Day 672 Friday November 9, 2018 919 Days to Go
I made it to my first protest in thirty nine years. It was everything I expected. It had that lovely disorganized feel to it. First off the place had been moved, which was fortunate because the first place picked was under construction. There was nowhere to assemble. I finally found the other location and drove by to see a small band of souls standing forlonely on the sidewalk. Trying to park my car at the closest available lot was impossible because all the spaces not taken had traffic cones in front of them and there were three or maybe five motorcycle cops there. ( To translate back to the 60’s “the man” was ready to come down on the situation. )
I parked at the next lot one street down. Five bucks – one hour – not bad. I took my sign out. It’s a thing of beauty. Made from a recently acquired greenhouse steel semi hoop, which before you bend it is a straight dual steel rod with lateral supports. I used part of the box it came in to fashion my signs. Likening it in my mind to a Roman military standard with “TRUMP” on the top where the Roman SPQR would have gone. Below that in descending order was “TRAITOR”, “LIAR”, “THIEF.” I only wanted to hit a few highlights.
As I walked to the assembly point I was joined by a woman going there as well. Her name was Jeannie and she was a self described crazy dog lady. I, of course, had to see a picture of her dogs – rescue – of course. There was a cat in the middle of the picture. So she was also a crazy cat lady, but she played that down. By the time we got to the assembly point there were about one hundred people congregated. Some had signs they were holding up for the passing traffic to see. All were hand done. None of them looked like the pre-printed stuff of a Trump rally.
There was a MAGA sign ( Mueller Ain’t Going Away ) Why? Is there another meaning for MAGA?
We milled around and chatted with others. The crowd grew to perhaps two hundred when a conga line formed that was led by a very musically inclined black man who got the crowd chanting in a call and response mode, reminding me of the videos of the Occupy movement.
“We Demand to Know the Truth!”
“Whittaker Should Recuse” and many others over the course of the time I was there.
The conga line got the rest of the crowd going.
The line would march down to the end of the block, turn around and come back. Every time they went to the far end of the block our chanting faded away, only to be renewed when they came back.
At some point a car stopped and someone got out with four cases of half bottles of water and a bowl of bananas, which they put on the half wall behind the sidewalk. Yum, bananas and water! I don’t know. It didn’t make sense, and it did. Meanwhile the chanting continued.
By now the crowd had grown to 250. Or so I told Jeannie with a “I’’m pretty good at estimating crowd size” thrown in. (and I am!)
The weirdest thing was people taking pictures of my sign. They would stand right in front of me, three feet away, not say a thing, focus on me and my lovely sign, take a picture, and move on. Even the local news camera guy did it (channel six). It reminded me of the youtube video of the guy taking pictures of girls in their bikinis on a beach, standing right there in front of them, impervious to the little girls trying to swat him away.
The crowd was polite. It was a mixture of ages, races, and -how do you say?- economic levels. There was a blind man and a guy in a wheel chair and what appeared to me to be a homeless guy who stumbled into the proceedings.
The chanting was fading. I was getting cold. I told Jeannie I was leaving. She said she was too. I gave her a ride to her apartment a few blocks away.
On the way home I listened to the second episode of Bagman by Rachel Maddow. It tells the story of the downfall of Spiro Agnew. He was a bully who liked to jab at the press, and people who disagreed with him. His base of supporters loved it. He was also taking envelopes of cash. He virulently denied any wrong doing and lashed out at those who were accusing him. His supporters loved him.
It made me think about the phenomena of the bully. A bully can intimidate another person; a weaker person, either physically or perhaps one without the quick response wherewithal to be able to defend themselves fast enough. What is part of that phenomena is the hangers on to the bully. They always seem to delight in the plight of the person being picked on, as if glad it’s not them and knowing it could be. That’s the thing, it could be them. Yet, they resist acknowledging that. It is because they, like the bully, lack courage. It takes courage to stand up to a bully, to call out the bully. The danger is that you are thus singling yourself out to be next, and that is what they fear the most.
The bully likes an audience. Someone to encourage and justify the actions being taken.
Rarely do they get called out. Trump did at the U.N. when his braggadocio got laughed at. Agnew got his too, somewhat. There was a forty page indictment of conspiracy, bribery, extortion, and tax fraud. He got to plead no contest to one charge of tax evasion and had to pay a ten thousand dollar fine (less than what he took in from his illegal activities in a month!) and resign as Vice-President.
He was a crook, a bully, and a liar. Among other things, but his supporters loved him. He told it like it is! He insults the press and his opponents! He’s a man! He’s a crook, a liar, and a bully. Those who supported him were no better.
Mueller Ain’t Going Away.
919 Days to Go
PS My new found friends.
PPS The new acting AG, Mat Whittaker, whose last job was working for a patent scam business can not Constitutionally be the acting AG. There’s this thing called the Constitution that forbids it. Picky, I know, but anyone in a principal job, as defined by the Constitution must be approved by the Senate. Even if you are in the position as “acting.” Sorry Matty. Rule of law and all that. Bye-bye.
Oh Donnie, didn’t think that through? Why would he start now? Too bad. Maybe, Rod Rosenstein will have to take over until a new AG can be appointed and confirmed by the Senate? Just sayin’
Oh, and Ms “I dye my nose hair” Karen Handler lost her congressional seat after all the votes were counted.
And in Arizona the senate race? They forgot to count 432.000 votes on election night when the Republican claimed victory. Those 432,000 ballots were from a strongly Democratic area, and there’s another strongly Democratic area they didn’t count the votes either.
And in the Georgia Governor’s race, the Republican nominee has claimed victory and tried to begin moving into the state house. Except there was a law suit saying he couldn’t do that because he couldn’t as Secretary of State validate his own election to Governor. so he resigned as Sec. of State and tried to move in. Whoa buddy. Now you have to wait. It’s not been certified and there is a minor problem with a bunch of ballots damaged by a hurricane that haven’t been counted, from a very Democratic area. Not to mention the over 700,000 people you kicked off the voting rolls.