Malacandra.me

The left is very shrill

The left is very shrill

by digby

Nancy LeTourneau at the Washington Monthly has written an excellent post examining this forming consensus among the Villagers that the Democrats are in big trouble because their voters are so angry --- and that's just off-putting to the Real Americans who matter in this country.


As the 2016 presidential election was getting underway, here is how the New York Times described what was going on:
They are angry at a political system they see as rigged. They feel squeezed by immigration, or the power of big banks. They sense that America is heading in the wrong direction, but emphatically believe only their candidate has the strength and vision to change things. 
The voters driving two of the more remarkable movements of this election cycle — for Donald J. Trump and Senator Bernie Sanders — share striking similarities. Both groups are heavily white, more male than female, and both are fueled partly by people who, in interviews, express distrust of their parties and the other candidates, especially Hillary Clinton.
That proved to be true throughout the election because the “heavily white, more male than female” voters were indeed angry.

The election was followed by an obsession among reporters, pundits, and political scientists attempting to document just what it was that Trump supporters were so angry about. No one can dispute the fact that the train Donald Trump rode to victory was one of tapping into white male anxiety. Democrats have been lectured constantly about the need to empathize with their anger.

As we head into the 2018 midterms, it’s Democrats—more of whom are women and people of color—that are anxious and afraid of what is happening to this country under the Trump administration. All of the sudden we’re hearing lectures on civility and warnings about how anger is divisive. Here’s Michael Scherer on that:

Growing liberal agitation over a pivotal Supreme Court retirement and a simmering crisis about immigrant child separation have left Democratic leaders scrambling to keep the political outrage they’d counted on to fuel midterm election wins from becoming a liability for the party.
That raises an obvious question: who gets permission to be angry in America? Rebecca Traister answered with an article titled: “The Summer of Rage.”

White men are at the center, our normative citizen, despite being only around a third of the nation’s population. Their outsize power is measurable by the fact that they still — nearly 140 years after the passage of the 15th Amendment, not quite 100 years after the passage of the 19th Amendment, and more than 50 years after the passage of the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts — hold roughly two-thirds of elected offices in federal, state, and local legislatures. We have had 92 presidents and vice-presidents. One-hundred percent of them have been men, and more than 99 percent white men. 
But it’s not just in the numbers; it’s also in the quotidian realities of living in this country. The suffocating power of our minority rule is evidenced by the fact that we’re always busy worrying about the humanity — the comfort and the dignity — of white men, at the same time discouraging disruptive challenge to their authority.
I am reminded of something Adam Serwer wrote recently.
An era in which Americans are supposedly exhausted with political correctness is thus defined by the acute political sensitivities and persecution complexes of white voters who object if things they do and say are described as racist, even as the bodies pile up in the background.
Contrasting the demands to do away with “political correctness” with the recent calls for civility underscores the point.

No kidding. The angry Trump voter is a fucking icon in this country. We hang on their every word, worry incessantly over their needs and wants and deepest anxieties. Somebody denies Sarah Sanders a side salad and out come the smelling salts.

Read the whole thing. There's a lot more to it including a good discussion of Rebecca Traister's great piece called Summer of Rage.

It's quite shrill. As it should be. smile