Gendering a Traitor

HANDOUT PHOTO:
Ashli Babbitt, 35, was shot and killed in the Capitol Wednesday.
(Courtesy of Timothy McEntee)

When women fought and won the right to fight, it wasn’t to then be romanticized as “poor her.”  She got killed. No.  She — Ashli Babbitt —  was trained by the U.S. military.

She knew the difference between the police — who shoot to kill in America — and enemy combatants. There’s no exception for the U.S. Capitol Police.  So stop gendering the woman’s right to die – by combat — her choice when she stormed the Capitol as a traitor.

It’s shameless for the GOP to invoke “due process” now.  So, Senator Ted Cruz is trying to steal the flag and the constituents who followed Trump.  Hopefully, he’ll thrown out by Texans who are now forming a blue wave in their state.

President Thomas Jefferson’s phrase “we are all Americans” came only after his election to office when he buried the Federalists — temporarily — and caught his own party wave as Jeffersonian Republicans captured both sides.  The United States never planned on having political parties — and their existence is a constant extralegal — potentially disruptive — disastrous force.  The GOP now can finally grab their party back from Trump.  What’s stopping them?  (Oh, the 75 million mob-sters — a gang of misogynistic white supremacists men and women — like Ashli they want to shamefully use and abuse to take power. Mob-ocracy.  What a silly word.)

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These posts reflect my original interest in American politics, history and political theory broadly cast. I’m interested in exploring the nexus between American Political Development (APD) and American Political Thought (APT) as well as American Studies and Africana Studies or all regional “studies,” including working with Gajo Petrovic a leader in Praxis published in the former Yugoslavia.

This was the reason I stayed in politics for my Ph.D. rather than leaving for law school, history, sociology or business school as faculty kept trying to convince me to do in undergraduate and graduate school after spending a gap year reading Heidegger’s Being and Time with University of Zagreb philosophy professor Gajo Petrovic, who spent time at IAS and working with the author of the former Yugoslavian Constitution, the one that stuck — written in the 1970s.  The latter scholar attended the Sorbonne in the 1930s and ended his career as the Dean of the best law school in Belgrade.  In the 1980s the Fulbright funded his scholarship on Jefferson at Claremont Graduate School.  I worked with him for my B.A. thesis on Marx, existentialism, phenomenology and Yugoslavian self-management supervised by Claremont Men’s College’s public law professor Winston Fisk.

Waiting for the 5:30 AM news to drop

I realize that A.O.C. tells it like it is. And putting it in a perverse way, we can ask if Trump’s 750 dollars he surrenders on federal court taxes or the I.R.S. will be the last straw? I dunno.

image of old building on american banknote
Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

I did get one of my friends to laugh when I suggested we all pitch in — a 10-person pod — and pay his taxes this year. Think about it, wouldn’t that be fun?

Another way to look at it is that for all the white supremacy that is being mentioned and discussed, in the end, Trump has not passed any anti-Civil Rights legislation. To be sure, he has destroyed the lives of so many children and their parents who cross borders. But he has passed no legislation other than tax reform.

Yet do “the people” care? Trump will most likely prevail with getting his Supreme Court nominee on the bench. This is another nail in the coffin of a country that has lacked a national agenda, not just national leaders who reflect what most people want.

At the beginning of the millennium, the Rehnquist Court rolled back the extent of federal authority with little notice. The Court limited the central government’s reach, giving more rights to people wanting guns but not helping those PwD (read: people with disabilities) and women who need protection from violence.

Putting her on the bench will have a long-lasting effect, long past my years. But as A.O.C. just said, maybe we “deserve to decline.”

As one vote of 435, she has little power other than as a national spokesperson. She unpacks issues like intersectionality very well and has enraged the “progressive” Democrats as much as or more than Republicans. A.O.C. is closing the age gap.

So it seems to me that Separation of Powers no longer works. There are not three equal branches sharing powers. Nor is there one branch, like a unitary executive that can get much done. What we can see looking at the 20th and 21st centuries is that the U.S. government functions well only if a President is a national representative and does not rig the Supreme Court.

This joining of the Presidency and the Judiciary is toxic. The President should lead Congress or defer to Congress without the Judiciary striking down legislation on issues like gun control, violence against women, and protection of persons with disabilities.#

Bound West Three Years Ago

Eugenics 101 more than a centennial earlier, now that we’ve Eugenics.2.o under Anti-Presidency President Trump. Visiting Yellowstone brought back all the memories about how many presidents, let alone social movement leaders from Teddy Roosevelt to Oliver Wendall Holmes (Buck v. Bell, “Three generations of imbeciles is enough” in 1927 and Margaret Sanger of Planned Parent (sterilize the poor immigrants) to Charlotte Perkins Gilman short story – Yellow Wall Paper pitting progressive to radical white women against women of all colors.

Buying and reading “Alice Roosevelt Longgworth, from White House Princess to Washington Power Broker” by Stacy Cordery got me thinking about how her bitterness was reserved not for eugenics but her father on a personal level. Surprise, surprise TR and his New Nationalism were reminiscent of the Anti-Presidency President Trump. Trump’s new nationalism is a bit scarier. While his neglect of Alice reveals his sexism, misogyny and “tough” love which is really code for hating all those who are weak – and not privileged (i.e. SLAMs, SCAMs and SLIMs) Indeed Mary Trump gives evidence of her Uncle Donald’s perversity since in the way he treated his mom, who broke bones all the times, spent alot of it in a hospital bed in their house and in hospitals shows where all his ugly neos and isms come from. Teddy, at least, got his own body in shape. Is this better, I wonder?

Trump’s People’s Park

Where would our former New Yorker, or any of his loved ones, take a turn, looking for a bit of freedom of — no, oops — peace of mind? Lafayette Park? Church? A temple, or how about a mosque, a revival tent where they do indeed speak in tongues (not some Hollywood version of it, I mean the real Weedpatch kinda thing)? It certainly wouldn’t be my mom’s alma m. on that awful Left Coast. Nor even inland, where extended “folks” got Ronald Reagan to take a turn and visit, less than 100 miles from Los Angeles, and 30 minutes off the 99.

It would be the whitest park of all, in NYC. Now I could go gather data. Instead, I went straight to the source: CPPD (one Central Park PD), not to be confused with all the other PDs, even in NYC.

Let me digress one more minute — did you know there are fewer McDonald’s in the United States of America than there are PDs? I know at least where the two McD’s are within 3 miles of my apartment, but not where 2 or 4 of my PDs are. (13,800 McDonald’s and 18,000 police departments.). This is of course why it’s easier to reform McDonald’s than law and order, let alone the police.

Here’s what I was: hot and bothered, bothered enough to go ask not one person in one building in the park but three, to go find one of the Central Park’s PDs (and of course get thrown out for asking for badges and IDs and names. I did get two of three). And here’s what the gentlemen officers told me (after the white one called me a racist, since I referred to the people outside that I counted as whizzing by with the fewest masks on, or should I say covering their noses while perspirating).

Clearly, this poor officer has not heard of whiteness, white supremacy, or even Zadie Smith’s white labels in one of her novels. More importantly, all three men tried to tell me that Central Park has no rule about masks, only social distancing. So we can run/walk/jog/cycle in a space that holds very few people following social distancing. Sweat is flying, mouths open, moisture of all kinds, and yet Mayor de Blasio has the gall to ask us not to wear masks and social distance in outdoor funerals and demonstrations? Is this because Central Park is not only white, it’s Trump’s Peoples’ Park?