Saturday, October 8, 2016

"Grab them by the pussy" and other Trump-isms

When I was a teenager I spent a lot time in locker rooms (tennis, football, wrestling) and heard some pretty vile talk that was similar  Trump's hot mic conversation. Usually these things were said by the kind of punks, scrubs, fuckmuppets, and cocksplats who got their ass beat on the regular by the team captains and the actual leaders. They would say or do something repulsive, some would laugh, some would insult the person right back to undercut them. But the real response wasn't in words. It was in action and in a certain type of herd thinking that was non-verbal and instinctively primitive. Some times the beat downs would start with a slap to the back of the head or whaling on their backs to humiliate them in front of others so they would be put back in their place. Other times you would put the ass-kickings into a savings account with a simple nod or look amongst others that said 'this guy is gonna get his ass kicked. Trust.' And then at a certain improvised moment, something in the group would just 'click' and the offending boy would find themselves getting a critical beatdown.

Locker rooms are cruel and stupid in many aspects. But the flipside of this is that I have never experienced the kind of visceral, masculine, unspoken, synchronicity of justice that a morally-aligned locker room can offer against bullies. This morning it feels like something has 'clicked' among Republicans. To the rest of us, we've just been banking this ass-kicking for a long time and intend on spending it in the voting booth. But keep some of that 'beat down' in the bank for after November, when we have to dismantle the party that enabled a misogynistic, tax-cheating, racist, rape-y, sociopath con artist. The real challenge is recognizing that Trump's ascent is a symptom of a systemic failure in our society and in each of us. 

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