Wednesday, March 01, 2017

Holy Shit! Some Lady Put Her Feet On A Couch!

Look, I get it: you hate Trump. I hate Trump. Lots of people hate Trump. Hell, if we count the entire world, it's probably true that the majority of people hate Trump. Heck, I wouldn't be too surprised if a majority of Americans hate Trump. He's a white supremacist, a moron, and most definitely a jagoff.

But! That doesn't mean it's cool to just throw every possible negative thing about Trump and his cronies against the wall in the mad hope that something will stick.

This isn't coming from some misguided notion to respect the office of the Presidency or be fair to Trump or any of that other milquetoast centrist shit people keep coming up with. Rather, it's about strategy and recognizing the fact that opposing this dude will require some effort and discipline.

The current hubbub over Kellyanne Conway being photographed sitting with her feet tucked underneath her on a couch in the Oval Office is a perfect example of what I'm talking about here. People are freaking out like she murdered a baby and bathed in its blood, not sat awkwardly on some fancy furniture.

For one, here's literally dozens of pictures of Obama putting his feet up on the furniture in the Oval Office, which somehow did not draw the same level of condemnation from people freaking out right now. But more important than who has or who has not put their feet on furniture, this is not something to be concerned about. Because, and I genuinely cannot believe I have to point this out, the reason the Trump administration poses such a threat is not because of their disrespect for furniture. Making any criticism about Trump's team hinge on such a superficial (and come the fuck on, completely meaningless) action only serves to legitimate them.

This odd freakout is wrong-headed for the same reason it's completely moronic for people to reply to exhortations to give Trump a chance with some version of the faux-witty rejoinder of "Oh, just like you gave Obama a chance?" Because, again, opposition to Trump is not because the other side was mean to the Democratic president, so now we all get to be mean to the Republican president.

Engaging in petty squabbles like this serves to legitimate the Trump administration, because it gives credence to the notion that "both sides do it." Our opposition to Trump is nothing like the Tea Party's opposition to Obama -- they opposed him because he's Black and they think he's a Muslim, we oppose Trump because his cabinet is stuffed full of ardent white supremacists and he's openly courted a growing fascist movement.

Those two things are not equal.

But when you equate them by pointing out the Tea Party did the "same" thing, or focus on completely meaningless superficial things like the way a woman sat once, you're building a narrative that the opposition to Trump is due nothing more than the fact that he has the wrong party affiliation, and the demonstrations are nothing more than the predictable anger of the losing side of the election. This is what allows America's desperately-seeking-the-middle-and-objectivity media to normalize Trump's actions -- sure, they draw massive protests, but lots of people didn't like Obama, either. It's just the way shit goes!

I mean, look, if you want to clown on Conway for sitting awkwardly, fine whatever, I'm sure she's heard worse. But quit trying to make this out to be some giant scandal. This is like complaining that Hitler drank shitty beer. Yeah, drinking shitty beer is a dumb thing to do, but that's not what was bad about Hitler. We've got a woman happy to go on television while spouting obvious lies and framing them as "alternative facts" while giving cover to the closest America has had to a genuine fascist threat in decades if not ever, and we've got half the internet freaking out about how she sits on a couch.

I just...I mean...come on. I don't know how to end this post other than with a series of bewildered ellipses as I struggle to put into words how idiotic this whole "scandal" is. But for what it's worth, I've written this all while sitting politely in a desk chair with both of my feet planted firmly on the floor, so you can take my word for it...

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