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Intolerable Cruelty: The #BeersForBrett hashtag is the ultimate symbol of Trump’s kingdom of spite

The Daily Caller’s Benny Johnson celebrates Kavanaugh’s confirmation (click to see original tweet)

By David Futrelle

Perhaps the most heartbreaking and enraging moment of Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony before the Senate came after Senator Patrick Leahy asked her to recall her most indelible memory of the night she said that now-Supreme-Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh had sexually assaulted her. Ford replied without hesitation: It was, she said, “the uproarious laughter” of Kavanaugh and his friend Mark Judge, two aggressive adolescent boys ““having fun at my expense.”

So it is perhaps not surprising that Kavanaugh’s supporters have responded to the accused would-be-rapist’s confirmation to the highest court in the land with their own cruel laughter — and a Twitter hashtag designed to memorialize the fun they are now having at Ford’s expense.

Let’s take a quick tour #BeersForBrett hashtag, celebrating the Supreme Court confirmation of a man facing credible accusations of alcohol-fueled sexual assaults that the GOP was happy to ignore and that the White House blocked from being properly investigated. The hashtag began before the final vote on Kavanaugh, but has picked up steam since his confirmation,

In it, Kavanaugh’s fans are happily gloating over their victory, mocking their opponents, often to their faces.

Revenge 4 Kavanaugh ‏ @MAGAManCraig1 Follow Follow @MAGAManCraig1 More Owning the libs! Cheers! #BeersForBrett

Davy2424 ‏ @Davy2424 Follow Follow @Davy2424 More #BeersForBrett I don’t always drink beer but when I do it’s while laughing my ass off at loser libs having their public meltdowns

piderMandela ‏ @Spider_Mandela Follow Follow @Spider_Mandela More Replying to @ERTBen WOMP WOMP #BeersForBrett

Dawn Marie Pepe ‏ @dawn_pepe Follow Follow @dawn_pepe More Replying to @japastu Keep crying snowflakes #BeersforBrett

 

Davy2424 ‏ @Davy2424 Follow Follow @Davy2424 More #BeersForBrett. Hey libs try pouring a beer in your little puckered ass right now. Might loosen you up a bit

While many using the hashtag are simply posting pictures of their own alcoholic celebrations (with predictably gloating captions), others are coming with the memes:

 

paulthepatriot 🇺🇸 ‏ @MAGAmindset_ Follow Follow @MAGAmindset_ More Picture from last night's #KavanaughConfirmed celebration ⬇️ #BeersForBrett #MAGA #KegsForKavanaugh

paulthepatriot 🇺🇸 ‏ @MAGAmindset_ Follow Follow @MAGAmindset_ More Replying to @KyleKashuv He's putting some ice in the cooler as we speak. #KegsForKavanaugh #BeersForBrett

 

William Bobalink ‏ @WBobalink Follow Follow @WBobalink More Replying to @MAGAShocka @2APrincess #BeersForBrett tonight everyone!!!Costanza ‏ @CostanzaTweeter Follow Follow @CostanzaTweeter More Let’s get this hashtag going fellas #BeersForBrett

 

There’s much gleeful talk about “triggering” liberals and women.

@policecode18_3 ‏ @Policecode183 Follow Follow @Policecode183 More #BeersForBrett seems to be triggering. Turn it up.

María Cardenas ‏ @mariaCardenas80 Follow Follow @mariaCardenas80 More Replying to @LawDog_Emeritus @ScorchedEarthhh I love how triggered liberals get over beers for Bret, I’m gonna go take a picture of a beer brb #BeersForBrett

Spicer Facts ‏ @Putin_TrumpUSA Follow Follow @Putin_TrumpUSA More Replying to @tk_thecyborg victims are triggered by laughter @Alyssa_Milano doesn't like to say white males laughing or being happy or being confirmed so.... #BeersForBrett won't trigger her but laughter after you drink beers might.

There are the inevitable jokes about “liberal tears.”

ℂ𝔼𝕃𝔼𝔹ℝ𝔸𝕋𝕀𝕆ℕ 𝕄𝔼𝕄𝔼 𝕋ℍℝ𝔼𝔸𝔻 🍻 𝐂𝐨𝐧𝐠𝐫𝐚𝐭𝐮𝐥𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧𝐬 𝐁𝐫𝐞𝐭𝐭 𝐊𝐚𝐯𝐚𝐧𝐚𝐮𝐠𝐡! 🍻 Please post memes celebrating Brett's confirmation, as well as memes mocking democrats for their nasty behavior. They deserve it!!

Cis White Male 🎃 ‏ @CisWhiteMale11 Follow Follow @CisWhiteMale11 More I haven't drank this many Liberal tears in a very long time. I'm getting kind of full, I need some beer to wash them down!

Houston Illuminati ❌ ‏ @Houston_Vicious Follow Follow @Houston_Vicious More new meme to add to the arsenal, drink liberal tears with your beer #SCOTUS #JusticeKavanaugh #BeersForBrett #BrettKavanaugh #QAnon #QArmy #RedOctober

 

XIII-13 ♔ 🇳🇱 ‏ @XIII000013 Follow Follow @XIII000013 More #BeersForBrett <-- is a special kind of beer. It's made of liberal tears. It's the best kind of beer on the planet.

George Costanza ‏ @ttysl13 Follow Follow @ttysl13 More Replying to @Slate hahahhahha. awwwww. the lib tears sure are flowing this morning. 😭😭 #BeersForBrett

Many of those on the hashtag have revealed themselves to be as vindictive, as eager for retribution, as Kavanaugh himself seems to be.

Botty McBotBitch 🤖 🇺🇸 ‏ @67_4_17 Follow Follow @67_4_17 More #BeersForBrett Suck it libs! Let's see how impartial Supreme Court Justice Kavanaugh is after all he & his family have been through! HA! CUT YOUR NOSE OFF TO SPITE YOUR FACE! hahaha! Good job libs! Hahahahaha!

Yankee Oswald. #NoWar ‏ @Nationalist1776 Follow Follow @Nationalist1776 More Yankee Oswald. #NoWar Retweeted Reuters Top News Womp womp, cat ladies! I’ll drink a beer 🍻 for you today Justice Kavanaugh! May your tenure in the court be a long one and a specially grueling one for our liberal friends and their “Holy cows” #JusticeBrettKavanaugh #BeersForBrett

wotie Von Beauty ‏ @TwotieVonBeauty Follow Follow @TwotieVonBeauty More Replying to @WinstonMcGill5 @USATODAY Yeah guess who's laughing today? And tomorrow and the next day and for 30 years b!tches! #BeersForBrett #MAGA

 

 

Some are directing their cruelty at Christine Blasey Ford herself:

Christopher Wayne Story ‏ @VampyreCowboy Follow Follow @VampyreCowboy More #BeersForBrett Because you can't drink her tearsom Manners ‏ @TomManners5 Follow Follow @TomManners5 More #BeersForBrett and #rapekits for Ford! LOLI Throw Ice At People ‏ @Spicoli1981 Follow Follow @Spicoli1981 More FOR SALE USED FORD HIGH MILES - CONTACT @SenFeinstein #KavanaughConfirmed #Kavanaugh #BeersForBrett #ChristineBlaseyFord

KAM ‏ @KAM21781 Follow Follow @KAM21781 More Ford is a lying skank! #ConfirmKavanaughNow #BeersForBrett

As the tweets directed at Ford suggest, the whole hashtag stinks of misogyny, with many tweeters taking special pleasure in the suffering of women.

Rad123 ‏ @Tombx7M Follow Follow @Tombx7M More The protests were embarrassing #BeersForBrett #FoxAndFriends #tcot #ccot #KAG #cnnsotu #mediabuzz #thisweek #QAnon #trump #SundayMorning #MAGA

Dr. Manhattan, M.D. ‏ @DrManhattanMD Follow Follow @DrManhattanMD More *record scratch Whoa, whoa, WAIT!!! I was promised when #Kavanaugh got confirmed “MILLIONS OF WOMEN” were going to die. Where all the dead bitches at?!? #ILikeBeer #KegsForKavanaugh #BeersForBrett #SuckItFeminists

Vincent James ‏ @RealVinceJames Follow Follow @RealVinceJames More I can’t wait to sit with my grandkids while we read obituaries of barren cat ladies. #BeersForBrett

 

die BOOtler 💀 👻 🎃 ‏ @dibutler Follow Follow @dibutler More Newest protest chant? "Who's court? Our court!" Never let it be said that these bussed in protesters aren't creative. Bonus-chants of "shame! shame! shame!" From the neo-Puritan Tinder sluts.

For even more blatant displays of misogyny, see this horrifying thread.

Still, not all of those posting in the hashtag are overgrown frat boys; there are numerous women as well, reminding us that the overwhelming majority of Republican women supported Kavanaugh.  (White supremacy is a hell of a drug, I guess.)

Angela Box ‏ @TheBoxThatRoxx Follow Follow @TheBoxThatRoxx More I wonder how many women have died already this morning because of #JusticeKavanaugh? 😂😂😂😂 #winning #BrettKavanaugh #SCOTUS #BeersForBrett #BelieveSurvivors #midterms

RawHoney ‏ @RawHoney6 Follow Follow @RawHoney6 More RawHoney Retweeted Elizabeth Warren Wonder if she was crying into a tub of Ben & Jerry’s while surrounded by empty red wine bottles when she tweeted this. #Hysteria #BeersForBrett

Misogyny isn’t the only form of bigotry on display. (I censored the first image somewhat.)

Sasquatch Lives Matter ‏ @MoistNigga69 Follow Follow @MoistNigga69 More Replying to @SarahEastcoast All the people getting triggered over #BeersForBrett look like this. Generalizations are awesome and totally accurate.

 

Rusty Shackelman ‏ @OhSoBigandVeiny Follow Follow @OhSoBigandVeiny More Replying to @catzz222 @UncrcU and 12 others Roasties get btfo, weaponizing #metoo didnt work, all your (((Soros))) money couldn't help you and I guarantee you that all this crying wont help you, but hey you give a good laugh to a large p as r of the country so keep the salt coming #Beers4Brett

But the people supporting this hashtag aren’t just internet trolls and alt-right Nazis. Far from it.  Not only are a wide spectrum of Trump supporters posting in the hashtag; prominent conservative publications — and politicians — are getting into the action as well, with the Daily Caller going so far as to troll anti-Kavanaugh protesters by trying to give them beer.

TheBlaze ‏ Verified account @theblaze Following Following @theblaze More Who else had #BeersForBrett

Senator John Cornyn ‏ Verified account @JohnCornyn Follow Follow @JohnCornyn More Not quite #Beers4Brett but #Bubbly4Brett instead

The Daily Caller ‏ Verified account @DailyCaller Following Following @DailyCaller More Official statement from The Daily Caller: Of course we were handing out beer. We like beer. Everyone likes beer. Somebody has to bring this country back together. What better way than with a cold beer? #bringingpeopletogether

Ironically, despite the sneering disingenuousness of the Daily Caller’s tweet, it did manage to get one thing right. All these beers for Brett are intended to bring people together. Just not all people.

In a powerful essay in The Atlantic several days before the Kavanaugh vote, journalist Adam Serwer compared the Trump fans who laughed at the President’s mocking of Ford at a rally in Mississippi last week to the “respectable” white citizens caught on camera in 90-year-old photographs of public lynchings, standing only feet from the bodies of murdered black men, with huge grins on their faces.

“Their names have mostly been lost to time,” Serwer writes,

But these grinning men were someone’s brother, son, husband, father. They were human beings, people who took immense pleasure in the utter cruelty of torturing others to death—and were so proud of doing so that they posed for photographs with their handiwork, jostling to ensure they caught the eye of the lens, so that the world would know they’d been there. Their cruelty made them feel good, it made them feel proud, it made them feel happy. And it made them feel closer to one another.

Trump and his supporters are in many ways the contemporary equivalents of these men. While “[t]he Trump era is such a whirlwind of cruelty that it can be hard to keep track,” Serwer notes, Trump’s cruelty towards Ford, and the mocking laughter of his supporters, is going to remain indelible in the collective hippocampus of rape survivors for a very long time, to paraphrase Dr. Ford.

As the laughter at the rally made clear — and the collective gloating that is the #BeersForBrett hashtag has further underlined — for Trump and his fans, cruelty towards others is bonding experience, just as lynchings were for so many racist white men and women in the early 20th century.

As Server argues,

The cruelty of the Trump administration’s policies, and the ritual rhetorical flaying of his targets before his supporters, are intimately connected. As Lili Loofbourow wrote of the Kavanaugh incident in Slate, adolescent male cruelty toward women is a bonding mechanism, a vehicle for intimacy through contempt. …

We can hear the spectacle of cruel laughter throughout the Trump era. There were the border-patrol agents cracking up at the crying immigrant children separated from their families, and the Trump adviser who delighted white supremacists when he mocked a child with Down syndrome who was separated from her mother. There were the police who laughed uproariously when the president encouraged them to abuse suspects, and the Fox News hosts mocking a survivor of the Pulse Nightclub massacre (and in the process inundating him with threats), the survivors of sexual assault protesting to Senator Jeff Flake, the women who said the president had sexually assaulted them, and the teen survivors of the Parkland school shooting. There was the president mocking Puerto Rican accents shortly after thousands were killed and tens of thousands displaced by Hurricane Maria, the black athletes protesting unjustified killings by the police, the women of the #MeToo movement who have come forward with stories of sexual abuse, and the disabled reporter whose crime was reporting on Trump truthfully. It is not just that the perpetrators of this cruelty enjoy it; it is that they enjoy it with one another. Their shared laughter at the suffering of others is an adhesive that binds them to one another, and to Trump.

As the headline of Serwer’s piece puts it: “They cruelty is the point.” Indeed, reading through the #BeersForBrett hashtag, it is hard not to conclude that for many of Trump’s most fervent fans, the cruelty — and the privilege it is designed to celebrate and protect — is practically the only point.

Trump’s fans don’t care if his reputation as a self-made business genius is utter bullshit, built on tax fraud and money from daddy (and possibly decades worth of money laundering). They don’t care if he gushes over Kim Jong Un, the brutal boy dictator he once threatened to nuke off the face of the earth. They may not even care if he never builds his infamous wall. They just like to watch him go off on “uppity” women, on people of color, on anyone outside the magic circle of white male supremacy. As long as Trump is “triggering the libs,” many of his fans don’t even care if his policies are screwing them over.

But by making this collective cruelty such a central — and such a public — part of their exercise of power, Trump and the GOP have ignited a righteous fury in the hearts of all of us who oppose him. The cruelty and gloating that accompanied Kavanaugh’s ascension to the Supreme Court is bringing this fury to a head.

We were angry before; for many of us the 625 days since Trump’s inauguration have been a rollercoaster of rage and despair. But I’ve never seen  so many people so angry before. The midterms are a month away. We need to win them, to push back against every obstacle that Trump and the GOP put in our way, to take back every seat we can and then some, so we can begin the process of tearing down Trump’s empire of cruelty.

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Victorious Parasol
Victorious Parasol
1 year ago

@ Alan

I think my favorite Prenda Law tidbit was the Star Trek inspired benchslap.

https://abovethelaw.com/2013/05/prenda-boldly-benchslapped-where-no-one-has-gone-before/

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
1 year ago

@ Vicky P

In that Da Vinci Code case here, the judge let his inner geek out. The Court of Appeal were less than impressed.

As was noted at the time, he was prompted by the extensive use in DVC of codes, and no doubt by his own interest in such things, to incorporate a coded message in his judgment, on which nothing turns. The judgment is not easy to read or to understand. It might have been preferable for him to have allowed himself more time for the preparation, checking and revision of the judgment.

In the judge’s defence, he’d pointed out that in effect both sides to the dispute were Random House, and they sold loads of extra copies of both books on the publicity from the trial; so he wasn’t minded to take it all that seriously.

Pie
Pie
1 year ago

@Allandrel

Killing helpless enemies who beg for mercy makes one a fascist. Disdain for mercy is one of their defining features.

Who said anything about killing? Alan’s turn of phrase, “I just hope… they don’t have the audacity to ask for any quarter in return” refers to them asking for mercy, or pity, or some sort of favorable agreement. The alternative can (and should) be the seizing of assets, the breaking up of companies, generous quantities of jailtime and utter contempt heaped upon their memories.

Stop handwringing over imagined atrocities.

CarrieV
CarrieV
1 year ago

Although I fear many of the accounts pushing these cruel hashtags are real (i.e., Americans), I also know that many are just Russians pushing more of a divide onto our country. “United we stand, divided we fall” has never been truer, and they are capitalizing on it.

https://www.thedailybeast.com/how-russia-exploits-american-white-supremacy-over-and-over-again?ref=home

The above article doesn’t just focus on the Russians pushing the Black/white narrative, but also how they’re sowing division between men and women, rich and poor, gay and straight, religious and non, etc.

A house divided cannot stand.

CarrieV
CarrieV
1 year ago

[edited to remove double-posting that for some reason only becomes apparent a few minutes after the initial posting finally shows up!]

Allandrel
Allandrel
1 year ago

@Pie

Who said anything about killing? Alan’s turn of phrase, “I just hope… they don’t have the audacity to ask for any quarter in return” refers to them asking for mercy, or pity, or some sort of favorable agreement. The alternative can (and should) be the seizing of assets, the breaking up of companies, generous quantities of jailtime and utter contempt heaped upon their memories.

What you’re describing is mercy. Lack of mercy would be to do to fascists what they want to do to everyone else, i.e. murdering them.

Stop handwringing over imagined atrocities.

I’ve encountered a sadly large number of people who seem to think the only way to defeat fascists is to adopt their methods. That we are “weak” unless we do the same as they do.

Myriad
Myriad
1 year ago

@Dormousing_it

I’m truly sorry for your loss. I hope you have others to lean on. Internet hugs if you want them.

KindaSortaHarmless
KindaSortaHarmless
1 year ago

@Allandrel

(shrugs) The laws and customs of war also demand reciprocity. If one side refuses to be bound by them, I cannot criticize their enemies for reciprocating.

SpukiKitty
SpukiKitty
1 year ago

@Dormousing_it

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Ariblester
Ariblester
1 year ago

@KindaSortaHarmless

The laws and customs of war also demand reciprocity. If one side refuses to be bound by them, I cannot criticize their enemies for reciprocating.

Two words: “enemy combatant”

Nevertheless, I agree with @Pie, and I think @Allandrel is reading more into @Alan Robertshaw’s comment than was intended (somewhat understandable, since “to give no quarter” in the laws and customs of war strictly refers to a blanket policy of not sparing the lives of the enemy, but I read Alan’s comment as being more in the figurative sense of their being spared from any negative repercussions of their actions)

Aleph
Aleph
1 year ago

Pfft, why is Johnson taking Coors Light? I thought that by their emphasis on traditional masculinity these guys would think that drinking light beer would be the unmannliest thing you can do (‘cuz, you know, the harder the drink the manlier it’s supposed to drink it, by that logic at least).

It may be me never drinking light beer and thus me not ever noticing how popular it actually is, but that was my impression.

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

I’m guessing it’s because the Coors family are big right wing donors and besides, craft beer is for big city liberal beta cucks. Shitty beer is a status symbol for right wingers. That’s fine. More good stuff for the rest of us.

Z&T
Z&T
1 year ago

Dormousing it,

I’m very sorry to hear of your sister’s passing, my sincere condolences as well.

I lost my mom around this time last year, 20 October, I am reminded at this time of year.

I’m also reminded that she loved the autumn and Halloween, so I try to remember the positive and happy as well.

It is very hard and life seems unfair.
We can carry on and try to help others.
It’s something.

Many hugs and wishes of peace from all of us here too.

Cats In Shiny Hats
Cats In Shiny Hats
1 year ago

@Dormousing_it
Losing a sister was the hardest thing in my life. My thoughts are with you.

rainwoman0451
rainwoman0451
1 year ago

Fuck all of you talking about not sinking to their level.

If we kill, we kill people standing in the way of a world where women can walk the streets at night without worrying about being raped. If we build mass graves we’ll fill them with people who believe women are nothing but reproductive machinery. If we work our enemies to death in gulags then they’ll die building a better future, whether they like it or not, instead of living as a danger to every decent human being left in this rotten world.

The reason the western left failed is because they allowed themselves to be gaslighted into believing that violence and cruelty are problems to be solved rather than tools to be used.

Take back the house and the Senate, yes, but while we’re at it we also need to take back the military, law enforcement and gun culture as a whole. And more than anything else, take back the will to fight for a better tomorrow, because creatures like Trump and Kavanaugh will never stop fighting for a worse one.

Pie
Pie
1 year ago

@Allandrel

What you’re describing is mercy. Lack of mercy would be to do to fascists what they want to do to everyone else, i.e. murdering them.

What I described isn’t merciful because it doesn’t include torture or murder. Your understanding of the term is entirely too narrow. Have a read about “truth and reconciliation” for example. I’m pretty certain that there are some people who absolutely do not deserve amnesty for what they’ve done.

Pie
Pie
1 year ago

@rainwoman0451

The reason the western left failed is because…

Evidence suggests that blind fucking ignorance of recent history would also be a major problem. Please try and rectify that before torturing your way to a better world, mmkay?

Cindy
Cindy
1 year ago

@rainwoman

PREACH!

(Might want to tone down the rhetoric though – comment policy and all that.)

Ariblester
Ariblester
1 year ago

@rainwoman0451

If I am understanding you correctly, you believe that targeted killings, mass killings, torture and slavery are acceptable “tools to be used” as long as the other side are deemed to be “creatures” (i.e. sufficiently inhuman).

Well then.

@Cindy

Exactly how does one “tone down” this statement:

violence and cruelty are […] tools to be used

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

Yeah, I’d rather not defeat the right by becoming it. If violence has to be used in self defense, sure. But cruelty and mass murder? No.

Progressivism hasn’t failed. There’s been plenty of progress over the last century or two. We’re in a backlash to it. That might unfortunately set back some of the progress made. I’m not being a Pollyanna here, I know there’s a good chance things will get worse before they start to improve. But the left has barely gotten started with its recent resurgence of nonviolent direct action. Let’s not declare it failed yet. It takes time for the impact to start being felt.

Pie
Pie
1 year ago

@Ariblester

If I am understanding you correctly, you believe that targeted killings, mass killings, torture and slavery are acceptable “tools to be used” as long as the other side are deemed to be “creatures” (i.e. sufficiently inhuman).

I like the use of “gulag” as well; really the icing on the leftwards-presenting despotism cake, for want of a better metaphor. If there were any more numbers of the end of their username, I’d be suspicious that they weren’t actually commenting here in good faith…

Allandrel
Allandrel
1 year ago

@rainwoman0451

Thank you for proving my point about some people wanting to defeat monsters by becoming monsters.

@Pie

What I described isn’t merciful because it doesn’t include torture or murder. Your understanding of the term is entirely too narrow. Have a read about “truth and reconciliation” for example. I’m pretty certain that there are some people who absolutely do not deserve amnesty for what they’ve done.

I agree about amnesty. But there is a wide range of options between “no negative repercussions” and “kill them as they beg for mercy,” and most of those are merciful. That seems like a pretty broad definition of mercy to me.

Mercy is an essential element of justice. And victory without justice is just… bad. It’s bad. I think we all know how bad it is.

Catalpa
Catalpa
1 year ago

@Allandrel

If a fascist surrenders, you treat them according to the laws and customs of war, and try them fairly for their crimes.

Question- if the fascists own the courts, how can we try them fairly? Their buddies will just let them off with at best a slap in the wrists. More likely- the person opposing the fascist will be the one condemned.

@rainwoman

If we work our enemies to death in gulags then they’ll die building a better future,

No. Fuck no. Slavery is not something that can build a better future.

Katamount
Katamount
1 year ago

Do they ever ask themselves “are we the baddies?”

They actually think they’re the good guys. They think morality is about the genitalia and skin color of the people you have sex with and everything they do to restrict others’ rights is holy and good.

I actually find “good” and “bad” to be inadequate descriptors. When it comes down to it, these people are all little Fredos from the Godfather Part II, shouting at their more capable and responsible kid brother that they’re smart and they want respect:

comment image

But what they’ve defined as “respect” requires supremacy and subservience of everyone else, particularly those that aren’t like them. It requires fear and fear requires the cruelty to enforce it. So they want to be feared, but they also want to be able to look themselves in the mirror without seeing a monster staring back, hence all the obfuscation and threat hyping that goes along with their worldviews.

Meanwhile, all us Michaels are just trying to be the adults in the room. And like Michael, we should respond thusly:

Fredo, you’re nothing to me now. You’re not a brother, you’re not a friend. I don’t want to know you or what you do. I don’t want to see you at the hotels, I don’t want you near my house. When you see our mother, I want to know a day in advance, so I won’t be there. You understand?

These people need to be marginalized. Not coddled. Not catered to. Not indulged in any fashion. They rely on us being the responsible ones, to second guess relationships, to fret over burning bridges or making them upset. Nah, they need to know that their attitudes are dealbreakers.

Allandrel
Allandrel
1 year ago

@Catalpa

Question- if the fascists own the courts, how can we try them fairly? Their buddies will just let them off with at best a slap in the wrists. More likely- the person opposing the fascist will be the one condemned.

Same way we’ve tried fascists in the past. Defeat them and their corrupt institutions, then set up fair courts to try them. If it comes to fighting in the streets, we’ve already given up on our existing institutions and need new ones.

And again, what is the alternative to trying them? Imprisoning them for life without trial? Murdering them?

Ariblester
Ariblester
1 year ago

@Allandrel

Do you interpret @Alan Robertshaw’s initial comment about giving no quarter to be made in the literal sense of being in a military conflict against fascists, and was that what prompted you to invoke the laws and customs of war (which, as their name suggests, only apply in wartime)?

@Alan Robertshaw

Alan, did you mean for your comment to be interpreted in the sense of a shooting war, or in a figurative sense (e.g. for the deplorables to be able to take as much as they dish out on Twitter, etc.)?

I’m asking because there seems to be two related, but distinct discussions being had here; one regarding how to treat fascists in capital-W War, and the other regarding how to treat them in the here and now, in the figurative war for the political future of America (or at least in online forums).

The rules of engagement for both are very different, and should not be conflated.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
1 year ago

@ ariblester

That is a very good question; and I’m not sure I have a good answer. My thoughts are all over the place on this. I can say I was very angry when I wrote that post; I still am. Now that of course raises another question as to whether someone who’s completely out of the firing line even has a right to be angry about all this. I do though have an almost pathological hatred of Nazis. My politics is really pretty simple; I hate bullies and cowards. Everything else flow from that really. I don’t want to trigger a big debate here, nor breach the comments policy; so perhaps if I just share some of the thoughts buzzing through my mind and you can get some insight from that?

After WW2, Churchill just wanted to deal with the Nazis by way of a bill of attainder. It was Stalin who argued for the Nuremberg trials. And of course they did expose the truth about the Nazis to the world. It also gave the Nazis a chance to make their case; (which is why I don’t believe they’re entitled to a voice now, we’ve heard everything they had to say).

On the ground however, the liberators of the death camps did engage in summary executions, or handed over Nazis to their former prisoners. Was that wrong? We’ll all have our own views on that.

I am very mindful though, of how many attendees to the Wannsee Conference went on the successful and respectable post war careers.

So whether it’s Sean Spicer making appearances at comedy awards, or Tiki Nazis taking off their polo shirts when confronted, and pleading the “I was only in it for the lulz” defence, something does stick in my craw that fascists expect and demand a lack of consequences when the tables are turned. That’s a consideration they’d never grant to their victims when they hold the reigns.

So is it justice, vengeance, or just plain ensuring they’re no longer a threat? These are considerations that go through my head, and I am conflicted. My wishy washy liberal ‘rule of law’ sentiments pull one way; the thought of what Nazis would happily do to people I care about, and everyone generally, pull the other.

Allandrel
Allandrel
1 year ago

@Ariblester

Do you interpret @Alan Robertshaw’s initial comment about giving no quarter to be made in the literal sense of being in a military conflict against fascists, and was that what prompted you to invoke the laws and customs of war (which, as their name suggests, only apply in wartime)?

Yes, that was my take on it. I’ll let Alan speak for himself as to what his intention was.

Scildfreja Unnyðnes
Scildfreja Unnyðnes
1 year ago

Yeah, okay, so we’re doing this, then.

I took a crack at writing this, then threw it all away. Here’s another go.

(I don’t want to start a proper argument or anything divisive here, but I can’t let these opinions slide without comment – it’s important to speak your beliefs and intentions clearly at a time like this. So Im’a comment. I will try to be clear, because it’s basically impossible to discuss these things with nuance. Any mention of blunting the edge of the blade is treason to a hawk; any sharpening is sin to a dove. There’s not a lot of room here. That said – take it how you will.)

The reason the western left failed is because they allowed themselves to be gaslighted into believing that violence and cruelty are problems to be solved rather than tools to be used.

I’ve heard this before. “We need to consider violence a tool in our tool belt.” And it’s right – we need to be able to punch predators until they leave good people alone.

Funny thing, though, I’ve only ever heard this “violence and cruelty are tools” from people who want that to be our only tools. Our first resort. Our tool belt should be full of tools, because we have a world to fix. We need everything at our fingertips. You’ve got your hammer, and by the line quoted above it sounds like you’re pretty scornful of the level and compass.

Know that saying, “When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail”? See, some of our problems are nails. But some are screws. And if you’re a hammer surrounded by screws it’s awful tempting to bash one’a them fuckers in. You know, to make some headway on the problem. Pretty soon you’re happily smashing away – at least you’re doing something, right? But in doing so you’re destroying the flooring, the beams, the rafters, and just making the problem harder to solve.

We need people with full tool kits to build a worthy future. The hammer’s going to be in there, but it’s got to be one of many tools at our disposal. This cruel authoritarian swagger isn’t going to get any play here. It’s more in common with Putin than progressives.

That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it.

Scildfreja Unnyðnes
Scildfreja Unnyðnes
1 year ago

Quick addendum, thank you anonymous person who poked me about it.

Cruelty isn’t a tool.

It’s a motivation. It’s a reason to do something, not a thing to be done.

Cruelty, applied outwards, is abuse.

I don’t think that’s a tool we should use. Abuse only makes more abusers and makes more suffering. Aside from the fact that, you know, abusing people is evil.

Catalpa
Catalpa
1 year ago

@Allandrel

Same way we’ve tried fascists in the past. Defeat them and their corrupt institutions, then set up fair courts to try them

Cool. I’m all for that. But what do we do about the fascists before we manage to overturn the entire fricking institution? Or do we just leave them be and think that they’ll learn their lesson once they get humiliated a bit? Didn’t seem to slow down Chris “crying nazi” Cantwell.

And again, what is the alternative to trying them? Imprisoning them for life without trial? Murdering them?

I don’t condone death if there is any other alternative. That said, these are fucking nazis, and they need to be stopped from doing harm in whatever way possible. Their power needs to be stripped away. Make them unemployable. Make them ostracized from all supports. Make people unwilling to rent to them, unwilling to provide services, unwilling to assist them. Take away their weapons. Physically stop them from harming others. Make them ashamed and afraid to ever show their festering nazi faces anywhere. Leave them helpless and alone.

Maybe, if someone is feeling particularly merciful, give them an opportunity to renounce their old ways and take up the cause against their former brethren. Though, honestly? I wouldn’t trust them. Maybe someone else will, though.

Allandrel
Allandrel
1 year ago

@Catalpa

Cool. I’m all for that. But what do we do about the fascists before we manage to overturn the entire fricking institution? Or do we just leave them be and think that they’ll learn their lesson once they get humiliated a bit? Didn’t seem to slow down Chris “crying nazi” Cantwell.

No, it didn’t. But as I said above, when talking of “mercy” I’m talking about armed conflict, where the institutions have failed. In non-violent conflict:

I don’t condone death if there is any other alternative. That said, these are fucking nazis, and they need to be stopped from doing harm in whatever way possible. Their power needs to be stripped away. Make them unemployable. Make them ostracized from all supports. Make people unwilling to rent to them, unwilling to provide services, unwilling to assist them. Take away their weapons. Physically stop them from harming others. Make them ashamed and afraid to ever show their festering nazi faces anywhere. Leave them helpless and alone.

All this. This is, in my book, dealing with enemies non-violently and mercifully. Lack of mercy would be kangaroo courts, enslavement, or summary execution – in other words, treating them the way they would treat us.

Maybe, if someone is feeling particularly merciful, give them an opportunity to renounce their old ways and take up the cause against their former brethren. Though, honestly? I wouldn’t trust them. Maybe someone else will, though.

Nor would I. There’s a difference between being merciful and naively trusting the supposedly repentant.

Catalpa
Catalpa
1 year ago

Hm, I suppose the conflict between us lies in the interpretation we have of the word “mercy”, then. Because I will bet good money that, if/when the nazis ever face even a portion of the comeuppance that I outlined in my previous post, they’ll be wailing and begging for mercy within the hour. And, like Alan said, they’ll be granted no mercy from anyone who has even the slightest inkling of how fast the nazis will revert back to form if they’re granted reprieve.

Pie
Pie
1 year ago

@Catalpa

And, like Alan said, they’ll be granted no mercy from anyone who has even the slightest inkling of how fast the nazis will revert back to form if they’re granted reprieve.

That probably isn’t as encouraging as you’d like it to be.

Catalpa
Catalpa
1 year ago

Hmm? Which part isn’t encouraging? The implication that nazis will go right back to harming others the second they feel that it is safe to do so, or the implication that not everyone who opposes the nazis will realize this? Granted, neither are very desirable things, and unfortunately I do not believe either are false. The former, well, we have plenty of evidence catalogued on this very site.

The latter, yeah, I would have liked to end that sentence with just “they’ll be granted no mercy”, unappended. But too many people seem to be squeamish about making the nazis uncomfortable (far more than they seem to be concerned about the victims of those nazis being uncomfortable), so…

lkeke35
lkeke35
1 year ago

I want to focus on all this “triggering” that people like that are gleefully chuckling about all the time. I wonder what all that will mean to a future generation of millenials (and under) who have been horribly traumatized by all this cackling cruelty.

I know that I’ve been experiencing a great deal of emotional fatigue and all this “nasty, triggering bullsht” is part of the reason why. JEEBUS, , but I’m just fckling TIRED!!! I’m just fckling tired of White people right now. Not all of them, but enough of them that I wish that every single person in those tweets, their friends, family and loved ones, were swept from the face of the Earth in a strong hot wind!. I’m not normally a vindictive person, but I’m telling you, I’m so very very gotdamned tired of these people. Every day brings some new fresh shit they’re tracking all over the internet.

So, I’d hate to know what it’s like for marginalized people suffering from various mental illnesses like depression and anxiety. How y’all holding up? (If you need virtual hugs or puppies, lemme know, cuz dayyum!)Psychiatrists have already said they’ve experienced a spike in the number of patients they’ve been seeing since Trump got in office. And this kinda sht, retraumatizing sexual assault victims, does not help.

I just want to say, that the time for them celebrating themselves will be over soon. They’re gonna pay the price for this. I don’t know what it is they’re sowing because I don’t know the future, but it’s gonna be really really bad, because Regimes like this don’t last. There’s gonna becrepurcussions. A backlash to the traumatic backlash were going through now.

In these tweets, in social media, all over the internet, a new generation is truly seeing the true and ugly faces of their friends and family and coworkers, of white supremacy and cruelty and evil, and I’m trying not to get demoralized by watching a subsection of Americans happily, nay gleefully, running towards being their worse possible version of a human life. I’m trying to keep my eye on the “long game”.

But I worry about how the trauma of this time period is going to play out in the next few decades as the Millenials age. How will it manifest? And what will that mean for us as a nation?