”.
* Gal-Spouse is a former fashion model/general fashion plate and is wearing a baggy green jacket that’s “frumpy” and nothing like her style in hot Texas Summer weather.
* Gal-Spouse and Jerk-spouse have contrasting explanations for jacket.
* Jerk-Spouse’s explanation the most likely one.
* One of them claims it’s a trendy jacket marketed to hipster-types by the Daughter’s clothing company….but it is not.

If the theory’s correct. Dotard and Mel got into a huge fight and the Orange Jerk forced her to wear some grungy unstylish thing that he had the words scrawled on with white paint.

AuntieMame Redux
AuntieMame Redux
2 years ago

I’m with those who think Melania was forced/ordered to wear this jacket. During the campaign, I was married to an abuser and I often “felt” the same expression on Melania’s face that I felt on my own.

As for that jacket, apparently from a two year old Zara collection, I can’t imagine Melania ever, ever buying something like this. Ever. She obviously cares about clothes and fashion but I’ve never seen her do anything that was grunge or street. I wonder how they laid their hands on this jacket. It isn’t something Melania would wear or choose in a million years.

The 3.5% rule rings some sort of a distant bullshit bell for me. If it were that easy, wouldn’t the world look very different? Seriously, something like 30 to 40 percent of the worlds population goes without or struggles for basics like food, shelter, potable water and sanitation. Let’s not even talk about basic healthcare, education and security. If 3.5 percent was all it took…..

That said, thank you all Mammothers for helping me hold hope even when it is difficult. Bad enough that our problems of managing our material life, environmental degradation to a point that it really is going to kill us if left unchecked, racism, sexism, all the other prejudices, corruption and evil among those with power, the helplessness of those who want things to be different, the ignorance and hatred of those who support the very people who are in reality hurting them…..you all know the list sometimes puts me in freeze mode. Even knowing that there are others who don’t want to live in a world of megalomania and hatred really helps.

I’ve listened to Ivanka speak very carefully. It is truly brilliant. She doesn’t ever actually say very much. But she says things in such a way that the listener can project their own beliefs onto her words. When she speaks about women’s issues for example. This can’t be an accident because it is the very highest levels of manipulation and propaganda. I don’t think that Ivanka is kinder and gentler. I also think that she is abused. Having your father say publicly that he wants to fuck you is abuse before we even discuss what goes on behind closed doors.

Back to percentages. I read a long explanation about this some years back. In short, 20 to 30 percent of any given population end up at the poles. The 40 to 60 percent in the middle will turn to follow one of the poles during a crisis. Which pole it is has to do with the ethical culture of that society. This is a very simplified precis of the theory. I really worry that our middle may not swing the way we hope.

But, but, I would say add a zero to that 3.5 percent. We need say 30 to 35 percent to start moving any population in a mass direction.

Surplus to Requirements, Observer of the Vast Blight-Wing Enstupidation
Surplus to Requirements, Observer of the Vast Blight-Wing Enstupidation
2 years ago

The Trump jacket (and it is, undeniably, a Trump jacket, not a Melania jacket) is worse than any of you think.

https://www.theguardian.com/news/2018/feb/22/casapound-italy-mussolini-fascism-mainstream

He had “me ne frego” (“I don’t care” – the slogan used by Mussolini’s troops) tattooed diagonally across the left side of his neck.

To whichever of you previously semi-joked that the next one would be a “1488” jacket … you missed the fact that, basically, this one already was.

I think shit is about to get real, and probably before the midterm elections. I expect there’s a growing contingent of trumpanzees, administrolls, corrupt Cabinet CEOs, and assorted other snowflakes that are preparing the ground for events designed to ensure that those elections never take place, or not as free and fair elections at any rate.

I hope that turns out to be wrong. But be prepared.

Daenerys Hughes
2 years ago

All right-wing ‘satire’ is one variation or another on ‘why don’t they eat cake?’

lightcastle
lightcastle
2 years ago

The 3.5% is the amount you need to engage in ongoing, organized, civil resistance. Strikes, protests, etc. Not the amount that needs to disapprove of the government.

The idea is that if a consistent core of roughly that size maintains, the number of people who do smaller things also increases.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
2 years ago

Thanks to Bina, AuntieMame, and Lightcastle for the 3.5% comments.

I very much retain my scepticism. I was concerned though that my preference for kinetic solutions might have been causing some sort of confirmation bias; so it been great to get your opinions on this. Cheers.

JustMe
JustMe
2 years ago

I prefer journalist Liz Plank’s take on this because it’s eventually the conclusion I had too. If you haven’t seen it, please look it up. It’s insightful. At first I was outraged and then when Melania’s publicist called out the news for focusing on Melania’s jacket, I started to wonder if we weren’t set-up to make it look like we were focusing on the frivolous. Trump is very good at these kind of manipulative gas-lighting of the media an the public. Team Trump wanted to create a stir about Melania’s clothing so that when people were naturally outraged by it, they could claim victimhood by saying people where focusing on the wrong thing. For the record, Melania spent all of 2 hours at the boarder facility and lets be honest, didn’t to much of anything for the situation.

For all the sympathy we give Melania, she is complicit in Donald Trump’s behavior. She has defended him verbally even when he was attacking other women in politics. She has defended him bullying others even as she originally tried to make bullying her platform. She, like Ivanka, see themselves as the victims. I think we give Melania far too much credit for being a decent person. She could leave this marriage if she really wanted to. She doesn’t want to. She is complicit in his behavior.

AuntieMame Redux
AuntieMame Redux
2 years ago

@JustMe

Point taken and you’re right. Melania could leave. Trump has never tried to keep children from their mothers during divorce. I don’t think she would starve, even if her prenup is harsh. Not even not starve, I think she would probably live better than most of the planets population. But, having been in the gaslighting and insanity of being abused, I also know how hard it is to get your head screwed on straight. But you are right and truth is complex. Even though abuse is always wrong and nobody deserves it and it is never justified, it doesn’t automatically follow that everyone who is abused is a moral avatar either. As much as it pains me to write that.

@ Alan Robertshaw

I think I got caught up in the specificity of the 3.5 percent. Maybe the better question is: Are large social movements fomented and maintained by smaller numbers of people than generally perceived as lightcastle points out?

That is heartening and hopeful if it is true. Can history help us? How many people were involved and active in say early Bolshevism, the early Civil Rights Movement, Quit India before WWII and National Socialism in the early thirties ala Roehm and his SS forerunner?

Can we get a feel for the numbers as percentage of the adult population in these examples? I know I gave some evil examples as well, but, well we are dealing with evil now too as much as I hesitate to use the term. We could be overrun. I don’t know what else to call people who clearly are on board with the use and abuse of everyone who isn’t the most privileged of rich, white, cis, straight, white men in positions of power.

Eryn
Eryn
2 years ago

I hate when people compare Melania to Marie Antoinette (who never said “let them eat cake,” by the way; that’s from a book written by Rousseau when she was a child). Marie Antoinette was sold into a diplomatic marriage a stranger at age 14 and forced into the most formal, isolating court in Europe from the relative informality of her native Austria. She made mistakes, true, and grievous ones that cost her and her people dearly, but she’s no way the same as Melania, a grown woman who knew exactly what she was getting into.